The new owner of Saskatchewan’s only gold mine is planning a seven-year, $90 million expansion it hopes will boost production, cut operating costs and extend the operation’s lifespan into the mid-2020s.
SSR Mining Inc.’s planned investment in the Seabee gold operation, which is about 125 kilometres northeast of La Ronge, is “really exciting,” said the president of the Saskatchewan Mining Association.
“I think the $90 million … that they’re looking at really sends a strong signal that they’re looking at re-investing in that whole area for the long-term. It’s really significant,” Pam Schwann said.
SSR Mining acquired the operation — which consists of two underground mines, Seabee and Santoy, and a mill — as part of its $450 million friendly takeover of Saskatoon-based Claude Resources Inc. in May 2016.
The company said in a preliminary economic assessment that the expansion could boost the mine’s annual production by about a third compared to record-setting 2016 levels while cutting operational costs by about nine per cent.
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