Pioneer is one of the largest gold mines in Russia and is also the Group’s ﬂagship mine, accounting for c.46% of the Group’s total gold production in 2015.
Pioneer was acquired as a greenﬁeld site in 2001 and was explored, developed and built using in house expertise. Since commissioning in 2008, the resin in pulp (RIP) plant has been expanded in phases to reach its current processing capacity of c.6.6Mtpa. As at 31 December 2015, Pioneer had produced c.2,130koz of gold, and had c.5.3Moz of Mineral Resources, of which c.2.6Moz were Ore Reserves.
In late 2015, with the acquisition of a new exploration license for Sosnovaya, the Pioneer project area was more than doubled. It is still being actively explored and has high potential for increases in reserves to be identiﬁed.
Exploration is well under way targeting deep high grade resources for potential underground mining at the North East Bakhmut, Andreevskaya, Bakhmut and Promezhutochnaya zones.
Deposit type: Hard rock with both non refractory and refractory ore.
Mining: Currently open pit. The decision has been made to develop an underground mine.
Processing: RIP plant and seasonal heap leach facility on site. Currently only non refractory ore processed.
Development history: Acquired in 2001 as a greenﬁeld project. Developed in house into one of Russia’s largest gold mines.
Reserves and resources: 2.6Moz of Ore Reserves and 5.3Moz of Mineral Resources.