Newcrest faces ‘no impact to operations’ as COVID-19 infects Lihir worker

The Lihir operation. Image: Newcrest Mining

A Newcrest Mining worker has tested positive to COVID-19 at the Lihir gold operation in Papua New Guinea.

The Papua New Guinean employee, flew to Lihir from the capital city of Port Moresby on July 30.

The worker, who was asymptomatic, was moved from Newcrest’s designated isolation camp into the company’s separate treatment facility.

“To date, our testing and containment protocols have prevented disruption to the operation,” Newcrest stated.

All people who travelled with the individual to Lihir have not displayed symptoms, but have remained in Newcrest’s isolation camp and have all tested negative to COVID-19.

Newcrest stated it will be undertaking further testing during the 14-day isolation period, with isolated employees required to pass the polymerase chain reaction test three times at separate intervals and test negative in order to be released.

The Lihir operation is on Aniolam Island, 900 kilometres from Port Moresby.

Newcrest produced 207,233 ounces of gold in the June quarter, up from 187,245 ounces in the previous quarter due to a boost in head grade and recovery.

The company reached its production guidance during the 2020 financial year for Lihir with 775,978 ounces.