StockMarketWire.com - Russia-focused gold miner Petropavlovsk said output sank 39% in the first half, as expected, with a higher gold price partially offsetting the blow.

Production for the six months through June dropped to 195,000 ounces and the company stuck to annual guidance of 430,000-to-470,000 ounces.

The fall in output was pinned, in part, on a switch to processing ore from the Elginskoye deposit at Albyn and preparations for the launch of the Pioneer flotation plant.

The move had entailed a shift to mining refractory ore for stockpiling and a planned temporary shutdown of the processing plant in April.

The company's average realised gold price for the first half was up 9% year-on-year at $1,795 an ounce.

'The first half of 2021 was a transitional period for Petropavlovsk as we prepared to launch the Pioneer flotation plant, which heralds the mine's shift from processing non-refractory ore to being a producer of refractory concentrate to feed our Pokrovskiy POX hub,' chief executive Denis Alexandrov said.

'I am proud to highlight that we launched the plant one month ahead of our revised schedule.'

'With the Pioneer flotation plant and increased deliveries of third-party concentrate in the second half, we are confident of meeting our full-year production guidance for 2021.'


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