Canada’s Aya Gold gets key backer for $182 mn Moroccan project

 Canada’s Aya Gold gets key backer for $182 mn Moroccan project

Aya Gold & Silver Inc., a Canadian company that operates the underground Zgounder Silver Mine and the Boumadine polymetallic project in Morocco, has secured $100 million in debt to expand its operations.

The Toronto Stock Exchange-listed company, which is focused on operation, acquisition, exploration and development of silver and gold deposits, said the debt financing package will support expansion of the Zgounder Silver Project.

The European Bank for Reconstruction and Development has received final board approval to provide a senior debt facility of US$92 million, while the Climate Investment Funds, through its Clean Technology Fund, is providing US$8 million, Aya Gold said.

The debt has six-year maturity, with a two-year principal grace period, Aya Gold said.

This covers more than half of the cost of a $182 million project in the North African country that a subsidiary of Aya Gold is implementing. Zgounder Millennium Silver Mine S.A, a silver mine company owned 85% by Aya Gold and 15% by Moroccan state unit National Office of Hydrocarbons and Mines (ONHYM).

The Zgounder project is located 260 km east of Agadir in Morocco. Aya Gold also has another silver project at Imiter bis, an exploration property located on Morocco’s sub-Atlas range, about 150 km from Ouarzazate. Aya also has a number of exploration properties located along the prolific Anti-Atlas belt.

On the gold side, it has projects Boumadine, Amizmiz, Azegour and Tijirit.

“The infrastructure build-out will serve as a regional catalyst, bringing additional investment, local jobs and procurement, and an array of social and environmental initiatives that benefit both the government of the Kingdom of Morocco and local communities,” said Benoit La Salle, President and CEO of Aya Gold.

Vivek Sinha

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