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Quarterly production results show Caledonia Mining still on track to hit full-year target

Caledonia's medium-term production target is 80,000 ounces
Quarterly production results show Caledonia Mining still on track to hit full-year target
Mining techniques have recently been improved at Blanket

Caledonia Mining Corporation PLC (LON:CMCL) (TSE:CAL) produced 11,948 ounces from the Blanket mine in Zimbabwe during the quarter ended 31 March.

The company maintains its 2019 full-year production guidance of between 53,000 ounces and 56,000 ounces, and is still on track with progress towards its target of 80,000 ounces by 2022.

WATCH: Caledonia Mining delivers 'robust performance' with good progress on expansion

"Production in the first quarter of 2019 was slightly below our target and below the comparable quarter in 2018 (Q1 2018: 12,924), albeit at a level which allows us to maintain our 2019 production guidance of 53,000 to 56,000 ounces for the full year,” said chief executive Steve Curtis.

“Continued difficulties with unstable electricity supply and grade dilution which we experienced in 2018 had an adverse effect on production, but improved drilling and blasting practices have been put in place in pursuit of improved grade control and I am pleased to say that efforts to minimize dilution are proving successful.

"Our technical team has worked tirelessly to mitigate the effects of electricity supply interruptions and we continue to work closely with the Zimbabwean electricity supply authorities to address these challenges as well as investing internally to improve our resilience to this issue."

And for the longer term, Curtis remains upbeat.  

"The sinking of the central shaft continues according to plan,” he said.

“We are now only months away from the completion of the shaft sinking phase of the project and are set to commence shaft equipping from mid-2019. We look forward to commencing production from the central shaft from mid-2020 which is expected to deliver the company's growth plan to achieve 75,000 ounces in 2021 and 80,000 ounces by 2022."

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