Lihir Gold Limited

Lihir Gold Limited

December 13, 2007 10:17 ET

Lihir Gold Ltd.: Update on 2007 Production

BRISBANE, AUSTRALIA--(Marketwire - Dec. 13, 2007) - Lihir Gold Ltd. (TSX:LGG)(ASX:LGL)(NASDAQ:LIHR) ("LGL") has reduced its production forecast for 2007 by 7 percent to 700,000 ounces.

While the Company's operational performance this quarter has continued to build on the strong improvements implemented over the past two years, with record material movements and autoclave throughputs in the current year, the gold grade of ore being fed to the autoclaves has been below plan. This has been primarily due to:

- recent unplanned maintenance shutdowns of the primary crusher; and

- ore feed to the mill being harder than expected, restricting milling throughput

This has necessitated the requirement to blend softer material through the secondary crushing system to maintain feed to the autoclaves. This material has had a significantly lower gold grade.

In addition, the recently commissioned oxygen plant has experienced a compressor failure reducing the amount of ore that can be oxidised. This plant is unlikely to be back on line before the New Year.

Despite these temporary setbacks, LGL remains on track to achieve record production in 2007. This will be followed by another record in 2008, due to a full year's operation of the flotation circuit expansion at Lihir, and the commencement of production at the company's Ballarat operation, which remains on schedule for the second half of the year.

"The improved operational performance, together with the expansion projects being planned, and the elimination of all hedging earlier this year, will position LGL for a strong improvement in operating cashflows in 2008 and beyond," said CEO Arthur Hood.

Contact Information

  • Lihir Gold Ltd.
    (Brisbane): Joe Dowling
    GM Corporate Affairs
    Mobile: 0421 587 755
    Lihir Gold Ltd.
    (Toronto): Greg W Taylor
    (905) 337-7673