Gold producer DRDGOLD reported a 5% increase to 1,493 kg in output for the quarter ended September 30 compared with the three months to June. Picture: Reuters/Siphiwe Sibeko/File Photo

JOHANNESBURG  - Gold producer DRDGOLD on Monday reported a five percent increase to 1,493 kg in output for the quarter ended September 30 compared with the three months to June.

It attributed the rise primarily to a four percent increase in tonnage throughput as its Far West Gold Recoveries operation achieved a planned throughput of 500,000 tpm from phase 1 and successfully started operating its mills at the beginning of September.

"This resulted in a three percent and two percent decrease in cash operating cost per kilogram of gold sold and cash operating cost per ton of material processed respectively, compared to the previous quarter," DRDGOLD said.

Overall yield increased by one percent compared to the previous quarter due mostly to improved head grade at Ergo Mining.

Adjusted EBITDA (earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation, and amortization) more than doubled for the quarter, due mainly to the 15 percent increase in gold price received and a six percent increase in gold sold.

All-in sustaining costs per kilogram and all-in costs per kilogram for the quarter were 11 percent and nine percent higher respectively, due to the positive impact of the change in estimate of environmental rehabilitation recognised in profit or loss, lowering the comparative unit costs of the previous quarter.

DRDGOLD said the board of directors would consider the payment of a dividend once half year results had been finalised.

The company extended  its condolences to the family of chief security officer Bart Coetzee, who it said was fatally wounded during an exchange of gun fire last Monday after an armed gang gained entry to the Ergo plant at Brakpan.

The gang escaped with a quantity of calcine concentrate, estimated to contain up to 17 kg of gold. A large part of the gold containing concentrate was recovered by police during an investigation following the incident, DRDGOLD said.

- African News Agency (ANA)