Australian gold mining company Ausgold has announced the results of a scoping level study that showed potential for a larger scale, 5Mtpa throughput at the Katanning Gold Project.

The increased throughput would deliver an average of 136koz per annum, over its ten-year life of mine (LOM), using the same mine plan determined in the Prefeasibility Study (PFS) in August last year.

The 5Mtpa throughput option from the Scoping Study indicated a total revenue of A$3.64bn (2.14bn), project EBITDA of A$1.63bn, pre-tax free cashflow of A$1.14bn, and post-tax free cashflow of A$770m over its LOM.

Also, the study indicates a pre-production capital requirement of A$297m, pre-tax NPV5 of A$819m, post-tax NPV5 of A$541M, and post-tax internal rate of return (IRR) of 46%.

Ausgold managing director Matthew Greentree said: “Following the results of the 2022 PFS, this Scoping Study clearly indicates increased scale from the PFS level mine plan producing 163 k more ounces than the PFS over the life of mine.

“More importantly in the first six years, higher gold grades deliver an extra 174 koz from what was determined in the PFS. The LOM average production profile of over 136 koz pa delivers an early payback within the first 20 months, even with the additional capital required for a larger 5 Mtpa operation, which is estimated to be $297m.

“The 5Mtpa scenario delivers a pre-tax NPV5 of A$819M, a post-tax NPV5 of A$541M and a post–tax IRR of 46% which strongly supports a debt-equity funding model. This Scoping Study was undertaken to assess the optionality of the KGP while progressing the DFS.”

The study showed that the project would produce an average of 155,000oz of gold per annum, over the first six years and an average of 136,000oz per annum over a 10-year period.

The scoping study results increased the average annual gold production by 30%, compared to the PFS results announced last year.

In August last year, Ausgold announced that the pre-production capital requirement for the development of its Katanning gold project is estimated at A$225m ($158.4m).