StockMarketWire.com - Randgold Resources increased its total attributable mineral resources in 2013 despite depletion from mining in a year that delivered record production.

The company's annual resource and reserve declaration shows attributable resources up by 5% to 28.6 million ounces while reserves, reflecting depletion, decreased by 8% to 15 million ounces.

Randgold reserve and resource management executive Rod Quick said all the group's mines were ramping up both production and grade, which inevitably impacted on its reserve inventory.

"We are confident, however, that we can replenish our reserves through ongoing exploration as well as resource conversion," he said.

"This confidence is based on the robustness of our current five year plan as well as the prospectivity of the regions where we operate, as demonstrated by our growing resources."

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Randgold Resources said it aims to exceed one million ounces of consolidated gold production in 2014 and is closing in on its long term goal of 1.2 million ounces by 2015, chief executive Mark Bristow says in the company's 2013 annual report published today.

In 2013 Randgold increased output by 15% to 910 374 oz at a reduced total cash cost of $715/oz and Bristow said it was targeting a production increase of between 24% and 30% for this year, with costs coming down further to $650-$700 per ounce.

"The growth in production is expected to come from rising grades at the company's flagship Loulo-Gounkoto complex in Mali, improved throughput at Tongon in Côte d'Ivoire, and the first full-year contribution from the recently commissioned Kibali in the Democratic Republic of Congo," Randgold said.

The company's management teams had closely scrutinised all mining plans to ensure that they were both optimal and deliverable, and that all operations would remain profitable at even lower gold prices, CEO Mark Bristow said.

"In the current market, our focus needs to be on profitability and not on maximising reserves," Bristow said.

"The priority is to replenish profitable ounces because we are increasing production as we access higher-grade ores," he said.

"Our objective is also to extend our 5 year rolling business plan to 10 years and l continue to look closely at all our projects against a range of gold price scenarios. In the meantime we have put in place a robust budget for 2014 and kept our five-year forecast intact."

Given Randgold's traditional commitment to growing through discovery and development, it would continue to invest substantially in exploration and had earmarked US$60 million for this purpose in 2014, he said.

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New World Resources confirms a fatality at the Karviná Mine of OKD, a.s., its Czech mining subsidiary. On Thursday 27 March a 42-year-old worker died about 1,000 metres underground.

An investigative committee comprising members of the District Mining Authority in Ostrava, Karviná Mine management, OKD management, the OKD Trade Unions representatives, and the Police of the Czech Republic is now conducting an enquiry into the accident.

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Strategic Natural Resources confirm that talks with a potential strategic investor group are on-going. There was no guarantee that the talks would result in additional funding.

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Savannah Resources has sold its remaining Malian gold exploration permits to AIM-quoted Alecto Minerals Plc following a strategic review of the Company's assets.

The sale was of 100% interest in the Karan and Diatissan gold projects in western Mali. The sale price of £0.25m was to be satisfied by the issue of 20m new shares in Alecto, lifting Savannah's effective shareholding to 17.9%.

Savannah is focussing on evaluating the Jangamo Heavy Mineral Sands Project in Mozambique, which is two broad mineralised zones identified with intercepts of 18m at 3.5% Total Heavy Minerals ('THM'), 24m at 3.2% THM and 10m at 2.2% received.

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Pan African Resources said its board has approved the commencement of construction of the Evander Tailings Retreatment Project, which will recover gold from the retreatment of gold tailings situated at Evander in South Africa's Mpumalanga province.

The ETRP project would increase Evander's gold production with up to 10 000 oz a year at a low cash cost, thereby increasing the profitability of Evander and, consequently, that of Pan African.

"The project will bring to account a portion of the significant tailings resource at Evander and will utilise the current spare capacity of the Kinross metallurgical plant (2.16 million tons per annum)," the company said.

"The success of the ETRP could provide a springboard for an even larger tailings project in the coming years."

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Premier African Minerals said a mineralogical report for the RHA Tungsten Project confirms the predominant tungstate mineral is Wolframite, and that liberation of this material occurs at a fairly coarse grind.

"The report further highlights that recovery of the liberated material, to a final product specification, can be achieved by the use of simple and cost effective gravity separation," the company said in a statement.

The sample head grade of the mineralogical sample was 1.52% WO3. Wolframite was the dominant tungsten bearing mineral with 1.28% of the total sample being wolframite and 0.28% of the sample being scheelite, which occured as a secondary alteration mineral and was slightly finer grained than the wolframite.

Metallurgical test-work was underway and was expected to complete in approximately 14 days.

The mineralogical report allows Premier to provide anticipated product specifications and Premier would now move to finalise off-take agreement negotiations, announced originally in December 2013.

The additional drilling of Lode 2A, as recommended in the Preliminary Economic Assessment, was completed in December 2013.

Assay results from boreholes DD09 to DD14 were released on 13 March 2014. The Lode 2A mineralised zone, the targeted Lode, has also been intersected in boreholes DD15 and DD16. Borehole DD17 did not intersect the Lode and DD18 intersected mineralisation that has been interpreted as footwall veins.

"The current interpretation of DD17 is that the borehole was not drilled deep enough to intersect Lode 2A. Similarly, borehole DD18 clipped the top of Lode 2A. The deposit remains open along strike to the South-West and down-dip."

-- Serabi Gold booked a FY pretax loss of $6.3m, from $4.7m. Revenue was nil. Increases in administrative expenses along with a $1.0m write-off of past exploration costs, from $0.3m, weighed.

"Palito is in production, with full throughputs expected in the second quarter of this year and we have started the initial mine development at our high grade Sao Chico deposits," said CEO Mike Hodgson in a statement.

"Financially, we are in a strong position with no significant borrowings and US$13 million in cash. I am very optimistic about our prospects for 2014."

Serabi Gold is a Brazil-focused gold mining and exploration company.

-- Asia Resource Minerals exceeded its output target but underlying earnings tumbled due to the continued impact of weak thermal coal prices.

Full-year production rose by 11.7% to 23.5mt but underlying earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation fell to $176m in 2013 - down from a restated £321m in 2012.

Revenues fell to $1.4bn - down from $1.5bn - and capital expenditure was substantially reduced: $46m compared with a restated $101m in 2012.

Chief executive Nick von Schirnding said, "I am pleased to report that we exceeded our production target for the year. In the continuing weak environment for thermal coal prices, we remain resolutely focused on cost reduction and asset optimisation.

"We now look forward to maximising the opportunity at PT Berau as we begin a new chapter in the Company's life."

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AIM-listed uranium, thorium, base and precious metals and gemstones explorer and developer LP Hill posts pre-tax losses of £77,000 for the six months to the end of December - up from £48,000 last time.

Non-executive chairman Dr Bernard Olivier said during the period the board continued to assess diligently further potential acquisition opportunities to expand the company's asset portfolio. This included the evaluation of more advanced projects that are either revenue generating or have a clear short-term path towards revenue generation.

And he said the board has also continued to support the company by deferring any fees or salaries for the period.

Olivier said the company still awaited environmental clearances and approvals Madagascan government authorities for the potential phase 2 exploration work programme for the Marodambo project and, in the meantime, the project remained on a care and maintenance footing.

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Alecto Minerals has enhanced its existing Malian gold portfolio, which includes its flagship Kossanto gold project, through the acquisition of NewMines Holdings from Savannah Resources.

NewMines' wholly-owned subsidiary Tobon Tondo controls the prospective 250 sq. km. Karan gold project and the 16 sq. km. Diatissan gold project in western Mali.

The Karan Project is located in a proven gold producing region, in close proximity to significant gold resources, and both historical and current extensive artisanal mining activities underpin the likelihood of the presence of gold within the project's licence area.

Alecto says the transaction is in line with its strategy to build on its existing portfolio of prospective African gold projects and has been achieved at a low cost price of £250,000 to be satisfied wholly through the issue of 20,000,000 new ordinary shares.

Chief executive Mark Jones said: "The acquisition of the Karan project bolsters our existing African gold portfolio, which includes our flagship Kossanto gold project in the same country.

At 250 sq km, the Karan project is a large tenement with excellent geophysical and solid gold anomalies as well as widespread artisanal mining operations.

"In 2011, Newmont Mining Corporation obtained its highest bulk leach extractable gold ('BLEG') results on the Karan project when it undertook regional exploration. Multiple targets have been identified, with two positioned for near term drilling.

"Our existing knowledge of the area, obtained from the management team's previous role in its development, will be highly beneficial and we have identified that RAB drilling, utilising our in-house equipment will best uncover the Karan project's wider potential. In light of Mali having put its recent political challenges behind it, interest in Malian gold assets is now growing and JV opportunities on greenfield projects are improving.

"Accordingly, we look forward to advancing both projects in tandem with Kossanto to best deliver long-term shareholder value."

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DiamondCorp, the southern African diamond development, exploration and mining company, has raised £2.1m through a placing of 41,526,000 new ordinary shares.

The placing, which was oversubscribed, was undertaken with a range of new and existing institutional and private investors in both the UK and South Africa.

The new shares comprise 36,526,000 UK placing shares at a price of 5p each, placed through Panmure Gordon (UK) Limited, and 5,000,000 SA placing shares at a price of ZAR0.90 each - equivalent to 5p based on current exchange rates - subscribed through Sasfin Capital.

The price represents a discount of 7.0% and 10.9% to the closing mid-market price on AIM and AltX, respectively, on 27 March .

The net proceeds- which are expected to be approximately £2.0m - will be used to fund corporate overheads over the next two years and for general working capital purposes.

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FinnAust Mining - previously Centurion Resources - posts a pre-tax loss of £1,470,577 for the six months to the end of December, up from £52,276 a year ago.

The group's net cash balances at 31 December 2013 were £3,234,579 (31 December 2012: £122,981). The group's cash position currently stands at £2.6m.

Chairman Daniel Lougher said: "With a defined, high impact exploration and development strategy in place, a strengthened management team, and a portfolio of highly prospective projects located in close proximity to major historic and current deposits, I believe we are ideally placed for strong growth in 2014 and beyond."

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Coalfield Resources' net assets rose to £55.2m at its 28 December year-end - up from £47.9m in 2012.

Profit from continuing operations rose to £3.3m (2012: £0.3m).

Coalfield Resources is an investment holding company. Its only significant investment is a 24.9% stake in Harworth Estates Property Group Limited in which it takes an active investment management role.

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Berkeley Mineral Resources posts a loss, before exchange translation differences, of £0.88m for the six months to the end of December, up from £0.59m last time.

The majority of the loss for the period comprises management and administrative expenses.

The increase is in line with management expectations and associated with ramping up production facilities in anticipation of ZEMA approval for the start of lead and zinc concentrate processing and copper production.

The cash balance at the period end was £0.40m compared with £0.30m at 30 June.

The strengthening of sterling against the US dollar gives rise to an adverse exchange translation difference on Zambian operations of £0.9m at the end of the period, compared with £0.56m at 31 December 2012 and £0.52m at 30 June 2013.

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Beacon Hill Resources slashed pre-tax losses to $18.9m in the year to the end of December - down from $45.1m last time.

Operating losses fell to $14.99m from $44.8m and the gross loss narrowed to $4.2m from $14.2m.

Beacon Hill said it made significant progress towards establishing Minas Moatize as a tier one cash cost coking coal mine within the next 12-15 months.

It said further progress was made towards securing end to end rail export logistics infrastructure, including long term rail allocation on the Sena Railway line and conclusion of a US$21m rolling stock transaction for five locomotives and 90 wagons.

Chief executive Rowan Karstel said: "The Beacon Hill team remain centred on developing a low capex, low opex coking coal mine at Minas Moatize, capable of generating attractive returns to investors during all phases of the resources cycle.

"We are confident that Minas Moatize has all the right attributes, including significant tonnage with a limited strip ratio and high quality coking coal properties, to achieve this objective so our focus is set on developing the optimum processing parameters and logistics chain to deliver a Tier One cash cost asset.

"In line with this strategy, I am delighted to report that we have received a non-binding offer for a $20m debt facility for the expansion of the Minas Moatize washplant to 2.8Mt per annum run of mine, which, if secured, will enable the Company to accelerate development at the mine."

At 4:25pm:

[LON:AMI] African Minerals Ltd share price was +0.75p at 154.75p

[LON:AQP] Aquarius Platinum Ltd share price was -0.75p at 35p

[LON:BEM] Beowulf Mining PLC share price was +0.84p at 5.95p

[LON:BKY] Berkeley Resources Ltd share price was +0.01p at 15.63p

[LON:CEY] Centamin PLC share price was -1.07p at 49.73p

[LON:CHL] Churchill Mining PLC share price was -2p at 24p

[LON:CZA] Coal of Africa Ltd share price was +0.19p at 4.48p

[LON:FDI] Firestone Diamonds PLC share price was +0.01p at 3.63p

[LON:FRES] Fresnillo PLC share price was +11.25p at 848.75p

[LON:GEMD] Gem Diamonds Ltd share price was +2.5p at 174p

[LON:HOC] Hochschild Mining PLC share price was +7p at 170p

[LON:KMR] Kenmare Resources PLC share price was -0.37p at 14.13p

[LON:PAF] Pan African Resources PLC share price was 0p at 14.25p

[LON:RRS] Randgold Resources Ltd share price was +42.5p at 4528.5p

[LON:SNRP] Strategic Natural Resources PLC share price was +1.5p at 4.5p

[LON:SRB] Serabi Mining PLC share price was 0p at 5p

[LON:VED] Vedanta Resources PLC share price was +7.25p at 890.25p



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