Full steam ahead at Calidus' Warrawoona
Activity at Calidus Resources’ Warrawoona gold project is ramping up ahead of first production next year (reports MiningNews).
2nd July 2021
Resources Rising Stars
The A$106 million project, outside Marble Bar in the Pilbara, is only 15 weeks into construction, which is going "seamlessly" according to workers on site during an analyst and media visit this week.
"We're pretty proud of what's happening here - the guys on site are doing a sensational job," Calidus managing director Dave Reeves said.
Construction kicked off in late March and remains on time and on budget for first gold in the June quarter of 2022.
Earlier this month, Calidus drew down on the first $25 million of a $110 million Macquarie debt facility.
Reeves estimates that by the end of this month, Calidus will have spent about 40% of the project's budget.
"We're getting into peak spend now. The next four months we're really spending, then it tails off," he said.
The company expects to have spent about 85% of the budget by the end of 2021.
While Western Australia is in the midst of a labour crisis, Reeves said Calidus hadn't felt it on the construction side.
He said the pinch point was operators.
Calidus has invested more into the 240-room accommodation camp to attract workers.
"People will jump ship for a few bucks an hour for a better camp, better food," Calidus chairman Mark Connelly said.
Reeves added: "It's bloody important that the camp is good."
A major upgrade of the Marble Bar airport will begin within 2-3 weeks, which will slash the amount of time it takes to get to site. Current access is via a flight to Port Hedland and a 2.5-hour drive.
"When we talk about attracting people, the airport is absolutely vital for a short commute," Reeves said.
Reeves acknowledged there were costs pressures on the operational side, but the company had tweaked its pit design to ease some pressure.
"We've pretty much pulled every lever we can on that now," he said.
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