OceanaGold Corporation (ASX, TSX, NZX: OGC), which is domiciled in Melbourne but has the Toronto Stock Exchange as its home bourse had a net earnings for the September quarter of US$13.7 million (NZ$18.28 million) and, at $42.6 million (NZ$56.8 million), a 9% improvement in EBITDA over the previous quarter.

Gold production for the quarter totalled 68,763 ounces, realising a year-to-date total of 201,595 -- in line with company projections.

There have been improved mining and milling rates at the Fraesers open cut and Frasers underground operations at Macraes, north of Dunedin on the South Island, resulting in a 20% increase in production when compared to the previous quarter.

A New Zealand exploration program added 3,600 metres of underground drilling completed at Frasers Underground at Macraes and 7,600m of drilling at Globe Deeps at its Globe-Progress mine at Reefton on the South Island's West Coast.

Mill throughput of Macraes ore for the September quarter was 1.48 million tonnes, compared to June quarter's 1.34 Mt and the grades treated were generally higher. Cash operating costs were $US568/ounce (NZ$758/oz) compared to June quarter $US564/oz. A key factor for this was the progressively weakening American dollar, as the company pointed out that since June the $US had declined 10% to the $NZ.

The operating margin grew to US$664/oz (NZ$885/oz) compared to US$627/oz (NZ$836/oz) for June.

The Globe-Progress mine, which delivers a concentrate to the Macraes pressure oxidation plant, mined 14% less ore in the quarter due mainly to wet conditions on the West Coast that gave mining equipment poor access to the pit floor.

Gold production attributable to Reefton was 19,031 oz, 7,000 oz less than the June quarter.

OceanaGold's executive chairman, Jim Askew, said the company's third quarter results demonstrated higher cash operating margins and solid cash flows from our NZ operations.

With the resumption of development of the Didipio gold-copper project in the Philippines "the company will be well positioned for ongoing earnings growth and expansion".

"Didipio represents a long life mine with robust economics that, after allowing for copper by-product credits, will create a cash cost profile that aims to put the company within the lowest quartile amongst its peer group," he said

Since releasing the quarterly results, OceanaGold separately released a new technical report that provides positive signs for lifting the mothballs of this project and have it contributing to group production within two years. This year's group production from NZ operations was estimated to be between 270,000-300,000 oz.


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