Australian miner OceanaGold Corp. on Friday reported a net profit of $6.9 million in the third quarter of the year, reversing a net loss of almost $1 million in the second quarter this year, although earnings for the nine months fell by half from a year ago.
In a report, OceanaGold said that the return to profitability in the third quarter came on the back of strong metals output from its Didipio copper-gold mine in the Philippines and attributable production from the Waihi gold mine in New Zealand, which the company acquired from Newmont Mining in July 2015.
Revenue for the third quarter was pegged at $109.5 million, down from $125.4 million during the same period last year.
For January-September 2015, consolidated net income dropped by 50.7 percent to $30.41 million from $73.7 million a year ago, while revenue also slipped to $364.3 million from $420.67 million.
Mick Wilkes, OceanaGold managing director and chief executive officer, said that the past six months have been an exciting time, noting that the transformation of its Didipio mine and additional mining assets abroad have further strengthened and transformed the company into a leading mid-tier gold producer.
“Over the course of the next 12 months, we will advance comprehensive exploration programs across our portfolio to unlock value at each site while optimizing our existing operations,” Wilkes said.
At Didipio, the mining operations focused on completing Stage 4 of the open pit while transitioning to mining ore from Stage 5. During the quarter, the operation increased ore inventories and by the end of the third quarter, nearly 15 million tons of ore were stockpiled on surface for future processing.
OceanaGold expects to have over 20 million tons of ore stockpiled when the open pit operations are completed and underground ore feed commences at the end of 2017.
Wilkes also said that the development of the underground at Didipio continued to advance well with 570 meters of development completed to date. In the third quarter, the company completed the construction of the overhead powerline connecting the Didipio plant to the national grid.
The company is currently commissioning the powerline, which it expects to complete early in the fourth quarter. Once on grid power, the miner expects to reduce operating costs by approximately $5 million to $7 million per annum based on current fuel prices.