April 25, 2006
Sumitomo Metal Mining Co., Ltd.
Sumitomo Metal Mining Co., Ltd. (SMM) and Sumitomo Corporation (SC) (SMM and SC collectively referred to in as "Sumitomo") jointly announced today that they have updated the production of Pogo Gold Mine located in Alaska, U.S.A. and managed under the joint venture formed by Teck Cominco Ltd. in Canada and Sumitomo.
As announced on February 13, 2006, the Pogo Gold Mine has commencedits production since February 12, 2006 local time and it had been expected to be proceeded with the ramp up of the production toward the full operation in several months after the first production.
In the course of the ramp up of the production and through the monitoring of the performance of the mill grinding and flotation circuits, however,it was found that design throughput cannot be sustained because of inadequate tailings filtration capacity coming from the adverse effect by ore characteristic. The Pogo Gold Mine is studying the need to install a third filter to be in operation in the first quarter of 2007, and the full production is not expected to be achieved until then.
The additional equipments and installations would cost approximately US $10-12 million, and the mine is expected to operate at approximately 50-60% of design capacity until the filter plant modifications are operational.