By Miguel A Heredia
Happy New Year to all of our readers! I want to wish you all the very best in this coming 2022, especially good health, prosperity and a lot of fun!
With deep regret I knew early this week about the sensitive and unexpectedly passing of David Jones at his home in Tucson, Arizona. David was a well-respected geologist who worked for many years in Mexico making many friends. David will be remembered for being responsible of multiple discoveries in Mexico such as Los Filos in the Guerrero Gold Belt, and Switchback vein system at the El Aguila project in Oaxaca among others. “Descansa en paz amigo!”
During the 52nd and last week of the year (December 27th, 2021 to January 2nd, 2022), at least 13 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, and 2 news published by the media, with four reporting resources and developments of their properties, three disclosing deals and corporate issues, three informing on exploration results, three announcing financial issues, one commenting on Mexican issues, and one discussing social issues. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Mexico will lose potential investments if it does not increase its level of certainty in the mining industry, warned Jody Kuzenko, CEO of the Canadian company Torex Gold Resources. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Silver Spruce announced that it is proceeding with the preparation of an Informe Preventivo for trenching and drilling its Jackie property. In Durango, Southern Empire received preliminary results from a geophysical survey conducted at its Pedro Gold project. In Guerrero, Pantera Silver commenced a drilling program at its Nuevo Taxco Silver project. ON MINING, no relevant news. ON FINANCING, Altaley executed a loan agreement with Sail Natural for USD $5M (Tahuehueto project, Durango). Prismo completed the first closing of a non-brokered private placement for total gross proceeds of $1M (Palos Verdes project, Sinaloa). SilverCrest completed the third drawdown of USD $30M on its previously announced USD $120M Project Financing Facility (Las Chispas, Sonora). ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Fabled released results from its ongoing drilling program at its Santa Maria project, Chihuahua. Fresnillo and its JV partner Mag Silver provided a commissioning update on its Juanicipio project in Fresnillo, Zacatecas. GoGold provided an outlook and deliverables for 2022 (Los Ricos North and South projects, Jalisco). Silver Tiger provided a review of its 2021 activities at its El Tigre project in Sonora. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Gold79 retained Dig Media to provide investor relation services for the company (Taviche project, Oaxaca). Great Panther announced board changes (Topia mine, Durango). Minaurum announced the passing of David Jones. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, Compañía Minera Cuzcatlán (Fortuna Silver) reported that its operation does not generate a negative impact on the water resource located in communities surrounding its San Jose mine in Oaxaca.
ON MEXICO ISSUE
- Mexico will lose potential investments if it does not increase its level of certainty in the mining industry, warned Jody Kuzenko, CEO of the Canadian company Torex Gold Resources. Mexico’s mining industry has slowed because the current administration of President Andrés Manuel López Obrador has suspended the issuance of new mining concessions; likewise, companies in the sector are increasingly forced to deal with crime by hiring private security companies. Recently, the federal government proposed a constitutional reform initiative for the Mexican electricity industry in which it seeks for the Federal Electricity Commission (CFE) to regain a leading role in the sector, establishing that the company will generate at least 54% of consumption national electric. Torex Gold is the third largest gold producing company in Mexico, with 430,480 Oz Au in 2020; its operations are carried out in Guerrero, where Limón-Guajes is the second most important mining unit in the country in terms of gold production. In that same entity, the company plans to invest more than USD $500M to start operations at its Media Luna mining unit in 2024, with a production of 179K Oz Au, 21K tonnes of Cu and 1.5M Oz Ag, although these estimates will be updated with a new feasibility study. Since Torex Gold is growing in Guerrero, it will need more electrical power. “Reliability is required, that the power is not interrupted while you are working; the price must be competitive, and investors are looking for a wide margin in our process of decarbonization and reducing greenhouse gases”.
- Silver Spruce Resources Inc., announced that it is proceeding with the preparation of an Informe Preventivo to be filed at the Mexican Government Environmental Authority (SEMARNAT) for conducting trenching and drilling at its Jackie property in Sonora. The environmental permit will include 13 trenches and 36 drill pads. The SEMARNAT permit for the Informe Preventivo is expected within four to six weeks of submission.”
- Southern Empire Resources Corp., received preliminary high-resolution, airborne magnetic and radiometric geophysical data covering its Pedro Gold Project in Durango. In December 2021, Terraquest Ltd. of Markham, Ontario, collected 393.2 line-kilometers of airborne geophysical data on flight lines that were flown at azimuth 060 / 240 with 50m spacings. This data has been delivered to Condor Consulting, Inc. of Lakewood, Colorado; experts in geophysical processing, analysis and inversion modeling. “The results of our preliminary airborne magnetic data provide some strong clues about the structural setting and underlying ‘plumbing system’ of the HP Breccia gold zone. Together with the regional government magnetics, we see evidence for a deeper intrusive body that could be linked to the hydrothermal fluids and related potential for epithermal vein systems that are the target of Southern Empire’s upcoming drill campaign”. The company has mobilized a diamond drill rig to the Pedro Property and is scheduled to start a 2,000m, nine-hole core drill program in January of 2022.
- Pantera Silver Corp., commenced a drilling program at its Nuevo Taxco Silver project in Guerrero. The first phase of this maiden exploration drill program will consists of up to 2,000m with holes of approximately 50-150m in depth.
- No relevant news.
- Altaley Mining Corporation executed a loan agreement with Sail Natural Resources LP for USD $5M. Net proceeds will be used to fund the final costs of construction and working capital at its Tahuehueto project in Durango. The loan agreement is for four years with an interest of 13.5% where Altaley shall make four quarterly payments of interest only on the outstanding amount of the loan commencing on March 10, 2022, and ending on December 10, 2022.
- Prismo Metals Inc., completed the first closing of a non-brokered private placement for total gross proceeds of $1M (Palos Verdes project, Sinaloa). The company expects to complete a second closing for $1M in the first half of January, 2022. “The Company will use expected $2M gross proceeds from the Units to complete a 4,000m drilling campaign on its Palos Verdes property (estimated at $1M), conduct exploration on its Los Pavitos property, Sonora with a view of identifying drilling targets (estimated at $400K), the costs of the offering (estimated at $125K which includes payment of finder’s fees) and for general working capital”.
- SilverCrest Metals Inc., completed the third drawdown of USD $30M on its previously announced USD $120M Project Financing Facility with an affiliate of RK Mine Finance. Funds will be used towards the continued construction of the Company’s Las Chispas Project located in Sonora, with a targeted completion in Q2, 2022.
ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT
- Fabled Silver Gold Corp., released results from its ongoing drilling program at its Santa Maria project, Chihuahua. The most significant drill intercept was obtained in hole SM20-45, which encountered a mined-out void zone at the target depth, but before reaching the target depth it intersected the Santa Maria footwall zone with 0.16 g/t Au 34 g/t Ag, 0.01% Pb, and 0.04% Zn (42.5 g/t AgEq) over 6.40m, including 0.23 g/t Au, 38 g/t Ag, 0.01% Pb, and 0.06% Zn (50 g/t AgEq) over 0.60m, and including 0.19 g/t Au, 55 g/t Ag, 0.01% Pb, and 0.04% Zn (68 g/t AgEq) over 1.7m.
- Fresnillo plc and its JV partner Mag Silver Corp., provided a commissioning update on its Juanicipio project in Fresnillo, Zacatecas. Although the Juanicipio project team delivered the project for plan commissioning on schedule, the “Comisión Federal de Electricidad” (CFE), the state-owned electrical company, notified Fresnillo plc, the Juanicipio Project operator, that approval to complete the tie-in to the national power grid cannot yet be granted and the mill commissioning timeline will therefore be extended by approximately six months. Stoping and mineralized mine development at Juanicipio will continue and will make available any unused plant capacity at its Minera Fresnillo and Minera Saucito operations to process mineralized material produced at Juanicipio, and if possible matching commissioning and ramp up tonnages that were previously expected. The effect on cashflow generation from Juanicipio therefore will also be mitigated while CFE approvals are pending.
- GoGold Resources Inc., provided an outlook and deliverables for 2022. At Los Ricos North, the company plans to conduct an aggressive drilling and exploration campaign on El Favor East and Gran Cabrera areas to increase the mineral resource estimate at the property. At Los Ricos South, GoGold will initiate a drilling program on the Jamaica structure since this mineralized zone offers the potential for an additional bulk tonnage target in Los Ricos South. The company also plans to initiate a PFS anticipated to be completed prior to the end of 2022.
- Silver Tiger Metals Inc., provided a review of its 2021 activities at its El Tigre project in Sonora. The company reported wide high grade silver intercepts in quartz veins within a black shale horizon on the Sooy, Benjamin and Seitz Kelly Veins. Highlights include hole ET-20-202 in the Sooy Vein with 382 g/t AgEq over 22.2m, including 668 g/t AgEq over 11.75m; hole ET-21-204 in the Benjamin Vein with 519 g/t AgEq over 14.2m, including 1,010 g/t AgEq over 5.6m; and hole ET-21-264 in the Seitz Kelly Vein with 2,608 g/t AgEq over 17.5m, including 82,873 g/t AgEq over 0.5m. It also completed a $23M bought deal institutional financing, and disclosed 2021 Environmental, Social, & Governance (ESG) strategy roadmap.
ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES
- Gold79 Mines Ltd., retained Dig Media Inc. dba Investing News Network, to provide investor relation services for the company. Under the terms of the contract for this advertising and investor awareness campaign, Dig Media will provide various digital media advertising and related services to increase public awareness of the company. (Taviche project, Oaxaca).
- Great Panther Mining Limited announced the resignation of its Director and Chair of the Board of Directors, and the appointment of one of its independent Directors as the new Chair of the company (Topia mine, Durango).
- Minaurum Gold Inc., announced the sensitive and unexpectedly passing of David Jones early this week at its home in Tucson, Arizona. “Descansa en paz amigo”.
ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY
- Compañía Minera Cuzcatlán (Fortuna Silver Mines Inc.) reported that its operation does not generate a negative impact on the water resource located in communities surrounding its San Jose mine in Oaxaca. The company monitors quarterly the water quality in surface and underground bodies. It also stated that since the beginning of its operation, it does not compete for this resource with neighboring communities, nor does it use the water that was monitored for its mining activities. The water samples are required every six months by environmental regulations, but to generate greater certainty and confidence among the population, the company proactively performs them every three months. The foregoing, through the hiring of external and certified laboratories, whose procedures are endorsed by both the National Water Commission (CONAGUA), as well as by the Federal Attorney for Environmental Protection (PROFEPA) and whose results comply with the NOM-OO1 of the Ministry of the Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT).
Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.
On the picture above, a hydrothermal breccia from a low sulphidation epithermal vein system in a project in Durango, Mexico. Photo by Miguel A Heredia.