Mining company Vast Resources updated the market on its Baita Plai Polymetallic Mine on Wednesday, as well as the Takob mine in Tajikistan, and the settlement of a historic claim in Zimbabwe.
The AIM-traded firm reported a 20% increase in tonnes mined at Baita Plai during the first quarter of the year, despite two short months of production in January and February.
It also noted positive results from a new drilling campaign, indicating an extension of the skarn at depth.
In Tajikistan, Vast confirmed that commercial production of calcium fluoride had exceeded the minimum target, fulfilling the Takob contract performance condition.
Additionally, commercial production of lead-zinc at target grade had started, with the first commercial quantities set to be shipped in May.
Vast Resources said it would receive a participation equivalent to a 12.25% royalty over all sales of non-ferrous concentrate, and any other metals produced from the Takob Processing Project, as previously announced on 3 May last year.
Finally, Vast updated shareholders on the settlement process in Zimbabwe, saying it expected closure towards the end of April or in the first half of May.
“First quarter production has seen a significant increase both in mining and in concentrate production as a result of the changes that have been implemented on site during the second half of 2022, and the ongoing upgrades and further development underground,” said chief executive officer Andrew Prelea.
“Management strongly believes in Baita Plai’s increasing performance and our ability to reach the goal of nameplate capacity in the first half 2023.
“We expect to see the increased production trend continue throughout 2023.”
Prelea said the new drilling programme at Baita Plai was already proving to show that the technical report published in February was indicative of what the mine was capable of producing, in terms of grade and ore tonnage.
He added that as stated, there was positive indication that the ore continued at depth, giving further scope for increasing current resources.
“Tajikistan is now producing commercial quality and quantity of both calcium fluoride and lead-zinc concentrates, and the company is looking forward to updating the market once the first sales have been finalised.
“Due to the sensitive nature of the process, the settlement in Zimbabwe has taken longer than the market has anticipated.
“However, the settlement is following the path of consensual due process and we appreciate the government’s continuing assistance in bringing this matter to a close.”
At 1346 BST, shares in Vast Resources were down 5.78% at 0.48p.
Reporting by Josh White for Sharecast.com.