VANCOUVER , May 5, 2020 /PRNewswire/ – Galiano Gold Inc. (“Galiano” or the “Company”) (TSX, NYSE American: GAU) (formerly Asanko Gold Inc.) is pleased to announce its 2020 exploration program plans for the Asanko Gold Mine (“AGM”), located in Ghana , West Africa . The AGM is a 50:50 joint venture (“JV”) with Gold Fields Ltd (JSE, NYSE: GFI), which is managed and operated by Galiano.
The exploration program at the AGM is led by Galiano’s newly appointed Senior Vice President of Exploration (“SVP Exploration”), Paul Klipfel . The exploration team at the AGM now reports to the SVP Exploration who will report to Greg McCunn , Chief Executive Officer. The exploration team is being managed as a separate business entity to the AGM operations with a $10 million budget for 2020.
- Near term – to replace depletion from mining activity in 2020 and 2021.
- Medium term – to improve the business plan for 2023 to 2026 by delineating Mineral Reserves by the end of 2022 that have superior economics (return on invested capital) to Cut 3 at Nkran.
- To advance exploration targets with +1 million ounce potential to be in production by 2027 to replace Esaase.
“The exploration potential of the 21,000 hectare district scale land package at the AGM joint venture has yet to be materially tested and we are excited to be launching this newly focused initiative aimed at improving the AGM’s five year business plan,” said Greg McCunn , Chief Executive Officer . “After four years of commercial production at the AGM without any new substantial reserves being delineated, our top priority will be to begin the process of attempting to replace depletion on an ongoing basis. In addition, we will be testing several defined drill targets which we believe have the potential to fit into our mine plan over the next five years and provide superior economics to our existing life of mine plan.”
Initial Drilling Programs
An initial drill program targeted at replacing depletion and improving the five-year business plan has been initiated with five drill rigs planning to drill approximately 36,000 meters of diamond drilling (“DD”) and reverse circulation drilling (“RC”) during Q2 2020 (“Q2”) and Q3 2020 (“Q3”). Nine high priority targets will be tested including the highly prospective Miradani-Tontokrom trend on the Company’s South Camp mining concessions as well as the recently acquired Central West Camp concessions located immediately adjacent to the Company’s Obotan Mining Camp and the 5.4 million tonne per annum processing plant (Figure 1).
Near Term: Replacing Depletion 2021 – 2022
Five of the nine advanced targets are believed by management to have the potential to replace depletion in 2020-2021 and will be drilled in Q2 and Q3 in order to allow results to be included into the AGM’s planned annual Mineral Reserve update as at December 31, 2020 . The initial drill program consists of a planned 18,250 meters targeted at replacing depletion, split approximately one-third DD and two-thirds RC.
- Nkran South – located 1.3km south of the Nkran pit, previously mined, targeting extensions to mineralization identified in soil and VTEM geochemistry anomalies. Planned 3,000 meters of RC drilling.
- Akwasiso – located 5km northeast of the processing plant, currently being mined, targeting extensions of the ore body to the north and south as well as upgrading of inferred resources. Planned 4,600 meters of RC and DD.
- Abore – located 13km north of the processing plant on the Esaase haul road, current mineral reserves planned for mining in 2021, targeting upgrading of inferred resources and extensions to the ore body to the north and south. Planned 5,190 meters of RC and DD.
- Midras South – located 5km south west of the processing plant, previously explored in 2015 and 2017 with no stated resources, targeting definition of the ore body as well as extensions to the south and at depth. Planned 4,180 meters of RC and DD.
- Adubiaso – located 5km northwest of the processing plant, previously mined, targeting upgrading of inferred resources. Planned 1,250 meters of RC and DD.
Currently, drilling is underway at Nkran South, Akwasiso, Abore and Adubiaso with four operating drill rigs. A fifth drill rig is expected to commence drilling in Q2.
Medium Term: Business Plan Improvement 2023 – 2026
Four of the nine high priority targets that are in close proximity to the processing plant and are believed by management to be capable of being augmented into the mine plan from 2023 will be drill tested in the initial program with approximately 18,000 meters of DD and RC drilling. These high priority targets are:
- Miradani Central – located along trend and approximately 2km southwest of Tontokrom, previous trenching by the prior operator indicates multiple wide zones of mineralization. Planned initial drill program of 2,400 meters.
- Kaniago West – located 6km northwest of the processing plant, a 5,000 meter drill program was completed by the previous operator. The current program will be targeting resource definition of the target with extensions along strike and at depth. Planned 4,100 meters of RC and DD.
- Mepease – located 8km southwest of the processing plant, newly acquired Central West concessions host a cluster of targets with a 10,000 meter drill program underway by current operator. Planned program to continue with an additional 8,000 meters of RC and DD.
- Tontokrom – located 10km southwest of the processing plant, drilled in 2019. Prior small scale mining operations have left a shallow pit, approximately 400m x 150m with known mineralization extending at depth and along strike. A 3,600 meter drill program is planned to infill previous drilling and aims to define an initial resource once the ongoing boundary dispute is resolved with a local small-scale leaseholder which introduced access challenges to certain portions of the concession.
This initial program on the four target areas is expected to be complete in August 2020 . Additional drilling programs for Q3/Q4 2020 will be designed based on the outcomes of the initial program.
Longer-term: Transformational Targets 2025-2028
In parallel to the near- and medium-term drilling programs, work will also advance on exploration targets with +1-million-ounce potential with the goal of these conceptual targets being in production by 2027 to replace Esaase. The current conceptual targets are on prospecting licenses and will require extensive work including soil sampling, ground geophysics and drilling.
About Paul Klipfel
Dr. Klipfel has 40 years of exploration experience in a wide variety of geologic settings and deposit types. Most of his work for the past 13 years has been in Ghana and other West African countries. He was an original mapper on the Esaase project for Keegan Resources and has been a consultant to many companies over the past 17 years in West Africa , North and South America , Australia , and Asia . He also served as President for Abzu Gold and as Chief Geologist/COO for Ashanti Gold Corp. Dr. Klipfel holds a Ph.D. in Economic Geology from Colorado School of Mines and M.S . degrees in Mineral Economics from Colorado School of Mines and Geology from University of Idaho .
The scientific and technical contents in this news release have been approved by Dr. Paul Klipfel , Senior Vice President Exploration of Galiano Gold Inc. , who is a “Qualified Person” (AIPG # 10821 Certified Professional Geologist) as defined by Canadian National Instrument 43-101 (Standards of Mineral Disclosure). Mr. Klipfel is not independent of Galiano Gold Inc.
About Galiano Gold Inc.
Galiano is focused on creating a sustainable business capable of long-term value creation for its stakeholders through organic production growth, exploration and disciplined deployment of its financial resources. The company currently operates and manages the Asanko Gold Mine , located in Ghana , West Africa which is jointly owned with Gold Fields Ltd. The Company is strongly committed to the highest standards for environmental management, social responsibility, and health and safety for its employees and neighbouring communities. For more information, please visit www.galianogold.com .