Equinox begins full-scale construction at $1.23 billion Ontario gold project

Equinox Gold has begun full-scale construction at its Greenstone Gold Mines project – a 60:40 joint venture with Orion Mine Finance Group – in Ontario, which is set to become one of Canada’s largest gold mines.

The US$1.23 billion project is expected to deliver over five million ounces of gold over its initial 14-year life, including an annual production rate of 400,000 ounces for the first five years of the operation.

“Equinox Gold continues to focus on its strategy of sector-leading growth, launching Greenstone Mine development as construction and our Santa Luz mine in Brazil is nearing completion,” said CEO Christian Milau.

Meanwhile, Ontario’s Premier Doug Ford praised Equinox for its work with indigenous communities and the government to prepare the project for construction. “This world-class gold mine will create jobs and bring prosperity to the region, and to every corner of our province,” Ford said at the ground-breaking ceremony yesterday.

Greenstone Gold Mines will create 800 local and 1,300 regional jobs during construction, with 500 permanent positions to be created. Construction is expected to take two years with six months of commissioning. Mining would start in the last quarter of 2022, with first gold pour targeted for the first half of 2024.

Once operational, the mine will cement Canada’s position as one of the leading global gold producers. The value of gold production in Canada has more than tripled from $2.2 billion in 2008 to $7.8 billion in 2020, making the country the world’s fifth largest producer. 75% of Canadian gold originates in Ontario and Quebec.