Bonikro in Côte d'Ivoire, West Africa, is owned and operated by LGL Mines CI SA, an Ivorian company 89.89 per cent owned by Newcrest. It is located approximately 250 kilometres north-west of the nation’s commercial capital, Abidjan.
Bonikro produces gold doré. It is a conventional truck and excavator open pit mine. The predominant method of gold recovery is via carbon in leach technology, with some gold recovered via a gravity circuit.
First gold was poured in October 2008. For the financial year ending 30 June 2012, 92,102 ounces of gold was produced.
Strong potential exists to increase the resource base at the Bonikro deposit below the current pit, as well as to the north and south. Geochemical and geophysical surveys to date, together with drill testing, indicate numerous prospects within 30 kilometres of Bonikro that offer a strong opportunity to supplement the present operation. These include the Dougbafla East prospect 15 kilometres north of the Bonikro deposit, and at Hiré, 12 kilometres to the south-east.
In addition to Bonikro, Newcrest has interests in more than 15,000 square kilometres of prospective tenements in Côte d’Ivoire. This region of West Africa has yielded numerous multi-million ounce gold discoveries in recent years. Newcrest has committed more than US$30 million to an exploration campaign in Côte d’Ivoire, aimed at discovering a major deposit.
Bonikro is a major contributor to the local economy employing around 1,000 local employees and contractors, and injecting significant benefits into the local, regional and national economy through operating supplies, wages, sustainable development projects, enhancement of local infrastructure and donations. Newcrest aims to leave a positive legacy in Côte d’Ivoire by creating jobs and improving living standards for Ivoirians.
An agreement was signed with the United Nation Development Program (UNDP) to develop and implement a sustainable community development program in the Bonikro area through a partnership that will ensure financial leverage from other donors. Implementation of the partnership started in January 2012 with the UNDP agreeing to a local development plan in collaboration with all the stakeholders.