* Signs deal to mill all Cigar Lake ore at the McClean Lake mill
* Says project’s production startup date remains mid-2013 (Follows alerts)
Oct 5 (Reuters) - Cameco Corp said it signed a new milling arrangement with its joint venture partners which will help it cut operating cost at its Cigar Lake project.
Canada’s top uranium producer said it signed a non-binding memorandum of understanding with its joint venture partners -- AREVA Resources Canada Inc, Idemitsu Resources Canada Inc and Tepco Resources Inc-- to mill all Cigar Lake ore at the McClean Lake mill.
Cigar Lake, located about 660 kilometres north of Saskatoon, is the world’s largest undeveloped high-grade uranium deposit, according to Cameco’s website.
The company said estimated average cash operating cost would drop to about $18.60 per pound from $23.14 per pound due to the new milling arrangement.
Cameco, which owns a 50 percent stake in the Cigar Lake project, said it continues to expect production to start in mid-2013. (Reporting by Swetha Gopinath in Bangalore; Editing by Muralikumar Anantharaman)