Predictive Discovery (PDI) has upgraded its inferred reserve estimates for the Siguiri basin Bankan project in Guinea from 3.63 million ounces to 4.2 million, grading at 1.63g/t gold.
Going from discovery hole to mapped reserves in a mere 17 months, Bankan represents the largest maiden resource discovery in West Africa since 2012, polishing the region’s reputation as number one for gold discoveries over the past decade and number two for net gold production.
With Guinea the least explored country for gold in this region underserved by exploration (sitting at number four globally by spend), PDI’s golden goose in the basin could unlock a fresh wave of multinational foreign direct investment towards mining E&P.
PDI’s Bankan project is comprised of two major deposits – NE Bankan and Bankan Creek- in a roughly 90:10 split. As of this month, these two resource pools sit at 72.3 million tons grading 1.65 g/t gold and 7.2 million tons at 1.43 g/t gold, respectively, however, PDI’s deepest diamond hole, dubbed BNERD0113, lies outside the reported Mineral Resource area and thus has yet to have its gold reserves quantified.
The company also holds four contiguous exploration permits at Kaninko, Saman, Bokoro and Argo across a 356 km2 stretch of the West African Birimian gold belt in which the Bankan discovery was made, lying 550 km northeast of the capital of Conakry in the southwestern region of the globally renowned Siguiri basin. Led by managing director Andrew Pardey – priorly CEO of mining multinational Centamin, with experience at AngloGold Ashanti’s 10 Moz and Nordgold’s 4.3 Moz gold mines both in the basin -, PDI currently has nine drill rigs operational across its Guinea licensed zone, conducting resource drilling, grade control and near deposit exploration works.
PDI’s Bankan project has every sign of becoming West Africa’s next tier one gold mine, $57 million in the pot to help develop the open pit project and accompanying 35 km long structural corridor. Aircore and power auger programs are underway along with aeromagnetic surveys, gold intercepts at four distinct prospects found from early drilling alone, joined by soil geochemical sampling, BLEG stream sediment sampling, ground magnetics, rock-chip sampling and accompanying mineral mapping techniques.
Initial metallurgic test work has shown a 92% average recovery from 24 hours of leaching, greenlighting feasibility studies and government talks around mining production permit securement. Headed by country manager Aime N’Ganare, PDI are also in discussions with Guinea’s Ministry of Environment and third party surveyors to develop a best practice biodiversity management program, recognizing the Bankan site’s border with the Upper Niger National Park.
This September, mining, transport, infrastructure and accompanying energy-adjacent industry leaders will convene for MSGBC Oil, Gas & Power 2022, the region’s foremost future-facing platform for public-private power partnerships and investment. As PDI leads the charge in West Africa with projects in Guinea, Burkina Faso and Ivory Coast, other multinationals are flocking to the MSGBC basin and MSGBC 2022 is the platform where this diverse, globalized interdisciplinary future of the industry will be written.
Guinea-Conakry as an Extractive Industries Transparency Initiative member has set a golden standard for mining but now seeks to marry this sector with energy works – 22 offshore blocks coming up for bidding and the region’s foremost liquefied natural gas port under construction for 2023 launch, power imports allowing in situ processing of bauxite ore for a sixfold increase in value.