Miner's shares dip as transport suspended

ALAN WOOD
Last updated 16:18 25/02/2013

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Shares in OceanaGold Corp fell more than 4 per cent after the gold miner announced the transportation of copper-gold concentrate at its Didipio mine in the Philippines had been temporarily suspended.

OceanaGold said in the Philippines today that it was in discussions with various government departments over interpretations of tax exemptions pertaining to OceanaGold's Financial and Technical Assistance Agreement (FTAA).

Didipio was the first project to be built and start operations in the Philippines under the FTAA structure, the miner said.

"Due to these clarifications on tax exemptions being sought, some of the trucks used for transporting concentrate are being held by local government agencies and thus transportation of copper-gold concentrate has been temporarily suspended," OceanaGold said.

"While these discussions take place, mining and processing operations continue."

In late December OceanaGold said it expected to boost its gold production by 25-40 per cent in 2013 as the Didipio operation came on stream and while it lowered costs.

OceanaGold runs two South Island operations and one start-up in the Philippines, and forecasts production of between 285,000 and 325,000 ounces of gold in 2013.

The company produced its first copper-gold concentrate from Didipio in December.

Today it said the ramp-up of the process plant at Didipio continued to track well.

"To date, approximately 2500 tonnes of copper-gold concentrate has been delivered to port and in excess of an additional 2500 tonnes has been produced and is awaiting transport from the mine site," the company said in a statement.

Shares in OceanaGold were 12 cents or 4.26 per cent weaker at $2.70 in afternoon trade on the NZX.

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- BusinessDay.co.nz

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