The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Third Week of March 2023

By Jorge Cirett

During the 11th week of the year (March 13th to March 19th, 2023), 12 companies working in Mexico released news on their properties. Four companies informed on Q4 and year 2022 financial and operational results. One company opened a financing exercise and one more closed a previously announced private placement. Three companies released drilling results on their advanced properties. A company received a permanent injunction order against an act by SEMARNAT that would sharply reduce the term validity of a needed permit. One more company announced the acquisition of a large adjoining claim block to its flagship property. ON MEXICO ISSUES, no relevant news. ON EXPLORATION, no relevant news. ON MINING, SilverCrest Metals, Americas Gold and Silver, Fortuna Silver and Orla Mining released Q4 2022 production or/and financial reports. ON FINANCING, Silver Viper is to undertake a non-brokered private placement for up to $3 M. Heliostar Metals closed its non-brokered private placement, raising C$20 M. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Zacatecas Silver released plans on several exploration targets at its Esperanza project in Morelos. Vizsla Silver announced the filing of a technical report with updated mineral resources for its Panuco project in Sinaloa. Defiance Silver released drilling results from testing of the Veta Madre vein system at the San Acacio project in Zacatecas. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Fortuna Silver received a court ruling that protects its operation while a definitive ruling is obtained regarding the term of a permit granted by SEMARNAT. Colibri Resource acquired the 4,260 ha “Plomo Gold” property adjacent to its flagship Evelyn project in Sonora. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, no relevant news.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • No Relevant News.

ON EXPLORATION

  • No Relevant News.

ON MINING

  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. reported financial results for year 2022. Las Chispas mine construction in Sonora was completed in May 2022 for US$133 M, with revenue from mining allowing for the payment of US$40 M of debt. Commercial production was declared on November 1, 2022. During Q4, 2.3 km of underground development were completed, 65 K tonnes were mined, and 104 K tonnes milled @ 3.67 gpt Au, 382 gpt Ag, recovering 96.9%Au, 93.3% Ag, to produce 11.9 K Oz Au, 1.2 M Oz Ag (2.2 M Oz AgEq). For the year, 201 K tonnes were mined, 188 K tonnes were milled @3.05 gpt Au, 312 gpt Ag, recovering 96.05% Au, 92.5% Ag to produce 17.8 K Oz Au, 1.7 M Oz Ag (3.3 M Oz AgEq). By the end of February 2023, the company’s cash balance was US$71.2 M, which permitted the prepayment of US$15 M and the reduction of the debt outstanding to US$35 M.
  • Americas Gold and Silver Corp. reported financial and operational results from its activities in Mexico and USA. The company obtained revenue of $85.0 M on the production of 5.3 M Oz AgEq, with cash costs of $0.77 per Oz Ag and all-in sustaining costs of $9.64 per Oz Ag. At Cosalá, in Sinaloa, 636 K Oz Ag, 39.3 M Lb Zn, 15.3 M Lb Pb were produced. For 2023, production is projected to be between 1.2 – 1.4 M Oz Ag, 33 – 37 M Lb Zn, 11 – 13 M Lb Pb.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. reported financial and operating results for Q4 and full year 2022. At San Jose, in Oaxaca, 259.5 K tonnes were milled at a rate of 2,883 tonnes per day, grading 194 gpt Ag, 1.13 gpt Au, recovering 91% Ag, 90% Au, to produce 1.47 M Oz Ag, 8,499 Oz Au, at cash cost $11.16 per Oz AgEq and All-in sustaining cost of $15.53 per Oz AgEq.
  • Orla Mining Ltd. announced results for Q4 and full year 2022. During the year Orla commissioned the Camino rojo Oxide deposit in Zacatecas, producing 32,017 Oz Au in Q4 for a total of 109,596 Oz Au on the year, at an all-in sustaining cost of $634 per Oz Au on Q4 and $611 per Oz Au on the year. By the end of 2022 the company had a cash balance of $96.3 M and net debt of $49.5 M. “A 34,000-metre, 57-hole follow-up drill program will continue to infill the Camino Rojo Sulphides in 2023 (20% of the holes will extend to test the deep potential of the deposit). In addition, 6,500 metres will be drilled on the extensions of the Camino Rojo oxide deposit to update and expand resources and reserves”.

ON FINANCING

  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp. is to undertake a non-brokered private placement financing to raise gross proceeds of up to US$3 M (La Virginia, Sonora).
  • Heliostar Metals Ltd. closed its previously announced non-brokered private placement offering, for gross proceeds of C$20.4 M (Ana Paula, Guerrero).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Zacatecas Silver Corp. announced exploration plans on several near surface targets and a key deep intrusion target near the Esperanza project in Morelos. The previous operators drilled several holes with high grade intercepts on the western edge beneath the planned open pit. Near surface targets include the Northern contact, Northeastern contact and Colotepec. Planned exploration includes soil geochemistry on a 50 by 100 m grid, land magnetics, and an induced polarization survey. Depending on results obtained, the use of deep-sensing audio-frequency magnetotellurics (AMD) or large-scale controlled audio magnotellurics (CSAMT) may be used.
  • Vizsla Silver Corp. filed a NI-43-10 compliant technical report containing an updated mineral resource estimate on the Panuco project, in Sinaloa.
  • Defiance Silver Corp. provided results for seven drill holes testing the Veta Grande vein system of the San Acacio project in Zacatecas. “These holes were designed to improve the main Veta Grande structural model and to test splays to the Veta Grande system, including the footwall San Herculano structure”. Highlighted core-length intervals comprise 9.57 m @ 157 gpt Ag, 0.12 gpt Au; 8.59 m @ 60 gpt Ag, 0.07 gpt Au, 6.98 m @ 81 gpt Ag, 0.17 gpt Au; 1.15 m @ 45 gpt Ag, 0.34 gpt Au, 1.3% Pb, 0.6% Zn; 2.73 m @ 237 gpt Ag, 0.04 gpt Au; 2.23 m @ 95 gpt Ag, 0.14 gpt Au; 11.22 m @ 24 gpt Ag, 0.34 gpt Au, 0.7% Pb, 1.7% Zn (including 3.40 m @ 50 gpt Ag, 0.71 gpt Au, 1.7% Pb, 3.85% Zn).

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES             

  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. reported that the Mexican Federal Administrative Court has granted a permanent injunction to Fortuna Silver that allows the San Jose mine in Oaxaca to continue to operate under the terms of the 12-year environmental impact authorization (EIA). Fortuna had to initiate legal proceedings against SEMARNAT after it issued a re-assessment on the term of the EIA. “The grant of the permanent injunction in favor of Minera Cuzcatlan allows the San Jose Mine to continue to operate under the terms of the 12-year EIA until the Court has ruled on the revocation of the EIA”.
  • Colibri Resource Corp. announced the acquisition of the “Plomo Gold” property in the Caborca belt in Sonora. The 4,260 ha property takes Colibri holdings in the area to 4,766 ha. The property has an historical database containing 1,853 rock samples, 1,570 m of drilling in 10 holes, geological mapping and 14.1 Km of induced polarization survey. High priority targets include Banco de Oro, San Perfecto (with an 11.65 m drill intercept averaging 0.66 gpt Au), Pavorreal and Bonancita. “The Plomo property is underlain by a variety of rock types that include Paleoproterozoic metamorphic rocks, a sequence of Jurassic volcanic rocks ranging in composition from andesite to rhyolite, and intrusive rocks that include diorite, granodiorite, and monzonite”.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • No Relevant News.

On the image below: Blue sky and copper staining on a project in the Sonoran Desert. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

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