Dugald River

The Dugald River project is one of the largest and highest-grade known undeveloped deposits of zinc, lead and silver in the world. Located in north-west Queensland, approximately 65 kilometres north-west of Cloncurry, the deposit is a Mineral Resource of 63 million tonnes at 12% zinc, 1.8% lead and 31g/t silver.

The deposit is being developed as an underground mine accessed by two declines (north and south). The underground mine development continued to advance ahead of schedule, with the two exploration declines in excess of 12,900 metres at the end of December 2013. All-weather access to the Dugald River site is in place, with construction village access and main access road infrastructure works substantially complete.

In 2013, MMG completed financing arrangements with BOC and CDB in relation to the project. During the year, MMG undertook additional geotechnical and geological test work to better understand the Dugald River ore body. The findings of this work prompted a review of the planned mining method, optimum production volumes and surface infrastructure requirements.

The Board approved an additional A$57 million for a trial stoping program during 2014. The program will provide practical mining experience, enabling optimisation of the underground mine design. A change in project parameters arising from the 2014 work program could impact the future direction of the project.

A five-day metallurgical test of 95,000 tonnes of Dugald River ore on the Century processing circuit was conducted in early October 2013. The campaign produced 6,050 tonnes of zinc in concentrate, containing an average of 50.8% zinc, 1.6% lead and 1.6% manganese. Processing Dugald River ore using existing infrastructure at Century remains a future option for the project.

MMG will not achieve the previously announced schedule of first concentrate shipment in late 2015. The trial stoping program will provide greater certainty on the future direction of the project including project schedule, mining and processing methods, and capital and operating costs.


Key milestones

Deposit discovered


First systematic exploration


Feasibility study


Further feasibility studies


Pre-commitment phase 


Environmental Approval received 

Q3 2012

Board Endorsement  

Q4 2012

Final financing approval received

Q2 2013

Pre-approval activities continue, including building of construction village and mine access road (including emergency airstrip).

Second half of 2013


Timelapse of the Dugald River skyline and communications tower (courtesy of Alex McGregor).



PO Box 69
Burke Development Road
Cloncurry, Queensland 4824
T +61 7 4442 0603
F +61 3 9288 0025
E dugaldrivercsp@mmg.com

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