Amara Mining's Ivory Coast gold mine to start production in 2017
* Company to invest $400 mln over next two years
* Resources evaluated at 6.3 mln oz
* Average annual production forecast at 325,000 oz
By Loucoumane Coulibaly
ANGOVIA, Ivory Coast, Oct 1 (Reuters) - Amara Mining will invest $400 million over the next two years to build one of Africa's largest gold mines at its Yaoure property in Ivory Coast with production due to start in 2017, the London-listed company's CEO said on Wednesday.
Resources have been evaluated at 6.3 million ounces, John McGloin said during a visit to the site in the centre of the West African nation.
"We expect to produce an average of 325,000 ounces per year. With this level of output we'll be in the top 10 of the largest mines in Africa and the largest in Ivory Coast," he said.
Construction, which will be financed by the company, private investors, banks and through market fundraising, will begin in 2016 and last 18 months.
The mine has a projected lifespan of 12 years. McGloin said the company, which has already spent around $24 million on exploration at the site, hopes that further drilling will lead to discoveries that could prolong the mine's life to around 20 years. Continued...