Namibia’s second gold mine, which is still in the construction phase, poured its first gold ahead of schedule, the company announced on Monday.
“The B2Gold Corporation is pleased to announce that the first gold pour has occurred at the Otjikoto gold mine ahead of schedule,” president and chief executive officer Clive Johnson said.
The first gold ingot was supposed to be poured by Monday, but occurred three days earlier.
The Otjikoto gold mine is 300km north-east of Windhoek, near Otavi.
It is 90 percent owned by the Canadian mining company B2Gold Corporation and 10 percent by EVI Mining, a Namibian empowerment group.
Construction for the ND2.4 billion open-pit mine started in January 2013.
Otjikoto was expected to produce between 140,000 to 150,000 ounces of gold in 2015 at a cash operating cost of around US500 per ounce, the company said in a statement.
Once the planned mill expansion was completed in the third quarter of 2015, annual gold production was expected to increase to around 200,000 ounces annually.