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Gold miner St Barbara on Friday announced that despite issues at its Simberi operation, in Papua New Guinea, group production for the 2022 financial year had been met.

Group production in the full year ended June reached 280 746 oz, which was in line with the guided 275 000 oz to 290 000 oz, while total group production for the June quarter reached 86 403 oz, representing a 40% increase in quarter-on-quarter production.

The Simberi operation contributed 17 882 oz during the June quarter, and 28 136 oz during the full year, while the Atlantic operations, in Canada, contributed 18 015 oz in the June quarter and 61 151 oz in the full year.

St Barbara’s Leonora operations contributed 50 506 oz in the June quarter and 191 459 oz in the full year.

The ASX-listed company earlier this year flagged a strategic review of the Simberi operations, deferring a final investment decision on the sulphide expansion project after project costs ballooned.

The company is also in talks with fellow gold miner Genesis Minerals regarding a “potential business combination aimed at consolidation of the Leonora Province and the unlocking of operating and development synergies in the region”.

St Barbara on Friday pointed out that it had the largest mineral resource base of 10.3-million ounces and an ore reserve base of 2.5-million ounces in the Leonora region, and also held significant resource growth opportunities with further resource extension and infill drilling planned for 2023.

The company’s Leonora processing plant will also be expanded from 1.4-million tonnes a year to 2.1-million tonnes a year, and it is readying to start underground mine portal construction at the recently acquired Zoroastrian asset in the March quarter of next year.