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Sanbrado gold mine contracts for Outotec, Byrnecut and Lycopodium

Gold developer West African Resources reports progress on its Sanbrado Gold Project in Burkina Faso for the quarter ending 31 December 2018.

During the quarter WAF selected Outotec to supply a 4 MW semi-autogenous grinding (SAG) mill and a 4 MW ball mill, principally due to extensive experience with grinding mills especially in the size range required for Sanbrado. Manufacture of the SAG and ball mills, and associated equipment, has commenced with completion scheduled for Q3 2019. Outotec has extensive experience  manufacturing and delivering more than 200 grinding mills to sites worldwide over the past 20 years, including more than 40 in West Africa. Outotec’s recent mill deliveries in West Africa include Endeavour Mining’s Ity (Côte d’Ivoire) and Hounde (Burkina Faso) gold projects and the Toro Gold’s Mako gold project (Senegal).

During the quarter the company awarded the underground mining contract to highly experienced mining services contractor Byrnecut Burkina Faso SARL (Byrnecut), part of the Byrnecut group of companies. The contract amount is some $110 million over five years. The underground mining contract is a key operational contract for Sanbrado and its award followed the completion of a competitive tender process and extensive due diligence process examining safety, experience and capabilities. West African and Byrnecut will also enter into a deferred payment plan of up to $10 million.


The M1 South underground will kick-off WAF’s mining development at Sanbrado with portal establishment on track to commence in March 2019. Works under the Underground Mining Services Contract, which has an initial term of five years, include:

  • Underground portal establishment for M1 South
  • Decline and level development (7 km)
  • Ore driving (2 km & 0.2 Mt) and stope production (1.3 Mt)
  • Raise drilling
  • Cemented rock backfill

Byrnecut Offshore currently employs over 1,200 people with operations in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, Mali, Burkina Faso, Saudi Arabia and Tanzania. The Byrnecut group has a A$1.5 billion annual turnover and 3,500 employees worldwide.

Finally during the quarter West African announced it had awarded the engineering, procurement, construction management (EPCM) contract to Australian engineering company Lycopodium following a competitive tender process. The companies signed a Letter of Intent during the quarter relating to the engineering and procurement (EP) portions for a new 2 million tonne per annum (Mtpa) carbon-in-leach (CIL) treatment facility and other supporting infrastructure to be constructed at Sanbrado. Detailed design and procurement of mechanical equipment has commenced, with process plant construction scheduled to commence in Q2 2019.

Lycopodium is an Australian headquartered engineering and project management consultancy that has completed the construction of more than a dozen gold development projects in West Africa since 2009. It has a successful track record in Burkina Faso, recently delivering EPCM projects at the 3 Mt/y Hounde and 4 Mt/y Karma Upgrade gold projects for Endeavour Mining 3 Mt/y Natougou gold project for Semafo, 4 Mt/y Bissa and 8 Mt/y Bouly gold projects for Nordgold and currently building the 2.5 Mt/y Wahgnion gold project for Teranga Gold Corp.

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