Gold Explorations began its operational life in Peru in 2004, assisting with the second phase construction and expansion of the Huanca-Acari processing operation, located in the south of the country. The ore processing plant whose smelting work began in 1998 initially produced only 3,014 ounces per annum, but following two later expansion stages in which Gold Explorations supplied our valuable technical skills, the plant has since 2012 produced an average of 60,000 ounces per year, a 1900% increase in production capability and making it the 2nd largest boutique gold processing plant in Peru.
In 2005 Gold Explorations began working in Chile, the world's largest copper producing nation, seeking out new deposits of this valuable commodity. Here we have worked closely with a number of industry heavyweights, including the large state run copper mining institution 'Codelco', as Chile focuses attention and investment capital on a massive overhaul of its mining industry infrastructure, aimed at keeping the country firmly ahead of rival south American mining nations, in terms of copper production as well as boosting its position as a gold producing country. Last year alone saw Chile's strongly established gold and copper mining industry attract in excess of $30 billion worth of direct foreign investment capital as strong Chinese demand for mineral resources pushed the average world price of copper to around $7,245 per ton and witnessing gold prices hit a high of $1,382 per ounce. With resource demand again on the rise for both gold and copper, Gold Explorations intends to fully capitalize on this.
Over the course of our 11 years of operations, Gold Explorations has placed extensive focus on exploration and green field development across the range of our licensed mining concessions, spending since 2009 over $7 million dollars on the further exploration of our centre-piece concession located in the Tumipampa region of Peru. Two years of extensive surveying and exploration work later, a polymetallic skarn was discovered on the site and in 2014 high gold grade deposits were identified within the Manto Dorado vein of the geological structure. This site is the one on which much of Gold Explorations' interest has been placed in terms of further growth in Peru and gold mining efforts in particular.
By spreading our attention across all aspects of mining, from early stage exploration to late stage processing operations involving both gold and copper in the two South American countries with the most developed infrastructure for the recovery of these minerals, Gold Explorations has been able to endure the cyclical stages of downturn that can affect mining companies who are highly specialized in terms of minerals sought or services provided for. This strategic approach to our industry has seen Gold Explorations grow consistently over our lifespan and allows for even greater, faster growth, as new opportunities emerge on the continent, making us both a trusted partner in the region's mining industry and an ideal stable investment platform.