Please briefly introduce yourself and share your experience.

I started my professional journey in the mining industry in 2005, almost 19 years in the field. I’ve spent three years at the Kazakh enterprise TLC "DANK." Progressing to a field geologist, I later joined the company JSC"Varvarinskoye" in 2008 as a geological technician in the quarry. Working in this role for nearly five years, I then took on the role of deputy general director for mineral and raw material resources at JSC Varvarinskoye. I began my journey at JSC Varvarinskoye with the foreign company Orsu Metals, and when Polymetal acquired this deposit in December 2009, I continued with them for about 13 years. Currently, for almost a month and a half, I lead the company Camp-Vostok as its director. Since we mentioned Polymetal, I was aware of your work there, and I'm curious about the differences in approach between Polymetal and your previous companies. Polymetal is known for its innovation and unique perspectives. Indeed, Polymetal provided valuable experience and knowledge to the entire staff at JSC Varvarinskoye and Komarovsky Mining Enterprise, including myself. Despite primarily focusing on geology, my development extended beyond it, encompassing mining operations, enrichment technology, and economic considerations. Comparatively, Polymetal stands as a giant in the mining industry, with entirely different approaches. Their outlook differs significantly from the companies I worked with and currently work for. The task ahead for Camp-Vostok's leadership is to reach the level of a giant like Polymetal. There are numerous differences, ranging from geological and operational exploration to ore extraction and storing. Having a rich experience, I aim to reshape the company's perspective and focus on more optimal approaches to enhance quality and profitability.

Perhaps, for our viewers, could you provide some specific examples of the differences, if we delve into the details? Well, if we start with sample collection and operational exploration, for example, in Polymetal, they use the RC drilling method, reaching depths of up to 50 meters and more. The assessment of mineral resources is done on a six-month to one-year horizon. This allows for more accurate planning of mining activities, providing insights into ore deposits. The qualitative planning will be more advanced compared to companies currently operating at, let's say, below-average levels. Most of them do not understand that using reverse circulation drills might seem expensive compared to flushing machine, where the same drill holes can be used for both ore sampling and blasting. It's like killing two birds with one stone, but the downside is that you only see the current situation. In other words, there's no foreseeing of what happens below a 5 or 10-meter depth with the ore - whether there's displacement or if it has skewed. That understanding is lacking. This is one aspect. Secondly, when using RC drilling, if we can see several horizons ahead, we can plan the blasts accordingly. This involves separate blasting, separating ore from rock. Moments can be chosen, like blasting a 10-meter section if it's a continuous ore structure, rather than blasting rock sections. If we are confident, based on exploration, that a section lacks ore richness, we could confidently conduct explosive work even up to 15 meters, reducing explosive material usage and, consequently, the cost of explosions for blasts exceeding five meters. And with RC, you mean it anticipates and allows for a deeper view either because it can drill deeper or because the sample is cleaner? There are several aspects here. First, we see forecast data on ore content. Second, it's about quality, right? Quality is paramount. With direct flushing, the borehole samples, now tested in many companies, have contamination at the wellhead and well walls. Also, the sampling is done manually, introducing a human factor. This brings certain risks. However, using reverse circulation (RC) drilling eliminates the human factor and contamination between intervals. The key is to have the equipment and a company experienced in RC drilling with the appropriate sample selection quality - like the Johnson Splitter. There are many variations of Johnson Splitters, of course, but there are those that meet high-quality sample selection standards. Have you compared the results, for example, of blasthole drilling and RC drilling? Are there any real-life examples? Economically, a mining company might think blasthole drilling is more cost-effective initially. They believe they save money now. However, in reality, lacking the information provided by RC drilling might lead to information loss, potentially making it more expensive in the future. Yes, there are many examples, as I mentioned. Polymetal always embraces cutting-edge technologies, including RC drilling. I remember we started RC drilling around 2008-2009; initially, the volumes were small. With time, understanding, and further development, each year saw an increase in volume. We smoothly transitioned from blasthole wells to RC drilling for operational testing. We conducted comparative analyses, revealing significant variations in results between blasthole and RC wells in some cases. There wasn't a consistent pattern; results were sometimes inflated or understated in certain wells. However, everything is validated by the final factory results. In essence, our comparison involved testing blasthole wells and RC drilling on the same site to ensure a fair assessment. So, we created a block model for both blasthole and RC drilling wells. While the structure showed around 90% similarity, the content quality varied. After breaking it with explosives, we brought the material to the factory. The final factory results closely aligned with RC wells in terms of quality and content. We conducted tests on both 5-meter and 10-meter blasthole wells, but the limitation was that blasthole wells allowed only vertical drilling, while RC drilling allowed drilling at various angles, making it more convenient for determining ore body thickness. You mentioned the cost difference between RC and blasthole drilling. On the factory side, for instance, if a customer spends $1,000,000 on RC drilling for the entire year. And how will this reflect in the factory? Spending 1,000,000 here, how can one profit in the factory? And what amountapproximately? Well, the factory plays a crucial role in terms of losses and dilution. Blasthole wells might have internal contaminations leading to a decrease in gold content. However, with RC drilling, drilling at angles allows a clear view of ore body thickness, aiding in calculating the angle of ore block extraction and estimating dilution losses accurately. When considering blasthole drilling, drawing ore bodies and thickness is feasible, but depicting ore body drop is ambiguous due to the challenges in illustrating vertical wells. The thickness could vary within 20-30%, leading to some inconsistency. Therefore, here we can incur losses in the sorting of mining methods, especially during the design phase. As a result, many companies, using blasthole drilling, drill the area, try out the wells, and determine the location of ore bodies. The explosion is then carried out jointly. Because if we determine that 60% of the area where we drilled with blastholedrilling is ore, it is not cost-effective for the subsoil user to avoid blasting the remaining 40%. This would mean money spent on drilling, so they will blast all 100% of these wells. So, after the explosion, we have, so to speak, an explosive ore-bearing area. During exploitation, we try to select rock and ore areas separately. But this is not always possible, as the explosive mass is, so to speak, unpredictable. The same displacement of the explosion's impact in a certain direction results in a mixing and losing quality of both the rock and ore areas. In any case, the mineral user is compelled to conduct selective mining. In contrast, when we drill with RC, we already know where the ore is. Consequently, we can blast, set theblasthole drilling specifically in the part where there is no ore, to break the rock, or to blast the ore separately and then only the rock. This is precisely about the quality. The significant difference lies in the processing at the factory. RC drilling, compared to blasthole drilling, allows identifying areas with valuable ore that can be processed for profit and avoids processing empty rock at the factory? Yes, so, the degree of dilution and the presence of empty rock in the ore are lower with RC drilling compared to blasthole wells. In essence, blasthole drilling doesn't provide information to distinguish between ore and waste rock effectively? It does provide such information

if approached qualitatively to this method, to this approach, as sampling, I repeat again, is a manual method. In other words, constant control is needed. The geologist himself must be there with samplers and assistants, selecting samples according to the technology. It doesn't always work out that the technologies are maintained. So, the risks increase here, and it's labor-intensive, a manual method. If we compare in terms of mass, literally 200-300 kilograms of mass need to be mixed, divided through a Johnson splitter in several stages to obtain a routine sample. It'sa hard work, so to speak. And so much time is lost on this, rather than on RC drilling. The machine took the same amount of time as the manual method, but in the meantime, you've already obtained a sample. With blasthole drilling, someone must constantly stop the process to collect a sample before continuing drilling. The crucial point is probablycontamination within the interval? If blasthole drilling covers a 10-meter well, the entire 10 meters are essentially mixed. They do mix, as the air pressure during drilling introduces contamination along the borehole wall. While the exact percentage is unclear, the proportion of contaminations is high. Well, by the way, in our case, if you remember, there was an article in our newspaper using a Chilean deposit as an example, and they provided figures claiming that over 20 years, by implementing RC drilling, they managed to save around $20,000,000,000. So, those were the figures presented. Have you ever calculated something similar for yourself, maybe not in billions?.. Not in billions, but essentially, at the time when we switched to RC, we calculated in metal, so to speak. I can't say for sure, but in one block, it seemed that if we hadn't used RC drilling, we could have lost almost five kilograms of gold from a single block. So, there were such potential losses. Is this over what period? This was precisely over 10-11 years, as we calculated. Basically, it's from one block, right? And we had about 10 of such blocks per month. So, in a month, we could easily reach 50 kilograms. Am I correct that if you didn't drill with RC, you would have used blasthole drilling, and it might have shown barren rock, and you would have discarded it, right? Gold. Yes, exactly. So, it's like even mixing with rock, an increase in the milling and crushing work. That is, rather than crushing ore specifically, the costs include the amount of material for crushing, electricity, and so on. If we determined 100,000 tons of ore with RC drilling, and with DBO, let's say, it would be 120,000 tons because 20,000 tons are the barren layer for us, it's dilution. Consequently, the factory would pass more ore through, but it would still yield the same amount of metal as with 100,000. After the testing, out of these 10 machines, it might turn out that two or three machines are empty, no ore, and during shipment to the factory, you have to choose exactly what showed as ore. So, the content, if any. And what is happening now at the Camp has led to the fact that there is no useful area in the ore warehouse. Because in all these batches, about 40%, turned out to be ore, and the rest is like empty rock, and that's it. And now, this empty rock either needs to be spread on-site to avoid removal or somehow use it, I don't know, as backfill or something else. Just after we drill with RC, it's separate blasting, as I mentioned, we separate rock and ore, we already know precisely what content is in the subsurface, and with a certain content, we bring it from several benches, two excavators work in the quarry. This one, for example, works on rich ore, this one on poor ore. And that's it, we determine a certain charge forthe machines, how many machines are needed from this rich bench and how many are needed from the poor one to create this area for forming stacks. And, accordingly, we raise it as a large dump but already averaged in content. And you don't need a large area, just a small plot to form these stacks, and that's it, calmly set the loader a task for loading. And there's no need for a person for control there. They simply take the blending stack from the edge and load it onto the factory. That's it. However, when it comes to batches, a person walks around and indicates for each pile which one needs to be offloaded…

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Adilbek Tursynkhanov
Head of the mining company "Camp-Vostok"