Cambodia has produced a total of 2,275kg of dore bars with 90 per cent gold solution, from its sole gold mining operation in the northeastern province of Mondulkiri since the first gold pour in June, Prime Minister Hun Sen said in a statement on March 31.
Speaking at the inauguration ceremony for the Chaom Chao interchange on March 31, Hun Sen described Cambodia’s venture into gold production as a replacement for crude oil, which he said the Kingdom had “yet to profit from” due to the “small quantity” extracted from offshore Block A, according to the statement posted on the premier’s official Facebook page.
He enthused that several other gold mining projects were under exploration, and that the pay-off of these endeavours would help meet the needs of the people.
Australian-owned Renaissance Minerals (Cambodia) Ltd became the Kingdom’s first gold producer on June 21, the day it began the commercial operation of its Okvau Gold Project in the Okvau area in the eastern corridor of Chung Phlas commune of southwestern Mondulkiri province’s Keo Seima district.
During an inspection of the site last month, Australian ambassador to Cambodia Pablo Kang noted that the project was the island nation’s largest investment in the Kingdom, with a budget of $140 million over 15 years.
Cambodia expects the Okvau Gold Project to generate $185 million per annum in pre-tax cashflow, with $40 million from royalties and taxes transferred to the national budget.
This year, three Chinese-invested companies are set to start mining gold in Preah Vihear, Kratie and Mondulkiri provinces, and another Indian-invested firm in Ratanakkiri.