Pouring of the First Gold at the Darasun Gold Deposit and Official Opening of the Darasun Gold Mining Complex

23.06.2004

Highland Gold Mining Limited (HGM.L), the AIM listed Russian gold producer, announces the pouring of the first gold from the Darasun deposit in the Chita Region of Russia. The deposit was officially opened by the Governor of the Chita Region, Ravil Geniatulin, in a ceremony held today. Darasun is expected to produce 40,000 oz of gold from 100,000 tonnes of ore processed this year, rising to 120,000 oz in 2005 when the mine reaches full capacity. This will raise total gold production for Highland Gold to 320,000 oz in 2005, an increase of 60% on 2003.

Commenting on today’s announcement Peter Daresbury, Executive Chairman, said:

“Darasun is a mine with both excellent operational and financial characteristics. Bringing the deposit back into production, on time and within budget, is a credit to Ivan and his team. Being present in Chita will increase the geographic diversity of the company’s operations. Together with our other development projects we have the potential to double our gold production.” 

Ivan Koulakov, Highland Gold’s Managing Director, said: “The first pouring of gold at Darasun is a very exciting event for Highland Gold. From today we are now fully operational in the Chita Region, an area of immense gold-producing potential. Not only do we believe that inferred reserves at Darasun are at least as great as the proven and probable reserves, but we are also looking forward to realising the potential of our other interests in the Region, including the Novoshirokinskoye deposit. 

For further information:

Andrew Garfield, Mark Antelme, Brunswick, +44 207 404 5959