Equinox to focus on Greenstone Ontario mine in 2023

Equinox to focus on Greenstone Ontario mine in 2023
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VANCOUVER – Equinox Gold Corp. [EQX-TSXV, EQX-NYSE] has released is fourth quarter and fiscal 2022 financial and operating results. The company also said it expects to produce between 555,000 and 625,000 ounces of gold this year.

“Equinox Gold finished 2022 with its strongest quarter of production at the lowest costs for the year, bringing full-year production to 532,319 ounces of gold at an all-in-sustaining cost of US$1,622 per ounce,’’ said Equinox President and CEO Greg Smith.

Equinox Gold is a Canadian mining company with eight operating gold mines, a multi-million-ounce gold reserve base and a clear path to achieve one million ounces of annual gold production from a pipeline of development and expansion projects.

Equinox operates entirely in the Americas, with two properties in the United States, one in Mexico and five in Brazil.

The company said its primary development focus for 2023 continues to be construction at Greenstone, a multi-million-ounce gold project located in Ontario. With targeted production of 400,000 ounces annually for the first five years (60% attributable to Equinox), Greenstone will be a cornerstone asset for the company’s portfolio.

Equinox’s share of construction capital in 2023 is forecast at $277 million. As of December 31, 2022, Greenstone was 65% complete.

In addition the company expects to spend $8 million on Castle Mountain (California) phase two optimization, engineering and permitting. The aim is to extend the mine life to 21 years and increase production to an average of more than 200,000 ounces annually. Equinox also expected to spend $8 million on Fazenda (Bahia State, Brazil) underground development and expansion.

Equinox is putting the focus on Greenstone after completing construction and achieving commercial production at its new Santa Luz Mine in Brazil.

The company said Santa Luz construction was completed on time and on budget, with no lost-time injuries. Commissioning commenced in February, 2022.

When operating at capacity, Santa Luz is expected to produce approximately 100,000 ounces of gold annually. During 2022, with a partial year of production, the mine was expected to produce 70,000 to 90,000 ounces of gold.

Meanwhile, Equinox reported earnings from mine operations of $85 million. However, it posted a 2022 net loss of $106.0 million or 35 cents per share.

Cash costs for 2023 are forecast to be similar to 2022 and reflect management’s expectation that inflation has largely plateaued, but input costs are expected to remain high throughout 2023.

Production is expected to grow each quarter through 2023 and costs are expected to decrease accordingly.

On February 21, 2023, Equinox shares closed at $4.78. The shares are currently trading in a 52-week range of  $11.46 and $3.23.

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