Polyus Starts Commissioning Natalka Mine in Russia’s Far East

Construction begins on the Natalka processing plant, which will have a capacity of 10 million mt/y.
PISC Polyus, Russia’s largest gold producer, has launched the start of hot commissioning of its Natalka mine in the Magadan region of Russia’s Far East. Russian President Vladimir Putin participated in a launching ceremony in early September via video-link from the Eastern Economic Forum then in progress in Vladivostok. Following completion of ramp-up in late 2018, Natalka is scheduled to produce in the range of 420,000 ounces per year (oz/y) to 470,000 oz/y of gold over a mine life of more than 30 years.

Natalka currently has 16 million oz of gold in JORC-compliant reserves and 34 million oz in resources. Mining is done by conventional open-pit shovel-and-truck operations. Mining activity was relaunched in January. The Natalka deposit was previously mined from 2013 through 2014.

At design capacity, the Natalka processing plant will process 10 million mt/y of ore, making it the largest plant of its type in Russia. Major processing equipment includes the primary crusher, crushed ore conveyor, primary SAG mill, main ball mill, gravity concentrators and electrowinning cells. Polyus has finalized delivery of all processing equipment. Major equipment vendors are on site to assist with the commissioning. Construction of power facilities and auxiliary infrastructure is ongoing.

“We are delighted to announce the long-anticipated launch of Natalka, Polyus’ main greenfield project and the largest gold mine in the Russian Far East,” said Polyus CEO Pavel Grachev. “Natalka will provide up to 470,000 oz of additional production annually and support our targeted increase in overall gold production to approximately 2.8 million oz/y by 2019. The project will also foster economic growth in the region through the creation of 2,000 jobs at the mine and the processing plant.”

As featured in Womp 2017 Vol 10 - www.womp-int.com