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OceanaGold (TSX: OGC) has completed the federal permitting process for the expansion of its Haile gold mine located in Kershaw, South Carolina.

On Tuesday, the company announced that the US Army Corps of Engineers (ACOE) has issued the supplementary environmental impact statement record of decision (SEIS ROD) and granted a permit under Section 404 of the Clean Water Act for the mine expansion.

In addition, the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control (DHEC) issued the mine operating permit (MOP) on Dec. 14, which, following a statutory 15-day period, will become final and will complete the state permitting process for the Haile expansion.

The receipt of the federal and state permits allows for development and operation of the underground mine and an expansion of the operating footprint to allow for additional waste containment facilities and expanded tailings storage capacity.

The move to underground mining at Haile is expected to cost an estimated $110 million and generate an additional 200 direct jobs on site. First ore from the Haile underground remains on-track for delivery in the fourth quarter of 2023.

OceanaGold president and CEO Gerard Bond said “the receipt of the Haile SEIS ROD and the MOP represents a significant milestone for OceanaGold, putting the company on a clear path to deliver increased gold production and lower unit costs at this cornerstone asset.

“We are thrilled to be progressing the next stage of Haile’s growth as we expand our operations underground and, with exploration success, pursue further opportunities to profitably extend the mine life.”