June 29, 2012 / 12:43 PM / in 6 years

UPDATE 1-New Gold begins production at British Columbia mine

June 29 (Reuters) - New Gold Inc said it started production at its New Afton gold and copper mine in south central British Columbia, on track with its expectation.

The Canadian miner said in April that New Afton would begin milling in June and start commercial production in August.

The first ore was processed through the mill circuit on Thursday, the company said in a statement.

The company continues to expect production of 35,000 to 45,000 ounces of gold and 30 million to 35 million pounds of copper this year.

New Gold, which said the daily milling rate will continue to increase, still expects total development cost of about C$765 million for the mine.

Shares of New Gold, which has a market value of C$4.45 billion, closed at C$9.54 on Thursday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

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