The Scandinavian-based Ethiopian gold exploration and boutique mining company today announced that its mining operations has finally hit the Segele ore body seeing the familiar visible gold that has characterised the exploration phase. After 13 years of relentless exploration and dedication, and 12 months since breaking ground, the company has successfully reached the Segele gold ore body underground, marking a significant milestone in the company's history.
This achievement also highlights Akobo Minerals as one of few mining companies that have successfully navigated the path from exploration to mining. With an average grade of 22.7 grams of gold per ton of ore, Segele is one of the world's highest concentration gold resources. This high grade translates to remarkably low operating costs, especially noteworthy given the current gold price close to $2,000/oz.
Jørgen Evjen, CEO of Akobo Minerals, expressed, "After first encountering the mineralization in the early part of 2020 and now finally hitting this unique discovery underground, it is a significant moment for our organisation and all our supporters out there. "
He continued, "Only a handful of exploration companies successfully transition into mining operations. Witnessing the ore body and knowing that our processing plant is nearing completion fills me with great hope for the future. It has been a journey marked by hard work and countless challenges, and I am deeply grateful to the entire team for their unwavering dedication."
However, hitting the ore body has been delayed by several months due to rectifying major mistakes by the former contract miner. The knowledge acquired by the Akobo Minerals team during this period will enable more accurate extraction estimates from the underground mine and refined production schedules for the plant.
Evjen added, "With the lessons learned from overcoming challenges, we are better positioned to make precise production estimates and schedules. The commissioning of the main plant will kick off as soon as we extract meaningful material with gold from the mine. Further details will be provided in the Q3 presentation."
The next step for Akobo Minerals is to commence production from the pilot plant, which is already operational. In that regard the company together with the Ministry of Mines plan an official opening of the Segele mine with top federal officials, pending their availability.
Akobo Minerals is poised for the next phase of its journey, with the successful identification of the ore body marking a crucial step toward becoming a key player in the Ethiopian mining industry.