Engineering & Mining Journal

MAR 2017

Engineering and Mining Journal - Whether the market is copper, gold, nickel, iron ore, lead/zinc, PGM, diamonds or other commodities, E&MJ takes the lead in projecting trends, following development and reporting on the most efficient operating pr

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REGIONAL NEWS - EXPLORATION ROUNDUP 22 E&MJ • MARCH 2017 www.e-mj.com New Drilling Extends Strike Length at Ivanhoe's Kakula Copper Discovery The latest drill results from Ivanhoe Mines' Kakula copper discovery in the Democrat- ic Republic of Congo (DRC) confirm the exceptional continuity of the deposit's high-grade copper mineralization and its relatively flat-lying geometry. Highlights in- clude a step-out hole drilled 1.6 kilometers (km) northwest of the current boundary of Kakula's inferred resources that intersected 11.10 meters (m) true width of 5.82% cop- per at a 3% copper cut-off, beginning at a downhole depth of 993 m. The mineraliza- tion is similar to the mineralization found at the established center of the deposit. High-grade copper mineralization at Kakula has now been outlined along a cor- ridor about 1 km wide and at least 5.5 km long. The discovery remains open along a northwesternly to southeasterly strike. Ivanhoe is mobilizing additional contract drill rigs to the Kakula discovery, and as of late January had nine rigs drilling on the site. Ongoing work includes infilling a 2.6-km 2 area immediately northwest of the current in- ferred resource boundary; infill drilling of in- ferred resources in the central section of the deposit; and step-out drilling to the south- east to explore for additional extensions of the Kakula high-grade zone along the trend. Ivanhoe anticipates that extensions to Kakula's strike length will have a major, positive impact on the project's econom- ics, with potential to significantly expand planned mining rates and extend the pro- ject's mine life. A positive economic assess- ment (PEA) of the project was completed in December. An updated PEA is now planned to analyze project development alternatives. The updated PEA will focus on deter- mining an optimal initial development sce- nario, including a steady-state mining rate that balances capital efficiency with effec- tive scale and long-term operating costs to maximize the project's net present value. Ivanhoe plans to complete an updated mineral resource estimate for the Kakula discovery by the end of April. The initial min- eral resource estimate, reported in October 2016, identified 66 million metric tons (mt) of indicated resources grading 6.59% cop- per and 27 million mt of inferred resources grading 5.26% copper, both at a 3% cut-off. (www.ivanhoemines.com) Exploration Briefs Gold Standard Ventures has outlined plans for a $15.5 million 2017 exploration pro- gram on its Railroad-Pinion project on the Carlin Trend in Nevada, including up to 48,800 m of reverse-circulation and core drilling in a total of 117 holes. The bud- get also includes an extensive predevel- opment component, with new resource estimates, further metallurgical work and economic studies to de-risk key assets. "Railroad-Pinion has now become a truly district-scale play, with multiple de- posits of different types. Each year, we set out to find the limits of the gold systems we have discovered, and each year we end up with new opportunities that exceed our expectations," said Gold Standard CEO Jonathan Awde. "We think 2017 will be no different. We believe we have found the right balance between expanding and advancing resources at known deposits and continuing to evaluate the many new targets that have emerged over the past year. This should be a very exciting next few months." Geologic mapping, geochemical sam- pling and geophysics are ongoing to de- fine new targets throughout the 115-km 2 Railroad-Pinion district. Thirty reverse circulation scout holes totaling about 10,600 m are planned as part of Gold Standard's 2017 exploration program to provide the first tests of these targets. A preliminary economic assessment of the Pinion and North-Main Dark Star re- sources is planned for completion during the third quarter of 2017. (goldstandardv.com) Columbus Gold has initiated an explora- tion drilling program to assess the expan- sion potential of its 100% owned Mon - tagne d'Or gold deposit in French Guiana. The program consists of 36 core holes for a total 5,520 m and is designed as a first-pass investigation of exploration tar- gets on strike of and in close proximity to currently defined mineral resources. Magnetic, electromagnetic and radio- metric airborne geophysical survey data have traced the prospective volcano-sed- imentary sequence hosting the Montagne d'Or deposit for up to 5 km to the west. The current drilling program will test three separate targets identified within this sequence. In addition, within the Montagne d'Or deposit envelope, one hole will test the depth extension of the gold mineraliza- tion. To date the vertical depth of drilling has averaged only about 250 m. A preliminary economic assessment of the Montagne d'Or deposit complet- ed in July 2015 estimated that a mine developed on the deposit could produce approximately 273,000 ounces per year (oz/y) of gold at a mined head-grade of 2 g/mt gold over its first 10 years of produc- tion at all-in sustaining costs of $711/oz. A bankable feasibility study of Mon- tagne d'Or development is scheduled for completion before the end of the first quarter of 2017. (www.columbusgoldcorp.com) Mirasol Resources and OceanaGold have signed a Letter of Intent (LoI) as a first step toward formation of a joint venture to explore and develop Mirasol's La Curva gold project in Santa Cruz province, Ar- gentina. Mirasol has undertaken an exten- sive exploration and geophysical program at the property over a number of years and outlined three priority prospects. The earn-in terms of the LoI entitle Oceana to acquire a 51% interest in La Curva by completing $7 million in explo- ration expenditures over four years and making $1.5 million in staged cash pay- ments to Mirasol. Included in the terms is a first-year exploration spending commit- ment of $1.25 million, with a minimum of 3,000 m of drilling. Following the completion of the initial earn-in, Oceana can elect to increase its interest in La Curva to 60% by funding and delivering within two years a pre- liminary economic assessment (PEA) on an inferred resource of not less than 500,000 oz of gold-equivalent. Addition - al provisions offer potential for Oceana to increase its interest to as much as 70%. The LoI is subject to a due diligence review by Oceana. (www.mirasolresources.com)

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