Canadian gold company Argonaut Gold has achieved first gold pour at its first Canadian operation, Magino Mine, located in Dubreuilville, Ontario.

Argonaut said that the process plant ramp-up remains on schedule with commercial production expected in the third quarter of this year.

Magino mine is expected to produce around 72,000 to 81,000 ounces of gold this year, at costs ranging between $850 and $950 per ounce.

Also, it is anticipated to produce around 148,000 ounces of gold at a cost of $868 per ounce in 2024, as its first full year of production, said the Canadian gold company.

Argonaut Gold president and chief executive officer Richard Young said: “The Magino mine is key to achieving our vision to become a low-cost, mid-tier North America gold producer that creates significant value for all our stakeholders and proudly demonstrates responsible mining.

“We thank all our employees, contractors, and community partners for their hard work and dedication that has led us to this exciting project milestone.”

Argonaut pursues additional growth at Magino, including plans to begin a 12 to 15-month exploration and reserve development program, in the third quarter of this year.

The company aims to convert open pit resources to reserves, test deep underground high-grade targets, and test open pit targets along strike west of the current deposit.

Simultaneously, it will review the mill optimisation and expansion in the third quarter, to potentially increase the throughput rates and annual production.

Argonaut Gold chief operating officer Marc Leduc said: “With the first gold pour milestone behind us, we are now focused on completing commissioning and ramping up the mill to steady state.

“In addition, we are looking to further grow our flagship gold mine as we commence a reserve development drilling program intending to increase reserves in combination with studies to expand and optimize mill throughput, both scheduled to begin later this summer.”

In January 2021, Argonaut signed a fixed bid EPC contract with Ausenco Engineering Canada for the Magino processing facility and other parts of the mining project.