Showing posts with label Peru. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Peru. Show all posts

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Govt to allow informal miners to sell gold, asks protestors to have patience

The Peruvian government will approve a decree this week allowing informal miners to continue selling gold as long as they are in the process of legalizing their operations, the mines and energy ministry (MEM) said in a release.

The government began to take a hard line with illegal mining this year by issuing several decrees designed to eradicate the activity and help small and artisanal miners formalize their operations.

On Tuesday, informal miners in several regions held protests against the government's initiatives.

The government has set up technical roundtables with representatives of the national federation of small and artisanal miners (Fenamarpe) in many of the country's regions and is drawing up several legislative decrees to regulate the sector, according to MEM.

"Informal miners will be able to sell their product while they are carrying out the paperwork. Only after 24 months of this process will they be required to have the corresponding documentation," deputy mines minister Guillermo Shinno said.

The deputy minister called on the protestors to call off the demonstrations and to have "patience" as this week the government will publish regulations that "will clear things up."

Opposition to the new norms is mainly from 'illegal' miners and especially in relation to chemical inputs, according to Shinno. "Regarding inputs (cyanide, mercury), initially supervisory routes were set up for Madre de Dios but in the future they will be for the rest of the country... We must clearly separate illegal miners from informal ones," he said.

A decree that came into effect in March distinguishes between informal miners - who are willing to legalize their operations with help from the state - and illegal miners who are profiting from the activity at the expense of the state.

Mining accounts for around 60% of Peru's exports.

Gold exports hit US$2.57bn in Q1

Peru's gold exports totaled US$2.57bn in the first quarter of this year, making it the country's principal export, the national mining, oil and energy society SNMPE said in a release.

Gold represented 23% of overall exports in Q1, which totaled US$11.3bn, according to the chairman of SNMPE's gold committee, José Miguel Morales.

The yellow metal also accounted for 39% of total mineral exports which were US$6.65bn in January-March.

Peruvian gold exports increased 30% in 2011 to US$10.1bn, up from US$7.76bn the previous year and accounting for 22% of the country's exports and 37% of mineral exports.

From 2007-11, yellow metal exports totaled US$34.4bn, according to the release.

The main destinations for Peru's gold exports are Switzerland, Canada and the US.

Peru is the largest gold producer in Latin America and sixth globally.

Peru's federation of mining unions plan nationwide strike May 14

Head of the federation, Luis Castillo, says workers want the government to implement a law that will create a special retirement fund for miners funded by monthly payrolls and corporate profits.

Peru's federation of mining unions said on Monday it is planning to start a two-day nationwide strike on May 14, but individual unions have not yet confirmed their participation.

Workers want the government to implement a law passed by Congress that would create a special retirement fund for miners funded by monthly payrolls and corporate profits, said Luis Castillo, the head of the federation.

"It's been nine months that the government hasn't implemented the mining retirement law," Castillo told Reuters.

The success of the national strike rests on approval of local unions. Previous calls for a national walk-out from the federation, most recently in July, did not come to fruition because member unions could not agree on terms.

Peru is the world's No. 2 copper and silver producer and is No. 6 in gold.

Not a gold bull or bear, but a gold agnostic: Eric Coffin

As a contrarian, all the doom and gloom tells Eric Coffin the market is about to pull out of its tailspin and he talks about why the Yukon is an area play he still believes in. Gold Report interview

The Gold Report: Eric, the gold bears recently outnumbered the gold bulls in Bloomberg's weekly Gold Bull/Gold Bear Sentiment Survey for the fourth time in a year. Are you a bull or a bear?

Eric Coffin: I think the gold price is going to end the year higher, so I guess that makes me bullish, but I think of myself as agnostic.

There needs to be a return of calm to Europe for the gold price to move much higher. The currency pair trade between the euro and the dollar is going to be a big determinant to the gold price. There's been more noise about the EU providing stimulus funds to offset all the government budget cuts in Europe. All of those countries have to deal with their debt loads. But it's not realistic to think that they can cut their deficit and 3% off their gross domestic product year after year and realistically get any net growth.

The other side of that equation is that the U.S. has slowed down. That'll help the gold price because a lot of goldbugs are riding on there being another round of quantitative easing. I'm not sure it's going to happen. But as long as Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke keeps saying it might happen, that's good enough.

TGR: Stagnant gold prices are translating to equities. Canaccord reports that "sector weakness in the gold equities over the last six years has typically ended with 'V'-shaped corrections to the upside." Do you believe that's what will happen this time?

EC: I sure hope so because I'm on the buy side, not the sell side. I'm going to feel pretty dumb if it doesn't happen. We're still in a bull market for gold. In a secular bull market, generally speaking, coming out of a dip tends to be an impressive move.

TGR: Many Yukon junior mining companies are starting their 2012 exploration programs after completing off-season financing on buyers' terms. What types of companies are getting financing?

EC: The only financings I've seen in the past five months are either relatively new deals where investors have a lot of respect for management-which is a roundabout way of saying that investors figure management will figure out a way to make money regardless-or companies that have something pretty definitive with a bunch of drill holes. Companies that didn't take the opportunity to raise money last year are going to have to pull a rabbit out of their hat. The Yukon is an expensive place. There's no getting around it.

Outside of companies with discoveries, nobody's really done large financings and that's going to be tough. About 60% of the companies are going to have a hard time undertaking any significant programs this year. If the market gets better, which I think is going to happen, they still have a shot, but it's at buyers' terms.

I suspect a lot of companies are going to say, "Let's just wait and see if next year is better." You haven't seen many announcements. Quite a few of those companies that were talking last year about doing $4, $6, $8 million exploration programs-many of those programs aren't going to happen.

TGR: Desjardins Capital reports that 26 mergers and acquisitions worth a combined $30 billion (B) took place during 2010 and 2011. There are about 120 more companies operating in the Yukon. Are other junior explorers going to be forced to merge?

EC: I think there will be merger activity at the junior level. There are a lot of companies with decent but not spectacular projects where they haven't done enough work and are not in a position to raise money. A merger is one way out for them.

TGR: Is it still fair to call the Yukon an area play when the shares of most of the juniors operating there have declined considerably, often by more than half? Even good results often don't tangibly move share prices.

EC: It still is an area play. This is a fairly common path even for a successful area play. The easy money has been made or, as is the case here, the market's just lousy and there is a lot of consolidation. The Yukon is getting to that point. The few companies that have done well will have the ability to pick up a lot of projects. In any area play, anywhere from a third to a half of the companies involved are piggybacking on the play to help raise money. Those companies tend to disappear quickly if they don't find something large right away or if the financing environment gets difficult. The bad market has exacerbated things but a large number of drop outs from an area play at this stage is not an unexpected development.

TGR: What are your thoughts on what's happening in Peru?

EC: The political landscape has shifted a lot in Peru. It's made it very difficult for anybody outside of Peru-and maybe even inside Peru-to get a handle on what's a good spot and what isn't. There are a lot of South American countries where mining companies just shouldn't go because they're bound to face a political or indigenous population problem and they won't get permitting. Now no one seems to know what the good areas and the bad areas are. That's going to make it tough for everybody in Peru until this stuff gets clarified.

TGR: Do you have some parting thoughts for us on the market and how it translates to the retail investor?

EC: I'm fairly comfortable that the U.S. is going to do OK over the next couple of years. It's going to have another political fight at the end of the year when tax cuts die. Europe has the capability to pull itself out of its problems. In a large measure, it's political decision-making. I certainly appreciate northern Europeans and Germans that don't really see why they should be footing the bill, but they can afford to foot the bill.

We're not particularly worried about China. It's trying to rebalance its economy. China's in a different boat from Europe or the U.S. in that it's got $3 trillion in reserves and can open the taps anytime it wants. China will increase the growth rate when it feels it's the right time to do it.

The world economy will do OK as well. I know it feels like the end of the world for investors that own a lot of resource stocks as I do. The secular bull market hasn't ended. Ironically, all the political problems in different producing regions are going to extend that secular bull market in metals because it's that much harder to grow production to a point that knocks metal prices down.

I'll just leave you with a contrarian thought: Everybody's so negative right now because this is what bottoms look like. Everybody thinks the world is coming to an end. Everybody thinks it's the worst market they've ever been in. Everybody thinks nothing is ever going to go up. That's what a bottom looks like. It's not fun to go through. There's so much negativity everywhere that it's telling me as a contrarian that there's probably not a lot more pain to go through before things start getting better.

If readers would like to download HRA's new company report on Precipitate Gold Corp., HRA has set up a special free report offer for a limited time. Simply click here and they will send you the report.

Eric Coffin is the editor of the HRA (Hard Rock Analyst) family of publications. Responsible for the "financial analysis" side of HRA, Coffin has a degree in corporate and investment finance. He has extensive experience in merger and acquisitions and small-company financing and promotion. For many years, he tracked the financial performance and funding of all exchange-listed Canadian mining companies and has helped with the formation of several successful exploration ventures. Coffin was one of the first analysts to point out the disastrous effects of gold hedging and gold loan-capital financing in 1997. He also predicted the start of the current secular bull market in commodities based on the movement of the U.S. dollar in 2001 and the acceleration of growth in Asia and India. Coffin can be reached at or the website

Source: The Gold Report

Sunday, May 6, 2012

The Conga Project in Peru - Environmental Impact Assessment

The Conga Project in Peru involves surface mining of a large copper porphyry deposit also containing gold that is located 24 kilometers northeast our Yanacocha Gold Mine, which is also a joint venture between Newmont and Buenaventura. Full funding for the project was approved by Newmont’s Board of Directors in July 2011 and the project is anticipated to provide employment for 5,000-7,000 during construction, with priority given to locals for employment and contracted services.

The public engagement process leading up to the approval included approximately 13,000 people from the neighboring communities, the Cajamarca region and elsewhere.

Water management practices incorporated in the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) were based on more than 10 years of hydrology and engineering studies conducted by respected independent firms. In addition, the Conga water management program is designed to provide a year-round water supply to surrounding communities. For a summary of the EIA report please select from the following:

EIA Report - English version

Mining News – Today TV


Friday, May 4, 2012

Dia Bras drilling expands catas-cuye deposits and discovers high-grade gold at the Purisima area on its yauricocha property, Peru

Dia Bras Exploration Inc. (TSX-V:DIB) (BVL: DIB) ("Dia Bras" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that its drilling programme for resource expansion at the Yauricocha mine in Peru continues to find additional ore below the current levels. An additional eight holes have been drilled and have expanded the deposit to the south and 350 m to depth. Also, drilling in the Purisima area of the property yielded high grades of gold in several drill holes.

Daniel Tellechea, President and CEO of Dia Bras, commented: "These results demonstrate that we continue to expand the resources of the Yauricocha mine and continue to prove the prolific nature of this highly mineralized mining district. We know now that the Catas and Cuye orebodies extend more than 350 m to depth, and our drilling continues to discover previously-unknown deposits that also are expected to extend for hundreds of meters down dip. This mature, productive mine has many, many years of production before it and its precious metal potential is being reinforced with recent disco veries of high grade gold at its Purisima area, which is only 500 meters away from current mine working areas."

Recent Drilling Results
Yauricocha Mine: Drilling of the Catas and Cuye bodies below the mine workings continues to demonstrate that these wide, high-grade ore bodies continue to depth (see link to "Yauricocha Longitudinal Section" here). The deposits are of high-temperature, carbonate-replacement type, which is an important distinction because these types of deposit often have great vertical extent. The Company expects that these bodies will continue to great depth, much deeper than the depth to which current drilling has shown the deposits to occur.

SOURCE Dia Bras Exploration Inc.

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Junior focus: Rio Alto gold grade double mine plan – but not high grading

Rio Alto's President and CEO Alex Black speaks with Mineweb about its success and prospects as it hits boilerplate production at its La Arena gold project in Peru.

Rio Alto Mining's (TSX: RIO) early success in bringing the La Arena gold deposit in Peru into production. Rio Alto poured gold about a year ago and is now on track to churn out some 150,000- to 160,000-ounces this year. Total cash costs have been low more or less from the get-go, in the $600 per ounce gold range, and are expected to stay that way this year. In its last quarter, Rio Alto's biggest yet, it produced 56,000 ounces gold and more than doubled cash holdings to $71 million.
What struck one as much or more so than outright gold output from the last quarter was grade. Basically it was double mine plan. Rio Alto mined 1.3 million tonnes @ 1.37 g/t gold versus an expected 2.2 million tonnes @ 0.69 g/t from the La Arena gold/copper deposit, which holds some 1.5 million ounces of gold in measured and indicated resources in an oxide cap (in sulphides below there is an additional 313 million tonnes @ 0.24 g/t gold and 0.29 percent copper which it might mine during a second phase).

The big drop in ore production below mine plan was due both to the bump-up in grade and unusually heavy rains during the quarter, which slowed leach pad expansion. Thus Rio Alto shifted its mining efforts to waste removal. Ore tonnes mined were approximately 871,000 tonnes less than plan, while waste removal exceeded plan by 694,000 tonnes.

"Some people thought we were high grading," Alex Black, Rio Alto president and COO, told Mineweb over the phone from Peru where he is based. High grading refers to a usually short-sighted mining technique that bypasses lower grade ore in favour high grade stuff, something that inevitably hurts down the line when the good ore is gone and you're forced to mine - at higher cost - what you had once passed over.
But Black said high grading was not at play at La Arena. Rather, he said, preproduction "we knew there would be some sort of grade kick." It was just a matter of how much of a grade kicker would come. The cause, Black said, are high-grade structures within the La Arena deposit. The high grades therein are not reflected well in the resource, much of which is based on drilling by previous operators. Chief among these was Cambior before Iamgold took it over back in 2006.

Now, Black said, Rio Alto is trying to get a handle on mine reconciliation. To do so Rio Alto is conducting a geostatistical study that should be done sometime in the fourth quarter and help Rio Alto better model grades.
A tantalizing question remains, however; will the high-grade kicker continue? Black is realistic in response. High-grade structures, stringers in the deposit that have bumped up gold grade, could continue deeper - or not. "We just don't know," he said. That is why Rio Alto plans to update its model yearly, to reflect any changes to the deposit model as mining progresses.
Another side to Rio Alto's success in its start up at La Arena is ore processing. "It leaches like a dream," he said. Metallurgical testwork predicted it would, but Black noted there is always uncertainty about any preproduction metallurgical testing: the question of whether it will translate to commercial reality. It has.
Rio Alto's success so far has translated into cashflow and some will wonder what Rio Alto will do with its growing dollars should high gold prices remain high and production continue according to plan.
A dividend is one option. Black was non-committal but did not take it off the table. "We've got to think about that," he said, noting dividends are a relatively recent phenomenon in the gold mining sector. Rio Alto would look at whether to issue one on a "case by case basis," he said. Perhaps shareholders will have some say on the matter as they increasingly look to dividends as an important way to fill a void that was once filled by a higher premium on gold stock.
Cash of course will also fund Rio Alto's inhouse portfolio of projects. Black noted they hold some 27,000 hectares at La Arena, a smidgen of which accounts for mining operations. He said there was "plenty of potential there."
Yet he also pointed to the junior marketplace. With the fall of so many junior market caps it may seem a bargain basement shop replete with worthless trinkets and the odd, surprising, treasure like a Rolex mixed up in a box of plastic Mickey Mouse watches.
Such opportunities, whether in the form of acquisitions, mergers or joint-ventures are all possibilities, Black said. "There's plenty of potential in the market," he said. Rio Alto could go after them or opportunity could come to it. "There are all sorts of things that could happen," Black said.
According to Black, there is interest in Rio Alto by other companies, though where that might lead is anyone's best guess. As is typical for any junior miner, Rio Alto has let others take a peek into its operation more closely. "We've opened the door to people that want to take a look," Black said.
Black also observed that acquisitions seem difficult to sell to the market these days. Looking to recent events in the gold sector Black described takeovers this way. "Damned if you do, damned if you don't." Thus it would seem he treads carefully in weighing Rio Alto's options in pursuing growth.
One thing that is hard to escape notice: Rio Alto's stock chart. Over the past few years it has a nice steep up-curve. For much of last year Rio Alto hovered around C$2 per share. This year it peaked over C$4.60, having since come down to the low C$4s.
While Rio Alto's shareprice has declined over the past six months, in a relative world it must be said to have some sticking power as part of a broader investment landscape that has dumped risk and resource stocks.

The obvious reason behind its market resilience is that Rio Alto started full-scale mining last year and turned out a strong performance. Investors like that.
Some of the sticking power, however, may also come thanks to a more surprising source: Peruvian pension funds. Rio Alto trades in both Lima and Toronto and Black noted that since Rio Alto graduated to the big board in Toronto from the Venture exchange, its shares have become an eligible target for Peruvian pension funds.
"The various pension funds are starting to buy our stock," Black said.
Pension funds in Peru are active in the resource sector and to illustrate their hunger for resource investments Black used Volcan Compañía Minera, a Peruvian mining powerhouse, as a prime example. Pension funds are minority shareholders in Volcan and what's more in a recent $600 million bond issue by Volcan Black said the pension funds bought all the paper. "It shows appetite for the right story," Black said.
Rio Alto is not near Volcan in size, but Black said this is not scaring off the pension funds. You might think they would eschew smaller companies and small share blocks in favour of more giant-sized investments like the Volcan bond issue. However Black said the pension funds are willing to buy in smaller blocks on the open market.

Source: Mineweb

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Rio Silver signs community agreement for its Niñobamba project in Peru

Canadian junior Rio Silver Inc. (TSX.V: RYO) announced it has signed a community agreement to begin the initial exploration program at its flagship Niñobamba silver project, located about 330 kilometres southeast of Lima, in the Department of Ayacucho, Peru.

The Niñobamba silver project was discovered by AngloGold Exploracion Peru S.A.C. in 2001, when silver was trading in the US $5 per ounce range. Niñobamba is a high sulphidation, epithermal system hosted within a Tertiary volcaniclastic unit with silver mineralization demonstrating the potential for a bulk tonnage, disseminated silver deposit.

Niñobamba is one of several silver and gold exploration projects in Peru that the Company owns through its wholly owned subsidiary, Minera Rio Plata S.A.C (“Rio Plata”). The Niñobamba silver project is 100% owned by Rio Plata with no royalties or exploration expenditure commitments, in an historic, mining friendly jurisdiction. Consultation with the local community stakeholders resulted in an agreement which will see community members working in all phases of the exploration program as the project advances.

The company said in a statement it looked forward to working with the local community members and that appreciated their support in working through the Community Consultation process to the benefit of all stakeholders.

Niñobamba Silver Project

Originally explored by AngloGold Exploracion Peru S.A.C. (“Anglo”) in 2001, Anglo focused on an area of intense hydrothermal surface alteration and drilled five widely spaced core holes totalling 861metres. Anglo’s drilling highlights included DDH-2 which reported assay results of 87 gpt silver over a drilled interval of 130 metres starting from a depth of 9 metres and DDH-4 reporting 54 gpt silver over a drilled interval of 96 metres starting from 23 metres. Results of this limited exploration program outlined two distinct zones of silver mineralization reported to be open along strike and at depth. The initial work program will consist of road building, trenching and prospecting in advance of the proposed 2012 drill program.

St. Elias Mines Ltd. Update - Cueva Blanca gold property in Peru

Lori McClenahan, President, Intigold Mines Ltd. and St. Elias Mines Ltd. (TSX VENTURE: SLI) (PINKSHEETS: SELSF) (US Clearing Symbol: SELSF) (FRANKFURT: EKL) (collectively the "Companies"), announces today the following update and overview with respect to the Cueva Blanca Gold Property (the "Property") located in northwest Peru.
The Property is owned 100% by St. Elias Mines Ltd. Intigold Mines Ltd. has an option to acquire a 60% interest in the Property.

The Companies have initiated field studies in the Cueva Blanca area in preparation for diamond drilling. At this time, it is anticipated that very little field work will be required prior to mobilizing drilling equipment and crews to the site. The initial drilling targets include the Cruz vein, the Cruz breccia bodies as well as the Bi-Hg quartz manto zone. The economic targets at the property are gold and silver.

The Companies have recently been approached by Compania de Minas Buenaventura to conduct a review of the property. The Companies are taking this into consideration.
Cueva Blanca Property Agreement

Intigold acquired an option to earn a 60% carried interest in the Property, subject to a 1.5% net smelter return royalty ("NSR"), from St. Elias in consideration of Intigold making cash payments of $200,000 to St. Elias over a two-year period, issuing 1,000,000 common shares in the capital of Intigold to St. Elias and incurring $1.5-million in exploration expenditures on the Property over a three-year period.

In addition, Intigold has the right to purchase one-half of the 1.5% NSR from St. Elias for the sum of $1,500,000, thereby reducing the NSR payable from 1.5% to 0.75%.
Cueva Blanca Property

The Property covers approximately 5,000 hectares (50km2), and is located in the Lambayeque department in northwestern Peru, within the Northern Peru Miocene metallogenic belt. This belt is defined by a large number of world-class gold and copper-gold deposits of similar age (5-25 million years). Giant gold deposits within this belt include Yanacocha, Lagunas Norte, and Pierina. Also of great importance are world-class Cu+/-Au porphyry deposits such as Rio Blanco, Canariaco, La Granja, Cerro Corona, Minas Conga-Galeno-Michiqillay, Magistral, and Antamina.

The giant gold deposits and the Cu-Au porphyries often occur in clusters (e.g. Yanacocha-Conga-Galeno-Michiqillay). Discrete vein and breccia-hosted deposits of gold and polymetallic mineralization occur adjacent to some Cu porphyry deposits.

The Cueva Blanca property is bordered to the south and southeast by mineral concessions of Vale S.A. Barrick Gold holds extensive mineral concessions four kilometres to the north.
The Property lies within the northern member of a pair of profound east-west tectonic warps that cross northern Peru. These flexures are marked by an abrupt change in the direction of the regional geological trend from northwest to east-west. Within the southernmost of these tectonic features is the multi-million ounce Yanacocha gold mine and numerous Cu-Au porphyry deposits. Both the northern and southern structures are on the order of 60-80 km wide; they extend right across the Andes from the Pacific Ocean to the Amazon River Basin.
The locations of the giant Yanacocha gold mine and other gold deposits and Cu-Au porphyries of the Cajamarca district may be controlled or at least influenced by east to north-east structures within the large-scale southern tectonic flexure. The Cueva Blanca property, as well as the Canariaco and Rio Blanco Cu-Au porphyries and gold prospects such as Las Huaquillas (Inca One) and Rio Tabaconas (Golden Alliance, GLL), appear to be with the northern tectonic flexure.

An important feature of the Cueva Blanca property is the Cruz gold/silver epithermal vein system. Some examples of exceptional classic epithermal deposits with geologic characteristics similar to the Cruz vein system are Kupol (Russia), El Penon (Chile), and Tayoltita, Guanajuato, and Pachuca (Mexico).
Exploration History

Cueva Blanca exploration history has followed the classic pattern: acquisition based on geologic reasoning; property-wide prospecting and subsequent discovery of precious metal showings; detailed surface exploration of mineralized zones; and initial diamond drilling. The historical results provide an indication of the potential of the Property and are relevant to continuing exploration.

The previously announced confirmation exploration work, conducted in 2011, consisting of sampling of outcrops and trenches at the Cruz Vein portion of the Property. Assay results indicate a weighted average grade of 2.84 g/t gold across an average width of 4.3 meters and along a strike length of 850 meters in the Cruz Vein system.

Historical exploration work on the Cruz vein system, which included 91 trenches and 18 drill holes totalling 1,860 metres, proved that the quartz veins consistently contain gold and silver and that the Cruz vein system is a classic epithermal gold-silver deposit. Historical results of gold assays from the Cruz vein drill program include 6.0 metres of 2.31 grams per tonne, 6.0 metres of 2.96 grams per tonne (including 1.75 metres of 7.45 grams per tonne), 1.5 metres of 22.68 grams per tonne, 9.5 metres of 8.09 grams per tonne (including 1.5 metres of 35.84 grams per tonne), 10.8 metres of 2.4 grams per tonne and 1.2 metres of 6.95 grams per tonne. The vein intersections contain virtually no sulphides. The vein system is open along strike to the southeast and northwest, and to depth. (Summary report, Sivertz, 1999.)
While the Companies have no reason to doubt the accuracy of the historical results, the existing data should not be relied upon until the Companies' own exploration work confirms that the data meet National Instrument 43-101 standards for disclosure. Historical results and the work that generated them predate the enactment of National Instrument 43-101 and accordingly may not meet the requirements of that policy.

Qualified Person
The technical contents of this news release have been verified by George Sivertz, P.Geo., a Canadian geologist residing in Peru, who is a "qualified person" as defined in National Instrument 43-101, Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.
For additional information on St. Elias and its projects, please visit us at for further information on IntiGold, please visit or call 1-888-895-5522 (toll free US and Canada) or contact:
U.S. Investor Relations Consultant
Herbert Haft
The Haft Group, Inc.
Tel: (212) 759-8865

ST. ELIAS MINES LTD.(signed "Lori McClenahan")
Lori McClenahan,
The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or the accuracy of the contents of this document.
This News Release may contain forward-looking statements including, but not limited to, comments regarding the timing and content of upcoming work programs, geological interpretations, potential mineral recovery processes, etc. Forward-looking statements address future events and conditions and therefore involve inherent risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those currently anticipated in such statement.
SOURCE St. Elias Mines Ltd.

Newmont posts 9% rise in profit, Peru project remains suspended

Newmont Mining on Friday reported a 9% increase in first-quarter profit to $561-million, or $1.13 a share, keeping within its expectation for the year.

The multinational gold miner lifted revenue for the quarter by 9%, to $2.7-billion, outpacing higher labour and power costs at its operations.

CEO Richard O'Brien pointed out that the company had increased its gold operating margin by 29%, which outpaced the 22% year-on-year increase in the average realised gold price.

The firm produced 1.3-million ounces of gold, down by 2%, and 35-million pounds of copper, down by 35%.

UBS Investment Research noted the adjusted first-quarter earnings a share of $1.17, compared with $1.04 a share for the prior year, was in line with what it had expected.

Analyst Brian MacArthur said in a note the company was “tracking well towards the higher end of the year’s production guidance”.

Newmont's board approved a second-quarter gold price-linked dividend of $0.35 a share, based on the company's average realized gold price of $1 684/oz for the first quarter, an increase of 75% over the $0.20-a-share dividend paid in the second quarter of 2011.

Further, the Denver-based company expected to spend about $3-billion to 3.3-billion on capital projects, or $4-billion to $4.3-billion on a consolidated basis.

However, Newmont cautioned that the estimate assumed the development of the Conga project, in Peru, proceeded as anticipated in connection with its outlook provided in January. Development of the Conga project was temporarily suspended in November 2011 and restarting and future development remained subject to certain risks, including political and social risks, and uncertainties, including those relating to the environmental-impact assessment (EIA) review.

The Conga project's EIA, which was approved by the central government of Peru in October 2010 after a public engagement process, was subject to a review by independent experts during the first quarter at the request of the Lima government. The results of the independent review were recently made public and confirmed that the reviewed sections of the EIA met Peruvian and international standards.

However, O’Brien said the Conga project remained suspended, pending further analysis of the economic and technical impacts of the recently released report from the independent panel.

Should the company be unable to continue with the development of Conga, it may reprioritise and reallocate capital to other development alternatives in Nevada, Australia, Ghana and Indonesia.

“During the first quarter, we continued to invest in the development of our Akyem project in Ghana, which remains on schedule for initial production in 2014," O'Brien said in a statement.

Newmont maintained its outlook for gold production of 5-million ounces to 5.2-million ounces and copper production of 150-million pounds to 170-million pounds at costs applicable to sales of between $625/oz and $675/oz of gold on a co-product basis, and $1.80/lb and $2.20/lb of copper.

Monday, April 30, 2012

Strait Gold provides update on projects in Peru

Strait Gold (TSX VENTURE:SRD) is pleased to provide this overview of the Company's projects in Peru. The Company has also filed on SEDAR its financial statements for 2011 along with management's discussion and analysis of those statements and its 2012 Annual Information Form. The statements, MD&A and AIF are also available at

Strait is involved in four mineral exploration projects, all in Peru: Alicia, Caribe, Letra Rumi South and Culebrilla. The Company's main focus in 2011 was Alicia which has demonstrated potential to host a porphyry-style copper-gold deposit.

Alicia Project

The Alicia property is approximately 500 km southeast of Lima within an emerging copper belt that hosts a number of important deposits including Xstrata's Las Bambas, First Quantum Minerals' Haquira and HudBay Mining's Constancia. Strait Gold holds a 55% interest in Alicia and, having met its expenditure requirements, the Company is in a position to increase that interest to 100% by issuing 400,000 shares to the vendor any time before February 19, 2013.

Work is advancing well at Alicia. Detailed mapping of alteration and vein/stockwork is underway in the main Alicia intrusive and will be followed by detailed rock sampling along proposed drill sections in preparation for an upcoming 6,000-metre, 15-hole drill program.

An NI 43-101 Technical Report was filed in April, 2011, recommending further work, including 5,000 metres of diamond drilling. The Company proceeded with additional surface sampling and geophysical surveys throughout the balance of 2011 in preparation for additional drilling.

In December of 2011 the Company signed an option agreement with a subsidiary of Teck Resources Limited (the "Teck Agreement") giving the subsidiary the right to earn up to a 75% interest in the property by, among other things, (a) spending $30 million on exploration or (b) spending $10 million on exploration and delivering a pre-feasibility study. A pre-condition of the agreement required Teck to make a $600,000 equity investment into the Company which was done at a 100% premium to the Company's then-current share price. As part of the Teck Agreement, Teck's subsidiary is now funding a mandatory $2-million exploration program at Alicia in 2012 and paying the Company a 10% administration fee to manage the program.

A community agreement, which is required prior to drilling in Peru, was recently renewed between Strait Gold and the community until the end of February, 2014. Prior to entering into the Teck Agreement the Company applied to the Ministry of Energy and Mines for a permit to conduct up to 10,000 metres of core drilling which was approved by the Ministry in February, 2012. Subsequent to entering into the Teck Agreement, and in consultation with Teck, the Company revised its 2012 drill plan. The Company is preparing an application to the Ministry to modify the existing drill permit accordingly and will set up informative meetings with the community to comply with the legal regulations derived from the modification.

With 2012's $2-million exploration program at Alicia fully funded by Teck, the Company plans to allocate its financial resources to its Caribe, Letra Rumi South and Culebrilla properties.

Caribe Project

The Caribe copper-molybdenum property was optioned from a private Peruvian corporation in early 2012. Strait Gold can earn a 100% interest in the 200-hectare property over three years. Caribe is in the Region of Apurimac, approximately 80 km west of Alicia and within the same metallogenic belt.

Due diligence surface exploration was conducted by the Company, particularly in an area where informal mining is being carried out by local residents, but no systematic exploration program has been mounted yet. Initial discussions with the community, including informal miners, leads the Company to believe it will be able to reach a community agreement, and the signing of such a community agreement will then become the anniversary date of the three-year option agreement.

Porphyry copper-molybdenum mineralization at Caribe is associated with quartz porphyrytic intrusives that are extensively brecciated. Typical porphyry-style alteration is present including secondary biotite (potassic) and intense argillic alteration. Secondary enrichment zones composed of covelite-chalcocite-bornite and pyrite locally make up more than 10% of the rock. Historical assays of nine samples returned up to 4.5% copper, greater than 100 grams per tonne (g/t) silver and greater than 1% zinc in the secondary enrichment zone and up to 0.82% copper and 0.08% molybdenum in the primary sulphide zone. The porphyry system extends across the property in a northwest-southeast direction for more than 1,000 metres and is approximately 700 metres wide.

Recent reconnaissance mapping and sampling was conducted by Strait Gold geologists as part of the Company's due diligence. A total of 11 composite chip samples from panels of 1-4 square metres were taken intermittently over approximately 500 metres. Highlights include: one sample returning 5.38% copper, 1.405% molybdenum, 0.334 g/t gold and 63 g/t silver and another sample returning 3.88% copper, 1.055% molybdenum, 0.387 g/t gold and 31.8 g/t silver. Five of the 11 samples returned greater than 3.3% copper.

Under Peruvian law, small-scale or informal mining is governed by an environmental impact statement regime that is more lenient than that applicable to mid-scale and large-scale mining. Nevertheless, the Company intends to conduct exploration adhering to the highest Peruvian and international standards.

Strait Gold can earn its interest in Caribe by making option payments over a three-year period commencing upon the registration of a community agreement with Peruvian authorities (the "Anniversary Date") as follows: a non-refundable payment of US$20,000 to secure the option (paid); US$40,000 on the Anniversary Date; US$40,000 six months after the Anniversary Date; US$100,000 one year after the Anniversary Date; US$400,000 two years after the Anniversary Date; and a final US$600,000 three years after the Anniversary Date. The Anniversary Date will not be established until the Company negotiates and signs an agreement with the community. Please refer to the Press Release dated February 29, 2012.

There are no work commitments and no royalties and Strait Gold will not earn any interest until the final payment is made.

The Company also holds a 100% interest in both the 900-hectare Letra Rumi South base metals property and the adjoining 2,200-hectare Culebrilla precious metals property. Both are in the Region of Ancash approximately 250 km north of Lima and both are subject to the same 3% NSR royalty, two-thirds of which can be purchased for US$1-million per third.

Letra Rumi South Project

The Letra Rumi South concession was staked by the Company in 2007 to examine two gossan outcrops: Zone 1, which measures approximately 250x135 metres, and Zone 2, which measures approximately 315x110 metres. Ground geophysics included an induced polarization (IP) survey that indicated the presence of two strong chargeability anomalies corresponding with the two gossans.

Letra-Rumi South is drill ready, but work has been limited since 2009 when the Company began to focus on the Alicia Project.

Culebrilla Project

At Culebrilla, the Company intends a sampling program focusing on the Letra Rumi North area where previous work identified two copper-silver-gold-bearing quartz veins. Channel sampling and mapping of the entire length of the two veins is planned.
Mineralized showings in this area are polymetallic in nature. The southern vein is continuous over more than one kilometre in strike length and sampling along a portion of this vein returned values of 8.4% copper, 304 g/t silver and 0.8 g/t gold in one grab sample and 1.3% copper, 73.4 g/t silver and 0.7 g/t gold in a 1.3-metre chip sample.

Mineralized outcrops within the northern vein zone are discontinuous but may connect to form a single continuous vein at depth. Sample highlights from the northern vein include one grab sample that returned 847 g/t silver, 1.9 g/t gold, 1.6% copper and 0.3% lead and one 0.6-metre chip sample that returned 58.2 g/t silver, 0.5 g/t gold and 1.3% copper.

Newmont takes independent report on Conga EIS seriously

Newmont Mining Corp has said it is taking the report of the independent panel appointed to evaluate the environmental impact statement of its Minas Conga gold project in northern Peru seriously and is assessing the changes suggested by the panel.
The international panel’s report concluded that Conga’s environmental impact assessment “meets all the technical requirements for its approval” and conformed to both Peruvian and international standards, Newmont spokesman Omar Jabar wrote in an e-mail sent to Mining Journal.

The verdict of the report’s 258 pages boiled down to calling on the Newmont-Buenaventura joint venture to spare two of the four high mountain lakes that the Conga gold project will destroy and to nearly double the size of the four fresh-water reservoirs that will be built to provide a year-round water supply to area farmers and residents.
“We have agreed to President [Ollanta] Humala’s request to conduct a technical and economic analysis of potential alternatives for the Chica and Azul lakes,” said Mr Jabar. “The president’s request regarding Chica and Azul was based on the panel’s report, which suggested alternatives for the lakes be evaluated to see if they would be technically and economically viable.

“If alternatives for the lakes were not viable, the panel’s report suggested we explore other environmental mitigation and/or compensation,” he said, adding that the plans to double current water storage capacity in the lakes would allow for a year-round water supply for downstream users, “something they don’t currently have as a result of the dry season”.
The independent report was ordered by the president in February and delivered to the Peruvian government last week. The authors of the report are engineers Luis Lopez Garcia and Rafael Fernandez Rubio of Spain, and Portuguese geologist Jose Martins Carvalho.

Mr Fernandez Rubio said the report is the result of four trips to Cajamarca as well as discussions with experts that could provide information. “We have acted independently. It is not a political document,” he said.

The report also said the water in the four highland lakes is not fit for human consumption and called for more rigorous and complete methodologies and baseline measurements in the determination of the hydraulic flows of the mountainous area where the US$4.8 billion Minas Conga project will be located.

The report was embraced by Mr Humala, who stated in a nationally broadcast speech that the Conga project will be subject to “new conditions”, which include the creation of 10,000 jobs as well as the expansion of the four new reservoirs. He also said the company must promise to invest in schools, irrigation canals and drinking water infrastructure in Cajamarca, a farming region in the northern Andes, and must not dry up highland lakes.

The principal leaders of the opposition are Cajamarca regional president Gregorio Santos and environmental leader Wilfredo Saavedra, who maintain that the Conga project is not viable and have dismissed the report’s recommendations.

Read more Conga Project :

Friday, April 27, 2012

CST sells Mina Justa for US$505m

Hong Kong-based copper producer CST Mining Group Ltd said it would sell a 70% stake in the Mina Justa copper project to Peru-based base-metals firm Minsur SA, for a total US$505 million.

Located in southern Peru, Mina Justa has been estimated to hold copper reserves of 163Mt at 0.8%, and annual production was projected at 110,000t/y over 11.5 years, comprising 50,000t/y as cathode and 60,000t/y in concentrates.

The project was the subject of a US$475 million offer from Glencore last December, but the agreement was terminated after the commodities giant said that conditions of the deal were not met.

CST and Minsur said that details of the transaction would be released in due course, with Minsur to place a US$50.5 million deposit in an escrow account during the transaction.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

Peru's Humala says Newmont mine project needs work

Peruvian President Ollanta Humala said on Friday that U.S.-based Newmont Mining should carry out a more ambitious environmental mitigation plan if it hopes to build its $4.8 billion Conga gold mine project.

Humala, who urged community activists to stop protesting against the stalled mine's construction, said the government would make sure the company adheres to strict social, environmental and labor goals.

His comments to end a months-long impasse came two days after independent environmental auditors encouraged the company to build larger reservoirs to guarantee even more water supplies. They also said the company should preserve two lakes that would be displaced under the company's original plan.

"The company should meet the environmental and social recommendations made by auditors. And the capacity of the reservoirs should be at least four times greater than originally proposed by the company so as to benefit more townspeople," Humala said in a televised address.

Newmont's plan to replace four alpine lakes with artificial reservoirs fueled protests in the northern Cajamarca region late last year as some townspeople feared the most expensive mine ever attempted in Peru would leave local farmers without sufficient water supplies and cause pollution. The mine's construction has since been halted.

In a bid to gain confidence from locals, Humala's government asked three European auditors to issue an evaluation of the mine's environmental impact study, which was approved by the previous government.

Newmont has not yet responded to Humala's latest comments but has indicated it is willing to fine tune its mitigation plan. It has also said the reservoirs as planned would guarantee a year-round water supply for Cajamarca, whereas currently there is a lack of water during the dry season.

Peru's environment minister has said some of recommendations made by auditors would be relatively more costly and that the company would have to decide if it still wants to proceed after the government's recommendations.

Gregorio Santos, the president of the region of Cajamarca who has opposed construction of the mine even though it would generate some 10,000 jobs, said he was unmoved by Humala's comments - which also included a promise that the government would invest $1.9 billion in the region.

"No position has changed here," he said by radio from Cajamarca. "The Conga project isn't viable."

CST Mining sells 70% stake in Peru copper mine for $505 million

CST Mining is selling its 70% stake in the Mina Justa copper project in Peru for US$505 million.

cHong Kong-listed CST Mining (Stock Code:985) which owns the Lady Annie copper mine in Queensland, said today it has entered into a share purchase agreement with a subsidiary of Minsur S.A., the world’s fourth largest tin producer and Peru’s largest tin miner by tonnage.

The price is a 6% premium on last year’s offer by commodities giant Glencore to buy the stake off CST Mining for $475 million- a deal that Glencore walked away from.

Reporting on today’s news, the Wall Street Journal (sub required) said selling the 400-million-tonne asset will allow CST to concentrate on its Lady Annie operation which aims to produce 30,000 tonnes of red metal this year.

CST Mining has as its executive vice chairman Owen Hegarty, who as WSJ points out, “famously built Oxiana from a mining hopeful in 1995 to a multi-billion company on the ASX.” Oxiana later combined with Zinifex for $12 billion to create OZ Minerals in 2008.

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

Lara Exploration Ltd.: New targets and properties on the Sami Gold Project in Peru

Lara Exploration Ltd. (TSX VENTURE:LRA) ("Lara" or the "Company") is pleased to report very encouraging results from the 2011 exploration program its 100%-owned Sami Gold Project in southern Peru:

1. Pitusaja high-sulphidation epithermal target as defined by gold silver geochemistry and alteration has been extended to over 2 kilometres in size.
2. The Condorutca and Pitusaja Sur targets are interpreted as being part of the same alteration system as Pitusaja, suggesting potential for a much larger target part covered by recent sediments.
3. Systematic mapping and sampling has identified 15 new targets (for a total of 20) with evidence of epithermal and/or porphyry type alteration and mineralization.
4. New claims and acquisitions, covering extensions of Pitusaja and other target areas, have increased the property from 32,600 to 50,100 hectares in size.

Andre Gauthier, President of Lara, commented, "The number and quality of the targets we're finding at Sami is very exciting and we believe that the project has the potential to develop into a world class epithermal gold target and possibly also a porphyry copper district."

The Company has now completed systematic alteration, geological and structural mapping and collected a total of 1,862 rock chip samples (964 from the 2011 campaign). The exploration work has been focused on outlining and expanding high sulphidation epithermal gold anomalies like Pitusaja, but the Company's exploration teams have also identified low sulphidation epithermal gold-silver, copper-molybdenum porphyry and copper-silver vein-type alteration and mineralization, suggesting that Sami may host a well-preserved and extensive porphyry-epithermal system.

The Company is planning additional geology and sampling work as well as detailed ground geophysics over priority targets anomalies during 2012 to prioritize drill targets. Please visit the Company's website for maps and to see more details of specific target areas.

Quality Control

Samples from Sami were sent to the Certimin Peru laboratory where they were systematically analyzed for gold by 50 gram fire assay with atomic absorption finish, 35 other elements using ICP and for mercury using the Aqua Regia cold vapor atomic absorption. Approximately 10% duplicate samples were checked at ALS Chemex in Peru with the same analytical methods.

Andre Gauthier, Lara's President and CEO, a member of the Quebec Order of Engineers, is a Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects and is responsible for the preparation and verification of the technical information in this release.

About Lara

Lara is an exploration company following the Prospect Generator business model, which aims to minimize shareholder dilution and financial risk by generating prospects and then exploring them in joint ventures funded by partners. The Company currently holds a diverse portfolio of prospects and deposits primarily in Brazil and Peru where it has signed agreements for fifteen joint ventures. Lara's common shares trade on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol "LRA".

Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Source: Marketwire

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

Minas Conga 3rd party technical water report to be made public Wednesday

Three international consultants have turned over to Peru's Council of Ministers their independent recommendations regarding further technical mitigation of the Minas Conga copper and gold project's potential water impacts.

A yet-to-be-released report says serveral aspects of the mitigation for mining-related water impact issues, outlined in the Minas Conga environmental impact assessment document, can be improved.

During a press conference late Tuesday afternoon, however, Peru's Environmental Minister, Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, did not go into detail about the study's specific findings and conclusions. He said the 260-page document will be posted online at Peru's Ministry of Environment's website Wednesday.

Pulgar-Vidal observed that the report "a highly technical document" for which a simplified analysis would be made available after the document is made public.

"I want to emphasize that this survey has been totally fair and transparent, in which our experts have been working to evaluate all environmental and technical aspects of this Conga project," he stressed. The study was authored by Luis Lopez Garcia and Rafael Fernandez Rubio, both from Spain and Portuguese geologist Jose Martins Carvalho.

"It's not our mission to say if the project is viable or not," said Lopez Garcia, "we've just tried to improve its technical aspects."

"Some measures could be implemented quite easily but others would require economic studies to see if they make sense," he added.

Peru's Prime Minister Oscar Valdes said the government hasn't yet made a decision but will review the consultants' recommendations. "This is going to be processed by the different ministries," he said.

Minas Conga is Peru's largest mining project and is being developed by Minera Yanacocha of which Newmont Mining holds a 51.35% interest and Compania de Minas Buenaventura with a 43.65% stake. The IFC owns the remaining interest.

Minera Yanacocha hopes to start production at Minas Conga in late 2014 or early 2015 with an average annual production ranging from 580,000 to 680,000 gold ounces and 155 million to 235 million pounds of copper in the first five years of mine life.

The project was suspended last November in the wake of protests by local politicians and residents who fear the mine will harm local water supplies. The third-party consultants' report focuses specifically on water issues.

However, Omar Jabara, Newmont's group executive for corporate communications, told Mineweb in an e-mail Tuesday, "Conga's reservoirs would more than double the current water storage capacity of the four lagoons in questions and would provide a reliable, year-round water supply to downstream users, something they don't currently have as a result of the dry season."

Newmont declined further comment on the third-party report until it is publicly released by the government.

Bloomberg reported Tuesday that Pulgar-Vidal revealed that the third-party consultants had recommended increasing water storage in reservoirs and delegating Peru's National Water Authority to monitor stored water usage.

The region of Cajamarca, in which Conga is located, had enacted an ordinance banning work on the mining project. However, Peru's highest court, the Constitutional Tribunal, Tuesday ruled against the ordinance.

The justices found that the Cajamarca government had exceeded its legislative powers, adding that the region has no jurisdiction over regulations affecting medium- and large-sized mining projects, such as Conga.

The court determined Peru's National Water Authority was the sole government agency that could rule on the viability of projects that involve Peru's water supplies.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Final report on Newmont’s $4.8 billion Conga gold project delivered to Peru’s Government

The long-awaited and twice postponed report from international experts on the environmental impact study (EIS) for Newmont and Buenaventura’s US$4.8 billion copper-gold project, Conga Mine, is finally in Peru’s Government’s hands, reports news state agency Andina.

Peruvian environment minister, Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, did not comment on the results, but said he will address the country and the press at 6 pm ET today and that the results will be published online tomorrow for greater transparency.

The report establishes the viability of a proposed water solution for the Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) and Buenaventura’s copper-gold project located in in the northern Peru region of Cajamarca. The U.S.-based company has been accused by locals of potentially disrupting water supplies in the region.

Reuters is reporting that the team has recommended the Peruvian government that Newmont should make “substantive improvements” before being allowed to restart work on its massive project.

Newmont owns 51.35% of Minas Conga. The Colorado-based company hopes to begin production either in 2014 or 2015, producing between 155 and 235 million tons of copper a year at the site, if it gets permission from the Peruvian government.

Newmont stopped construction in November last year, after violent protests forced Peru’s government to declare a state of emergency in the area.

More demonstrations are expected if the experts’ report supports Newmont’s contention that the development will not hurt water supplies. These protests and their political consequences could delay the project further even if the report is favorable to the miners.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Key report for Newmont’s $4.8 billion Conga gold project now expected tomorrow

Peru’s long-running Conga mine dispute is about to reach a turning point as international consultants appointed by the government in February are expected to deliver their report on the viability of proposed water for Newmont Mining (NYSE:NEM) and Buenaventura’s US$4.8 billion copper-gold project tomorrow.

The independent review of the environmental impact study (EIS) for Conga was expected to be ready last Monday, but new protests in the region seemed to have delayed its release. Peruvian environment minister, Manuel Pulgar-Vidal, said the results will be published online tomorrow, according to news state agency Andina.

Newmont stopped construction in November last year, after violent protests in the northern Peru region of Cajamarca.

In December, the government was forced to declare a state of emergency after boulders were used to block exits from the regional capital of more than 200,000 inhabitants, schools, hospitals and business were closed and dozens injured in clashes with police.

Civil strike against mining project shuts down Cajamarca —again

A protest against Newmont Mining’s proposed Conga copper-gold mine shut down much of Peru’s Cajamarca region last Wednesday, reported World War 4 Report.

The site says organizers of a 24-hour civil strike claimed participation in all 13 provinces of the Andean region:

Hundreds of campesinos from the outlying provinces of Celendín and Bambamarca marched on the city, and students occupied the campus of the National University of Cajamarca. Campesinos in Jaén province, organized by a local ronda (peasant self-defense patrol), erected barricades of rocks and tree-trunks on the road through their territory, blocking traffic for hours. No violence was reported, despite a huge presence of National Police and army troops in the region, and threats from authorities in Lima.