PJSC Polyus ("Polyus" or the "Company") today releases its 2H 2022 and FY 2022 operating results.
2H 2022 HIGHLIGHTS
- Volumes of ore mined increased 21% to 34,184 thousand tonnes, compared to the first half of 2022, reflecting higher ore volumes mined at Olimpiada and Blagodatnoye.
- Volumes of ore processed amounted to 24,542 thousand tonnes, a 3% increase on the first half of 2022, driven by a seasonal improvement of heap leaching operations at Kuranakh.
- Doré gold output stood at 1,382 thousand ounces in the second half of 2022, up 16% compared to the first half of 2022.
- Total gold output amounted to 1,474 thousand ounces, a 38% increase compared to the first half of 2022, reflecting a higher gold production across all operating assets of the group. This also includes higher volumes of gold in flotation concentrate produced in the second half of 2022 (80koz vs 4.0koz in 1H 2022).
FY 2022 HIGHLIGHTS
- Volumes of ore mined in 2022 decreased 7% year-on-year to 62,333 thousand tonnes, due to lower ore volumes mined at Blagodatnoye, Natalka and Verninskoye. This was partially offset by higher volumes of ore mined at Olimpiada.
- Volumes of ore processed amounted to 48,319 thousand tonnes, remaining almost flat on the previous year.
- Recovery rate decreased to 81.8%, compared to 82.7% in 2021, mainly due to lower head grades.
- Doré gold output totalled 2,568 thousand ounces, down 6% year-on-year.
- Total gold output declined to 2,541 thousand ounces, compared to 2,717 thousand ounces in 2021, driven by:
- Lower production of refined gold at Olimpiada due to temporary decline in grades in ore processed. The Company’s management intentionally decided to downscale excavation volumes versus the initial mining calendar accounting for elevated risks of potential disruptions in supply chains for spare parts and mining equipment. This led to a delayed access to high-grade zones of the ore body. The excavation volumes have already been brought back to normal, and some portion of high-grade ore planned for the second half of 2022 will be carried forward to the first half of 2023.
- An anticipated decrease in head grades at Blagodatnoye and Natalka.
- In 2022, the Company sold the total of 2,423 thousand ounces of gold, down 11% from the prior year. A difference between sales and the total gold output mainly reflects the accumulation of gold contained in concentrate produced in the fourth quarter of 2022. Sales of flotation concentrate have been typically lagging behind production for several months. Inventories of concentrate will be sold and reflected in the group’s financials in early 2023.
2023 PRODUCTION GUIDANCE AND ANNOUNCEMENT OF NEW PROJECTS
- Polyus anticipates gold production for the full year of 2023 to reside within the range of 2.8 — 2.9 million ounces. The year-on-year increase in production is expected to be mainly driven by higher grades in ore processed at Olimpiada since Polyus will be mining rich gold-bearing zones of the Vostochny pit.
- Polyus continues development of its previously announced brownfield projects, including Mill-5 construction at Blagodatnoye, which is anticipated to be completed in 2025.
- In addition to the existing project pipeline, Polyus launches 3 new brownfield initiatives:
- Throughput capacity expansion at Kuranakh’ existing heap leaching facilities aimed at increasing capacity from 1.5 million tonnes per annum to 5.0 million tonnes per annum starting from 2025.
- Construction of new 12.5 million tonnes per annum heap leaching facilities at Kuranakh with a scheduled launch in 2026 and the full ramp-up by 2028.
- Introduction of a flotation circuit at Natalka by 2025.
- These projects are expected to add 0.3 — 0.4 million ounces of incremental gold volumes per annum to the group’s gold production on the horizon of 3 — 5 years.
- Additional information on these initiatives will be provided in March 2023 when the Company discloses its financial results for the full year of 2022.
Investor and Media contact
Victor Drozdov, Director Communications & Investor Relations (CIR) Department
Forward looking statements
This announcement may contain "forward-looking statements" concerning Polyus and/or Polyus Group. Generally, the words "will", "may", "should", "could", "would", "can", "continue", "opportunity", "believes", "expects", "intends", "anticipates", "estimates" or similar expressions identify forward-looking statements. The forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements include statements relating to future capital expenditures and business and management strategies and the expansion and growth of Polyus’ and/or Polyus Group’s operations. Many of these risks and uncertainties relate to factors that are beyond Polyus’ and/or Polyus Group’s ability to control or estimate precisely and therefore undue reliance should not be placed on such statements which speak only as of the date of this announcement. Polyus and/or any Polyus Company assumes no obligation in respect of, and does not intend to update, these forward-looking statements, except as required pursuant to applicable law.