Pan Australian opens mine in Laos

Pan Australian opens mine in Laos

Pan Australian Resources Ltd has officially opened its $US241 million ($A257.03 million) Phu Kham copper-gold mine in Laos.

Commissioning was completed several months ahead of the company’s mid-2008 target date, and within budget, enabling it to move quickly to take advantage of record copper prices.

Managing director Gary Stafford said the Lao government had exercised its right to acquire a 10 per cent interest in Pan Australian’s subsidiary Phu Bia Mining Ltd, which operates Phu Kham.

Concentrate production commenced in April and the company anticipates its first sale by the end of May.

Production is being ramped up to the phase one target of 60,000 tonnes of copper, 60,000 ounces of gold and 600,000 ounces of silver a year.

The Brisbane-headquartered company has been producing gold since 2005 at the associated Phu Kham heap leach gold operation.

It will spend $US30 million ($A32 million) exploring for copper-gold and gold resources in Laos and Thailand in 2008, with a goal of doubling production by 2012.

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