This has set a record for the Company for amount of gold produced in one quarter.
During the first quarter of 2012, the Company milled 225,700 tonnes of ore at an average grade of 4.02 g/t Au, with a 90.2% mill recovery.
Record Mill Production in March, 2012
Avion produced 11,887 ounces of gold in March, 2012, after refinery adjustments. This is the highest amount achieved by the Company in a one month period, and is attributable to the start of underground mine production at its Tabakoto deposit earlier in the year.
Commenting on the first quarter 2012 production numbers, Avion’s Chief Operating Officer, Mr. Andrew Bradfield, stated: “Record production in March was achieved despite a military coup in the last week of the month. The strong results are a testament to the hard work and dedication of the management team at the mine site, and the higher than expected grades and lower dilution at the Tabakoto underground mine.”
Avion Hires Vice President Operations
The Company is also pleased to announce that it has hired Richard Allan, P.Eng., as Vice President Operations. Mr. Allan brings over 34 years of mining experience to the Company, and was recently the Senior Director – Mining of Barrick Gold Corporation.
Military Coup Situation
Under intense pressure from the nations bordering Mali, the military leaders who seized control of the country in a coup last month signed an accord, agreeing late Friday to return the country to constitutional rule. As such, the recent sanctions imposed by neighboring West African countries have been lifted and borders have been re-opened.
Management views these developments as positive for the Company as it will allow production and operations to continue as normal in Mali. However, Avion’s mill expansion may be impacted as Malian custom and import offices will take some time to become fully operational again and allow materials required to complete the mill expansion to enter the country. The length of the delay is unknown at this time.
Andrew Bradfield, P.Eng., the Chief Operating Officer of the Company, and a qualified person under National Instrument 43-101, has reviewed and approved the scientific and technical information in this press release.