B2Gold Corp. - CEO, Clive Johnson
CEO, Clive Johnson
Source: Business in Vancouver
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  • B2Gold Corp (TSX:BTO) is still expecting its three operating mines to exceed their production forecasts, despite COVID-19’s ongoing impact
  • However, the Masbate mine in the Philippines has had to suspend operations temporarily, due to fuel shortages
  • Planned expansions at B2Gold’s mines in Mali and Namibia remain on track, but could face impacts of future government lockdowns or supply chain issues
  • The company is continuing to implement stringent screening procedures to limit the chance of an outbreak at its operations
  • B2Gold (BTO) is up 4.5 per cent, with shares trading for C$4.20 and a market cap of $4.33 billion

B2Gold Corp (TSX:BTO) still expects its mines in Africa and the Philippines to exceed expected production, despite COVID-19’s ongoing impact.

Operations at the Fekola mine in Mali, B2Gold’s mine in Namibia remain largely unaffected.

However, fuel shortages have forced the Masbate mine in the Philippines to suspend operations temporarily. The mine’s mill is continuing to process stockpiled ore and the company expects to have the site fully operational soon.

The fuel shortages were the result of the Philippine government’s new COVID-19 restrictions. The government mandate requires all incoming materials and crew go through contamination testing. Consequently, fuel is being held up at port and has yet to make its way to the mine site.

B2Gold will release the effects of this fuel shortage on the mine’s outlook at a later date, but stressed that the mine will meet its Q1 2020 production goal. 

Currently, production at Namibia is unaffected. However, the planned underground mine expansion later this year could face delays if mandatory lockdowns affect contractors.

The company is moving ahead with its developments at the Fekola mine. Excavators are currently expanding the mine site and B2Gold is building a larger tailing facility at the processing centre.

The company stated that, barring any COVID-19-related shutdowns, the expansion should be complete by the third quarter.

However, it is possible that the pandemic’s effect on global production could interrupt component sourcing and supply chains. If so, this may stall development.

B2Gold maintains that no staff at any site have presented with coronavirus symptoms. The company is continuing to enforce strict control measures to monitor any potential outbreaks.

B2Gold Corp (BTO) is up 4.5 per cent, with shares trading for C$4.20 at 10:44am EST.

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