Barberton Mines

130-Year Mining Legacy

The Fairview, Sheba and Consort underground mining operations constitute the Group’s Barberton Mines complex, which has been operating for over 130 years. With a remaining life-of-mine estimated at 20 years, this asset is positioned as a long-life operation in Pan African’s portfolio. These flagship underground mines are high-grade operations that can produce approximately 80,000oz of gold per year, with an excellent long-term safety record.

Barberton Mines also includes the BTRP surface retreatment operation which is located within Fairview Mine’s mining right footprint area. The BTRP was designed to treat 100,000t of tailings per month and adds low-cost and low-risk ounces to our production profile.

Fairview Mine is the birthplace of BIOX®

BIOX® is an environmentally friendly process of releasing gold associated with sulphide (refractory) minerals using micro-organisms that perform this process naturally and with excellent recoveries consistently in the region of 98.8%. The BIOX® plant was commissioned in 1988 and is still used as a training facility for BIOX® plants globally.

Performance FY23

Our Commitment to Renewable Energy

We are constructing an 8.75MW solar energy plant at Barberton Mines’ Fairview operation. This plant will bring significant benefits, including annual cost savings. Moreover, the solar plant is expected to reduce carbon dioxide emissions by approximately 22,000t per year. With an economic life in excess of 25 years, the solar plant is expected to generate power beyond the mine’s existing 20-year life-of-mine, based on the current Mineral Reserves estimates. The first power generation is anticipated to take place in the hot commissioning phase during the 2024 calendar year.

An image of the solar panels at the Barberton mine

In 2023, Barberton Mines solidified its position in the South African gold mining sector by producing an impressive 64,586 ounces of gold. With a capacity nearing 110,000 oz/annum, our operations are not only vast but also efficient, boasting an All-In Sustaining Cost (AISC) of just $1,810 per ounce. This efficiency is driven by our team of 2,097 employees and 1,394 contractors.

Understanding the industry’s concerns about potential losses and the challenge of depleting orebodies, we’ve implemented strategies to ensure consistent and sustainable gold extraction. As we look to the future, the projected 20-year lifespan of Barberton Mines underscores our commitment to long-term growth and excellence in gold mining.

Image of a Blueberry Farm at the Barberton Mines

Financial Stability and Growth at Barberton Mines

Barberton Mines stands as a testament to Pan African Resources’ commitment to financial resilience and sustainable mining practices. Our prudent capital management ensures the long-term viability of operations, while our adherence to high governance standards guarantees transparency and accountability in financial reporting.

This financial stability not only contributes to the consistent performance of Barberton Mines but also supports our ongoing efforts to minimize environmental impact and foster community development.

Fairview Mine

Fairview Mine, a part of the Barberton Mines complex, stands out for its innovative BIOX® process, an environmentally friendly method of releasing gold from sulphide minerals. Operating for over 130 years, this mine is a testament to sustainable gold mining, producing approximately 80,000oz of gold annually. Fairview is making significant strides with investments being made in infrastructure like refrigeration, a grout backfill plant, and a chairlift decline to optimise operations.

Our governance practices at Fairview Mine ensure that we maintain high standards of corporate responsibility, with the board and various committees actively monitoring our sustainability performance and stakeholder engagement.

Fairview Mine Performance

In the face of challenges such as labor and energy cost increases and deepening operations, Fairview Mine has shown resilience and placed its focus on enhancing its production profile and mining at deeper levels. Strategic solutions, including transitioning to continuous shift operations in February 2023, have been implemented.

The last quarter of the financial year saw notable improvements in production, thanks to optimized mining methods and increased availability of trackless mining machinery. For investors, the mine’s commitment to innovation, like the commissioning of an 8.75MW solar plant, signals a forward-thinking approach that balances profitability with sustainability.

Image taken inside the Barberton (Fairview) Mine
Image taken inside the Barberton (Sheba) Mine

Sheba Mine

Sheba Mine, with its esteemed legacy dating back to 1885, stands as one of the world’s oldest operational gold mines, representing historic value and modern innovation.

Its high recoveries are bolstered by the efficient use of the BIOX® process. The mine has also recently introduced an up-dip mining method, specifically designed to decrease dilution on the narrow orebodies that were previously mined using the cut-and-fill methodology. This strategic shift, combined with the optimization of mining methods at Sheba Mine’s MRC and ZK stopes and the increased availability of trackless mining machinery, has enhanced underground production volumes and mined grades.

The completion of Project Dibanisa, connecting 23 Level at Sheba with 38 Level at Fairview, not only streamlines the movement of mined ore and employees between the two mines but also amplifies operational efficiency. This synergy between historical depth and modern innovation makes Sheba Mine an enticing prospect for discerning investors.

Consort Mine

Consort Mine, though faced with challenges such as the depletion of its high-grade 42 Level block and geotechnical constraints, has showcased its adaptability and forward-thinking approach. Recognizing the potential pitfalls, the mine transitioned to a contractor mining operation, a strategic move that underscores its commitment to profitability and operational excellence.

A thorough review of its operations was undertaken, culminating in a comprehensive restructuring to bolster its underground operations. The initiation of continuous shift operations in February 2023 further exemplifies Consort Mine’s proactive stance in navigating challenges, presenting a compelling case for investors seeking a mine that is both adaptive and growth-oriented.

Image of the Barberton mine

Focus For 2024

Our objective is to continually enhance our industry-leading safety performance while consistently delivering high-quality ounces consistent with our production guidance of approximately 100,000oz per annum from the Barberton Mines complex. Additionally, we are actively pursuing value-accretive growth opportunities within our orebodies.

Our track record demonstrates our ability to replenish Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves through effective brownfield exploration. We are also exploring organic growth projects, such as the Royal Sheba project, to further bolster the sustainability and longevity of our operations.

Installing a grout backfill plant and underground piping infrastructure at Fairview Mine to optimise the extraction of the high-grade MRC orebody and alleviate congestion in the 3 Decline, the deepest section of the mine

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Reducing underground unit costs

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Enhancing Barberton Mines’ infrastructure utilisation by advancing the Royal Sheba project

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Extending the mines’ Mineral Reserves through comprehensive definition and infill drilling programmes

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For the upcoming 2024 financial year, our key focus areas are as follows:

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Commissioning the Fairview Mine solar plant to reduce carbon emissions and operating costs, while also ensuring a reliable electricity supply at Barberton Mines

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Identifying additional exploration targets using advanced geophysical techniques and following up with exploration drilling

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Increasing production flexibility

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Commencing the development of a chairlift decline adjacent to Fairview Mine’s 3 Decline

Barberton Mines ESG Initiatives

Looking to Invest in Gold?

Barberton, South Africa’s gold heartland, boasts some of the world’s oldest and richest mines. Pan African Resources, leveraging this golden legacy, has innovatively tapped into accumulated tailings, producing gold sustainably and cost-effectively.

With the pioneering BIOX® process at Fairview and the state-of-the-art Barberton Tailings Retreatment Plant, the company has cemented its position as a leading, eco-friendly gold miner. In 2019, their impressive yield of 171,706 oz. of gold generated a robust revenue of US$ 217.4 million, making Pan African Resources a compelling investment opportunity in the gold sector.

Image of three people standing and talking to each other inside a mine

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