Azerbaijan's leading gold mining company, Anglo Asian Mining, said on Thursday its gold output rose 22% in 2018 to 72,798 ounces from 59,617 ounces in 2017.
London-listed Anglo Asian produces gold at Gedabek and other Azeri mines in a joint venture with the Azeri state in which the company holds 51%.
The company said its total production of gold-equivalent ounces (GEO), which includes other metals, rose 17% year-on-year to 83,736 GEO from 71,461 GEO a year earlier and compared to a forecast of 78,000 to 84,000 GEO.
Copper output declined to 1,645 tonnes from 1,991 tonnes, while silver output rose to 210,184 ounces from 172,853 ounces.
The company said in a statement that total revenues in 2018 rose 26% to $90.4 million. Profit before tax in 2018 was $25.2 million, a more than four times increase year-on-year.
"We have set a production target of between 82,000 and 86,000 gold equivalent ounces for 2019, which is an increase from 2018," Khosrow Zamani, the company's non-executive chairman, said in a statement.
"We are on track to achieve this production target."
Anglo Asian began production at Gedabek, the bigger of two mines it operates, in July 2009. It eventually plans to develop seven mines in western Azerbaijan, with estimated gold reserves of 430 tonnes in total.
The company started a significant exploration programme at the end of 2016 after making a new gold discovery at Ugur, 3 km (2 miles) from its Gedabek processing facilities.
(By Margarita Antidze; Editing by Mark Potter)
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