By Jorge Cirett
During the 48th week of the year (November 26th to December 2nd, 2018), at least 16 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. Minaurum, Mexus Gold and Harvest Gold released news on exploration. Impact Silver and Santacruz Silver released third quarter results; America Silver increased production and Goldcorp is commissioning a new plant. Silver Spruce and SilverCrest announced news on financing. Endeavour Silver presented results from drilling. Americas Silver, Telson Mining, Candente Gold, Aura Silver and Firma Holding presented news on deals and corporate issues. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Andrés Manuel López Obrador was sworn as Mexico’s president for the next six years. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Minaurum Gold released high grade gold results from surface sampling of a new vein at its Alamos property; Mexus Gold continues drilling at its Santa Elena project. In Chihuahua, Harvest Gold informed on drilling at its Cerro Cascaron project in Chihuahua. ON MINING, Impact Silver and Santacruz Silver presented quarterly reports. Americas Silver increased production rates at Cosalá, in Sinaloa, and Goldcorp produced first gold on its pyrites plant in Peñasquito, Zacatecas. ON FINANCING, Silver Spruce was granted an extension on its financing round. SilverCrest is securing a $30.6 M investment by SSR Mining. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Endeavour Silver reported high-grade intersections from Bolañitos, in Zacatecas. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Americas Silver and Pershing Gold are to complete a business combination. Telson Mining announced the amending of a loan agreement with Nyrstar. Candente Gold and Sun River signed an agreement on El Oro tailings in Estado de Mexico. Aura Silver is to change name to Aura Resources Inc. Grace Point Mining owns now the Magistral project in Sinaloa.
ON MEXICO ISSUES
- On December 1st 2018, Andrés Manuel López Obrador, a life-long left wing politician, took charge as Mexico’s president for the next six years (2018-2024).
- Minaurum Gold Inc. released high grade gold assays from rock chip sampling on the Alessandra vein at its Alamos project in Sonora.The new vein is the first showing high grade gold in the project, measures more than 4 m in width, can be clearly traced for 1.1 km and topography suggest it might extend for another kilometer. Highlighted rock chip samples include: 0.4 m @ 17 ppb Au, <1 g/t Ag, 2.22% Cu, 0.98% Pb, 2.04% Zn; 1.0 m @ 9 ppb Au, 16 g/t Ag, 0.04% Pb, 0.06% Zn; 1.0 m @ 8 ppb Au, 6 g/t Ag, 1.55% Cu; 0.3 m @ 102,000 ppb Au (102 g/t Au), 29 g/t Ag, 1.94% Cu, 0.07% Pb, 0.25% Zn; 1.0 m @ 619 ppb Au, 4.63% Cu; 0.5 m @ 65 ppb Au, 4 g/t Ag, 2.97% Cu, 0.64% Pb, 4.90% Zn.
- Mexus Gold US. continues drilling at its Santa Elena project in Sonora (not to be mistaken with First Majestic’s Santa Elena mine, also in Sonora), and is now on its 7th hole. “Drill holes proved the continuity at depth of the main quartz vein varying in width from 0.75 m up to 2.0 meters at 25 to 35 meters deep with a dip angle of 45 degrees to the East”. A shallow dipping shear-fault zone consisting of fault-gouge-mylonite with siderite, hematite and quartz fragments has also consistently being intercepted with 7 to 12 m widths. Holes onward from hole 5 are targeting deeper parts of the Julio vein.
- Harvest Gold Corp. informed three holes at the Cascarita high grade prospect at its Cerro Cascaron project in Chihuahua have been completed, after delays by unexpected heavy rains at the start of the drilling campaign. The rig is being moved by helicopter to drill the Serpiente Dorada and San Pedro targets.
- Impact Silver Corp. released third quarter 2018 results. Mill throughput was 42.23 K tonnes @ 165 g/t Ag, to produce 179.5 K Oz Ag. Revenues for the quarter were $3.1 M, EBITDA -$1.5 M, a net loss of $1.4 M, of which $0.4 M was amortization and depletion.The focus now is on development of areas of higher grade ore. Impact is currently raising a non-brokered financing, the fourth capital raise in company history (San Ramón, Estado de México).
- Americas Silver Corp. informed production was increased to over 1,700 tonnes per day (tpd) during October at its San Rafael mine in the Cosalá district in Sinaloa.
- GoldCorp Inc. announced first gold has been achieved at its Peñasquito’s Pyrite Leach Project (PLP) in Zacatecas, Mexico. “Commissioning commenced in the third quarter of 2018 and the PLP is now processing 100% of the existing plant tailings. The PLP plant is operating 24 hours a day and is continuing the planned ramp-up process”. Commercial production is now expected by the end of 2018.
- Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. reported third quarter 2018 financial results. At Veta Grande in Zacatecas, and Rosario in San Luis Potosi, 58 K tonnes were processed to produce 249.4 K Oz Ag at cash cost $27.40 and AISC of $31.07 per AgEq Oz. Santacruz recorded a net loss of $2.9 M during the period and a negative EBITDA of $2.74 M.
- Silver Spruce Resources Inc. was granted an extension by the TSX Venture Exchange to complete the previously announced non-brokered private placement to raise up to $1.5 M (Pino de Plata, Chihuahua).
- SilverCrest Metals Inc. announced SSR Mining Inc. has agreed to invest $30.66 M (C$40 M) in a non-brokered private placement financing. As long as SSR hold more than 5% of SilverCrest outstanding shares,it is entitled to acquire up to a maximum of 9.9% of the shares, participation rights to maintain pro rata share ownership interest, a right of first refusal on any proposed royalty, stream of off take agreement and certain information rights to Las Chispas technical and scientific data.
ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT
- Endeavour Silver Corp. reported high-grade intersections from the drilling program at the Bolañitos mine in Guanajuato. “A total of 55 drill holes from surface and 11,000 metres were completed by the end of October on seven different vein targets, all of which are located within four kilometres of the Bolanitos plant”. Some true width (TW) highlighted intervals: 8.0 m @ 2.68 g/t Au, 6 g/t Ag; 1.2 m @ 13.17 g/t Au, 138 g/t Ag; 2.2 m @ 2.19 g/t Au, 53 g/t Ag; 2.2 m@ 2.05 g/t Au, 121 g/t Ag; 1.5 m @ 3.74 g/t Au, 49 g/t Ag; 1.3 m @ 2.92 g/t Au, 51 g/t Ag; 1.9 m @ 2.62 g/t Au, 18 g/t Ag; 1.5 m @ 8.66 g/t Au, 89 g/t Ag; 1.1 m @ 2.25 g/t Au, 1,415 g/t Ag; 1.6 m @ 6.79 g/t Au, 420 g/t Ag; 1.9 m @ 3.42 g/t Au, 102 g/t Ag; 1.4 m @ 2.38 g/t Au, 635 g/t Ag.
ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES
- Americas Silver Corp. entered last September into a definitive agreement to complete a business combination with Pershing Gold, which owns the Relief Canyon project in Nevada. Relief Canyon is expected to produce 75-90 K Oz Au annually for at least seven years of mine life. Both Americas Silver and Pershing Gold shareholders have to vote on the transaction prior to a meeting on January (Cosalá, Sinaloa).
- Telson Mining Corp. reached an agreement with Nyrstar Holdings Ltd. to amend the terms of its loan agreement. Among the main terms, Telson paid US$500 K plus interest and agreed to pay monthly installments of US$500 K plus interest until October 2019, at 10% per annum. Along with these payments, Telson will also pay 70% of any monthly cash flow, plus any monthly excess cash balance above US$500 K plus 50% of the monthly free cash flow generated by Telson’s Tahehueto project, once it declares commercial production (Campo Morado,Guerrero).
- Candente Gold Corp. signed a definitive agreement with Sun River Gold Corp. in which Sun River has the option to further test and, if proven economic, develop and operate the Candente’s tailings project in El Oro, Estado de México. Besides an already made payment of US$170 K, Sun River has to make staged payments to complete US$300 K within 15 months from the signing on November 2017 and grant Candente a 10% of net profits life of mine royalty. The tailings contain an inferred resource of 1.27 K tonnes containing 119.9 K Oz Au, 3 M Oz Ag (El Oro, Estado de México).
- Aura Silver Resources. Announced its shareholders approved the name change to Aura Resources Inc., and a five to one consolidation of the shares, on a meeting held on November 15th, 2018 (Taviche, Oaxaca).
- Firma Holdings Corp. announced “that its subsidiary GracePoint Mining Corp. and MX Gold Corp., signed a confidential mutual release”. As a result, MX Gold no longer has any rights,ownership interests, liabilities, or obligations associated with the Magistral Project, and GracePoint Mining Corp. owns 100% of the Magistral project in Sinaloa.
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On the image above, plagioclase lined epidote patches and veinlets in andesitic volcanic rocks in Jalisco. Picture by Jorge Cirett.