Golden Star Resources Limited, a gold mining company in the country, is investing an amount of US$15 million in exploration in its Wassa underground mine this year.
The Chief Operations Officer of Golden Star Resources Limited, Graham Crew who disclosed this during an interaction with a section of the media in Accra last week Thursday to explain the Preliminary Economic Assessment on the Wassa underground mine, said the move formed part of the company’s expansion strategy.
He said the investment was three times more than what the company invested in exploration last year.
“Our intention at Golden Star is to become a leading gold producing company in the country through the development of the Wassa underground mine,” he said.
He said the prospects of the Wassa underground mine were high and the objective was to develop it into a modern and first class mine and go deeper than the Obuasi underground mine.
The Chief Operating Officer said the Wassa underground mine, which has a life span of 17 years, would have the capacity to produce 300,000 ounces of gold in a year.
He said the mine had Net Present Value of more than $800 million with huge significant assets and would contribute greatly to the development of the Ghanaian economy.
Over, the next 17 years, Mr Crew said the company intend to invest more than $1 billion in the Wassa underground mine.
Currently, drilling and other preparatory works on the mine were being done, saying Golden Star was working with 19 local suppliers on the mine.
He said the energy requirement for project would be through gas.
Mr Crew indicated that the Wassa mine had an existing reserve of 3.5 million ounces of gold and the new exploration would help to discover more reserves.
Asked how the operations of the Wassa underground mine project was being funded, Mr Crew said the project was being funded through “cash flow from the Wassa mining operations.”
He said the project would help to improve both the local economy of Wassa and the country at large.
Mr Crew said the project would help to create jobs for the people in Wassa and enhance government tax revenue.
The Chief Operating Officer called for a stable fiscal environment to protect the investment of the company, stressing the company was investing huge amount in the Wassa underground mine.
“Golden Star is not asking for any special concession, but want to know how the mining fiscal regime will look like going forward,” said Mr Crew.
Touching on the issue of encroachment on the concession of the company by illegal miners, Mr Crew said Golden Star Resources Limited was in discussion with the appropriate authorities do address the problem.
“We in Golden Star Resources Limited will continue to use dialogue to deal with problem and will not want to engage in any confrontation with the people living in the catchment areas of our concession,” Mr Crew said.
Asked if the intention was to develop the Wassa underground mine and sell, the Chief Finance Officer Golden Star Resources Limited, Paul Thompson responded in the negative.