Silver Resources in the Altiplano

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The Mexican Altiplano is the most silver endowed region in the country. Within this well known mining region is the famous Faja de Plata (Silver Belt), host to the notorious Fresnillo, Guanajuato, Zacatecas, etc. mining districts. The region contains significant silver resources in several types of ore deposits, such as low & intermediate sulphidation epithermal, carbonate replacement, skarn, MVT, SEDEX, stratiform copper, porphyry Cu-Au, and VMS deposits.

The biggest silver deposit present in this mining region is the recently discovered Goldcorp´s Peñasquito in Zacatecas State.

Over 2.6 billion of the silver resources (~44%) are located in Zacatecas State, of which more than 1.4 billion (~23%) ocurr in the Fresnillo Mine area (Fresnillo, Saucito and Juanicipio properties). To date, the Altiplano hosts all inclusive published resources for more than 6.0 billion ounces of silver, of which 4.77 billion occur in intermediate sulphidation epithermal deposits, making these the most relevant silver mineralization style in this mining friendly region of Mexico.

Goldcorp´s Peñasquito with published resources (all inclusive) over 1.0 B Oz Ag is the biggest silver resource in the Altiplano. This deposit is followed by Fresnillo Mine of Fresnillo Plc and Silver Standard´s Pitarilla deposits with over 753 M Oz Ag and 739 M Oz Ag respectively. Other significant deposits with resources are Cordero of Levon Resources with 493 M Oz Ag, Saucito of Fresnillo Plc with 447.2 M Oz Ag, and Juanicipio of Fresnillo Plc-MagSilver with over 204.6 M oz Ag. Many deposits with less than 200 M Oz Au from different mineralization styles occur and are widespread in the region.

The Altiplano still has a great potential and is awaiting for mining companies to discover additional resources, as it has been attested by the recently discoveries of La Preciosa by Orex (now own by Coeur D´Alene) and Silver Standard´s Pitarrilla in Durango State, as well as the Fresnillo´s Saucito and Fresnillo-Mag Silver´s Juanicipio properties around Fresnillo Mine, being these last properties a result of succesfully brownfield exploration programs.

The table below shows tonnages, grades, as well as silver resources (all inclusive) for each of these deposits.

published silver resources in the altiplano

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