Explorer and developer Ariana Resources said Friday its Kiziltepe Mine delivered 'excellent' results in the fourth quarter of last year as higher silver production and sales drove up income quarter-on-quarter.

For the quarter ended 31 December, the Kiziltepe mine gross income rose to $10.6m from $10.1m a year earlier at an average realised gold price of US$1,238 per ounce, against an average revenue per gold ounce of US$1,413, up from $1,198.26 and $1,333.62 the previous quarter, respectively.

Silver production and sales for the quarter were 90,881 ounces, up from 70,363 ounces the previous quarter. While gold production and sales were 7,517 ounces for the quarter, down from 7,556 ounces the previous the quarter.

Operating cash costs increased to $349 an ounce for the quarter, up from $330 an ounce the previous quarter.

'These final results for Q4 2018 are fully in line with the excellent performance of the Kiziltepe Mine achieved during the prior two quarters,' said Dr. Kerim Sener, Managing Director.

'Operating cash cost per ounce remains low, mainly due to the maintenance of significant by-product silver credit and increased grades through the plant during the period. '

'As at the end of the quarter, 50% of the JV construction capital loan of US$33 million has been repaid, with the remaining balance to be repaid largely during 2019. Monthly intercompany loan repayments from the JV to our wholly owned subsidiary, Galata Madencilik San. ve Tic. Ltd., reached approximately US$2.1 million by the end of 2018.'