Banro Corporation has announced the first gold production at its wholly-owned Twangiza gold mine in South Kivu province, Democratic Republic of the Congo ("DRC").
Twangiza is Banro's first gold mine along the 210 km Twangiza-Namoya gold belt where the Company has to date delineated five projects within the 13 fully licensed mining concessions.
"Once we had taken the decision in mid-2009 to commence construction of the oxide project at Twangiza, we embarked on an extremely aggressive development schedule that was designed to get this Company into cash before the end of 2011," commented CEO, Simon Village. "The fact that we have completed this objective on a tight time and capital schedule is a true testament to the dedication and experience of all of our management and staff in the DRC, as well as the unwavering support and commitment of the executive and board, and the support provided by the Federal and Provincial levels of Government, and local administrations within the Twangiza area. This significant milestone is something that the whole South Kivu Province should be proud of and not only marks the first new commercial gold mine in the DRC for over 50 years, but it demonstrates what can be achieved when all stakeholders work together."
The Twangiza oxide plant will process the oxide portion of the Twangiza orebody which is expected to recover over 1 million ounces of gold over a seven year period, and will provide the platform to finance the planned growth in gold oxide production through similar low capital expenditure, high value oxide projects along the belt.
To this end, construction preparation has already commenced at Namoya, Banro's second gold project that is scheduled for production in the first quarter of 2013. Two other projects, Lugushwa and Kamituga, are also envisaged to contribute to the planned growth of gold oxide production along this belt.
Additional information with respect to the Company's Twangiza oxide gold project is contained in the technical report of SENET dated March 9, 2011 (as revised on March 24, 2011) and entitled "Economic Assessment NI 43-101 Technical Report, Twangiza Phase 1 Gold Project, South Kivu Province, Democratic Republic of the Congo".