LONDON - Avocet Mining Plc said its first-quarter gold production jumped 64 percent from the year earlier as the first contribution from its Inata mine in Burkina Faso outweighed lower output from South East Asia.

Inata's better than scheduled ramp up means that Avocet's annual production rate has now risen to over 200,000 ounces, said Chief Executive Jonathan Henry.

Gold production surged to 44,877 ounces from 27,374 ounces in the year-earlier period.

However, excluding Inata, which had not reached commercial production in the quarter, output fell 5 percent and overall cash costs rose 21 percent to $735 an ounce.

Inata produced 9,166 ounces of gold in April.

We are targeting further improvements in production as Inata continues to ramp up to full design capacity, and also in resource expansion, said Henry.

(Reporting by Julie Crust; editing by Kate Holton)