StockMarketWire.com - Mining company Fresnillo maintained its production guidance for silver, but trimmed its gold guidance as the pandemic disrupted its operations.

The company also reported a fall in quarterly production across its products in the third quarter.

Silver production guidance for 2020 remained in the range of 51 to 56 million ounces, while gold production was now expected to be in a range of 745,000 to 775,000 ounces, down from the 785,000 to 815,000 previously forecast.

The company pinned the downgrade on a reduced number of mine operators at Herradura due to Covid-19 preventive measures, lower-than-expected ore grades and restricted access to deeper areas at the Noche Buena mine.

Silver production fell 2.3% to 13.3 moz (including Silverstream), driven by a lower ore grade and volume of ore processed at Fresnillo.

Gold production fell 6.3% to 172.7 koz, down 6.3% versus the second quarter, due to the 'lower overall speed of recovery and ore grade at both Herradura and Noche Buena,' Fresnillo said.

Quarterly attributable by-product lead and zinc production decreased 6.4% and 1.5% respectively in the third quarter from the second, driven primarily by lower ore grades at Fresnillo, the company said.

'Our development projects remain on track, with the Pyrites Plant and optimisation of the beneficiation plant, both at Fresnillo, due for completion this year,' it added.

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