Australian gold miner Resolute Mining said it made a 700,000-ounce gold discovery at its Tabacoroni joint venture with Etruscan Resources that would boost output from its Syama mine in Mali by about 100,000 ounces a year.
Guy Riopel, director general of Resolute's Mali operations, said on Friday that the company planned to expand its processing plant at Syama by 2012 in order to exploit the Tabacoroni reserves.
We will transport the ore by road to the Syama plant. Proven reserves so far totalled 700,000 ounces, which could mean an additional 100,000 ounces in annual production, Riopel told Reuters in an interview on Friday.
Resolute previously said it targeted average production of 250,000 ounces a year from Syama over the anticipated 21-year life of the mine.
It was not immediately clear whether Resolute will officially boost that target to 350,000 ounces a year.
The mine produced 80,000 ounces in 2010, the year it was launched, in what the company said was its early development phase. Riopel said the mine has entered a commercial production phase with a target output of 200,000 ounces this year.
Mali is Africa's third-largest gold producer after South Africa and Ghana. Resolute, the Australian Securities Exchange's second-largest listed gold miner, has invested about $400 million on the mine, which it bought from Randgold Resources in 2003.