B2Gold's Otjikoto Mine saw a solid first quarter, producing 41,749 ounces of gold, 3% (1,363 ounces) above budget, as processed tonnes, grade, and recovery were all slightly better than budget.
The company in comparison to the first quarter of 2019, gold production was significantly higher by 28% (9,037 ounces), due to higher grade ore from the Wolfshag Pit (ore production from the pit resumed in the second half of 2019 following pre-stripping), they said in an announcement.
During the first quarter of 2020, the Otjikoto Mine processed 0.86 million tonnes (compared to budget of 0.85 million tonnes and 0.80 million tonnes in the first quarter of 2019) at an average grade of 1.54 g/t (compared to budget of 1.51 g/t and 1.29 g/t in the first quarter of 2019) and average gold recoveries of 98.4% (compared to budget of 98.0% and 98.6% in the first quarter of 2019).
The mine's consolidated all-in sustaining costs for the first quarter of 2020 were $850 (approx N$15, 708) per ounce sold (Q1 2019 - $829 (N$15, 319) per ounce sold), well-below budget by $93 (approx N$1, 718) per ounce (10%), mainly due to higher-than-budgeted gold production, lower-than-budgeted cash operating costs and sustaining capital expenditures ($2 million- N$36.9 million) as a result of timing differences.
Capital expenditures in the first quarter of 2020 totalled $12 million (approx N$221 million), including $10 million (approx N$184 million) for pre-stripping in the Otjikoto Phase 3 and Wolfshag Phase 3 Pits.
Based on current assumptions, for full-year 2020, the Otjikoto Mine is forecast to produce between 165,000 and 175,000 ounces of gold, from the Otjikoto and Wolfshag Pits.