LIMA May 21 A new mine being developed by Peru's Buenaventura would start producing up to 300,000 ounces of gold per year in 2016, Chief Executive Officer Roque Benavides said on Wednesday.
The Tambomayo gold field in Peru's southern region of Arequipa will cost $200 million to build, Benavides added.
"We expect to get it producing at the start of 2016," Benavides told reporters at a mining summit. "We'll surely produce between 200,000 and 300,000 ounces of gold per year."
Earnings at Buenaventura, Peru's biggest precious metals miner, have fallen in recent quarters because of lower metal prices and waning output from the Yanacocha mine it operates with Newmont Mining Corp.
Local opposition has stalled a $5 billion gold project that would offset dwindling deposits at Yanacocha, which Newmont controls.
Gold output in Peru, the world's fifth-largest producer, has fallen 17 percent in the past three years. But the government has said it expects production to recover gradually and reach 6.6 million ounces in 2017.
Benavides said there had not been any recent large gold discoveries in the Andean country to replace big, aging mines, and that more exploration was needed. (Reporting by Teresa Cespedes; Editing by Lisa Von Ahn)