By Jorge Cirett
During the 47th week of the year (November 22nd to November 28th, 2021), at least 17 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. To note, only three companies posted exploration advances on their properties, three more released Q3 reports, one reported concentrate theft, two released financing news and one on quarterly dividends, while four companies posted on project development or resource definition and one more on a mine in peril of closing by government red tape. ON MEXICO ISSUES, at MINNOVATION 2021 several companies received an award for social responsibility. In Oaxaca, inhabitants near Fortuna’s San José mine are being pressured to sign a document asking for the denial of expedition of an environmental permit, action that would result on the mine closure. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Ridgestone Mining is preparing to drill El Cobre target on its Rebeico property. In Chihuahua, Radius Gold informed on excellent drilling results from the California target at its Amalia project; Silver Spruce updated on exploration plans at Pino de Plata. ON MINING, Impact Silver, Altaley Mining and Discovery Silver presented their Q3 2021 reports. Consolidated Zinc informed on the armed robbery suffered at its Plomosas plant in Chihuahua, where 90 tonnes of Zn concentrate were stolen. ON FINANCING, Galore Resources and Canasil resources informed on the closing of financing rounds that accrued CAD$818.5 K and $810.7 K respectively. Alamos Gold declared a $48 M quarterly dividend for its shareholders, adding to a total of $235 M delivered in 12 years. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, GoGold Resources released initial metallurgical tests at Los Ricos North in Jalisco. Zacatecas Silver presented drilling results from the Panuco Central and Tres Cruces veins at its Zacatecas Silver project. Fabled Silver Gold informed on drilling results from its Santa Maria project in Chihuahua. First Majestic Silver filed an updated technical report for its Santa Elena and Ermitaño project in Sonora. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Fortuna Silver Mines is working with legal advisors to appeal the denial order received from SEMARNAT regarding its request for an extension of the environmental permit. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, Industrias Peñoles, Fresnillo PLC, Torex Gold and Grupo Mexico informed on its support for communities, environment and education.
ON MEXICO ISSUES
- Alfonso Durazo, Sonora’s governor, praised the social responsibility of the mining industry. This as he delivered awards to companies on the Sonora Mining cluster, for abiding by Responsabilidad Social Empresarial (Corporate Social Responsibility). Companies receiving the award included Peñoles, Autlán, Molymex and Alamos Gold, among others. The event was part of MINNOVACION 2021.
- Inhabitants of communities near San José del Progreso, Oaxaca, where Fortuna Silver’s San José mine is located, denounce pressure and intimidation by agrarian and municipal authorities to sign documents asking for denial of the environmental permit by SEMERNAT (The Mexican environmental regulator), and to risk losing government aid if not complying with the request.
- Ridgestone Mining Inc. finalized plans for a drill program on El Cobre property, within its 3,500 hectare Rebeico project in Sonora. The program envisages 2,700 m in 14 reverse circulation (RC) holes to test the mineralization below historical workings that run for 200 m along strike. Recent surface sample results include 1.0 m @ 3.5% Cu, 0.32 gpt Au; 1.5 m @ 1.5% Cu, 0.44 gpt Au; 3.0 m @ 2.65% Cu; 1.0 m @ 2.62% Cu; 1.5 m @ 2.21% Cu; 3.0 m @ 2.0% Cu.
- Radius Gold Inc. informed on more drilling results from the California target at the Amalia project in Chihuahua. Highlighted core length results comprise 12.8 m @ 259 gpt Ag, 0.54 gpt Au (including 3.2 m @ 705 gpt Ag, 1.92 gpt Au); 39.7 m @ 204 gpt Ag, 0.35 gpt Au (including 19.1 m @ 346 gpt Ag, 0.63 gpt Au). Broad multiphase mineralization up to 50 m in width has been intercepted along 1 km of the California 2.8 Km long structure, to 300 m of depth. Other targets along the structure are still to be drilled due to the current lack of roads. Drilling is underway at the 1.5 km long El Cuervo vein target, a subparallel structure between the Amalia and California structures, where stockwork veining and brecciation have been mapped at up to 40 m in width.
- Silver Spruce Resources Inc. updated on exploration at its 397-hectare Pino de Plata property in Chihuahua. A Lidar survey has been completed and the generated high-resolution topography provides a base for the incoming drilling, structural lineament mapping and future exploration. Negotiations continue with the surface owner to gain access to some of the drill targets.
- Consolidated Zinc Ltd. informed that on November 16th a group of armed bandits entered its Plomosas mine in Chihuahua to steal 90 tonnes of zinc concentrate valued at US$90 K. The security guard and employees were unharmed, but locked in a transport container.
- Impact Silver Corp. released financial and operating results for the Q3 2021. At Zacualpan, 34,587 tonnes were milled @ 156 gpt Ag to produce 152 K Oz Ag. At the Guadalupe mine production is being ramped-up to pre-pandemic levels, and a fourth drill rig has been added to the company’s fleet. The Capire open pit deposit and processing plant are being reviewed eyeing a re-start of operations.
- Altaley Mining Corp. released quarterly reports for Q3 – 2021. At its Campo Morado mine in Guerrero, 168.4 K tonnes were processed, recovering 66% Zn, 29% Pb, to produce 10,743 tons of Zn concentrate (45% Zn, 2.29 gpt Au, 724 gpt Ag), 2,690 tons of Pb concentrate (22%Pb, 1.56% Cu, 5.45 gpt Au, 919 gpt Ag). Total cash cost was US$0.45 per Zn Lb and AISC of US$0.70 per Zn Lb.
- Discovery Silver Corp. presented its financial results for the Q3 2021 and an update on the activities at the Cordero project in Chihuahua. Metallurgical tests show recoveries of 80-89% Ag, 83-91% Pb, 81-90% from locked cycle tests in sulfides and 54-80% Ag, 61-75% Au on oxide and transition ore cyanidation bottle roll procedures. An updated mineral resource estimate has been produced with information from 224,000 m of drilling in 517 holes, with 87% of the resource in the measured and indicated category. Phase 2 drilling is ongoing and focused on upgrading inferred resources, resource expansion of bulk-tonnage mineralization and testing the high-grade veins in the deposit. A PEA is expected to be released before the end of the current quarter, and a PFS on 2022.
- Alamos Gold Inc. declared a quarterly dividend of US$0.025 per common share, and the repurchase of 383 K shares with a cost of $2.9 M. During the year Alamos has repurchased $8.9 M in shares. Thus far in 2021 the company has returned $48 M to shareholders through dividends and share buybacks, accumulating $235 M in dividends in 12 years (Mulatos, Sonora).
- Galore Resources Inc. closed its non-brokered private placement financing, raising gross proceeds of CAD$818.5 K (Dos Santos, Zacatecas).
- Canasil Resources Inc. announced the closing of the non-brokered private placement previously announced to gather $500 K, same that ended accruing $708.7 K in gross proceeds. The company also received $102 K from the exercise of warrants, taking the total to $810.7 K (Nora, Durango).
ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT
- GoGold Resources Inc. announced positive initial results of metallurgic tests at its Los Ricos North project in Jalisco. HQ core from 108 drill holes at the Casados, El Favor, La Trini and El Orito deposits was composited and tested in Canada laboratories. The composites from Casados, El Favor and La Trini were subjected to direct cyanidation leaching of Au and Ag, while the one from El Orito was treated by flotation to extract also the base metal content. Recoveries ranged from 86% to 96% Au and 90% to 96% Ag on Casados, El Favor and La Trini, while at El Orito were 86% Au, 90% Ag, 87% Pb, 90% Zn and 90% Cu.
- Zacatecas Silver Corp. released results from the drilling program targeting the Panuco Central vein and the Tres Cruces vein at its Zacatecas Silver project in Zacatecas. Assay results for four of the holes at Tres cruces have been received, and the highlighted intervals comprise 1.85 m @ 224 gpt Ag, 0.49 gpt Au; 2.17 m @ 798 gpt Ag, 0.34 gpt Au; 3.00 m @ 203 gpt Ag, 0.85 gpt Au. “Three holes targeted a historical high-grade intercept in Central Tres Cruces, over 1 km to the northwest and along strike of the eastern Tres Cruces holes. Assays for hole PAN 2021-013, which intercepted almost 5 metres of sulphidic quartz vein, are pending”.
- Fabled Silver Gold Corp. informed on results from drilling at its Santa Maria project in Chihuahua. The drilling targeted and intercepted the down plunge extension of holes that recently returned significant gold grades, extending the zone 200 m below. Highlighted core-length intercepts comprise 1.5 m @ 69 gpt Ag, 0.63 gpt Au; 0.45 m @ 45 gpt Ag, 0.86 gpt Au; 1.05 m @ 165 gpt Ag, 0.58 gpt Au; 1.05 m @ 67 gpt Ag, 1.18 gpt Au; 3.3 m @ 138 gpt Ag, 1.46 gpt Au, 1.4% Pb, 2.0% Zn (including 1.85 m @ 107 gpt Ag, 2.40 gpt Au, 2.4% Pb, 3.5% Zn) in one hole.
- First Majestic Silver Corp. filed an updated technical report for its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. The report also includes the results of a pre-feasibility study (PFS) on the Ermitaño project, four kilometers from the Santa Elena processing plant. Measured and Indicated resources for both projects comprise 6.06 M tonnes @ 97 gpt Ag, 2.85 gpt Au, containing 18.9 M Oz Ag, 557 K Oz Au, while inferred resources stand at 6.25 M tonnes @ 80 gpt Ag, 2.43 gpt Au, containing 16.2 M Oz Ag, 490 K Oz Au.
ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES
- Fortuna Silver Mines Inc . “is working with legal advisors to file an appeal to the denial order received from SEMARNAT regarding its request to extend its environmental impact authorization (EIA) for its San José mine in Oaxaca. The company reported it continues to work with the authorities. However, due to the lack of concrete answers, it will use other legal alternatives”. The San Jose mine started operations back in 2011, but one of its environmental permits expired last month, and SEMARNAT (the Mexican environmental regulatory agency) is denying the permit on grounds of a pending evaluation on the regulation of the mine’s infrastructure and an indigenous consultation.
ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
- Industrias Peñoles and Fresnillo PLC informed on programs to aid education of the new generations in Coahuila, Durango, Chihuahua, Guerrero, Estado de Mexico, Sonora and Zacatecas.
- Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold) is supporting the education of students in Guerrero with the donation of computing equipment and facilities as well as providing professional practices on its installations for up to 20 students at a time.
- Fundación Grupo Mexico delivered through its “Vagón Verde” (Green train car) 8,000 tree saplings to the city of Celaya, Guanajuato.
On the image below: Geologists Christian StClair and Tomás Tapia in a copper stained specularite vein ridge in the Sonoran Desert. Picture by Jorge Cirett.