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  • Turquoise Hill Resources (TSX:TRQ) has updated shareholders on the ongoing developments at the Mongolian-Chinese border
  • Border restrictions have tightened since the first case of COVID-19 was recorded in Mongolia earlier this month
  • Turquoise Hill are currently working with the government to limit the spread of the disease and have implement screening tests at its Oyu Tolgoi mine
  • So far, operations at Oyu Tolgoi remains unaffected and a new underground mine remains on track 
  • However, the company was quick to point out it that the full effects of the outbreak on operations is still unclear
  • Turquoise Hill Resources (TRQ) was down 6.67 per cent, with shares trading for C$0.56 and a market cap of C$799 million

Turquoise Hill Resources (TSX:TRQ) has updated shareholders on COVID-19’s impact on the company’s Mongolia-based mining operations.

The Mongolian-Chinese border closed earlier this year when COVID-19 was first reported by China as a serious health concern. Then, on March 10, Mongolia recorded its first confirmed case of novel coronavirus and heightened the restrictions further.

Flights in and out of the country have been heavily restricted, so has movement across the border.

Turquoise Hill is currently developing the Oyu Tolgoi project in Mongolia. The Oyu Tolgoi one of the largest undeveloped copper and gold deposits in the world. The company has estimated the site could run for up to a hundred years, based on the high levels of mineralisation.

The company is mitigating COVID-19’s health risks by screening staff with temperature tests. Staff at Oyu Tolgoi also have a dedicated COVID-19 hotline to deal with any quarantine issues as they arise.

Turquoise Hill has also donated roughly C$150,00 to the Mongolian government through a support and development fund. This donation will go towards the COVID-19 emergency effort.

Despite the heightened restrictions, Oyu Tolgoi continues to operate. The company also continues to ship copper across the border without any significant disruptions.

Further expansions at Oyu Tolgoi are still ongoing, including the development of a new underground mine.

The underground project is expected to finish around second quarter of this year. However, the company is still unsure what the full effects the pandemic will have on its overall operations and this could affect the mine’s timeline.

Ulf Quellmann, Turquoise Hill’s CEO, stated that the company and the government are working in tandem to limit COVID-19’s impact.

“We fully support the Government of Mongolia’s decisive actions to prevent the spread of COVID-19.

“The health and safety of our employees and the wider community is our first priority. We will continue to work with our employees, local communities and the Government of Mongolia to manage the situation,” he said.

Turquoise Hill Resources (TRQ) was down 6.67 per cent, with shares trading for $0.56 at 10:39am EST.

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