The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the First Week of June, 2020.

tight folds

By Miguel A Heredia

During the twenty three week of the year (June 1st to June 7th, 2020), at least 49 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with fifteen commenting on Mexican issues, twelve communicating resumptions, production and financial results, six announcing financial rounds, five discussing on social issues, five reporting on resources and developments, three disclosing deals and corporate issues, and three informing on exploration results.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, The Undersecretary of Mining and the state Governors declared that the resumption of the mining activities in the first week of June has been successful. Francisco Quiroga, the Undersecretary of Mining, stated that the mining sector will sustain part of the national economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic.  The Mexican government, in a very unfortunate statement, declared that it is analyzing the possibility to disappear the Undersecretariat of Mining. Fernando Alanís, president of the Mexican Mining Chamber (Camimex), stated that Mexico’s mining production would drop 17% this year due to coronavirus pandemic. The deputy of the PRI, Carlos Pavón Campos, will present a proposal requesting that the Mining Fund returns to be used in accordance to its original objective. Esperanza Silver de México (Alamos Gold Inc.) announced that it expects to create hundreds of direct + indirect jobs if they open its Esperanza mine in Morelos. According to Fernando Alanis, president of the Mining Chamber of Mexico (CAMIMEX), mining companies plan to invest USD $4B in 2020.  Resuming of the mining activities in Oaxaca will activate 10,000 jobs. ON EXPLORATION, In Sinaloa, Vizsla recommenced drilling at its Panuco project. In Zacatecas, Advance Gold provided an exploration update on its Tabasqueña project. In Jalisco, GoGold resumed drilling at its Los Ricos project.  ON MINING, Several mining, such as GoGold, Great Panther, Avino, Argonaut, Impact Silver, Pan American Silver, Telson, Excellon, and Sierra Metals among others, announced the restart of their Mexican mining operations after receiving approval of the Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS).  Mexus Gold reported its May 2020 production results from its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. US Antimony reported its Sb and zeolite production for the month of May 2020. Excellon presented Q1 2020 production and financial results (La Platosa, Durango).  ON FINANCING, Advance Gold announced a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to $300K (Tabasqueña project, Zacatecas). Discovery Metals closed the first tranche of a CAD $35M non brokered private placement, for aggregates proceeds of CAD $17.1M (Cordero project, Chihuahua). Magna Gold closed its previously announced non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $7M (San Francisco mine, Sonora). Silver Viper closed its previously brokered private placement for gross proceeds of CAD $5.12M (La Virginia project, Sonora). Alamos Gold declared quarterly dividends of USD $0.015 per common share (Mulatos mine, Sonora).  Pan American Silver announced the closing of its overnight marketed secondary offering of common shares of Maverix Metals Inc., in which it raised gross proceeds of USD $45.54M (La Colorada mine, Zacatecas).  ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, VanGold concluded its +1,000 tonnes bulk sample and metallurgical test of mineral material from its Pinguino project in Guanajuato. Premier announced an update on its delineation core drilling program at its Mercedes mine in Sonora. US Antimony reported that a thickener circuit is being constructed on site at its Puerto Blanco mill in Guanajuato.  Endeavour released new high grade Au-Ag drill results from its Guanacevi mine in Durango. Golden Minerals President & CEO spoke about its Velardeña and Rodeo projects in Durango and its intention to bring them into production in 2021.   ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Canuc postponed the filing of its interim consolidated financial statement and management´s discussion and analysis for the period ended March 31, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic (San Javier project, Sonora).  San Marco granted stock options to directors and officers (Chunibas project, Sonora). Newmont published its 2019 sustainability report (Peñasquito mine, Zacatecas).  ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, Consorcio Minero Peña Colorada invested MXP $4M to refurbish health unit in Manzanillo, Colima. The Grupo Mexico Foundation delivered important donation to the Health Sector of Chihuahua and Sombrerete, Zacatecas. Minera Cuzcatlán (Fortuna Silver) donated medical ventilator, pantries, medicines and cleaning kits in Oaxaca. Minera San Julián (Fresnillo plc) delivered a mechanical ventilator and personal protection equipment to medical personnel of the Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS) of Parral, Chihuahua.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • The Undersecretary of Mining and the state governments, declared that the resumption of the mining activities in the first week of June has been successful. Almost 90% of the companies in the sector are already on work, thanks to the support of Francisco Quiroga, the Undersecretary of Mining of the Ministry of Economy, who established agreements with Governors of the states and with the companies, so that they could return to work safely and without risk of COVID-19 infections. The remaining 10% of mining companies are preparing sanitary protocols to resume activities in the coming days.
  • Francisco Quiroga, the Undersecretary of Mining, stated that the mining sector will sustain part of the national economic recovery after the COVID-19 pandemic. Activities derived from the mining industry serve to maintain various communities and even in some areas is the main source of economy. The mining sector is carrying out its reactivation of activities in a progressive way and with respect to health protocols. The sector has always worked with rigorous safety protocols to carry out its activities,
  • The Mexican government, in a very unfortunate statement, declared that it is analyzing the possibility to disappear the Undersecretariat of Mining. The measure would be in complete contradiction to the recent recognition of mining as an essential sector that generates 2.6 million jobs, has an impact in 10 states of the country and represents around 3% of GDP. The president AMLO has suggested the imminent disappearance, conversion, or inclusion in another agency, in order to reduce public spending. It occurs just when the Undersecretary of Mining, Francisco Quiroga, reached agreements with Governors, and the mining companies and their representatives have worked hard in a coordinated way to implement the security protocols. Entrepreneurs in this area, both Mexican and foreign, consider that the disappearance of the Undersecretariat of Mining may be negative for a sector that represents around 8% of industrial GDP. The panorama is worrying, since it seems to show the little interest of the current administration to encourage the development of the mining sector. Mining companies and their representatives see this measure as a setback for the country´s development. AMLO stated that to date, none decision has been taken so far, and recognized that mining is a fundamental economic activity that generates many jobs in the case of Sonora, Chihuahua, Durango, and the rest of the mining states.
  • Fernando Alanís, president of the Mexican Mining Chamber (Camimex), stated that Mexico’s mining production would drop 17% this year and the sector´s export could decrease by around 10% due to the cessation of operations to contain the spread of the coronavirus. He also said that although activities in the industry were beginning to resume and about half of the operating personnel had returned to work, exploration work remained suspended and anticipated that the pandemic would also have ended with some 71,000 indirect jobs in the local sector.
  • The deputy of the PRI, Carlos Pavón Campos, will present a proposal in the Chamber of Deputies, requiring that the Mining Fund returns to carry out infrastructure works in the municipalities of the country where mining activity is performed, with the purpose of promoting the development of the communities, which was its original objective.
  • Esperanza Silver de México (Alamos Gold Inc.), announced that it expects to create hundreds of direct + indirect jobs if they open its Esperanza mine in Morelos. Esperanza Silver, under the scheme of a “New Model of Social and Environmentally Responsible Mining” policy, wants to bring its project to the community of Tetlama to protect the environment and generate employment that is essential for the economic reactivation of the state due to the direct + indirect jobs that will be generated, the value chains and supplies that will be activated, and the generation of taxes that will favorably impact state and municipal public finances. The company has projected an estimated investment of USD $450M to bring into production its mining project.
  • According to Fernando Alanis, president of the Mining Chamber of Mexico (CAMIMEX), mining companies plan to invest USD $4B in 2020, which represents 14% more than in 2019, despite the COVID-19 health crisis.
  • Resuming of the mining activities in Oaxaca, will activate 10,000 jobs. The mining personnel will carry out all the health and training protocols to avoid COVID-19 infections, supervised by the Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS).

ON EXPLORATION

  • Vizsla Resources Corp., announced that it has re-commenced drilling at its Panuco project in Sinaloa. It had previously announced the return of its staff to the project on May 21, 2020 to execute its exploration program at its district-scale project.
  • Advance Gold Corp., provided an update on its Tabasqueña project in Zacatecas. The CEO of the company stated that they have hit what appears to be a very large sulphide system with their recent drilling program collared into a 3.2Km continuous IP chargeability anomaly. These holes encountered promising grades in the stacked lenses of disseminated sulphides. Next step will be to drill the core of the system on the hinge zone of the IP chargeability anomaly, where it increases in width, to confirm the identified mineralization.
  • GoGold Resources Inc., resumed drilling at its Los Ricos project in Jalisco. The Company is nearing completion of resource drilling at Los Ricos South for its upcoming 43-101 compliant resource calculation.

ON MINING

  • Several mining companies, such as GoGold, Great Panther, Avino, Argonaut, Impact Silver, Pan American Silver, Telson, Excellon, and Sierra Metals, among others, announced the restart of their Mexican mining operations following a government order adding mining to the list of essential services, and after receiving approval from the Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS).
  • Mexus Gold US, reported May 2020 production results from its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. It produced 102 Oz Au. The company announced that it plans to produce 150 Oz Au in June 2020. The heap leach pad at the Santa Elena mine currently holds 18,000 tons of mineralized material. Head grades are estimated at 3 to 4 g/t Au.
  • US Antimony Corporation, announced that it produced 108.9K Lb Sb and 1,129 tonnes of zeolites during the month of May 2020.
  • Excellon Resources Inc., presented Q1 2020 production and financial results from its La Platosa mine in Durango. It processed 19,042 tonnes of 542 g/t Ag, 5.4% Pb and 6.8% Zn to produce 296.3K Oz Ag, 1.89M Lb Pb, and 2.1M Lb Zn (or 523.7K Oz AgEq) with metallurgical recoveries of 89.3%, 82.8%, and 74.9% respectively.  Total cash and AISC of USD $15.35 and USD $26.52 per Oz Ag payable was reported respectively. The company had revenues of USD $6.6M, gross loss of USD $0.1M, cash and cash equivalents of USD $8.4M.

ON FINANCING

  • Advance Gold Corp., announced a non-brokered private placement to raise gross proceeds for a maximum of $300K. Net proceeds will be used to advance its Tabasqueña project in Zacatecas and for general corporate purposes.
  • Discovery Metals Corp., closed the first tranche of a CAD $35M non brokered private placement, for aggregates proceeds of CAD $17.1M. Discovery intends to close a further CAD$7,9M in subscriptions in a second tranche of the private placement, for an aggregate total of CAD $25M. Net proceeds of the first tranche will be used to fund their Cordero and Coahuila projects in Chihuahua and Coahuila states respectively, and for general working capital purposes.
  • Magna Gold Corp., closed its previously announced non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $7M. Gross proceeds will be used for working capital purposes in connection with their existing projects (San Francisco mine and Mercedes and San Judas projects, Sonora).
  • Silver Viper Minerals Inc., closed its previously announced brokered private placement for gross proceeds of CAD $5.12M. A cash commission of CAD $218,770 was paid to the brokers, representing a 6% of the gross proceeds. Silver Viper will be used the net proceeds to fund the development of its Virginia project in Sonora, and for working capital and general corporate purposes.
  • Alamos Gold Inc., declared quarterly dividends of USD $0.015 per common share. The company has paid dividends for 11 consecutive years during which time USD $173M has been returned to shareholders through dividends and share buybacks.
  • Pan American Silver Corp., announced the closing of its overnight marketed secondary offering of common shares of Maverix Metals Inc., in which Pan American raised gross proceeds of USD $45.54M (La Colorada mine, Zacatecas).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • VanGold Mining , concluded its +1,000 tonnes bulk sample and metallurgical test of mineral material from its Pinguino project in Guanajuato. This bulk sample was sent to Endeavour’s Bolañitos mill, located approximately 28km from El Pinguico project. The company will report the results obtained once the information is received. On the other hand, crews are clearing the bottom of the El Pinguino shaft since approximately 30 m of debris has accumulated at the bottom. Once it is done, VanGold plans to sample the bottom of the underground stockpile in order to determine if the grades of Au and Ag obtained on the top of the stockpile extends to the bottom of it; inspecting the #7 Sangria adit since it may provide a potential safe and inexpensive haulage way to bring the underground material to surface; and sample the Colmillo stope since it was a high grade portion of the Pinguico mine during the period prior to its closure in 1913.
  • Premier Gold Mines Limited, announced an update on its delineation core drilling program at its Mercedes mine in Sonora. The 2020 delineation drilling campaign is focused on expanding and confirming higher-grade mineralization in several areas including Marianas and Diluvio West. Highlights at Diluvio West include hole UG-DI20-096 with 6.1 g/t Au and 23 g/t Ag over 84.7m, and hole UG-DI20-095 with 6.38 g/t Au and 14 g/t Ag over 73.5m. At Marianas, good drill intersections were encountered at hole UG-MR20-056 with 11.67 g/t Au and 56g/t Ag over 5.2m and hole UG-MR20-059 with 9.74 g/t Au and 16 g/t Ag over 11.3m. Diluvio consists of a stockwork system that is divided into Diluvio Central, hosted in felsic volcanoclastic, and Diluvio West hosted in an andesite while Marianas represents the down-plunge extension of the main Mercedes mine trend.
  • US Antimony Corporation, reported that a thickener circuit is being constructed on site at its Puerto Blanco mill in Guanajuato to increase the production rate and control the pulp density of ore to be processed. “The company is anxious to continue on the cyanide leach of the gold and silver Los Juarez ore now that they will have a thickener.”
  • Endeavour Silver Corp., released drill results of 18 holes collared in the Santa Cruz vein on the El Curso property at its Guanacevi mine in Durango, of which 12 holes reported new high grade Au-Ag values over minable widths. Drilling highlights include hole UCM-27 with 3.25 g/t Au and 1,085 g/t Ag (1,410 g/t AgEq) over a true width (TW) of 10m; hole UCM-26 with 1.87 g/t Au and 762 g/t Ag (949 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 5.1m; and hole UCM-25 with 1.43 g/t Au and 986 g/t Ag (1,129 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 4.8m. This drilling program confirmed the extension of the P4 orebody, and now the extension measures 200 m long by 300 m deep, still open at depth, and discovered a new mineralized zone to the west of the P4 extension of 250 m long by 150 m deep, still open along strike and at depth.
  • Golden Minerals Company President & CEO, spoke about its Velardeña and Rodeo projects in Durango and its intention to bring them into production in 2021. The company is currently generating revenue through the lease of its oxide mill in Mexico to Hecla Mining Company, and intends to bring into production its Rodeo open pit Au project in 2021 after the lease concludes with Hecla at the end of 2020. Rodeo, according to the PEA “is capable to provide almost USD $25M in after-tax cash flow in two years of production. The goal of the company is to use the cash generated from Rodeo to finance a potential startup for its Ag-Au Velardeña project. Velardeña’s 2020 PEA shows an USD $86M NPV”.

 ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Canuc Resources Corporation, postponed the filing of its interim consolidated financial statement and management´s discussion and analysis for the period ended March 31, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic (San Javier project, Sonora).
  • San Marco Resources Inc. granted stock options to directors and officers (Chunibas project, Sonora).
  • Newmont Corporation, published its 2019 sustainability report, “Beyond the Mine”, a transparent and comprehensive disclosure of the Company’s environmental, social and governance (ESG) performance.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Consorcio Minero Peña Colorada S.A. de C.V., invested MXP $4M to reconvert a building attached to the Manzanillo General Hospital, providing it with medical equipment and furniture for 3 medical care modules and one more for the rest of medical personnel.
  • The Grupo Mexico Foundation, delivered important donation to the Health Sector of Chihuahua, which consisted of five new mechanical ventilators, 15,000 medical equipment consisting of N-95 masks, disposable gowns, face masks, goggles, overalls, boot covers, respirators, aprons and gloves, as well as ultrasound equipment, portable X-rays and monitoring panels. The donation also included 25 non-invasive ventilators and 10,000 serological tests for COVID-19, which will allow detecting a greater number of people infected and have a broader overview of the behavior of the disease in the state. Additionally, Grupo México Foundation also joined the Chihuahua Food Program, by donating 650 pantries to support vulnerable groups in the municipalities of Aquiles Serdán and Santa Bárbara. In Sombrerete, Zacatecas, the Grupo Mexico Foundation also delivered more than 1,700 articles of medical supplies consisting of tyvek coveralls, N95 masks, face shields, disposable gowns and boot covers, and alcohol gel, and donated 700 pantries to the municipality of Sombrerete through the Municipal DIF to be distributed among the groups most at risk from this epidemic, as is the case of older adults in the Divine Providence Asylum that received 40 pantries with items from the basic food basket.
  • Compañía Minera Cuzcatlán (Fortuna Silver Mines Inc., donated MXP $1.3M to the Business Contingent Exchange and the Medical Support Program promoted by the Oaxaca Ministry of Economy to buy an equipment for ventilation and respiratory monitoring in the Intensive care unit, and delivered more than 3,300 pantries, 3,400 family cleaning packages and 4,600 medicines to the population of San José del Progreso and communities close to the operation of the San José mining unit. It is estimated that these actions have benefited more than 7,000 Oaxacans.
  • Minera San Julián (Fresnillo plc), delivered a mechanical ventilator equipment to the Mexican Social Security Institute (IMSS) of Parral, Chihuahua and donated more than 2,000 pieces of personal protective equipment such as 50 tyvek suits, 200 N-95 face masks, 200 surgical fabric mouth masks, 600 mine-made mouth masks, 1,000 pairs of nitrile gloves and 50 safety glasses to employees of the health institution.

 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, tight folds in an orogenic Au prospect in Michoacan, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Fourth Week of May, 2020

134 - copia

By Jorge Cirett

During the 22nd week of the year (May 24th to May 31st, 2020), at least 36 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Francisco Quiroga, subsecretary of mining had a very active week by reviewing personally the health protocols put in place by mining companies in several states, as well as being present on the installation of regional mining committees in a handful of states, before the full re-start of mining operations allowed by the government. BNamericas presented a list of 24 mining projects going ahead in Mexico from 2020 to 2026, with a capital investment of US$7,450 M. Mining companies scrambled on the restart of operations permitted by the government with the inclusion of the industry in the category of essential activities that can operate during the Coronavirus emergency. ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Ridgestone Mining resumed activities at its Rebeico project. In Chihuahua, Kootenay Silver released results from drilling at its Columba project; Mammoth Resources announced Centerra is returning for exploration work at its Tenoriba project. In Nayarit, Candente Gold is to rehabilitate underground workings to advance its El Dorado project. In Zacatecas, Defiance Silver delineated several targets at the San Acacio property. ON MINING, Sierra Metals, Impact Silver, Mexus Gold, Fortuna Silver, Gold Resource, Endeavour Silver and Aura Minerals announced the recommencement of activities, following the government easing of restrictions on mining. Impact Silver and Discovery Metals reported first quarter 2020 results. GR Silver Mining is postponing the filing of first quarter 2020 results, under the blanket relief granted by the regulatory authorities in Canada. ON FINANCING, in a pretty busy week, 16 companies made announcements related to their financing.  Canasil Resources granted 1.75 M options. Orex Minerals intends to raise up $2 M. Silver Tiger Metals is now trading on the OTCQB quotation system in the US. Vangold Mining accelerated a warrant bonus program in connection with its 2019 private placement. Equinox Gold saw warrants exercised for $145 M. Southern Silver Exploration extended the expiry date of some warrants for two years. Ridgestone Mining is now listed in the Frankfurt Stock Exchange. Aztec Mining engaged a Swiss investor relations firm for European exposure. Vizsla Resources is pursuing a financing round for C$4 M. DynaResources closed a financing agreement for $3.9 M. Minaurum Gold closed its private placement grossing $5 M. Telson closed the second tranche of its private placement for $196.6 K. Golden Tag Announced a non-brokered private placement for up to $1.12 M. Solaris Resources raised C$20 M. Mammoth Resources announced a private placement for up to $131 K. Consolidated Zn intends to raise up to $1.73 M.   ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Mexican Gold Mining is working on the PEA for its Las Minas project in Veracruz. Golden Minerals filed the PEA on Rodeo, Durango. Bacanora Lithium updated on activities to further advance its Sonora Lithium project. Discovery Metals has completed 15,000 m of its 30,000 m phase 1 drill program at its Cordero project in Chihuahua. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Mithril completed the acquisition of Sun Minerals, obtaining thus the Copalquin project in Durango. Candente Gold amended the memorandum of understanding to acquire the El Dorado property and the SDA mill in Nayarit. Sonora Metals published and filed a new version of the Cerro Caliche development report, as requested by the British Columbia Securities Commission. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Minera Peña Colorada, Grupo Mexico, Fresnillo PLC, Minera Real Bonanza and the mining industry in Sonora  informed on donations and work realized to aid communities, mainly on subjects related to the Coronavirus emergency, like medical supplies and equipment, comprising also a large array of investments and measures that benefit the mining communities.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Francisco Quiroga, subsecretary of Mining, personally verified the application of safety protocols to re-start operations in mines. Quiroga visited Agnico Eagle’s Pinos Altos, Grupo Mexico’s Santa Barbara and Frisco’s Concheño mines in Chihuahua. He will also review protocols in Durango, Zacatecas and Coahuila.
  • The fourth virtual personnel hiring session was held by La Cantera Desarrollos Mineros in Zacatecas.
  • The silver price has seen its strongest monthly growth in almost seven years. Prices have reached up to $17.69 per ounce.
  • The Regional Committee for the Development of Mining Zones was constituted in Durango.
  • Mining Companies are to re-start operations on June 1, 2020. Dozens of mining companies prepare to re-commence mining and processing activities, reviewing its health and work protocols.
  • The Regional Committee for the Development of Mining Zones was installed in Zacatecas. The governor Alejandro Tello, the Camimex president, Fernando Alanís and the Mining subsecretary Francisco Quiroga were in the event that also saw the presence of representatives of Fresnillo PLC, Industrias Peñoles, Minera Frsico, Capstone Gold, Excellon Resources, Newmont, Aura Minerals, Arian Silver, Grupo Mexico, Impulsora Minera Santacruz, First Majestic, Grupo Minera Candelaria, Minera Camino Rojo, and Minas de San Nicolás.
  • The subsecretary of Mining Francisco Quiroga reviewed the sanitary procedures of Minera El Roble.
  • Peñasquito restarted operations in Zacatecas, after the review of the health protocol by Francisco Quiroga, subsecretary of mining.
  • Bnamericas presented a list of mining projects going forward in 2020-2026 with a capital investment of US$7,450 M, notwithstanding the pandemic induced stoppages. A total of 24 projects would increase the annual production by 1.5 M Oz Au, 33 M Oz Ag and 247 K tonnes Cu to 2026.Bnamericas table, Mining Projects 2020-2026

ON EXPLORATION

  • Kootenay Silver Inc. released results from four more drill holes at its Columba project in Chihuahua. Highlighted core length intervals comprise: 1.06 m @ 259 gpt Ag; 7.0 m @ 124 gpt Ag (including 3.6 m @ 197 gpt Ag); 2.8 m @ 762 gpt Ag (including, 1.0 m @ 2,010 gpt Ag); 10.2 m @ 68 gpt Ag (including 0.65 m @ 368 gpt Ag); 4.4 m @ 209 gpt Ag (including 1.4 m @ 484 gpt Ag); 38 m @ 50 gpt Ag (including 0.45 m @ 486 gpt Ag); 6.0 m @ 317 gpt Ag (including 2.0 m @ 865 gpt Ag); 36 m @ 72 gpt Ag (including 1.1 m @ 769 gpt Ag and 4.36 m @ 317 gpt Ag). Drill results show continuity and high grades along nearly 600 meters of strike on the F Vein at depths from 15 to 200 meters.
  • Ridgestone Mining Inc. has resumed activities at its Rebeico project in Sonora. “Core samples from the first three drill holes at the New Year Zone, which encountered abundant sulphides, have been sent to ALS Chemex in Hermosillo for assaying”.
  • Mammoth Resources Corp. announced the return of Centerra Gold Inc. personnel to Mammoth’s Tenoriba project in Chihuahua.
  • Candente Gold Corp. is planning underground work on the El Dorado project in Las Minitas, Nayarit. Rehabilitation of underground workings is to aid in the construction of a 3-D model of unmined blocks and vein structure, to guide potential mining/extraction operations. Drill data from the 2010-2011 campaign would be also incorporated.
  • Defiance Silver Corp. announced the delineation of multiple targets at is San Acacio project in Zacatecas, which include a 1.3 Km by 300 m corridor where a hanging wall mineralizing event has been identified, deep targets along the Veta Grande strike to the SE, and the El Mirador part of the multi-km long La Veta Morada fault. Re-logging and sampling of historical drill holes is to continue, with a 5,000 m drilling program planned on existing targets. Defiance is preparing additional drill permit applications that will test some of the targets that lie outside of the current drill permit.

ON MINING

  • Sierra Metals Inc. informed the Mexican government issued a communication stating “that the effective date for Mining to be deemed an essential service was June 1, 2020. The Company is currently recalling employees from the Bolivar Mine (Chihuahua) to begin a COVID-19 screening process, including a quarantine period, allowing the Company to be ready to commence mining activities on June 1, 2020. The Cusi Mine (Chihuahua), as previously discussed in the May 13, 2020 press release, remains in care and maintenance”.
  • Aura Minerals Inc. announced that the Company filed its interim financial statements for the first quarter of 2020 (Aranzazu, Zacatecas).
  • Impact Silver Corp. announced its financial and operational results for the first quarter of 2020. Silver production was 179 K Oz Ag, with mill feeds from the Guadalupe, San Ramon, Cuchara and Veta Negra mines. At the end of the period the company cash and working capital stood at $3.9 M and $3.4 M respectively. Mining is to resume on June 1st, 2020, following government directions (Zacualpan, Estado de Mexico).
  • Mexus Gold US. Resumed full operational production after the Coronavirus emergency slowdown at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora (not to be mistaken with First Majestic’s Santa Elena mine, also in Sonora).
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. resumed production activities at its San José mine in Oaxaca.
  • Gold Resource Corp. received written government approval to restart its Oaxaca Mining Unit in Oaxaca. “After reviewing Gold Resource Corporation’s safety protocol documentation, the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social (IMMS) approved in writing the restart of the Company’s OMU operations on May 25, 2020”.
  • Endeavour Silver Corp. has restarted operations at its three underground mines in Mexico. “The Company filed its mine operating and health plans with, and received approvals from, the Secretariat of Health in Mexico to recommence mining operations”. Guanaceví in Durango, Bolanitos in Durango and El Compa in Zacatecas are ramping up activities to achieve normal operations.
  • Discovery Metals Corp. announced its operating and financial results for the first quarter 2020. By the end of the period Discovery had cash and cash equivalents of $20 M (Cordero, Chihuahua).
  • Minera Capela (Industrias Peñoles) reported a rock-fall that resulted in two deaths and three more casualties in Tehuixtla, Teloloapan, Guerrero.
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. Informed that due to international logistics and delays caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, the Company is relying on the blanket relief granted by the securities regulatory authorities in Canada to postpone the filing of its Q1 2020 reports. (Plomosas, Sinaloa).
  • Aura Minerals Inc. expects it will be able to gradually and safely resume activities at Aranzazu, Zacatecas, over the next few weeks.

ON FINANCING

  • Canasil Resources Inc. granted 1.75 M incentive stock options to directors, officers, consultants and employees. David Terry has agreed to act as an advisor to Canasil’s board of directors (La Esperanza, Zacatecas).
  • Orex Minerals Inc. intends to undertake a private placement financing to raise gross proceeds of up to $2 M. “Orex intends to use the net proceeds of the Offering to maintain its 40% share of the Sandra-Escobar Project in good standing and fund its 40% share of the upcoming work program, and for general corporate and working capital purposes”.
  • Silver Tiger Metals Inc. (formerly Oceanus Resources) announced it is now trading on the OTCQB, a US interdealer quotation system. Silver Tiger’s common shares also trade on the TSX Venture Exchange under its trading symbol SLVR (El Tigre, Sonora).
  • VanGold Mining Corp. adopted a warrant acceleration bonus program for its outstanding share purchase warrants granted in connection with the company’s 2019 private placement financing (El Pinguico, Zacatecas).
  • Equinox Gold Corp. reports that from April 1 to May 25, 2020, warrants s held by various security holders have been exercised for net proceeds of approximately $145 M. “As at May 26, 2020, the Company’s cash balance is more than $480 million” (Los Filos, Guerrero).
  • Southern Silver Exploration Corp. announced that the TSX Venture Exchange has approved the extension of the expiry date of certain of the company’s outstanding common share purchase warrants for an additional two years, with the expiration date now from June 2022 to September 2022 (Cerro Las Minitas, Durango).
  • Ridgestone Mining Inc. common shares are now listed on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange, broadening the corporation’s shareholders base in Europe (Rebeico, Sonora).
  • Aztec Minerals Corp. has engaged “Commodity-TV and Rohstoff-TV for an initial three month period to assist with Aztec’s investor relations activities. Pursuant to an agreement dated May 20, 2020, Aztec will pay C&R-TV €9000 plus expenses. C&R-TV is based in Switzerland and will introduce Aztec to its European investor network” (Cerro Cervantes, Sonora).
  • Vizsla Resources Corp. entered into an agreement with Canaccord Genuity Corp. for a bought deal purchase of shares for C$4 M in gross profits (Panuco, Sinaloa).
  • DynaResources Inc. closed a financing agreement with Golden Post Rail, LLC. and with certain individual shareholders of DynaUSA. Golden Post acquired a convertible promissory note of $2.5 M, bearing interest at 10% and maturing two years from the execution date. The other purchaser acquired convertible security notes in the amount of $1.4 M, bearing interest at 10% and maturing two years from the date of issuance (San Jose de Gracia, Sinaloa).
  • Minaurum Gold Inc. closed its previously announced brokered private placement offering, for aggregate gross proceeds of $5 M (Alamos Silver, Sonora).
  • Telson Mining Corp. closed a second and final tranche of the non-brokered private placement announced on December 27, 2019, for gross proceeds of $196.6 K (Tahuehueto, Durango).
  • Golden Tag Resources Ltd. Announced a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to $1.12 M. “Subsequent to closing of the Financing, the Company will have cash balances of approximately $2.1 million, and no debt” (San Diego, Durango).
  • Solaris Resources Inc. completed a non-brokered private placement financing raising gross proceeds of C$20 M (La Verde, Michoacan).
  • Mammoth Resources Corp. announced a non brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to $131 K (Tenoriba, Chihuahua).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. announced that the fully underwritten pro-rata non-renounceable entitlements offer to raise $1.73 M on the basis on 1 new share for every 3 shares held at the record date has closed (Plomosas, Chihuahua).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Mexican Gold Mining Corp. announced the company will resume activities at Las Minas, Veracruz, in July of 2020, with the goal of having all the necessary inputs for a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) study completed by the end of the year. A 3,000 m drilling program has been designed to expand and upgrade the current resource at El Dorado and continue exploration at the Cinco Señores and Changarro areas. A comprehensive metallurgical study is to be elaborated, as well as an airborne LIDAR on 50 square Km to map the ground surface to 10 Cm resolution.
  • Golden Minerals Co. announced the filing on SEDAR of a preliminary Economic assessment (PEA) for its Rodeo property in Durango.
  • Bacanora Lithium PLC. updated on activities at its Sonora Lithium project in Sonora. The pilot plant in Hermosillo is to remain closed until authorities lift the Coronavirus pandemic restrictions. Completion of the flow sheet engineering will provide an engineering, procurement and construction style engineering proposal to produce downstream battery grade lithium products, is now scheduled for end of Q4, 2020. from Sonora.
  • Discovery Metals Corp. informed that to date the company has completed 17,500 m (48 holes) of its planned 30,000 to 35,000 phase 1 drill program, demonstrating near-surface higher-grade potential over a strike length of 1,250 m, intercepting multiple sulfide veins with grades over 1 kilogram silver per tonne at its Cordero project, Chihuahua.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Mithril Resources Ltd. has completed the acquisition of Sun Minerals Pty Ltd., which holds and exclusive option to acquire the high-grade Copalquin project in Durango. The company issued 673.85 M ordinary shares for the acquisition of all the issued capital of Sun Minerals. Mithril also issued 10 M ordinary shares and paid US$200 K to Compañía Minera Copalquin, S.A. de C.V., and issued 225 M performance rights.
  • Candente Gold Corp. informed the memorandum of understanding (MOU) the company signed with Magellan Acquisition Corp. giving Candente the right to earn up to a 100% interest in both the SDA plant and the El Dorado property, in Nayarit, has been amended such that a payment of US$5 K is being paid upon signing the revised MOU and the payment of shares upon completion of due diligence and a definitive agreement to earn 10% interest has been increased from 4 M shares to 5 M shares, all other terms remain the same. The MOU is subject to TSX Venture approval as well as due diligence and execution of a definitive agreement.
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. has published a revised version of its Cerro Caliche project development report dated May 22, 2020. As a result of a review by the British Columbia Securities Commission, Sonoro withdrew an April 28, 2020 version of this project development report as it contained certain technical disclosures that did not comply with National Instrument 43-101 standards of disclosure for mineral projects. The revised report is not a technical report as defined by NI 43-101 and has been updated to address those disclosure issues and is now available on the Cerro Caliche project page of the Company’s website.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Minera Peña Colorada donated 1000 sets of groceries to aid the most needed families in Cuatitlán de García Barragán, Jalisco.
  • Grupo Mexico donated 23 respiratory ventilators to the State of Sonora, to be distributed mainly in the capital hospitals.
  • Fresnillo PLC donated personal medical protection equipment in Caborca, Sonora.
  • Minera Real Bonanza supports the fight against the Covid-19 menace through the Hacienda Santa Ana museum in Real de Catorce, San Luis Potosi.
  • Grupo Mexico Foundation and Fechac delivered health protection kits to hospitals in Ciudad Juárez, Chihuahua.
  • Fresnillo PLC donated a respiratory ventilator to health authorities in Durango.
  • Fresnillo PLC donated medical protection equipment to a hospital in Fresnillo, Zacatecas.
  • The mining industry in Sonora has contributed with sanitizing kits, grocery kits, medical protection sets, hospital equipment, office equipment and public spaces sanitizing. These have benefited 125,813 people with an investment of $64.6 M pesos during April and May 2020, in communities like Cananea, Caborca, La Colorada, Nacozari, Cumpas, Fronteras, Magdalena, San Javier and Esqueda.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: White, granular quartz-graphite vein, Hermosillo District, Sonora. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

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The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Third Week of May, 2020.

Phyllic alteration

By Miguel A Heredia

During the twenty one week of the year (May 18th to May 24th, 2020), at least 36 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with twelve commenting on Mexican issues, six disclosing deals and corporate issues, five discussing on social issues, four informing on exploration results, three communicating production and financial results, three announcing financing rounds, and three reporting on resources and developments.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the Mexican mining sector decreased last year according to government data.  Mexico deemed mining an essential activity, allowing companies to resume production activities. The Undersecretary of Mining, Francisco Quiroga, agreed with the Union Labour leaders on the strategy to guarantee a safe return to the mining operations in the country.  A protocol for reopening companies was defined and only the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) can approve it or rejected it. Mining companies with operations in Chihuahua signed a letter of commitment before the State Government and the Government of Mexico, to follow the instructions on health and safety at work during the phase of resumption of operations in the so-called “new normality”. Excellon Resources and the FRENTE Metallurgical Mining Union reached some agreements to continue operating the La Platosa mine in Durango. Industrias Peñoles announced the shutdown of its Francisco I Madero Zinc mine in Zacatecas due to difficult mining conditions and low metal prices. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Tocvan and its partner Colibri announced exciting new targets on its Pilar project. In Chihuahua, Kootenay released drill results from the first six of ten holes completed to date at its Columba project. In Sinaloa, Vizsla restarted its exploration and drilling program at its Panuco project.  ON MINING, Mag Silver reported Q1, 2020 financial results (Juanicipio project, Zacatecas). Mexus reported additional gold sales from production at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. McEwen reported full year 2019 production results from its El Gallo mine in Sinaloa. ON FINANCING, Magna Gold announced a non-brokered private placement to raise gross proceeds of up to $7M (Mercedes project, Son).  Discovery Metals announced that it intends to complete a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to CAD $25M (Cordero project, Chihuahua).  Mithril announced that its rights issue for capital raising has closed with strong support for both shareholder entitlements and additional shortfall shares (Copalquin project, Durango).      ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Endeavour reported drill results from fourteen holes collared at its Bolaños mine in Guanajuato, eight of which intersected high-grade mineralization in the Melladito Vein. Mag Silver provided an update on its Juanicipio project in Zacatecas. VanGold announced plans to conduct a 1,000 tonnes bulk sample from its Pinguino project in Guanajuato. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Alamos Gold reported results of its annual general meeting of shareholders (Mulatos mine, Sonora). Argonaut shareholders and Alio securityholders approved merger to create North American diversified Intermediate gold producer (El Castillo mine, Durango). Equinox announced results of its annual general meeting of shareholders (Los Filos mine, Guerrero). Defiance extended its option agreement on its San Acacio project in Zacatecas to 2023. Silver Tiger (former Oceanus Resources) commenced trading under the symbol “SLVR” (El Tigre project, Sonora). Sierra Metals appointed its new CEO (Bolivar mine, Chihuahua). ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, The Grupo Mexico Foundation donated 5,000 molecular tests for COVID-19, and will be distributing 450,000 protection kits in Mexico City as well as in the states of Mexico, Jalisco and Nuevo Leon. Minera Gorrión, subsidiary of Almaden Minerals and in charge of developing the Ixtaca mine project, in the north of Puebla, donated 1,000 disinfecting gels and 2,000 masks to the Ixtacamaxtitlán Community Hospital, in charge of leading efforts against the epidemic in the region. Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold), will donate MXP $2M to launch a hospital in Iguala, Guerrero, which will exclusively treat patients with COVID-19. Consorcio Minero Peña Colorada S.A. de C.V. , donated MXP $500K to the Integral Development of the Family (DIF)  of Colima State to allocate it to the Emergent Food Attention Program implemented by the government.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Foreign Direct Investment (FDI) in the Mexican mining sector, decreased last year, according to government data. Net FDI in 2019 was USD $592M, down from almost USD $ 650M in 2018, according to data published by the economy ministry. The 2019 figure is the lowest compared to previous years. Spending peaked at USD $ 5.44B in 2013. The industry leaders see a general decline in investment in 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Mining companies intend to restart operations in June 1, 2020, as part of a gradual reopening of the economy under which the sector has acquired essential status.
  • Mexico, deemed mining an essential activity, allowing companies to resume production activities, six weeks after asking all non-essential business to temporarily close in response to the COVId-19 pandemic. Argonaut, Azure, Compañía Real del Monte, Premier, Newmont, Alamos Gold, Great panther, among others, are some of the mining companies which will be starting activities at its mine operations.
  • The Undersecretary of Mining, Francisco Quiroga, agreed with the Union Labour leaders on the strategy to guarantee a safe return to the mining operations in the country, once the reactivation of this sector was allowed. The mining sector generates 370K direct jobs and 2.3M of indirect jobs throughout the country, which generates benefits for workers and employees. Mining represents an essential sector because it supplies raw materials to practically all industries. On the other hand, Francisco Quiroga has been very active working with mining companies to define, along with the Secretary of Health, Jorge Alcocer Varela, the protocols for a safe reopening in 249 mining municipalities.
  • A protocol for reopening companies was defined by the authorities. Companies must have the authorization of the Mexican Institute of Social Security (IMSS) to restart activities, after remain closed due to the CIVID-19. According to the Technical Guidelines for Health Safety in the Workplace, published this Monday by the Ministry of the Economy (SE), the IMSS will have 72 hours to approve or reject the request.
  • Mining companies with operations in Chihuahua, signed a letter of commitment before the State Government (Governor Javier Corral) and the Government of Mexico (Undersecretary of Mining Francisco Quiroga), to follow the instructions on health and safety at work during the phase of resumption of operations in the so-called “new normality”. Francisco Quiroga added that to close the circle of prevention, the mining industry will be trained in the management of the different equipment that will be put into operation to comply with the protocols set by the State Health Council.
  • Excellon Resources Inc., and the FRENTE Metallurgical Mining Union, reached some agreements to continue operating the La Platosa mine in the Bermejillo community, located in the Mapimí municipality, Durango. It highlights a cut of around 20% in personnel and a technical strike for the next 60 days as the company develops the restructuring process. The official assured that the liquidations of the personnel who will be dismissed will be 100% and in accordance with the provisions of the law, in addition to reaching an agreement with the union so that, while the technical strike is carried out, only 50% of their salary will be paid to the rest of the workers who, due to the pandemic caused by the COVID-19, are in domiciliary protection.
  • Industrias Peñoles S.A.B. de C.V., announced the shutdown of its Francisco I Madero Zinc mine in Zacatecas, due to difficult mining conditions and low metal prices. It stated that it has begun laying off unionized workers in the mine unit and also trying to reassign to others workers and contractors to other mine units. The Francisco I Madero mine started operations in 2001. Peñoles processed in 2019, over 2.3M tonnes to produce 93M Lb Zn and 19.9M Lb Pb.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Tocvan Ventures Corp, and its partner Colibri Resources Corporation, announced new exciting targets generated by an IP survey on its Pilar project in Sonora. “According to the survey data, the Main Zone and the North Hill Zone may be connected and, if confirmed, would be renamed as a mineralization trend. Results also indicate the potential of the northeast-southwest structures connecting the 4-Trench Zone to the Main Zone, Tocvan said”. Geophysical results will be combined with additional surveys to better define drill targets for a phase 2 drilling campaign.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc., released drill results from six of ten holes completed to date at its Columba project in Chihuahua, as part of its 2020 drilling program. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole CDH-20-045 with 239 g/t Ag, 0.08% Pb, and 0.4% Zn over 4.3m, including 350 g/t Ag, 0.1% Pb, and 0.5% Zn over 2.5m, and including 456 g/t Ag, 0.2% Pb and 0.6% Zn over 1.5m in the F Vein, and 208 g/t Ag, 0.1% Pb, and 0.2% Zn over 3m, including 974 g/t Ag, 0.03% Pb, and 0.3% Zn over 0.5m in a footwall vein; hole CDH-20-046 with 264 g/t Ag, 0.06% Pb, and 0.1%Zn over 6.8m, including 553 g/t Ag, 0.1% Pb, and 0.2% Zn over 2.9m, including 911 g/t Ag, 0.2% Pb, and 0.2% Zn over 1.4m, including 1,585 g/t Ag, 0.3% Pb, and 0.3% Zn over 0.6m, and 689 g/t Ag, 0.2% Pb, and 0.3% Zn over 0.5m, and 219 g/t Ag, 0.04% Pb, and 0.1% Zn over 5m, all in the F Vein; hole CDH-20-047 with 166 g/t Ag, 0.2% Pb, and 0.5% Zn over 15.65m, including 351 g/t Ag, 0.4% Pb, and 1% Zn over 5.97m, including 400 g/t Ag, 0.45% Pb, and 1.2% Zn over 4.97m, including 782 g/t Ag, 1.1% Pb, 3.6% Zn over 1.05, including 305 g/t Ag, 0.1% Pb, and 0.3% Zn over 1.15m, including 219 g/t Ag, 0.4% Pb, and 0.7% Zn over 1.1m, including 432 g/t Ag, 0.5% Pb, and 1% Zn over 0.97m; and hole CDH-20-042 with 115 g/t Ag over 0.3m in a hangingwall of a quartz vein, and 86 g/t Ag 0.02% Pb, and 0.1% Zn over 13m, including 111 g/t Ag, 0.03% Pb, and 0.1% Zn over 5.9m, in the F Vein. These holes tested the F Vein structure along 400 meters of strike length with holes 42 to 45 focusing on gaps in the 2019 drill program, while holes 46 and 47 were step outs along strike.
  • Vizsla Resources Corp., restarted its exploration and recommenced its 14,500m drilling programs at its Panuco project in Sinaloa. Vizsla has tested only five of the initially twenty targets and will continue with two drill rigs to ensure the remaining 10,861m of planned drilling is completed in the 2020 calendar year.

ON MINING

  • Mag Silver Corp., reported Q1, 2020 financial results. It estimated the pre-operative initial capital now at USD $440M as of January, 2018. The company also reported a development expenditure of approximately USD $153.5M (company therefore estimates approximately $286,584 of remaining initial capital on a 100% basis as at March 31, 2020), and an existing cash and other working capital as at March 31, 2020 of USD $6.8M and USD $13.2M respectively (Juanicipio project, Zacatecas).
  • Mexus Gold , reported addition gold sales from production at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. It sold 47.5Oz Au on May 7th and was processing an additional 45 Oz Au the week of May 18th. Mexus announced that the sales of gold for the month of May are expected to exceed 120 Oz Au.
  • McEwen Mining Inc., reported full year 2019 production results from its El Gallo mine in Sinaloa. It produced 2,700 Oz AuEq (GEO) from residual leaching of the heap leach pad. Beginning with Q42019, the company has ceased relying on, and disclosing, cash costs and AISC per GEO as key metrics for El Gallo mine. Residual leaching will continue for as long as incremental revenue exceeds incremental costs.

ON FINANCING

  • Magna Gold Corp., announced a non-brokered private placement to raise gross proceeds of up to $7M. Net proceeds will be used for working capital purposes in connection with the company´s existing projects (Mercedes project, Sonora).
  • Discovery Metals Corp., announced that it intends to close a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to CAD $25M. Net proceeds will be used primarily to continue the exploration programs at its Cordero and Coahuila projects in Chihuahua and Coahuila respectively.
  • Mithril Resources Limited, announced that its rights issue for capital raising has closed with strong support for both shareholder entitlements and additional shortfall shares. The company was required to raise a minimum of $1.5M under the rights issue as a condition precedent of the transaction with Sun Minerals Pty Ltd. Fund raised will be used to advance exploration at its Copalquin project in Durango, following completion of the acquisition of Sun Minerals.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Endeavour Silver Corp., reported drill results from fourteen holes collared at its Bolaños mine in Guanajuato, eight of which intersected high-grade mineralization over minable widths in the Melladito Vein. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole BN27 with 24.3 g/t Au and 787 g/t Ag (3,217 g/t AgEq) over a true width (TW) of 1.5m, including 91.8 g/t Au and 2,200 g/t Ag (11,380 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.20m; hole BN31 with 12.48 g/t Au and 50 g/t Ag (1,298 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 1.1m, including 50.8 g/t Au and 191 g/t Ag (5,271 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 0.2m; and hole BN32 with 7.37 g/t Au and 170 g/t Ag (907 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 2.7m, including 9.47 g/t Au and 327 g/t Ag (1,274 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 0.6m.”The eight drill holes outline a new mineralized zone 100 m long by 200 m deep, open in all directions. It could connect with the historic high-grade San Ramon mine workings immediately west of and the San Pablo mine workings immediately east of the drill holes. This part of the Melladito vein was not previously explored and represents an exciting new area for resource estimation and mine development”.
  • Mag Silver Corp., provided an update on its Juanicipio project in Zacatecas. Highlights include that a detailed engineering is near completion and earthmoving and foundation preparation is well advanced for the construction of the 4,000 tpd beneficiation plant; SAG and Ball mills, flotation cells, all associated vessels, thickeners and ancillary process equipment are now secured on site, progress made with the construction of the flotation plant and infrastructure, and underground development at Juanicipio has now approached 27 km (or 16.9 miles) and is focused on three sub-vertical ramps that descend alongside the mineralization and alongside the conveyor ramp to surface at plant site.
  • VanGold Mining Corp., announced plans to conduct a 1,000 tonnes bulk sample from its Pinguino project in Guanajuato. It entered in an agreement with Endeavour Silver and will be sending the bulk sample to Endeavour’s Bolañitos mill, located approximately 28kmfrom El Pinguico project. “By conducting this large test, the Company will gain valuable metallurgical and precious metal recovery information pertaining to the mineralized material on the El Pinguico property.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Alamos Gold Inc., announced results of its annual general meeting of shareholders. It also appointed and compensated executives and auditor´s remuneration (Mulatos mine, Sonora).
  • Argonaut Gold Inc., shareholders and Alio Gold Inc. securityholders, approved merger to create North American diversified intermediate gold producer. On closing of the transaction, Argonaut and Alio shareholders will own approximately 76% and 24% of the merged company, respectively, on an issued share basis. The merged company will continue as Argonaut Gold with the ticker symbol AR on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX). (El Castillo mine, Durango).
  • Equinox Gold Corp., announced results of its annual general meeting of shareholders. It also appointed auditors and approved executive´s compensation (Los Filos mine, Guerrero).
  • Defiance Silver Corp., announced that it has successfully negotiated with the project vendor its option agreement on its san Acacio project in Zacatecas. The project vendor has agreed to extend the option agreement terms by three years from September 27, 2020 to September, 27, 2023. “Defiance will now be making quarterly payments, over three years, to the property vendor totaling USD $2,278,189, with the final option payment of USD $2,407,461 due September 27, 2023. In accordance with the original agreement, the vendor retains a 2.5% NSR which may be purchased for USD $2,500,000. Should the agreement be terminated prior to September 27, 2023 a break fee equal to 5% of the outstanding option balance shall be paid to the property vendor”.
  • Silver Tiger Metals Inc., (former Oceanus Resources), commenced trading under the trading symbols “SLVR” on the TSXV. There was no change in the share capital of the company. Certificates representing common shares of the company will not be affected by the name and symbol change and will not need to be exchanged (El Tigre project, Sonora).
  • Sierra Metals Inc., announced the appointment of its new CEO effective immediately (Bolivar mine, Chihuahua).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • The Grupo Mexico Foundation, donated 5,000 molecular test for the detection of COVID-19 to be applied to patients from all over the state of Chihuahua. Governor of Chihuahua State, Javier Corral, stated that it will allow reducing the time of diagnosis and extending timely attention to the population. In addition, it also will donate 450,000 protection kits to be distributed in Mexico City as well as in the states of Mexico, Jalisco and Nuevo Leon. The kits are personal and contain supplies such as masks, gowns, hats, shoe covers, KN45 masks, gloves, goggles and everything necessary to promote the comprehensive protection of health personnel in hospitals.
  • Minera Gorrión (MG), subsidiary of Almaden Minerals Ltd., and in charge of developing the Ixtaca mine project, in the north of Puebla, donated 1,000 disinfecting gels and 2,000 masks to the Ixtacamaxtitlán Community Hospital, in charge of leading efforts against the epidemic in the region. On the other hand, 1,440 liters of gel and 4,800 face masks were distributed among 15 Rural Medical Units of the IMSS and 9 Health Houses of the Ministry of Health in the municipality. Likewise, MG delivered 1,300 liters of gel and 2,000 covers mouths to the Central Warehouse of Health Services in the state of Puebla to support the efforts led by the Puebla government to counteract the spread of the disease in the state.
  • Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold Resources Inc.), donated MXP $2M to launch a hospital in Iguala, Guerrero, which will exclusively treat patients with COVID-19. The hospital will be soon in operation and will also serve people from Taxco, Huitzuco, Tepecoacuilco and Cocula affected by the coronavirus.
  • Consorcio Minero Peña Colorada S.A. de C.V., donated MXP $500K to the Integral Development of the Family (DIF) of Colima State, to allocate it to the Emergent Food Attention Program, implemented by its government.

 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, phyllic alteration in a porphyry Cu system in a prospect in Oaxaca, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

 

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Second Week of May, 2020

IMG_9802 - copia

By Jorge Cirett

During the 20th week of the year (May 11th to May 17th, 2020), at least 43 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Camimex informed 23 mining companies supported 16 States on the Coronavirus emergency. The federal government announced the inclusion of the mining industries in the list of “essential” activities that could be performed under the Coronavirus emergency, starting on 18 May 2020…. only to backtrack a few days later with the announcement that mining companies “can begin to prepare” on 18 May, to start working on 01 June, 2020. Francisco Quiroga, sub-secretary of Mining, stated that the mining industry cannot wait until 01 June, 2020, for reactivation. The Supreme Court will evaluate the impugnation against the reform by which the federal government took control of the Mining Fund. First Majestic has taken steps to sue the federal government under provision of chapter 11 of NAFTA, on grounds of double taxation.  ON EXPLORATION, in Sinaloa, Vizsla Resources released results from seven historic holes from the Plomosas Mine area at its Plomosas project. In Zacatecas, Alien Metals informed on two targets defined with the aid of IP, gravity, magnetic and geochemical surveys at its Donovan 2 property. ON MINING, Santacruz Silver, Great Panther Mining, Torex Gold, Capstone Mining, Alamos Gold, Consolidated Zinc and Newmont announced their coming back to production on 18 May 2020 (the date previously released by the government to end the mining lockdown). Fortuna Silver, Argonaut Gold, Sierra Metals, Starcore International and First Majestic released quarterly results. Excellon Resources will postpone the filing of its interim financial statements. ON FINANCING, Canuc Resources closed a financing round for $100 K., Americas Gold and Silver closed it bought deal financing for C$28.75 M. Silver Viper opened a private placement intending to raise up to C$5 M. Minaurum Gold announced a C$4.2 M financing, concurrent with the previously announced C$5 M financing. Endeavour Silver entered into an agreement to raise up to $23 M for its Terronera project. GR Silver Mining granted 1.38 M options to insiders. Starcore commenced trading on the OTCQB. Oceanus Resources is to change name to Silver Tiger Metals Inc. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, SilverCrest Metals released infill and expansion results on the high grade footprint of the Babi Vista vein, which by now stands at 400 m long by 200 m in height, 1 m wide, grading 20.26 gpt Au, 1,590 gpt Ag. GR Silver Mining released high-grade results from historic drill holes at its Plomosas project in Sinaloa. GoGold Resources released drill hole results from the Los Ricos South project in Jalisco. Golden Minerals filed a PEA on its Velardeña properties in Durango. Sierra Metals filed a technical report on the Bolivar mine, Chihuahua. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Vizsla Resources renegotiated the terms of the Rio Panuco agreement, reducing by $4.2 M the payments to be made before early 2022. Sonoro Metals withdrew the technical report on Cerro Caliche, Sonora, as required by the British Columbia Securities Commission. Discovery Metals announced the resignation of Jose Vizquerra from the board of directors. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Minera San Julian, Capstone, Fresnillo PLC, Endeavour Silver, Argonaut Gold, Peña Colorada, La Cantera Desarrollos Mineros, First Majestic, Newmont and Grupo Mexico informed on donations ad work realized to aid communities, mainly on subjects related to the Coronavirus emergency, like medical supplies and equipment (even the construction of a hospital), but comprising also a large array of investments and measures that benefit the mining communities.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Camimex informed 23 mining companies working in Mexico have supported 16 States in the country, with activities and donations of medical supplies to aid communities in the Coronavirus emergency. Mexico was the only country in North America that did not place mining within the essential industries to continue activities during the lockdown.
  • The Consejo de Salubridad General (General Health Council) approved four agreements for the gradual lifting of measures to fight the Coronavirus, one of which is the declaration of mining as part of the essential industries that are permitted to continue work during the Covid-19 emergency (Important.- See note below).
  • Adding to the confusion on government announcements, the sub-secretary of health prevention and promotion Hugo López Gatell informed mining, construction and automobile industries are to start activities until 01 June 2020. Most mining companies had already announced the commencement of activities on 18 May, 2020, as the mining industry had been declared essential, a term which has allowed other industries to continue activities during the Coronavirus emergency. In this twist of events, the sub-secretary said these industries can prepare for starting work on 01 June, 2020, and that further notice on physical modification of workspaces, schedules, and distance between workers, among other regulations to be announced on 18 May, 2020.
  • Francisco Quiroga, sub-secretary of Mining, stated that the mining industry cannot wait until 01 June, 2020, for reactivation. This after the Health Secretariat established a two week preparation period for re-establishment of operations. “We cannot wait to the termination of the pandemic to get back to work. In mining we return to operate adhering to strict protocols and sanitary measures: since the people leaves home until they return”.
  • The Supreme Court will evaluate (after five months wait) the impugnation against the reform by which the federal government took control of the Mining Fund. The Supreme Court also has to rule in the case of Puebla’s indigenous communities against the granting of mining concessions in their ground.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp. “has taken steps to serve the Government of Mexico with a Notice of Intent to Submit a Claim (“Notice”) under the provisions of Chapter 11 of North American Free Trade Agreement (“NAFTA”)”. The company claims the SAT (Servicio de Administración Tributaria, equivalent to the IRS in USA), has shown a strong deviation from several international treatises on double taxation. “The service of this Notice by the Company on the Government of Mexico initiates a 90-day process for the Government of Mexico to enter into good faith and amicable negotiations with the Company to resolve the current dispute”.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Vizsla Resources Corp. released drilling results from seven holes on the Honduras vein and surface and underground sampling of the Animas, Cordon de Oro and Napoleon vein corridors at its Panuco project in Sinaloa. Highlighted drill intercepts comprise 4.35 m @ 208 gpt Ag, 0.83 gpt Au (including 1.0 m @ 432 gpt Ag, 1.55 gpt Au) and 2.60 m @ 151 gpt Ag, 1.02 gpt Au (including 0.70 m @ 294 gpt Ag, 2.09 gpt Au). Highlighted surface and underground sampling results comprise: 3.2 m @ 44 gpt Ag, 16.52 gpt Au (including (1.0 m @76 gpt Ag, 38.20 gpt Au); 11.90 m @ 140 gpt Ag, 1.67 gpt Au (including 2.90 m @ 249 gpt Ag, 3.84 gpt Au); 4.20 m @ 230 gpt Ag, 3.13 gpt Au (including 1.20 m @ 655 gpt Ag, 10.15 gpt Ag).
  • Alien Metals Ltd. informed excellent targets have been generated at its Donovan 2 project in Zacatecas, from an IP survey, coincident with previous geophysical and sampling results. The two stronger targets comprise the North zone prospect known as Cerro de la Cruz where ground magnetics, gravity and IP geophysics all returned coincident anomalies and the Central prospect known as Los Alomos where historical anomalous rock samples and the ground IP geophysics returned coincident anomalies.

ON MINING

  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. released financial results for the first quarter of 2020, without elaborating on figures from its Mexican operations. “As at March 31, 2020, the Company had $88.5 million of cash and cash equivalents…. and the company’s $150 M bank credit facility had been fully drawn”. AISC per silver ounce in the San Jose mine in Oaxaca was $10.70.
  • Argonaut Gold Inc. released its operating and financial results for the first quarter of 2010, including figures from its Mexican operations. The El Castillo Complex in Durango produced 28,508 Oz AuEq at a cash cost of $941, with 5.28 M tonnes of waste moved and 5.63 M tonnes of ore mined and 4.68 M tonnes placed on the heaps @ 0.44 gpt Au, producing 27,270 Oz Au, 99 K Oz Ag. La Colorada in Sonora produced 13,028 Oz AuEq at a cash cost of $1,021 per Oz Au, with 4.68 M tonnes of waste moved, and 947 K tonnes of ore mined and 966 K tonnes loaded to the leach pads @ 0.35 gpt Au, producing 13,028 Oz Au, 54.2 K Oz Ag. The company is preparing to restart activities at its two operating units as restrictions to work on the Coronavirus emergency ease.
  • Sierra Metals Inc. presented consolidated results for the first quarter of 2020. The Bolivar Mine processed a record 377.5 K tonnes in Q1 2020, representing a 43% increase over Q1 2019. Copper represents 40% of Sierra Metals’ revenue in Q1 2020, as the Company is trending towards copper as its main product as a percentage of revenue. During the period 8,048 m were drilled at Bolivar, Chihuahua, whereas at Cusi, also in Chihuahua, 2,172 m were drilled. The company held 36.9 M in cash and cash equivalents by the end of the period, with $49.2 M in working capital.
  • Starcore International Mines Ltd. announced production results for the fourth quarter of fiscal year 2019, ended April 30, 2020, at its San Martin mine in Queretaro. During the quarter 56.k tonnes were milled @ 1.65 gpt Au, 25.3 gpt Ag, recovering 88.7% Au, 55.8% Ag, to produce 2,925 Oz AuEq.
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. commenced preparations to resume mining and milling operations at the Zimapan mine in Hidalgo on May 19, 2020.
  • Great Panther Mining Ltd. intends to restart operations in Mexico this month in accordance with the Mexican federal government’s announcements of the lifting of restrictions that have suspended mining operations in the country since the start of April (Topia, Durango).
  • Excellon Resources Inc. will postpone the filing of its interim financial statements and management’s discussion and analysis for the first quarter of 2020, relying on the blanket relief granted by Ontario Instrument 51-502, which provides for up to a 45-day extension for periodic filings (Platosa, Durango).
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. presented first quarter 2020 results. At San José, in Oaxaca, 246.8 K tonnes were milled, averaging 2,837 tonnes per day (tpd) @ 216 gpt Ag, 1.33 gpt Au, with recoveries of 92% Ag, 91% Au, to produce 1.57 M OZ Ag, 9,630 Oz Au at production cash cost $7.50 per Oz Ag and AISC $10.70 per Oz Ag.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp. announced consolidated financial results for the first quarter 2020. Restart procedures are being taken after the announcement of the lifting of the Coronavirus emergency for mining companies, to start work by 18 May, 2020. The company ended the quarter with $145.2 M in cash and cash equivalents.First Majstic Q1 production1
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc. plans to resume full production at its El Limón Guajes mining complex in Guerrero by the end of this month, following the designation of mining as an essential activity by the government.
  • Capstone Mining Corp. announces it has safely started ramping up operational activities at its Cozamin mine in Zacatecas, following the Mexican federal government announcement on May 12, 2020 that mining is an essential industry.
  • Alamos Gold Inc. expects to begin ramping up full operations at its Mulatos mine in Sonora on May 18, 2020. Following the Mexican government’s declaration of mining as an essential activity.
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. advised that the Mexican Government has instructed that all mining is to be considered an essential service, allowing the Plomosas mine and Aldama concentrator to re-commence operations from 18 May 2020. It is expected the ramp up back to full production will be completed by the end of May.
  • Newmont Corp. expects to begin safely ramping up operations at Peñasquito in Mexico on May 18 following the government’s designation of mining as an essential activity. “On April 22, Peñasquito reached a definitive agreement with the San Juan de Cedros community (one of 25 neighboring communities) in Zacatecas, Mexico on land use, water availability, infrastructure and social investments. This includes access to 10,000 hectares for exploration and operational purposes, and resolves all outstanding issues with the community. The agreement was reached with the support of Mexico’s Ministry of Interior (SEGOB) and representatives of the State of Zacatecas and was signed by elected representatives of the Cedros community. The agreement is expected to be ratified in a General Assembly once COVID-19 restrictions on gatherings are lifted by the government. The agreement expressly states that any future disputes will be resolved through dialogue and free of blockades”.

ON FINANCING

  • Canuc Resources Corp. closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $100 K (San Javier, Sonora).
  • Starcore International Mines Ltd. announced its shares have been approved to commence trading on the OTCQB. “This listing on the OTCQB compliments the Company’s listings on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the Frankfurt Stock Exchange” (San Martin, Queretaro).
  • Americas Gold and Silver Corp. closed its previously announced bought deal financing with a syndicate of underwriters co‐led by Cormark SecuritiesInc. and Desjardins Capital Markets for aggregate gross proceeds of C$28.75 M (Cosalá, Sinaloa).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. has established an on-line application for shareholders to subscribe for the new shares under the Entitlement Offer 23 April 2020 (Plomosas, Chihuahua).
  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp. entered into a letter of engagement with Eight Capital and Red Cloud Securities Inc. for a private placement aiming to raise C$5 M in gross proceeds (La Virginia, Sonora).
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. granted incentive stock options to certain directors, officers, and consultants to purchase up to an aggregate of 1.38 M shares of the Company (Plomosas, Sinaloa).
  • Minaurum Gold Inc. announced that, concurrent with its C$5 M marketed private placement announced on May 4, 2020, the company has agreed to issue up to a further 10.5 M units to raise additional C$4.2 M in gross proceeds (Alamo Silver, Sonora).
  • Endeavour Silver Corp. entered into a sales agreement with BMO Capital Markets, CIBC Capital Markets, H.C. Wainwright & Co., TD Securities, Roth Capital Partners, B. Riley FBR and A.G.P., to sell common shares to raise gross proceeds of up to $23 M. No offers of sales of common shares will be made on the TSX or other trading markets in Canada. Net proceeds will be used to advance its Terronera project in Jalisco.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd. advised that its 1 for 1 Non-Renounceable Rights Issue closed at 5:00pm on 14 May 2020 (Copalquin, Durango).
  • Oceanus Resources Corp. announced that it is changing its name to Silver Tiger Metals Inc. on the TSX Venture Exchange. The company also announced a non-brokered private placement to raise up to $675 K (El Tigre, Sonora).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. is to restart exploration and development work at its Las Chispas Project in Sonora by mid-May, using strict COVID-19 protocols. The company also released in-fill and expansion drill results for the BaBi Vista vein at Las Chispas. The updated high-grade footprint is 400 m along vein strike by 200 m in height, grading 20.26 gpt Au and 1,590 gpt Ag over an average true width of 1.0 m, and open in most directions. Highlighted results from the last drill holes comprise true width intervals of 0.6 m @ 3.29 gpt Au, 216 gpt Ag; 0.9 m @ 12.44 gpt Au, 1,103 gpt Ag; 0.6 m @ 1.17 gpt Au, 93 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 2.0 gpt Au, 232 gpt Ag; 1.8 m @ 78.83 gpt Au, 5,235 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 3.12 gpt Au, 302 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 2.05 gpt Au, 148 gpt Ag; 0.4 m @ 4.72 gpt Au, 401 gpt Ag.
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. reported high-grade drill results at its Plomosas project in Sinaloa. The results are from holes in the Plomosas mine area, drilled by previous operators of the property. Highlighted true width (TW) intervals comprise 1.74 m @ 118 gpt Ag, 30.64 gpt Au, 0.1% Pb, 0.1% Zn; 1.30 m @ 4.75 gpt Au; 4.23 m @ 57 gpt Ag, 1.35 gpt Au, 3.7% Zn, 3.3% Pb; 3.13 m @ 31 gpt Ag, 4.54 gpt Au, 5.8% Zn, 5.2% Pb; 4.96 m @ 52 gpt Ag, 2.60 gpt Au; 0.7% Zn, 3.1% Pb; 0.98 m @ 850 gpt Ag, 0.14 gpt Au, 0.8% Zn, 1.2% Pb; 14.09 m @ 185 gpt Ag, 0.07 gpt Au, 0.6% Zn, 0.8% Pb; 2.70 m @ 240 gpt Ag, 0.05 gpt Au, 0.9% Zn, 1.6% Pb; 3.42 m @ 240 gpt Ag, 0.05 gpt Au, 1.0% Zn, 1.6% Pb; 4.28 m @ 760 gpt Ag, 2.3% Zn, 1.5% Pb; 12.15 m @ 225 gpt Ag, 0.43 gpt Au, 3.0% Zn, 3.6% Pb; 1.45 m @ 1,659 gpt Ag, 0.19 gpt Au, 1.2% Zn, 3.7% Pb; 1.93 m @ 96 gpt Ag, 4.11 gpt Au, 0.8% Zn, 5.9% Pb.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. released assay results from 15 diamond drill holes at the Los Ricos South project in Jalisco. Highlighted core length intervals comprise 14.6 m @ 1.64 gpt Au, 136 gpt Ag; 15.7 m @ 0.52 gpt Au, 22 gpt Ag; 18.0 m @ 0.65 gpt Au, 85 gpt Ag; 19.0 m @ 0.89 gpt Au, 208 gpt Ag (including 5.4 m @ 2.28 gpt Au, 559 gpt Ag and 3.2 m @ 3.13 gpt Au, 858 gpt Ag); 11.5 m @ 0.86 gpt Au, 61 gpt Ag.
  • Golden Minerals Co. announced the filing on SEDAR of a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) and accompanying technical report for its Velardeña properties in Durango.
  • Sierra Metals Inc. filed a 43-101 compliant technical report on the Bolivar mine in Chihuahua. “There are no material differences in the Report from those results disclosed in the Company’s press release dated March 31, 2020”.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Vizsla Resources Corp. renegotiated the terms of the Rio Panuco option agreement, extending it for one more year. The Silverstone option period has been extended into 2022 and the total Panuco mining district option payments between now and the beginning of 2022 will be reduced by over USD$4.1 M, from USD$5.63 M to USD$1.48 M. The total Panuco and Silverstone agreement is for USD$43.08 M in seven years.
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. withdraws Cerro Caliche project development report filed on April 28, 2020, as a result of a review by the British Columbia Securities Commission. “The Company is amending the Report to correct problematic technical disclosures, and expects to publish a revised version in the next week” (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Discovery Metals Corp. announced that Mr. Jose Vizquerra has resigned as a director of the company to focus on other professional commitments (Cordero, Chihuahua).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Minera San Julián (Fresnillo PLC), donated 20 tonnes of non-perishable food to the community of Guadalupe y Calvo, Chihuahua, as well as 2,300 face masks.
  • Capstone has donated approximately $150,000 pesos in Hacienda Nueva, Zacatecas. Food supplies and sanitizers are among the articles delivered.
  • Fresnillo PLC is to finish construction of the Covid-19 Hospital, in Fresnillo, Zacatecas by the end of May.
  • Fresnillo PLC donates medical equipment to the IMSS and General Hospital in Caborca, Sonora. The supplies include face masks, disinfectant gel and N95 face masks.
  • Endeavour Silver informed that during 2019 70% of all training involved safety education; received the “Caso de Plata” safety award at Guanacevi, Durango; Completed an average of 47 hours of training for each employee; supported 118 students with scholarships; sponsored several events to engage with over 1,000 locals in communities near Terronera, in Jalisco; fully funded a multi-use recreational facility for El Cubo community; planted 51,000 trees in reforestation projects and paid $5 M in various taxes.
  • Argonaut Gold Inc. informed it has delivered its 3,000th academic scholarship in Mexico, has initiated a local program with the community of Cerro del Gallo for the cleaning of the San Antón de las Minas River in Guanajuato, provided 150 food support pantries for families in San Juan del Rio in Durango and held the opening ceremony for the Argonaut Community House in La Colorada, Sonora, a center that the company donated to the community that is open for local stakeholders to interact with Argonaut team members and attend courses.
  • Peña Colorada donated 1,000 lab coats for doctors and 1,000 K95 face masks in Colima.
  • La Cantera Desarrollos Mineros installed the community lunch room in the El Encino neighborhood, in Guanajuato. The objective, partnering with the Municipality, is to assist the most needed with food supplies during the Coronavirus emergency; more than 60 families were serviced on the first day of operation.
  • First Majestic delivered 900 health sets to inhabitants of Tayoltita, Durango.
  • Newmont and the Zacatecas State signed an agreement to fight Covid-19. The company already has an integrated plan accepted by the Mining Sub-Secretariat, with a health perimeter and a protocol to follow should a Covid-19 positive case presents in the area. More than 24 tonnes of food has been delivered to persons in need on 25 communities, and Mx$5.25 M have been invested in the strengthening of hospital capacity; furthermore, 500 Covid-19 test kits were donated to the Health Secretariat and ventilators and screens are to be delivered to the desert health clinics.
  • Grupo Mexico and Cemza donate medical equipment in Campeche. The two groups donated medical equipment and supplies to the General Hospital “María del Socorro Quiroga Aguilar”.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: Quartz-graphite vein, Hermosillo District, Sonora. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

IMG_9802 - copia

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the First Week of May, 2020.

Bladed calcite in an epithermal vein system

By Miguel A Heredia

During the nineteen week of the year (May 4th to May 10th, 2020), at least 45 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with eleven communicating production and financial results, seven announcing financing rounds, seven disclosing deals and corporate issues, six reporting on resources and developments, six discussing issues on social responsibility, five commenting on Mexican issues, and three informing on exploration results.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, Americas Gold and Silver reported that its Cosalá operation in Sinaloa continue to be illegally occupied. The General Direction of Mines announced that all mining procedures were suspended until May 30, 2020. Peñoles concluded the construction of its Capela mine in Guerrero with a total investment of USD $334M, of which USD $83.9M were exercised in 2019. Gold mining companies in Mexico are preparing for a solid second semester. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Ridgestone announced that it has completed the first three holes of its ongoing 1,500m drill program at its Rebeico Au-Cu project and Aztec provided an updated 2020 strategic plan and outlook on its Cervantes project. In Chihuahua, Radius reported rock chip sampling results from its recently acquired Plata Verde project.   ON MINING, Avino, Endeavour, GoGold, Gold Resource, Golden Minerals, Great Panther, Hecla, Newmont, Pan American, Premier, and Torex reported production and financial results from their Mexican mining operations. ON FINANCING, Americas Gold and Silver entered in a bought deal public offering for net proceeds of approximately CAD $25M (Cosalá mine, Sinaloa). Fortuna Silver announced proposed amendments to financial covenants contained in its USD $150M credit facility (San Jose mine, Oaxaca). GR Silver entered firstly into a bought deal brokered private placement to raise aggregate gross proceeds of $6,021,000, and later the company upsized it to $8.1M (San Marcial and Plomosas projects, Sinaloa). Minaurum announced a private offering to raise up to CAD $5M (Alamos Silver project, Sonora).    Mithril announced that it is conducting a capital raising by way of a non-renounceable rights issue to shareholders for a minimum gross proceeds of A $1.5M and a maximum of A $2.46M (Copalquin project, Durango). Magna Gold entered into an amendment to include the closing of a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of a minimum of $1.8M and a maximum of $2M (San Francisco mine, Sonora).   ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Discovery Metals released results from eight diamond drill holes collared at its Cordero project in Chihuahua. GR Silver announced historical drilling results from its Plomosas Silver project and provided an update on its ongoing exploration program at its San Marcial project, both located in Sinaloa. Golden Minerals completed PEA´s for its Rodeo and Velardeña projects in Durango. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Agnico announced election of directors during its annual and special meeting of shareholders (Pinos Altos, Chihuahua). Alio Gold completed the sale of its San Francisco mine in Sonora to Magna Gold. Argonaut and Alio received positive recommendations of its proposed merger announced on March 30, 2020 (El Castillo mine, Durango). Azucar Minerals granted stock options to certain directors, employees and consultants (El Cobre project, Veracruz). Xtierra received TSXV conditional approval for the acquisition of Minera Portree (Bilbao project, Zacatecas). Pan American Silver released its 2019 sustainability report (La Colorada mine, Zacatecas). ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, Chihuahua Mining Cluster donated MXP $200M to the Mexican Red Cross. Esperanza Silver de México (Alamos Gold), delivered protective overalls to doctors and nurses at the IMSS Regional hospital 1 in Cuernavaca. First Majestic delivered pantries to five Ejidos from the Municipality of Ocampo, Coahuila. Fresnillo plc joined donated medical equipment to hospitals in Sonora. Grupo Mexico, in coordination with the Torreón City Council, delivered 300 pantries and disinfectant products to residents of a neighborhood near its Met-Mex Peñoles metallurgical plant. Minera San Julian (Fresnillo plc), will provide mask to the Municipality of San Julian, Chihuahua. Aura Minerals, in coordination with the municipal authorities of Concepción Del Oro Zacatecas, has helped to implement measures designed to support the communities in this difficult time. Compañia Minera Pangea (McEwen Mining) donated cleaning kits to 109 families of seven communities near of its El Gallo mine in Sinaloa.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Americas Gold and Silver, reported that its Cosalá operation in Sinaloa continue to be illegally occupied and stated that “while the company cannot negotiate with the self-interested representatives of this illegal action, it is optimistic that a legal a legitimate labour representative for its workers will be identified, and the mine will be in a position to re-open after any COVID-19 restrictions are lifted”.
  • The General Direction of Mines, announced that all the mining procedures were suspended until May 30, 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemia. “For the foregoing, the holders of mining concessions are informed that the obligation to present the report during May to verify the execution of the exploration or exploitation works, in the terms of articles 27, fraction I, 28, 29, 30 and 31 of the Mining Law, and 63 to 66 of its regulations, the term for its presentation is suspended, until May 30, 2020”. The deadline for receipt of the report will be now from June 01, 2020 to June 30, 2020. This postponement was published in the Official Gazette of the Federation and is based on article 28 of the Federal Law of Administrative Procedure.
  • Peñoles Group, finalized the construction of its Capela mine in Guerrero with a total investment of USD $334M, of which USD $83.9M were exercised in 2019. This new unit has a grinding and processing capacity of 4,500 tons of ore per day, to produce an annual average of 4.7M Oz Ag, 89.6M Lb Zn, 19.3M Lb Pb, and 15.7M Lb Cu contained in Pb, Zn, and Cu. It will also generate a total of 650 jobs.
  • Gold Mining companies in Mexico, are preparing to reactivate their activities after quarantines applied by the government to achieve profitable production amid the multi-year records that commodity prices have broken. The timing and success of reactivations will largely depend on the evolution of the pandemic. As operations could resume in May, the mines are in good shape to take advantage of healthy yellow metal prices, although social distancing measures are likely to affect productivity and costs.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Ridgestone Mining Inc., announced that it has completed 435.7m on the first three holes of the ongoing 10 holes, 1,500m diamond core drilling program at its Rebeico Au-Cu project in Sonora. The three first holes were collared at the New York Zone where high grade Au-Cu mineralization has been sampled on surface. All holes present visible sulphide mineralization. Assay results are pending and will be released when available.
  • Aztec Minerals Corp., provided an updated 2020 strategic plan and outlook on its Cervantes project in Sonora. During Q2, 2020 the company plans to finalize the JV agreement with Kootenay Silver, finalize the interpretation of 3-D geophysics conducted in 2019, and advance exploration on near surface oxide Au mineralization and deeper porphyry sulphide Au-Cu targets. In Q3, 2020, Aztec plans to extend detail mapping and sampling of the Purisima West, Estrella, Jacobo, Brazil, and other targets at its Cervantes project, and plan and obtain permits for phase 2 drilling program on its California and Purisima targets. In Q4, 2020 the plan is to commence phase 2 drilling program on these two targets.
  • Radius Gold Inc., reported results of 35 rock chip samples collected at its recently acquired Plata Verde project in Chihuahua. Highlights include 142g/t Ag over 64m at Mina Mojonera, including 350 g/t Ag over 12m. “At Plata Verde, Ag mineralization occurs as massive to crustiform banded barite calcite with Ag chlorides, sulphosalt minerals and native Ag infilling and cementing fractures and breccia within a basaltic/andesite extrusive volcanic”. At Mina Real, located 150m south of Mina Mojonera, 75 rock chip samples were collected from the walls and remaining pillars with Ag grades varying from 8 and 730 g/t Ag, with an average grade of 276 g/t Ag. Minas Mojonera and Real define a zone of Ag mineralization approximately 550m long by 200m wide, with the south portion apparently displaced by a large fault, and largely covered by post-mineral rhyolite ignimbrites. Radius is planning to run an airborne magnetic survey to help define the extension of the host rocks under cover.

ON MINING

  • Avino Silver & Gold Mines Ltd., released Q1, 2020 production and financial results from its Avino mine in Durango. It processed 164,096 tonnes of 0.4 g/t Au, 57 g/t Ag, and 0.57% Cu to produce 1,531 Oz Au, 267K Oz Ag and 1.8M Lb Cu (684K Oz AgEq), with metallurgical recoveries of 73%, 89%, and 86% respectively, at cash cost of USD $9.83, and AISC of USD $14.88 per Oz AgEq payable.  The company reported revenues of USD $7.12M, mine operation income of USD $843K, cash of $6.7M, working capital of USD $1075M, an EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA of USD $372K  and USD $391K respectively.
  • Endeavour Silver Corp., presented consolidated production and financial results from its Guanacevi mine in Durango, Bolañitos mine in Guanajuato, and El Compas mine in Zacatecas. Endeavour produced 857.7K Oz Ag and 8,476 Oz Au for 1.5M Oz AgEq at an 80:1 Ag: Au ratio or 1.8M Oz AgEq at 110:1 ratio. Cash cost of $7.85 and AISC of $18.38 per Oz payable Ag, both net of Au credits. The company reported an income of $21.9M from the sale of 665.5K Oz Ag and 7,454 Oz Au at average realized prices of $15.33 per Oz Ag and $1,633 per Oz Au.
  • GoGold Resources Inc., reported Q1, 2020 production and financial results from its Parral Tailings project, Chihuahua. It processed 367K tonnes to produced 601K Oz AgEq, at cash cost of USD $12.33 and AISC of USD $15.10 per Oz AgEq. GoGold reported an income of $USD $8.6M, and cash of USD $19.1M.
  • Gold Resource Corporation, announced Q1, 2020 production and financial results from its Oaxaca mining unit, Oaxaca. The company milled 174.5K tonnes to produce 6,450 Oz Au, 402.5K Oz Ag, 1.1M Lb Cu, 5.6M Lb Pb, and 13.1M Lb Zn, at cash cost of $918 and AISC of $1,229 per Oz AuEq sold.
  • Golden Minerals Company, announced its financial results for the period Q1, 2020. The company reported revenue of USD $1.2M and net operating margin of USD $0.6M related to the lease of its oxide plant. It also reported cash and cash equivalents balance of USD $ 2.2M.
  • Great Panther Mining Limited, released Q1, 2020 consolidated production and financial results from its Topia, Durango and Guanajuato mine complex, Guanajuato. The company milled 68,965 tonnes of 318 g/t AgEq.
  • Hecla Mining Company, reported Q1, 2020 production and financial results from its San Sebastian mine in Durango. Hecla produced 346,625 Oz Ag and 2,802 Oz Au, at cash cost of $6.91 and AISC of $9.59 per Oz Ag produced.
  • Newmont Corporation, produced 87K Oz Au at AISC of $769 per Oz Au sold, or 288K Oz AuEq at AISC of $841 per Oz AuEq sold.
  • Pan American Silver Corp., presented Q1, 2020 production and financial results from its La Colorada mine in Zacatecas and Dolores mine in Chihuahua. At La Colorada, Zacatecas the company produced 1.6M Oz Ag and 1.1K Oz Au, at cash cost of USD $7.23 and AISC of USD $9.98 per Oz Ag produced. At Dolores, Chihuahua it produced 1.23M Oz Ag and 27.1K Oz Au, at AISC of USD $23.29 per Oz produced.
  • Premier Gold Mines Limited, released Q1, 2020 production and financial results from its Mercedes mine in Sonora. Premier milled 162,408 tonnes of 2.4 g/t Au and 27 g/t Ag to produce 11,587 Oz Au and 52.2K Oz Ag, with metallurgical recoveries of 93.9% and 37.1% respectively, at cash cost of USD $1,282 and AISC of 1,883 per Oz Au per Oz Au sold.
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc., reported Q1, 2020 production and financial results from its El Limon Guajes mining complex in Guerrero. It produced 108.5K Oz Au at cash cost of $794 and AISC of $975 per Oz Au sold. Torex reported an EBITDA and adjusted EBITDA of $39.4M and 67.4M respectively, and cash flow from operations of $29.5M.

ON FINANCING

  • Americas Gold and Silver Corporation, announced a bought deal public offering for gross proceeds of approximately CAD $25M (Cosalá mine, Sinaloa).
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc., provided an update to amend the financial covenants contained in its USD $150M credit facility. The credit facility requires the company to maintain a total debt to EBITDA ratio of not greater than3:1. As of the financial year ended December 31, 2019, the total debt to EBITDA ratio was 1.7:1. Fortuna has entered into discussions with its senior lenders under the credit facility, and obtained agreement in principle to amend the financial covenants. The amendment to the credit facility is subject to the completion of definitive documentation between the parties (San Jose mine, Oaxaca).
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd., entered into a bought deal brokered private placement with a syndicate of underwriters for aggregate gross proceeds of $6,021,000. The company also granted the underwriters an option to purchase more stock for additional gross proceeds of $903,150. Later on, the company upsized it to $8.1M (San Marcial and Plomosas projects, Sinaloa).
  • Minaurum Gold Inc., announced a private offering to raise gross proceed up to CAD $5M. Net proceeds will be used for the exploration of its Alamos Silver project in Sonora and for working capital purposes.
  • Mithril Resources Limited, announced that it is conducting a capital raising by way of a non-renounceable rights issue to shareholders for a minimum gross proceeds of A $1.5M and a maximum of A $2.46M. Net proceeds will be used primarily to advance exploration at its Copalquin project in Durango.
  • Magna Gold Corp., entered into an amendment to include the closing of a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of a minimum of $1.8M and a maximum of $2M. Net proceeds will be used for the acquisition of, and for working capital purposes in connection with the San Francisco mine, Sonora.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Discovery Metals Corp., released results from eight diamond drill holes collared at its Cordero project in Chihuahua. Goal of these holes was to define and extend the higher-grade mineralized footprint to the NE and SW of the Pozo de Plata zone. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole C20-319 with 0.1 g/t Au, 70 g/t Ag, 1.5% Pb, and 1.9% Zn (207 g/t AgEq) over a width of 168.8m, including 0.2 g/t Au, 103 g/t Ag, 2.2% Pb, and 4.4% Zn (378 g/t AgEq) over 27.7m; and hole C20-317 with 0.22 g/t Au, 90 g/t Ag, 0.9% Pb, and 0.5% Zn (159 g/t AgEq) over 79m. 48 holes totaling 17,500 m have been completed to date at Cordero to understand the high-grade footprint. Assays from 16 holes are pending. All holes have been drilled roughly perpendicular to the main structural north-east trend of higher-grade mineralization.
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd., announced historical drilling results from its Plomosas Silver project and provided an update on its ongoing exploration program at its San Marcial project, both located in Sinaloa. At Plomosas, in San Juan Area, highlights include hole LRD-46 with 0.13 g/t Au, 198 g/t Ag, 1.7% Pb, and 0.5% Pb (261 g/t AgEq) over a true width (TW) of 6.4m, including 0.13 g/t Au, 404 g/t Ag, 0.7% Pb, and 0.3% Zn (444 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 3m; hole LRD-54 with 0.4 g/t Au, 821 g/t Ag, 7.4% Pb, and 4.5% Zn (1,304 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 2m; hole SJD-17 with 0.43 g/t Au, 521 g/t Ag, 4.6% Pb, and 1.6% Zn (705 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 1.9m; and hole SJD-10 with 0.8 g/t Au, 574 g/t Ag, 1.6% Pb, and 0.7% Zn (675 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 2.7m. “GR Silver Mining continues its review and validation of more than 500 surface and underground drill holes on all six zones, aiming to confirm additional multiple vein systems hosted in a set of regional high angle fault zones and shallow dipping younger regional faults”. At San Marcial project, it obtained positive initial Au results from channel sampling at two new targets including 28.94 g/t Au and 143 g/t Ag over 0.2m, and 6.81 g/t Au over 0.2m. It also completed the work to widen 170m an existing tunnel to reach the breccia-hosted high-grade mineralization. GR also commented that with all the accumulated data generated it has generated at least eight drill-ready targets to test.
  • Golden Minerals Company, completed PEA´s for its Rodeo and Velardeña projects in Durango. At Rodeo, the PEA shows a pre-tax NPV (8% discount rate) of USD $24.4M with a low start-up cost of USD $1.5M. Pending receipt of mining permits, mining and processing is planning for Q1, 2021. At Velardeña, the PEA shows a pre-tax NPV (8% discount rate) of USD $85.9M based on incorporating bio-oxidation processing as the key to achieving robust project economics. No development decision has been made with regard to this project.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited, announced the election of directors during its annual and special meeting of shareholders (Pinos Altos, Chihuahua).
  • Alio Gold Inc., completed the sale of its San Francisco Mine in Sonora to Magna Gold Corp. Under the terms of the agreement, Timmins GoldCorp Mexico S.A. de C.V., a subsidiary of Alio Gold, received 9.74M of common shares of Magna and will receive USD $5M in cash (or a 1% NSR royalty in respect of the San Francisco Mine, if the cash payment is not made by Magna) within twelve months.
  • Argonaut Gold Inc., and Alio Gold Inc., received positive recommendations of its proposed merger announced on March 30, 2020. Argonaut and Alio shareholders of record at the close of business on March 30, 2020 and April 14, 2020 respectively are eligible to vote their common shares (El Castillo mine, Durango).
  • Azucar Minerals Ltd., announced it has granted stock options to certain directors, employees and consultants of the company to purchase an aggregate 425K common shares at a price of $0.11 per share (El Cobre project, Veracruz).
  • Xtierra Inc., received conditional approval for the acquisition of 87.99% interest of Minera Portree de Zacatecas S.A. de C.V. , for the amount of CAD $56K in cash less a deposit of CAD $26K previously paid, the remaining CAD $30K is payable in installments subject to certain milestones, and the issue to the vendor of 2M common shares of the company at a deemed value of CAD $0.05 per share. The TSXV has provided conditional approval of the acquisition which requires completion of legal documentation in Mexico (Bilbao project, Zacatecas).
  • Pan American Silver Corp., released its 2019 sustainability report, which includes details on Pan American’s environmental, social, governance (“ESG”), and health and safety performance.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • The Chihuahua Mining Cluster, donated MXP $200M to the Mexican Red Cross, which will be used to acquire the paramedics ´personal protection equipment to face the COVID-19 pandemic. The president of the Chihuahua Mining Cluster recognized the commitment of all mining units and suppliers belonging to the cluster for showing solidarity with its employees and with the communities, and declared that the mining industry has had to fight against the onslaught of the pandemic, since despite not having been considered an essential industry and being forced to close all its operations.
  • Esperanza Silver de México (Alamos Gold), delivered protective overalls to doctors and nurses at the IMSS Regional hospital 1 in Cuernavaca. This action was in addition to the previous delivery of KN95 masks and gloves that the mining company carried out at the Regional 1 hospitals of the IMSS, the ISSSTE Family Clinic in Cuernavaca, the Regional of Temixco and José G. Parres de Cuernavaca.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp., through its personnel of La Encantada mine in Coahuila, delivered pantries to five Ejidos from the Municipality of Ocampo. Personnel of the company prepared packages with items from the basic food basket that were delivered to the peasant families, house by house, in support of the health contingency by COVID-19. The local authorities appreciated the help of the mining company and other companies and social organizations that have brought support and health and humanitarian aid to the inhabitants of Ocampo.
  • Fresnillo plc, donated 2,000 covers, 40 gallons of disinfectant gel and 400 N95 masks to the hospitals of Zone No. 8 of the IMSS and General of the State of Sonora, in the city of Caborca, in support and recognition of the hard work carried out by the staff of these institutions.
  • Grupo Peñoles, in coordination with the Torreón City Council, donated 300 pantries and disinfectant products, for the benefit of residents of the Vicente Guerrero neighborhood, Torreón, near its Met-Mex Peñoles metallurgical plant.
  • Minera San Julián (Fresnillo plc), will provide mask to the Municipality of San Julian, Chihuahua. The production of mouth masks will be in charge of a community company in the town of Yerbitas, which was hired by Minera San Julián to contribute to the support of sanitary guidelines to face the COVID-19 pandemic. The mining company is also helping to generate employment and strengthen the local economy.
  • Aura Minerals Inc., in coordination with the Municipal Authorities of Concepción del Oro Zacatecas, has helped to implement measures designed to support the communities in this difficult time such as screening checkpoint for all those entering the city, contracting the local workforce to produce additional face masks for ongoing essential activities, providing canteens, transportation vehicles and health questionnaires, facilitating temperature scanning and the use of screening checkpoints, hiring additional medical personnel and supplying COVID-19 test kits.
  • Compañia Minera Pangea (McEwen Mining), donated cleaning kits to 109 families (354 persons) of seven communities near of its El Gallo mine in Sinaloa.

 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, bladed calcite in a low sulphidation epithermal vein system in a prospect in Sonora, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

UNITED STATES ANTIMONY REPORTS PROGRESS ON THE GOLD AND SILVER LOS JUAREZ LEACH PLANT

usantimony_ 4 May 2020

May 4, 2020. Thompson Falls, Montana. United States Antimony Corporation (“USAC”, NYSE American “UAMY) reported progress on the gold and silver leach plant in Guanajuato, Mexico for the Los Juarez property. To date 16 test leaches have been completed in the startup process. To get the mill to its current capacity of 100 metric tons per day, a thickener is being constructed on site to control the pulp density, and one additional leach tank will be built on site.

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Second Week of April, 2020.

Quartz-alunite

By Miguel A Heredia

During the fifteen week of the year (April 06th to April 12th, 2020), at least 30 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with seven communicating production and financial results, six commenting on Mexican issues, five announcing financial rounds, five discussing issues on social responsibility, four disclosing deals and corporate issues, two informing on exploration results, and one reporting on resources and development.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, Mining companies operating in Mexico such as First Majestic, Telson, Torex, Capstone, Coeur, Endeavour, Impact, Hecla, Minera del Norte, and Equinox, have temporarily suspended mining activities at their Mexican operations in accordance with Mexico´s Ministry of Health´s decree to mitigate the spread and transmission of COVID-19. They also have withdrew their 2020 production and cost guidance until further notice due to the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.  ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Ridgestone announced that the three first holes of the 1st phase, 10-drill holes program were recently completed at its Rebeico project.  In Chihuahua, Discovery Metals released drilling results from 10 holes collared at its Cordero property. ON MINING, Impact reported full year 2019 production and financial results from its Zacualpan Mining District in Mexico State. GoGold reported Q1 2020 production results from its Parral tailings operation in Chihuahua. US Antimony reported its March 2020 production results. Hecla provided Q1 2020 production and financial results from its San Sebastian mine in Durango. Endeavour reported Q1 2020 production results from its Mexican operations. ON FINANCING, Santacruz raised gross proceeds of CAD $734,150 and reported that it won´t be completing any additional tranches of its previously announced non-brokered private placement (Veta Grande, Zacatecas). Consolidated Zinc advised that the underwriting agreement for the rights Issue announced on 9 March 2020 has been terminated, in accordance with the terms of the agreement, due to market conditions (Plomosas mine, Chihuahua). Candelaria closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $1,059,261 (Caballo Blanco project, Veracruz). Aloro announced its plan to raise gross proceeds of up to $400K (Los Venados project, Sonora). Minera Alamos received CAD $5M from Osisko Gold Royalties (Santana project, Sonora). ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Prime Mining filed a technical report on its Los Reyes deposit in Sinaloa, and provided a new mineral resource estimate. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Avino announced that it has deferred its annual general meeting of shareholders until August 27, 2020 (Avino mine, Durango). Sable announced management changes and it also granted stock options to certain officers, directors and consultants (Vinata project, Chihuahua). Equinox reported that it will hold its annual general meeting for shareholders on May 15, 2020 (Los Filos mine, Guerrero). Orla announced the appointment of its new CFO (Camino Rojo project, Zacatecas). ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, Minera Fresnillo (Fresnillo plc) donated a state-of-the art ventilator to the General Hospital of IMSS at Fresnillo, Zacatecas.  Minera San Xavier (New Gold) delivered protective medical supplies to medical and nursing personnel of the local hospital at its Cerro de San Pedro mine in San Luis Potosi.   Newmont announced the establishment of a USD $20M fund to help host communities, governments and employees combat the COVID-19 pandemic. Minera Peñasquito made a donation of 500 Pro Shield suites to medical personnel who will attend cases of COVID-19. Grupo Mexico delivered a hospital to the government of Oaxaca to attend cases of COVID-19 at Juchitán city in the Istmo of Tehuantepec region.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Mining Companies operating in Mexico, such as such as First Majestic, Telson, Torex, Capstone, Coeur, Endeavour, Impact, Hecla, Minera del Norte, and Equinox, have temporarily suspended mining activities until April 30, 2020 at their Mexican operations in accordance with Mexico´s Ministry of Health´s decree to mitigate the spread and transmission of COVID-19. They also have withdrew their 2020 production and cost guidance until further notice due to the uncertainty caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Ridgestone Mining Inc., announced that three out of 1o holes planed for 1st phase drilling program have been completed at its Rebeico project in Sonora for a total of 435.7m. Visible sulphide mineralization is observed in all three holes collared but assays are pending.
  • Discovery Metals Corp., released drilling results from 10 holes collared at its Cordero project in Chihuahua. These holes are part of the 30,000-35,000m planned for the first phase program focused on defining a high-margin project with scale that retains excellent leverage to rising metal prices. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole C19-309 with 0.26 g/t Au, 673 g/t Ag, 10.1% Pb, and 3.7% Zn (1,205 g/t AgEq) over 1.3m; hole C20-310 with 0.08 g/t Au, 904 g/t Ag, 5.4% Pb, and 8% Zn (1,436 g/t AgEq) over 1.2m; hole C20-312 with 0.16 g/t Au, 273 g/t Ag, 0.8% Pb, and 5.5% Zn (546 g/t AgEq) over 5.3m, including 0.87 g/t Au, 1,500 g/t Ag, 3.2% Pb, and 30% Zn (2,929 g/t AgEq) over 0.6m; hole C20-314 with 0.37 g/t Au, 51 g/t Ag, 1% Pb, and 0.6% Zn (139 g/t AgEq) over 106.1m, including 2.08 g/t Au, 355 g/t Ag, 6.6% Pb, and 4.5% Zn (946 g/t AgEq) over 4.8m; and hole C20-316 with 0.55 g/t Au, 119 g/t Ag, 2% Pb, and 0.3% Zn (247 g/t AgEq) over 27.7m, including 1.1 g/t Au, 1,255 g/t Ag, 20% Pb, and 2.5% Zn (2,153 g/t AgEq) over 1m, and including 2.3 g/t Au, 721 g/t Ag, 12.7% Pb, and 1.9% Zn (1,435 g/t AgEq) over 1.5m; and other deeper interval of 0.58 g/t Au, 79 g/t Ag, 1.2% Pb, and 1.15% Zn (217 g/t AgEq) over 62.8m, including 1.14 g/t Au, 212 g/t Ag, 3.5% Pb, and 2.3% Zn (522 g/t AgEq) over 10m, and including 0.75 g/t Au, 151 g/t Ag, 2.3% Pb, and 3% Zn (422 g/t AgEq) over 11.9m. Until March 31, 2020, 48 holes totaling 17,500 m have been collared and assays from 24 holes are pending.

ON MINING

  • Impact Silver Corp., reported full year 2019 production and financial results from its Zacualpan Mining District in Mexico State. It produced 664K Oz Ag with an average mill feed grade of 182 g/t Ag, to report adjusted mining earnings of $1.3M on $13.3M revenue for the full year 2019.
  • GoGold Resources Inc., announced Q1 2020 production results from its Parral tailings operation in Chihuahua. The company produced 365.8K Oz Ag, 2,355 Oz Au, and 62.7K Lb Cu (600.7K Oz AgEq)
  • US Antimony Corporation, reported its March 2020 production. It sold 101,326 Lb Sb at an average price of $2.67 per Lb and 2.35M Lb zeolites.
  • Hecla Mining Company, released Q1 2020 production results from its San Sebastian mine in Durango. It produced 0.35M Oz Ag and 2.8K Oz Au.
  • Endeavour Silver Corp., reported Q1 2020 production results from its Mexican operations. A summary of the quarterly production by mine is shown in the next table:

  • Great Panther Mining Limited, announced Q1 2020 production and financial results from its Mexican operations. At its Topia mine in Durango, it processed 19,353 tonnes of 0.82 g/t Au and 357 g/t Ag, with metallurgical recoveries of 55.2% and 92.3% respectively to produce 282 Oz Au, 205.2K Oz Ag, 898.2K Lb Pb, and 1.4M Lb Zn (376.3K Oz AgEq). At its Guanajuato Mining Complex in Guanajuato, the company processed 49,607 tonnes of 1.85 g/t Au and 125 g/t Ag, with metallurgical recoveries of 84.1% and 85.4% respectively, to produce 2,482 Oz Au and 169.7K Oz Ag (393.1K Oz AgEq).

ON FINANCING

  • Santacruz Silver Mining Inc., raised gross proceeds for CAD $734,150 and reported that it won´t be completing any additional tranches of its previously announced non-brokered private placement (Veta Grande, Zacatecas). Gross proceeds will be used for general working capital and corporate purposes (Veta Grande, Zacatecas).
  • Consolidated Zinc Limited, advised that the underwriting agreement for the rights Issue announced on 9 March 2020 has been terminated, in accordance with the terms of the agreement, due to market conditions (Plomosas mine, Chihuahua).
  • Candelaria Mining Corp., closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $1,059,261 (Caballo Blanco project, Veracruz).
  • Aloro Mining Corp., announced its plan to raise of up to $400K. Part of the gross proceeds will be used for property payments (Los Venados project, Sonora).
  • Minera Alamos Inc., closed the royalty agreement with Osisko Gold Royalties and received CAD $5M. In combination with the CAD $6M equity placement completed by Osisko in January of this year, the company, has now received gross proceeds of CAD $11M and retains an option to further drawdown an optional royalty facility of up to CAD $3M.  Overall, the package provided access to CAD $14M which exceeded the Company’s current development plans for its Santana project in Sonora.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Prime Mining Corp., filed a NI 43-101 technical report on its Los Reyes project in Sinaloa, and provided a new mineral resource estimate as of April 2, 2020. At a cut-off grade of 0.7 g/t Au, the measured and indicated resources are 8,697,000 tonnes of 2.21 g/t Au to contain 618,123 Oz Au, and the inferred resources are 2,603,000 tonnes of 2.09 g/t Au to contain 175,232 Oz Au. Total resources (M+I+I) are 11.3M tonnes of 2.18 g/t Au to contain 793,355 g/t Au. At a cut-off grade of 0.22 g/t Au, measured + indicated resources are 19,752,000 tonnes of 1.31 g/t Au to contain 833,032 Oz Au, and inferred resources of 7,094,000 tonnes to contain 261,132 Oz Au. Total resources (M+I+I) are 26,846,000 tonnes of 1.27 g/t Au to contain 1.1M Oz Au.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Avino Silver & Gold Mines Ltd., deferred its annual general meeting for shareholders until August 27, 2020 (Avino mine, Durango).
  • Sable Resources Inc., announced the resignation of one of its directors and reported that Rubén Padilla has joined to the board of directors. The company also announced that it has granted stock options to certain officers, directors, and consultants (Vinata project, Chihuahua).
  • Equinox Gold Corp., reported that it will hold its annual general meeting of shareholders on May 15, 2020 (Los Filos mine, Guerrero).
  • Orla Mining Ltd., announced the appointment of its new CFO (Camino Rojo project, Zacatecas).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Minera Fresnillo (Fresnillo plc), donated a state-of-the art ventilator to the General Hospital of IMSS at Fresnillo, Zacatecas to attend cases of COVID-19 that may arise. The Mindray SV600 mechanical ventilator is an essential medical device at this time, as it provides patients with more oxygen so they can breathe. Currently, Fresnillo plc has redoubled efforts to serve all of its workforce, implementing measures that reinforce the health actions recommended by the Secretaries of Health and Labor and Social Welfare, as well as international organizations.
  • Minera San Xavier (New Gold Inc.), announced the suspension of the mining activities at its Cerro de san Pedro mine in San Luis Potosi due to the COVID-19 pandemic, and donated protective medical supplies to the local hospital at Soledad town, such as tyvek type overalls, N95 respirators, masks with the level of filtration recommended, etc., with the aim that they are destined for the medical and nursing personnel who work and who will attend COVID-189 cases an its hospital.
  • Newmont Corporation, announced the establishment of a USD $20M fund to help host communities, governments and employees combat the COVID-19 pandemic. “Newmont will partner with local governments, medical institutions, charities and non-governmental organizations to target funds towards addressing the greatest needs with a view to serving as a catalyst for long-term resiliency and future community development” (Peñasquito mine, Zacatecas).
  • Minera Peñasquito, made a donation of 500 Pro Shield suits to medical personnel who are in the first line of care for patients diagnosed with COVID-19. The donation was delivered to the Zacatecas Health Secretariat (SSZ), an instance that will be in charge of administering and distributing this protective equipment to the hospitals where it is most needed. In this way, Peñasquito is in solidarity with Zacatecas.
  • Grupo Mexico, delivered a hospital in the city of Juchitán to the government of Oaxaca. The Hospital, with a constructed area of ​​6,800 square meters, will be equipped and used by the Ministry of National Defense to face the COVID-19 pandemic and meet the needs of the population of the Isthmus of Tehuantepec region. Grupo México will continue to monitor the support required in the region in the context of the contingency and reiterates its support for Oaxaca and the Federal Government’s strategy in the face of this difficult challenge

 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, quartz-alunite in an epithermal vein system in Zacatecas, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the First Week of April, 2020

154 - copia (2)

By Jorge Cirett

Amidst the Coronavirus widespread suspension of activities, including mining and exploration, decreed by the Mexican government, a record number of press releases was issued. During the 14th week of the year (March 30th to April 5th, 2020), at least 57 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, of which 20 were on how companies were dealing with the situation. ON MEXICO ISSUES, a national decree by the federal government suspended all non-essential activities, which include mining and exploration, until the end of April. The DGM (Mining Regulator) is to manage everything through electronic channels during the Coronavirus contingency (in practical terms, do not expect anything done during this period of time). Previous to the federal government decree, the Sonoran government ordered the stoppage of all work on the mines on the State. Mexico is well poised for a substantial growth in lead and zinc production in 2020 (although the work suspension on mines might prevent it).  ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Silver Viper released more drilling results on El Rubi zone of its La Virgina project. Tocvan Ventures commenced geophysical and soil survey programs at its Pilar project. In Chihuahua, Discovery Metals and Kootenay Silver announced the suspension of activities at its Cordero and Columba projects respectively. In Sinaloa, Kootenay Silver announced the suspension of activities at El Copalito. Advance Gold released drilling information on its Tabaqueña project.  ON MINING, Mag Silver, Excellon Resources and Odyssey Marine Exploration presented 2019 results. First Majestic plans to invest $46 M in capital expenditures at its Santa Elena project. GoGold completed the commissioning of a SART palnt at its Parral tailings facilities. Equinox plans to produce 170 K – 190 K Oz Au during 2020 at Los Filos, Guerrero, and invest a total of $75 M. ON FINANCING, Orla Mining closed a bought deal for C$75 M. Mithrill is to conduct a rights issue for share holders in Australia and New Zealand to raise $2.45 M. Southern Silver announced the exercise of 2015 and 2016 warrants and options, raising $1.25 M. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, First Majestic updated the mineral resource estimate on seven of its Mexican properties. Sierra Metals updated the mineral resource estimate on Bolivar, Chihuahua. Prime Mining produced a new resource estimate for its Los Reyes project in Sinaloa. Mag Silver has to obtain funding, or see its 44% JV participation in the Juanicipio project (Zacatecas) dwindle. Great Panther filed two technical reports on the Guanajuato mine complex. Bacanora Lithium granted a contract to GRES on the Sonora Lithium project. Golden Minerals presented a new PEA for its Velardeña properties. GR Silver Mining released underground channel results from the Plomosas project in in Sinaloa. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, GR Silver completed the acquisition of the Plomosas project in Sinaloa. Argonaut Gold and Alio Gold are merging. Orex Minerals and Pan American Silver are forming a JV on the Sandra project in Durango. Riverside is going ahead with the Peñoles project (Durango) spin-off. Mithrill Resources informed on the acquisition of Sun Minerals. Southern Silver entered into an agreement with Monarch Minerals to purchase a mineral concession adjacent to Cerro Las Minas project in Durango. Oroco Resources amended disclosures on the Santo Tomas project technical report. Odyssey Marine Exploration continues with the arbitration process for its offshore phosphate project in Baja California Sur. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Newmont GoldCorp Peñasquito donated 500 COVID-19 tests and delivered thousands of cleansing packages in the communities near the Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas..

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Mining halted in Mexico. A national decree by the Mexican federal government suspended all non-essential activities for 30 days on the wake of the fight on the propagation of the coronavirus. Mining is not considered essential thus all operations are due to shut down.
  • Mexico is well positioned for increased lead and zinc production, BNamericas. Supported by expected continued work at Newmont’s Peñasquito mine, Southern Copper’s San Martin mine and Peñoles operations, the lead and zinc Mexican production is poised to grow in 2020. Lead production could increase 27.8% to 194.9 K tonnes, with the expected production of 90.7 K tonnes at Peñasquito. Zinc production could increase 27% to 633.2 K tonnes, with its expected production of 192.8 K tonnes. Both zinc and lead face extremely low prices, with zinc at US$0.85/Lb and lead close to US$0.75/Lb.
  • To reduce coronavirus contagion risks, the Dirección General de Minas (DGM) initiated a protocol to process requests and information only through electronic media, for the time that the contingency lasts (in practical terms, the already slow pace of proceedings at the DGM is coming to halt for the time being).
  • The Mining Fund served its purpose at Jiapaz, Zacatecas, where solar panels were installed to power the water system on La Martinica de Guadalupe neighborhood.
  • The Sonora government issued orders to stop all non-essential activities, including mining, as a mean to reduce the propagation speed of the COVID-19 pandemic in the state.
  • Mining companies that presented press releases on Coronavirus related suspension of activities: Argonaut Gold, Sierra Metals, Pan American Silver, Premier Gold Mines, Equinox Gold, GoGold Resources, Gold Resource, Excellon Resources, Endeavour Silver, Azucar Minerals, Avino Silver & Gold Mines, Agnico Eagle Mines, Almaden Minerals, Alamos Gold, Fortuna Silver, Mithrill Resources, Vizsla Resources, Torex Gold, Great Panther, and Golden Minerals.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp. released drilling results at its La Virginia project in Sonora. The Rubi zone strike length increased by 100 m, to a total of 400 m, where a total of 6,103 m in 20 holes have been collared; a further 852 m in four holes were drilled at the Macho Libre target. The results for the last nine holes are still pending. Highlighted true width intervals comprise: 1.42 m @ 156 gpt Ag, 1.79 gpt Au; 2.84 m @ 249 gpt Ag, 1.55 gpt Au (including 0.36 m @ 1,584 gpt Ag, 5.56 gpt Au); 17.04 m @ 28 gpt Ag, 0.69 gpt Au; 1.07 m @ 52 gpt Ag, 1.27 gpt Au; 1.07 m @ 124 gpt Ag, 3.32 gpt Au; 4.26 m @ 38 gpt Ag, 0.64 gpt Au; 6.04 m @ 74 gpt Ag, 0.99 gpt Au (including 1.78 m @ 187 gpt Ag, 2.48 gpt Au. The company recently completed a 4,800-hectare; 718 line-km helicopter borne magnetic-radiometric geophysical survey centered on El Rubi zone.
  • Discovery Metals Corp. announced the temporarily suspension of all exploration activities at its Mexican operations due to the COVID-19 risks. “Discovery has already completed 48 holes totaling 17,500 metres of its planned 30,000 – 35,000 metre Phase 1 drill program. The Company will provide ongoing exploration updates for the 34 drill holes not previously press released once results have been received and validated”. Discovery had a cash balance of CAD$24 M by the end of 2019 (Cordero, Chihuahua).
  • Tocvan Ventures Corp. announced the commencement of the 2020 field program at the Pilar project in Sonora. The focus is to expand the known areas of mineralization, gain a better understanding of structural controls, identify mineralization targets and define drill targets. A multiple-task (?) geophysical survey is underway concurrently with a close-spaced soil sampling program. These surveys will be followed up with structural refining, XRF survey across the property and reviewing historical drill holes.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. temporarily suspended the current drill programs at its Columba (Chihuahua) and Copalito (Sinaloa) projects, to reduce the propagation risks of the Coronavirus.
  • Advance Gold Corp. released information on drilling at its Tabasqueña project in Zacatecas. One hole was abandoned because of challenging drilling conditions; a second hole intercepted a black slate with small sulphide lenses 0.3 cm to 1 cm in thickness, this unit explains the chargeability anomaly detected by the geophysical survey. The best intercept was 1.25 m @ 2.79% Pb; the third hole also intersected the sulphide bearing black slate unit, assays pending. Teck’ San Nicolas VMS project is 11 kilometers East of Tabasqueña.

ON MINING

  • First Majestic Silver Corp. plans to invest US$46.3 M in capital expenditures at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. Exploration, the installation of an autogenous mill, exploration and development of the Ermitaño West, mine access preparation and prefeasibility studies are among the use of the funds involved.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. reported the completion of commissioning of the SART plant at its Parral Tailings facility in Chihuahua. “The main economic drivers are the recovery of a high-grade saleable copper sulfide product, the re-generation of cyanide, which is the largest single operating cost at Parral, and improve the leaching efficiency of the heap”. GoGold reduced the need to purchase cyanide by $200 K in March.
  • Excellon Resources Inc. reports 2019 annual and Q4 financial results. At Platosa, in Durango, 19.8 K tonnes @ 435 gpt Ag, 4.84% Pb, 6.39% Zn were processed, recovering 91.7% Ag, 80.2% Pb, 76.5% Zn to produce 259.2 K Oz Ag, 1.69 M Lb Pb, 2.06 M Lb Zn during the quarter. For the full year 75.2 K tonnes @ 409 gpt Ag, 4.75% Pb, 6.82% Zn were processed , recovering 89.9% Ag, 79.2% Pb. 77.7% Zn to produce 1.05 M Oz Ag, 6.1 M Lb Pb, 8.4 M Lb Zn, or 1.93 M Oz AgEq.
  • Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc. reported results for the full year 2019.
  • Equinox Gold Corp. provided production guidance for 2020, including figures from its operations in Mexico. At the Los Filos mine in Guerrero, production is set to range between 170 K to 190 K Oz Au, at an AISC of $1,000 to $1,050 per Oz Au, sustaining capital of $24 M and Non-sustaining capital of $51 M. “The Company is advancing an expansion of the Los Filos mine complex including enlarging the Los Filos open pit, developing a second underground mine (Bermejal), adding a new open pit (Guadalupe) and constructing a new carbon in leach (“CIL”) plant to process higher-grade ore…….. Equinox Gold has budgeted a total capital spend of $75 million at Los Filos during 2020. Non-sustaining capital of $51 million relates primarily to the expansion project and includes $20 million for pre-stripping of the Guadalupe open pit and $23 million allocated to Bermejal underground development”.

ON FINANCING

  • Newmont Corp. has announced expiration and final results of the tender offers for its 3.5% senior notes due 2022 and Goldcorp’s 3.7% notes due 2023. (Peñasquito, Zacatecas).
  • Mithrill Resources Ltd. will be conducting a pro-rata non-renounceable rights issue to allow shareholders, of ordinary shares with a registered address in Australia or New Zealand, to apply for one share for every ordinary share held, to raise $2.45 M (Copalquin, Durango).
  • Southern Silver Exploration Corp. informed recent warrant and option exercised during the current fiscal period. Warrants and options issued in 2015 and 2016 were exercised for $1.25 M in gross profits (Cerro La Mina, Durango).
  • Orla Mining Ltd. closed its previously announced bought deal financing with a syndicate of underwriters led by Stifel GMP and including Desjardins Capital Markets, Paradigm Capital and Cormark Securities Inc. for aggregate gross proceeds of C$75 M.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • First Majestic Silver Corp. updated mineral reserve and mineral resource estimates for the San Dimas (Durango), Santa Elena (Sonora) and La Encantada (Coahuila) producing mines, as well as from its San Martín (Jalisco), La Parrilla (Durango), Del Toro (Zacatecas) and La Guitarra (Estado de Mexico) properties.

First Majestic Reserves and Resources 2019

  • Sierra Metals Inc. updated mineral reserve and mineral resource estimates for its Bolivar mine in Chihuahua. Mineral reserves decreased by 2.5 M tonnes on mining depletion from 2017, but measured, indicated and inferred resources have significantly grown.

Bolívar Reserves and Resources to 201911

  • Mag Silver Reported 2019 annual results. Development of the Juanicipio mine (Zacatecas) and processing plant continue, with the plant expected to commence commissioning in mid-2021. Underground development is ongoing, exceeding now 26 Km. Remaining pre-operative initial capital is estimated at $305 M, although this figure can be reduced by cash in hand of the operator of the JV (Fresnillo 56%, Mag 44%) and expected cash flow from mineralized material extracted and processed at the Fresnillo’s mine facilities commencing in mid-2020. “The Company needs to raise additional capital in the future in order to meet its full share of initial capital required to develop the Juanicipio Project. Mag does not generate operating cash flow at this time to fund such obligations, and accordingly, future liquidity will depend upon its ability to arrange debt or additional equity financings. The Company is currently evaluating several proposals. The inability of MAG to fund its 44% share of cash calls would result in dilution of its ownership interest in Minera Juanicipio in accordance with the shareholders’ agreement”. At the end of the year Mag had $71.86 M including cash and cash equivalents of $72.36 M AuEq.
  • Great Panther Mining Ltd. filed two technical reports regarding the Guanajuato mine complex. “The reports are titled “NI 43- 101 Mineral Resource Update Technical Report on the Guanajuato Mine Complex, San Ignacio Mine, Guanajuato State, Mexico”, dated March 17, 2020, and “NI 43-101 Mineral Resource Update Technical Report on the Guanajuato Mine Complex, Guanajuato Mine, Guanajuato State, Mexico”, dated March 27, 2020”.
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. released protocols to minimize exposure to coronavirus, in order to decrease the risk to employees, contractors, families and communities near Las Chispas project in Sonora.
  • Evrim Resources Corp. updated the resource on the Ermitaño project in Sonora, of which it holds a 2% NSR. Property owner First Majestic Silver Corp. announced a 15% increase in grade and a 345% increase in contained AgEq ounces in the indicated resources compared to the previous estimate. The indicated resources are 2.1 M tonnes @ 4.59 gpt Au, 70 gpt Ag, containing 311 K Oz Au and 4.73 M Oz Ag; the inferred resources stand at 3.73 M tonnes @ 3.08 gpt Au, 58 gpt Ag, containing 370 K Oz Au, 6.98 M Oz Ag.
  • Bacanora Lithium. Announced the granting of a contract to GR Engineering Services for engineering, acquisition and construction services on the Sonora lithium project.
  • Prime Mining Corp. released a new resource estimate for its Los Reyes project (formerly Guadalupe de Los Reyes) in Sinaloa. The pit constrained resources range from 19.75 M tonnes @ 1.31 gpt AuEq measured and indicated resources (M&I) containing 833.1 K Oz AuEq and 7.1 M tonnes @ 1.14 gpt AuEq in inferred resources containing 261.1 K Oz AuEq at a 0.22 gpt AuEq cutoff; to 5.91 M tonnes @ 2.72 gpt AuEq M&I resources and 1.68 M tonnes @ 2.59 gpt AuEq containing 516.2 K Oz AuEq and 140.5 K Oz AuEq respectively, at a cutoff grade of 1.0 gpt AuEq. The pit strip ratio is calculated as 4.6 to 1 waste to ore in six separate pits.
  • Golden Minerals Co. announced positive results from the updated mineral resource estimate and preliminary economic assessment (PEA) for its Velardeña properties in Durango. The PEA states a pre-tax net present value of $85.9 M at an 8% discount rate, an internal rate of return of 138.6%, pre-production capital cost of $10.27 M, post production and working capital $15.93 M and a life of mine of 10 years to produce 10.2 M Oz Ag, 119 K Oz Au. The resource estimate including sulfide and oxide ore comprises 1.35 M tonnes @ 307 gpt Ag, 4.92 gpt Au, 1.54% Pb, 1.78% Zn in measured and indicated resources, containing, 13.34 M Oz Ag, 214 K Oz Au, 45.8 M Lb Pb, 53 M Lb Zn; and 1.76 M tonnes @ 354 gpt Ag, 4.73 gpt Au, 1.72% Pb, 1.86% Zn, containing 20.1 M Oz Ag, 268 K Oz Au, 67.1 M Lb Pb, 72.3 M Lb Zn.
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. released assay results from initial underground channel sampling from the San Juan workings at the Plomosas Silver project. San Juan is one of six priority areas with underground development not yet exploited by previous owners. Some of the highlighted composites comprise 2.1 m @ 0.30 gpt Au, 552 gpt Ag, 0.7% Pb, 1.0% Zn (including 0.40 m @ 1.2 gpt Au, 3,003 gpt Ag, 2.9% Pb, 3.1% Zn); 5.0 m @ 0.28 gpt Au, 816 gpt Ag, 0.9% Pb, 0.5 % Zn; 2.0 m @ 0.51 gpt Au, 1,145 gpt Ag, 0.9% Pb, 0.4% Zn; 2.8 m @ 0.42 gpt Au, 482 gpt Ag, 0.4% Pb, 0.4% Zn; 9.3 m @ 0.13 gpt Au, 346 gpt Ag, 0.7% Pb, 1.0% Zn; 3.0 m @ 0.11 gpt Au, 485 gpt Ag, 0.2% Pb, 0.3% Zn.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. Has completed the acquisition of the Plomosas silver project in Sinaloa, from First Majestic Silver Corp. .GR Silver paid CDN$100 K, granted First Majestic a 2% NSR, of which half could be bought for US$1 M, and issued First Majestic 17.1 M shares of GR Silver. The project comes with six areas at the drilling/resource stage, with 563 drill holes totalling over 100,000 m of core drilling and the mining infrastructure of the Plomosas mine, that produced over 2.5 M tonnes of Pb-Zn-Ag ore.
  • Argonaut Gold Inc. and Alio Gold Inc. have entered into a definitive agreement for an at-market merger whereby Argonaut will acquire all of Alio shares. The transaction creates an intermediate producer with four operations rendering 235 K Oz AuEq per year from four mines and presence in Mexico, Canada and USA, and a pipeline that includes Ana Paula (Guerrero), Cerro del Gallo (Guanajuato) and Magino (Canada).
  • Orex Minerals Inc. entered into an agreement to form a JV with Pan American Silver Corp. to explore and develop the Sandra (formerly Sandra Escobar) project in Durango. Orex and Pan American will own a 40% and 60% interest in the JV.
  • Riverside Resources Inc. has received requisite shareholder approval for the spin-out of the Peñoles Project (Durango) to its shareholders. “Once the Arrangement becomes effective, Riverside shareholders will own shares in two public companies: Capitan, which will focus on the development of the Peñoles Project, and Riverside, which will continue to generate prospective mineral properties”.
  • Mithhrill Resources Ltd. Informed on the proposed acquisition of Sun Minerals Pty Ltd., which holds an option to earn up to 100% interest on the Copalquin project in Durango. Due diligence was completed, a formal share agreement for the acquisition of all issued share capital of Sun Minerals was executed and shareholder approval received. On view of recent market developments, Mithrill and Sun Minerals agreed that Mithrill is to raise a minimum of A$1.5 M.
  • Southern Silver Exploration Corp. entered into an agreement with Monarch Minerals Inc. to purchase the El Sol mineral concession in Durango, near the Sothern Silver and Electrum Global Holdings L.P. Cerro Las Minas JV project. The purchase will not form a part of the Cerro Las Minitas JV. Acquisition cost is $US300 K payable in three equal installments on signature, 12 and 18 months, with the vendor retaining a 2% NSR that can be bought by Southern Silver at any time for US$1 M.
  • Oroco Resource Corp. wishes to clarify and amend its disclosures with respect to its Santo Tomas project in Sinaloa. “The BCSC reviewed the Company’s October, 2019 and March, 2020 corporate presentations (the “Presentations”) and its current technical report dated August 22, 2019 and titled “Technical Report Geology, Mineralization, and Exploration of the Santo Tomas Cu-(Mo-Au-Ag) Porphyry Deposit Sinaloa, Mexico” authored by D. A. Bridge, P. Geol.” (the “Report”). Both the current Presentation and the Report have been removed from the Company’s website pending revision. The disclosure issues in the Presentations and the Report with respect to National Instrument 43-101 (the “Instrument”) and Form 43-101F1 are summarized in the following discussion”.
  • Odyssey Marine Exploration Inc. has launched a NAFTA arbitration process on its “Exploraciones Oceánicas” phosphate project off the Pacific coast of Baja California Sur. “The Arbitral Tribunal, consisting of three international arbitrators well-versed in international investment treaties, has been constituted and the parties are now in the process of finalizing the arbitration schedule and procedures with the Tribunal……..“We intend to continue to work diligently and in good faith with Mexico’s current administration to achieve an equitable resolution of this dispute and to help Mexico provide fertilizer to its farmers, but we are prepared to proceed with the full NAFTA arbitration process if necessary, and have recently received increased litigation funding specifically to support this case”. The Exploraciones Oceánicas project contains an estimated 588 M tonnes of phosphate, at a depth of 70-90 m, lying 25 to 40 km from the coast, with almost no overburden.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Newmont Goldcorp donates 500 COVID-19 tests in Zacatecas. The donation amounts to more than $2 M pesos.
  • Newmont Peñasquito delivered 3,000 cleansing packages, in the communities near the Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas, amidst the fight against the spread of the Coronavirus. The packages are to be delivered in and by local health institutions.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: Hematite-goethite stained quartz vein in an orogenic gold system, Oaxaca. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

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The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Second Week of March, 2020.

phreatic breccia

By Miguel A Heredia

During the eleventh week of the year (March 9th to March 15th, 2020), at least 21 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with four commenting on Mexican issues, three announcing financial rounds, three informing on exploration results, three communicating production and financial results, three disclosing deals and corporate issues, three discussing issues on social responsibility, and two reporting on resources and developments.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, A local Deputy of Durango State celebrated the investment of USD $100M in the mining sector. Michoacán State breaks the mining slowdown cycle, and Fe extraction grows 8% and climbs to second place. A series of Mexican mining projects have changed ownership in recent weeks as Au and Ag prices rise. In the last five years, the female workforce in the mining sector has grown by an average of 14-15%, according to Karen Flores, General Director of the Mining Chamber of Mexico (Camimex). ON EXPLORATION, In Sinaloa, Vizsla reported drilling results from its Panuco project. In Zacatecas, Alien announced its program development for its Mexican projects. In Jalisco, GoGold released drilling results from 11 holes collared at its Los Ricos project. ON MINING, Americas Gold and Silver reported full year 2019 production and financial results (Cosala mine, Sinaloa). Santacruz suspended milling operations at its Veta Grande mine in Zacatecas. Fortuna Silver reported full year 2019 production and financial results from its San Jose mine in Oaxaca. ON FINANCING, Almaden announced a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to $2M (Ixtaca project, Puebla). SilverCrest announced a bought deal financing for gross proceeds of CAD $75M (Las Chispas project, Sonora). Mexus sold some Au produced at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora.  ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Great Panther updated mineral resource estimate at its Guanajuato Mine Complex in Guanajuato and provided an update on its Topia mine operation in Durango. SilverCrest reported infill drilling results from its Las Chispas project in Sonora. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Equinox and Leagold completed merger to create premier Americas gold producer (Los Filos, Guerrero). Pan American filed its 2019 audited annual financial statement and annual information form (La Colorada mine, Zacatecas). Premier appointed a new member to its board of Directors (Mercedes mine, Sonora). ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, Almaden opened a local water reservoir in the community of Zacatepec, nearby its Ixtaca project in Puebla.  Argonaut gave scholarship number 3,000 to a student of La Colorada, Sonora. Minera San Xavier (New Gold Inc.), improves the public lighting system in Cerro de San Pedro, San Luis Potosi.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • A local Deputy of Durango State, celebrated the investment of USD $100M in the mining sector. It means greater economic development and especially the generation of a large number of well-paid jobs. For this reason, the Deputy said, it is necessary for the federal government to develop a state mining policy, as it is currently done in Durango that allows recovering the international competitiveness that characterized Mexico during the first decade of this millennium.
  • Michoacan State, breaks the mining slowdown cycle, and Fe extraction grows 8% and climbs to second place. According to the Economic Information Bank, the entity totaled 2.6M tonnes in 2019, which meant an increase of 8% with respect to the 2.4M tonnes reported during 2018.
  • A series of Mexican mining projects, have changed ownership in recent weeks as Au and Ag prices rise. For instance, Magna Gold acquired the San Francisco mine in Sonora from Alio Gold and is evaluating partnership opportunities to advance its suspended Ana Paula project in Guerrero; GR Silver Mining acquired Plomosas in Sinaloa from First Majestic; GoGold recently acquired 5 concessions around its Los Ricos project in Jalisco; and Fresnillo plc exercised an option to acquire the Naranjillo property in Guanajuato from Plata Latina. These latest agreements show that Mexico continues to generate a decent level of interest in mergers and acquisitions.
  • Karen Flores, General Director of the Mining Chamber of Mexico (Camimex), announced that In the last five years, the female workforce in the mining sector has grown by an average of 14-15%. Currently, 60 thousand women work in this industry in the country, which represents 16% of the total of its workers. In 2019, 3,153 new places were generated for them.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Vizsla Resources Corp., reported drilling results from its Panuco project in Sinaloa. Significant interception were encountered in hole AMS-20-06 with 1.25 g/t Au and 264 g/t Ag (364 g/t AgEq) over 3.55m, including 2.54 g/t Au and 474 g/t Ag (677 g/t AgEq) over a width of 1.3m; and hole AMS-20-04 with 2.45 g/t Au, 45 g/t Ag, 1.2% Pb, and 3.0% Zn (404 g/t AgEq) over 2.6m. These drilling results are the first set from an aggressive program of 14,500m that will continue throughout 2020.
  • Alien Metals Limited, announced its program development for its Mexican projects. The company has planned a detail exploration drilling program and has submitted applications for drill permits at its Los Campos and San Celso projects in Zacatecas. At its Donovan 2 Cu-Au VMS target in Zacatecas, it also is planning a ground magnetic survey to generate follow-up work and drill targets.
  • GoGold Resources Inc., released drilling results from eleven holes collared at its Los Ricos project in Jalisco: two at San Juan and nine at the Main area. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole LRGG-20-106 (San Juan Area) with 1.35 g/t Au and 118 g/t Ag (2.92 g/t AuEq or 219 g/t AgEq) over a width of 21m, including 2.83 g/t Au and 217 g/t Ag and (5.73 g/t Au or 430 g/t AgEq) over a width of 9.5m; hole LRGG-20-102 (Main Area) with 1.05 g/t Au and 156 g/t Ag (3.13 g/t AuEq or 235 g/t AgEq) over a width of 10.7m; and hole LRGG-20-101 (San Juan Area) with 0.54 g/t Au and 116 g/t Ag (2.08 g/t AuEq or 156 g/t AgEq) over a width of 33.8m, including 2.0 g/t Au and 467 g/t Ag (8.22 g/t AuEq or 617 g/t AgEq) over a width of 5m.

ON MINING

  • Americas Gold and Silver Corporation, reported full year 2019 production and financial results. Consolidated results indicate a total ore processed of 701.8K tonnes of 70 g/t Ag, 2.1% Pb, 3.4% Zn to produce 1.16M Oz Ag, 26.2M Lb Pb, and 43.3M Lb Zn, with a cash cost of $4.61 per Oz Ag and AISC of $12.71 per Oz Ag. The company reported revenues of $58.4M and a net loss of $34.2M. The Cosala mine in Sinaloa successfully executed its production plans for the year 2019, increasing mill tonnage to over 1,750 tonnes per day, and increasing production of precious and by-product metals.
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd., suspended milling operations at its Veta Grande mine in Zacatecas for approximately six months to facilitate plant and new tailings storage facility upgrades.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc., reported Q4 and full year 2019 production and financial results from its San Jose mine in Oaxaca. During the period Q4, 2019, it milled 273,066 tonnes of 249 g/t Ag and 1.5 g/t Au, recovering 91% for both metals to produce 2M Oz Ag and 12K Oz Au, at cash cost of $6.8 per Oz AgEq and AISC of $10.5 per Oz AgEq. For the full 2019 year, the company milled 1,068,722 tonnes of 252 g/t Ag and 1.57 g/t Au, recovering 91% for both metals, to produce 7.9M Oz Ag and 48.9K Oz Au, at cash cost of $6.70 per Oz AgEq and AISC of $9.8 per Oz AgEq.

ON FINANCING

  • Almaden Minerals Ltd., announced a proposed non-brokered private placement to raise gross proceeds of up to $2M. Net proceeds will be used for permitting activities related to its Ixtaca project in Puebla, and for general corporate purposes. Closing of the offering is anticipated to be on or about March 26, 2020.
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc., announced a bought deal financing for gross proceeds of CAD $75M. Net proceeds will be used to continue the exploration and development of its Las Chispas project in Sonora and for general working capital and administrative purposes.
  • Mexus Gold US, sold 16.5 out of 125 Oz Au produced at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora, at a price of USD $1,600 per Oz. Additional sales will be occurring shortly.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Great Panther Mining Limited, updated mineral resource estimate at its Guanajuato Mine Complex in Guanajuato. At Guanajuato mine, measured + indicated resources are 343,736 tonnes of 204 g/t Ag and 1.69 g/t Au to contain 2.25M Oz Ag and 8.7K Oz Au (3.75M Oz AgEq at a grade of 339 g/t AgEq). Inferred resources are 208,608 tonnes of 168 g/t Ag and 2.32 g/t Au to contain 1.13M Oz Ag and 15.6K Oz Au (2.37M Oz AgEq at a grade of 354 g(t AgEq). At San Ignacio mine, measured + indicated resources are 386,417 tonnes of 159 g/t A and 3.03 g/t Au to contain 1.97M Oz Ag and 37.6K Oz Au (4.98M Oz AgEq at a grade of 401 g/t AgEq). Inferred resources are 501,870 tonnes of 149 g/t Ag and 2.69 g/t Au to contain 2.4M Oz Ag and 43.4K Oz Au (5.88M Oz AgEq at a grade of 364 g/t AgEq). In addition, the company reported that it has temporarily ceased tailing deposition at its Topia mine in Durango. Great Panther is in the process of permitting a Phase III of a tailings storage facility (TSF) site. Meanwhile, it is reviewing alternatives to store tailings (permanent or transitionary) until phase III TSF is permitted. The company expects it is obtained in the within the next 3 or 6 months.
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc., reported infill drilling results from its Las Chispas project in Sonora. Highlights include hole UBV19-30 with 81.6 g/t Au and 6,619 g/t Ag (12,740 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 2.1m; hole BV20-22 with 101.45 g/t Au and 5,413 g/t Ag (13,022 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.1m; and hole BV20-18 with 45.8 g/t Au and 2,396 g/t Ag (5,831 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.6m. The drilling results have nearly doubled the size of the high-grade footprint for the Babi Vista Vein in the Babicanora Area.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Equinox Gold Corp., and Leagold Mining Corporation, completed merger to become in one of the world´s top gold producing companies. The concurrent USD $670M debt and equity financings associated with the merger have also been completed (Los Filos mine, Guerrero).
  • Pan American Silver Corp., filed its 2019 audited annual financial statement and annual information form (La Colorada mine, Zacatecas).
  • Premier Gold Mines Limited, appointed a new member to its board of Directors (Mercedes mine, Sonora).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Almaden Minerals Ltd., along with the Federal Government Water Authority (CONAGUA), opened a local water reservoir in the community of Zacatepec, nearby its Ixtaca project in Puebla. This water reservoir will be used for irrigation to boost the current harvests of the community.
  • Argonaut Gold Inc., gave the scholarship number 3,000 to a student of la Colorada, Sonora. In this community, the company has maintained an academic scholarship program since 2011. The General Manager of the La Colorada mine assured that the company’s commitment is fulfilled in coherence with the vision of social responsibility where the education of children and young people is a priority.
  • Minera San Xavier (New Gold Inc.), has invested heavily in the infrastructure of the municipality of Cerro de San Pedro, as part of the social actions contemplated in its Comprehensive, Inclusive and Participatory Mine Closure Plan. The company is improving the public lighting system in Cerro de San Pedro, San Luis Potosi, with solar luminaries, which have a positive impact on public safety and tourist activities. These solar luminaries count with great potential for energy savings, reducing electricity consumption and maintenance costs, without compromising the quality of lighting services.

 

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 phreatic breccia in an epithermal hot spring prospect in Guanajuato, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the First Week of March, 2020

IMG_4731

By Jorge Cirett

During the 10th week of the year (March 2nd to March 8th, 2020), at least 25 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, several companies are interested exploring for lithium in Zacatecas-San Luis Potosí. Grupo Mexico plans to invest 78% more in 2020. Several mining companies are to invest more than $200 M in exploration in Mexico. The year 2019 was not good for the mining industry in the country, with an overall decrease in production. Durango’s governor announced mining investments for $100 M. The Peñasquito mine is expected to produce 1.6 M Oz AuEq per year for the next five years. The Industria Nacional de Autopartes (INA) is promoting the installation of a lithium battery plant. The Future of the Mexican Mining Industry seminar was held during the PDAC convention in Toronto, Canada.  Peñoles is to switch to LP gas its diesel truck fleet at one of its mines in Sonora (Milpillas?). ON EXPLORATION, in Durango, Chesapeake Gold optioned the Duraznito project, near the San Dimas mine. In Veracruz, Azucar Minerals released more drill results from its El Cobre project.  ON MINING, US Antimony reported the successful startup of the Los Juarez production facilities in Queretaro and Guanajuato. Mexus Gold announced small scale heap leach gold production at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. Bacanora Lithium presented financial results for the last six months of 2019. Gold Resource presented production figures for 2019. Fresnillo PLC and Premier Gold Mines released financial results for 2019. ON FINANCING, One World Lithium announced the amendment of the terms on a number of  purchase warrants previously issued by the company. Consolidated Zinc entered into unsecured loan facilities with CZL major shareholders. Premier Gold closed its public offering, for gross proceeds of $38 M. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Mag Silver released results from last year’s 28-hole program with over 33,000 m of drilling, including some exciting intercepts. Gold Resource Corp. updated annual reserve estimates for the Oaxaca Mining Unit. Aura Minerals provided mineral reserve and resource estimates to the end of 2019 for the Aranzazu mine in Zacatecas. SilverCrest released metallurgical test results for its Las Chispas project in Sonora.  ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Mithril Resources is acquiring the company that controls the Copalquin project in Durango. Oroco Resource closed the acquisition of Altamura Copper, furthering its interest on the Santo Tomás project in Sinaloa. Magna Gold is acquiring Alio Gold’s San Francisco mine in Sonora. Sable Resources appointed Ruben Padilla as CEO. Equinox Gold and Leagold Mining received approval for its merger. GR Silver Mining and First Majestic signed a binding agreement on the sale to GR of the Plomosas property in Sinaloa. Prime mining signed a long-term surface agreement on its Guadalupe de Los Reyes project in Sinaloa. Cheaspeake gold optioned the El Duraznito project in Durango. Fortuna Silver is involved in legal proceeding regarding a royalty on one of its mining concessions. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Peñasquito  received two awards by Infonavit for its excellent compliance on payments.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Claudia Pavlovich, Sonora’s governor, praised the work women realize in the State, while on a trip visiting mining communities, like Turicachi, Nacozari de García and Cumpas, where she realized various activities.
  • Gustavo Puentes, Secretary of Economic Development, announced several companies are interested in investing in lithium exploration in the border between San Luis Potosi and Zacatecas.
  • Camimex (Cámara Minera de México) supports women collaborators that unite on the movement #UnDíaSinNosotras (One day without us) that is trying to eradicate genre violence.
  • The inauguration of Mexican Stand on the Prospectors and Developers of Canada Convention (PDAC) in Toronto counted with the participation of Graeme Clark, Canada’s ambassador in Mexico, Juan José Gómez Camacho, Mexico’s ambassador in Canada, Francisco Quiroga, subsecretary of Mining, José rosas Aispuro, Durngo’s governor and Salvador García, president of the Asociación de Ingenieros de Minas, Metalurgistas y Geólogos de México (AIMMGM). The Mexico stand was possible due to the support of the AIMMGM, Peñoles, Minera Media Luna, Newmont, Alamos Gold, Endeaavour Silver, Asociación de Mineros de Sonora, Construplan, Detector Exploraciones, SSR Mining Pitarrilla, Santacruz Silver Mining, Starcore, International Mines, MacClean, Diesel Cargo, Accendo Banco, ROD General Contractor and Ecodrill, as the Mexican government no longer supports international promotion.
  • Grupo Mexico plans to invest 78% more in 2020. On mining the budget is US$1,217 M to produce 1.12 M tonnes Cu, further US$367 M to invest in transport and US$412 M in the infrastructure division.
  • Mining industry companies are to invest more than US$200 M in exploration in Mexico during 2020. Torex Gold plans to invest US$13 M in the Media Luna project; Fresnillo will invest over US$135 M in exploration in Chile, Peru and Mexico; First Majestic Silver will invest US$28 M in San Dimas, Durango and Santa Elena, Sonora; Pan American Silver is to invest more than US$37 M at Dolores in Chihuahua and La Colorada in Zacatecas.
  • Mining did not have a good year in Mexico in 2019. Mining is ongoing in 25 States, produces 8.1% of the industrial GNP and had a 5.1% contraction as result of the policies of the actual Federal Government. Since December of 2018 no new mineral concession titles have been granted, and the environmental regulator, SEMARNAT has delivered just one Environmental Impact Report (Manifestación de Impacto Ambiental, or MIA). In Puebla, a local court maintains a suspension of work on El Gorrión mine (Ixtaca) based on a legal complaint by a communal group (ejido) on a mineral concession the company no longer has. The Cosalá mine in Sinaloa is paralyzed by a conflict between unions masterminded by Morena’s senator Napoleon Gómez Urrutia, reminiscent of the conflict suffered by Torex Gold a few months ago under the same terms. The projected investments for US$5,343 M were not achieved, with the projected real figure likely to be around 60%, and exploration at 36% of the expected. Coming interactions of the industry with the Environmental regulator the sub secretary of mining, Francisco Quiroga and Alfonso Romo are to try to better the condition of the industry.
  • The governor of Durango, José Rosas Aispuro announced at the PDAC convention in Toronto, the investment of US$100 M in the mining sector during 2020 in the State.
  • The Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas is the biggest gold mine in Mexico, the second largest for silver and one of the biggest producers of zinc and lead. The mine is expected to produce 1.6 M Oz AuEq per year during the next five years. The company is striving to reduce costs and optimize the operation.
  • The Industria Nacional de Autopartes (INA) promotes the installation of a battery plant based on lithium, to take advantage of the natural resources and the industrial prowess of the country. Bacanora Lithium plans to invest US$420 M on the installation of a processing plant in Bacadehuachi, Sonora, in order to produce 17 K tonnes a year. About 85% of the lithium producers are in Asia, and USA produces 20% of the batteries. The nearness to the USA and sea ports are other advantages for project owned by Bacanora Lithium.
  • During December 2019 mining grew by 0.9% thanks to the push given by a raise of 19.1% in lead production. For the year, mining decreased 1.5%, while lead production grew 13.3%. Los Gatos, in Chihuahua; Minera Capela in Guerrero; San Martin and Peñasquito in Zacatecas and production by Fresnillo aided in the growth seen by the bluish gray metal. Production rates from other metals show increments and decrements to the following tenor During December: Gypsum +14.4%, zinc +8.8%, silver +7.8%, sulphur +5.2%, coke -25.8%, iron pellets -7.3%, coal -5.2%, gold -2.2%, copper -0-8%. For the year: Overall -1.5%, gold -10.2%, silver +1.1%, copper +4.8%, zinc +7.0%, lead +13.3%, iron pellets -0.5%, coke -16.0%, Sulphur -14.7%, fluorite -5.0%, coal -2.0%, gypsum -0.6%. The trend reflects years of decreasing investment in mining, although some new developments might increase the production on lead, zinc, silver and copper.
  • The Future of the Mexican Mining Industry seminar was held during the PDAC convention in Toronto, Canada. Four environmentally focused conferences opened the seminar in which a dialogue table was set with the Mining Sub Secretary Francisco Quiroga, several governors, union leaders, mining company executives, financial analysts and congressmen.
  • Lithium exploration projects in Mexico: There are more than 20 lithium exploration projects in the country, most within Sonora, Zacatecas, San Luis Potosí, Baja California and Coahuila. The most advanced is Bacanora Lithium’s Sonora project in Bacadehuachi, but other interesting properties are comprised by OrganiMax’s Salar La Salada in Zacatecas, and Salar Santa Clara and Salar Caliguey in San Luis Potosí; Litio Infinito’s project in Sonora, adjacent to the ground held by Bacanora Lithium and One World Lithium’s Salar del Diablo project in Baja California.
  • Industrias Peñoles intends to change the fuel used by its mining trucks fleet in a mine in Sonora. The change involves modifying the trucks to run on LP gas instead of diesel (Milpillas mine?).

ON EXPLORATION

  • Chesapeake Gold Corp. announced it has an option to acquire El Duraznito project in Durango, which is 18 Km East of First Majestic’s San Dimas mine. Mineralization is represented by quartz veins and quartz bearing breccias along 1,500 m of longitude and 300 m vertically. Those structures are parallel to the San Dimas veins, and appear to be also of epithermal low sulfidation character. A series of rock chip samples on sub-parallel quartz bearing breccias have returned 45 m @ 1.6 gpt Au, 16 gpt Ag; 30 m @ 3.9 gpt Au, 48 gpt Ag; 23 m @ 1.8 gpt Au, 58 gpt Ag; 15 m @ 3.1 gpt Au, 24 gpt Ag. Channel samples on quartz veins returned 10 m @ 4.8 gpt Au, 464 gpt Ag; 2.5 m @ 3.9 gpt Au, 756 gpt Ag; 2.5 m @ 9.7 gpt Au, 343 gpt Ag; 3.0 m @ 2.8 gpt Au, 113 gpt Ag.
  • Azucar Minerals Ltd. released results from its ongoing program at El Cobre project in Veracruz. Core length intercepts released include: 158.0 m @ 0.64 gpt Au, 0.26% Cu (including 19.6 m @ 0.83 gpt Au, 0.28% Cu); 71.7 m @ 0.16 gpt Au, 0.12% Cu (including 17.7 m @ 0.04 gpt Au, 0.38% Cu); 179.5 m @ 0.20 gpt Au, 0.22% Cu (including 39.95 m @ 0.15 gpt Au, 0.63% Cu and 17.55 m @ 0.48 gpt Au, 0.32% Cu); 112.2 m @ 0.36 gpt Au, 0.26% Cu; 442.2 m @ 0.44 gpt Au, 0.23% Cu (including 158.0 m @ 0.64 gpt Au, 0.26% Cu); 197.5 m @ 0.32 gpt Au, 0.24% Cu (including 16 .0 m @ 0.25 gpt Au, 0.81% Cu); 193.5 m @ 0.27 gpt Au, 0.14% Cu.

ON MINING

  • United States Antimony Corp. reported the successful start up of the Los Juarez Au and Ag production at Los Juarez, Queretaro. Detailed mapping delineated jasperoid silica-rich mineralized pipes over an E-W strike length of three kilometres, and a maximum width of one kilometre. Highlighted individual 1.0-1.5 m assays on drill holes range from trace to 25 gpt Au, 13 to 451 gpt Ag and 0.08 to 1.19% Sb. With a mean grade of 1.09 gpt Au, 102 gpt Ag, 0.65% Sb, and recovery rates of 90% Au, 85% Ag, 70% Sb. The ore is being treated by flotation mill, flotation mill and caustic leach and flotation mill tailings and cyanide leach.
  • Mexus Gold US. Announced it is now producing gold daily at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora (not to mistake with First Majestic’s Santa Elena mine, also in Sonora). Mexus plans to produce 5 to 7 Oz Au daily, and then increase to 10 Oz Au per day by the end of the month.
  • Bacanora Lithium Plc. provided financial results for the second half of 2019. During the period Bacanora concluded an investment and offtake agreement with Ganfeng Lithium Co, Ltd., raised UK$14.4 M and retained a US$150 M conditional senior debt facility. Engineering work has continued, while full development capital for construction is being pursued.
  • Gold Resource Corp. presented production figures for last year, including figures from its Oaxaca mining unit. During the year, 29,435 Oz Au, 1.72 M Oz Ag, 1,859 tonnes Cu, 2,286 tonnes Pb, 5,734 tonnes Zn were produced. Apporting to that production, 629 .9 K tonnes were milled @ 1.73 gpt Au, 82 gpt Ag, 0.38%Cu, 1.88% Pb, 4.64% Zn at the Arista mine, part of the Oaxaca Mining Unit.
  • Fresnillo Plc. announced financial results for the year 2019. Silver and gold production diminished 11.6% and 5.1% respectively during the period. Total silver production was 47.4 M Oz, with most of such production coming from Saucito (15.9 M Oz Ag), Fresnillo (24.8 M Oz Ag), San Julián DOB (7.4 M Oz Ag), Ciénega (5.3 M Oz Ag) and San Julián veins (4.2 M Oz Ag). A total of 848 K Oz Au were produced, mostly from Herradura (496 K Oz Au), Noche Buena (105 K Oz Au), Saucito (72 K Oz Au), San Julián veins (62 K Oz Au), Ciénega (62 K Oz Au), Fresnillo (46 K Oz Au). The company also produced 49 K tonnes of lead, from Saucito (19.7 K tonnes Pb), Fresnillo (19.5 K tonnes Pb), Ciénega (4.4 K tonnes Pb ), San Julián (5.4 K tonnes Pb), and 78.6 K tonnes of zinc from Fresnillo (26.3 K tonnes Zn), Saucito (25.6 K tonnes Zn), San Julián (19 K tonnes Zn), Ciénega (7.6 K tonnes Zn). Cash cost per silver ounce varied between ($0.2) and $7 per Oz Ag on the different mining units, and gold between $818.6 and $847.8 per Oz Au.
  • Premier Gold Mines Ltd. released operating results for the quarter ending on December of 2019 and full year 2019 results, including figures from its Mexican operations. At the Mercedes mine in Sonora, 667.7 K tonnes were mined @ 2.91 gpt Au, 26 gpt Ag, recovering 95.8% Au, 34.0% Ag, to produce 59,901 Oz Au, 191.3 K Oz Ag. Co-product cash cost was $1,034 per Oz, and co-product AISC $1,263 per Oz Au. For the full year total capital expenditures were $18.8 M, focusing on underground mine infrastructure and development, as well as exploration and replacement of old mining equipment.

ON FINANCING

  • One World Lithium Inc. announced the amendment of the terms of 14.5 M outstanding common share purchase warrants, previously issued by the company (Salar del Diablo, Baja California).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. entered into unsecured loan facilities with CZL major shareholders, the Copulos and Retzos Groups. The loan facilities are for A$400 K at an interest rate of 10% per annum, repayable by the end of June 2021 (Plomosas, Chihuahua).
  • Alamos Gold Inc. declared a quarterly dividend of US$0.015 per common share and introduced a dividend reinvestment and share purchase plan (Mulatos, Sonora).
  • Premier Gold Mines Ltd. closed its previously announced public offering for gross proceeds of $38 M, paying a 5% cash commission, with a reduced 2.5% cash commission on the Orion purchase (check note for further details) (Mercedes, Sonora).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Mag Silver Corp. announced results from the 2019 28-hole program with 33,864 m of drilling on the Juanicipio JV property in Zacatecas. The latest exploration results confirm and expand the wide, high-grade mineralization in the Valdecañas Deep zone and the Anticipada vein, as well as confirming and expanding the Venada vein, and the discovery of the NE trending Valentina and Venadas II veins through drilling and development. Exceptional true width intercepts comprise: 5.7 m @ 3,884 gpt Ag, 8.4 gpt Au, 6.5% Pb, 9.7% Zn, 0.3% Cu; 21.1 m @ 129 gpt Ag, 1.7 gpt Au, 3.5% Pb, 7.8% Zn, 0.2% Cu; 21.2 m @ 147 gpt Ag, 1.2 gpt Au, 3.9% Pb, 8.8% Zn, 0.3% Cu; 1.0 m @ 187 gpt Ag, 10.6 gpt Au, 1.3% Pb, 4.4% Zn; 2.5 M @ 918 gpt Ag, 1.8 gpt Au; 1.2 m @ 279 gpt Ag, 0.7 gpt Au; 0.7 m 1,216 gpt Ag, 3.6 gpt Au.

Gold Resource Corp. updated annual reserve estimates, including figures for its Mexican operations. At the Oaxaca Mining Unit that comprises the Arista and the Mirador mine, 2.83 M tonnes @ 1.97 gpt Au, 122 gpt Ag contain 179,300 Oz Au and 11.1 M Oz Ag in proven and probable reserves.Gold Resource Reserve table 20192Gold Resource Corp Resource table 20191

  • Aura Minerals Inc. provided mineral reserves and resources estimates to the end of 2019, including figures for its Aranzazu mine in Zacatecas.Aranzazu Reserves 20191
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. released metallurgical test results with increased precious metals recoveries at Las Chispas property in Sonora. After nine months of intensive metallurgical tests involving all veins, the results show an increase on recoveries to 96.1% Au and 93.9% Ag. The design criteria envisages a single stage crushing, a sag mill single stage, gravity recovery of 40% to 50% precious metals, leach recovery for gravity concentrate on a 96 hours leach circuit and leach recovery for gravity tails on 96 hours leach circuit.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Mithril Resources Ltd. presented the 2019 end of year report. The most significant event is the ongoing acquisition of Sun Minerals Pty Ltd., which holds an option on the Copalquin project in Durango. The said acquisition is expected to be completed during the present quarter, with field work and drilling to be undertaken shortly after, as the statutory permits have already been obtained.
  • Oroco Resource Corp. closed the acquisition of the balance of the ownership of Altamura Copper Corp., giving the company 100% control of the Santo Tomás porphyry copper project in Sinaloa. The Company holds a 56.7% interest in 1,172.9 ha core concessions of the project, and may increase the interest up to an 81% interest with an investment of up to CAD$30 M. Oroco also holds a 77.5% interest in 7,807.9 ha of mineral concessions surrounding and adjacent to the core concessions.
  • Alio Gold Inc. entered into a definitive share purchase agreement to sell Molimentales del Noroeste S.A. de C.V., which owns 100% interest on the San Francisco mine in Sonora, with Magna Gold Corp.. Under the agreement Alio Gold will receive 9.74 M shares of Magna and an additional $5M in cash a year from the closing.
  • Sable Resources Ltd. announced the appointment of Dr Ruben Padilla to the position of company president & CEO (Margarita, Chihuahua).
  • Equinox Gold Corp. and Leagold Mining Corp. received the clearance decision “from the Comisión Federal de Competencia Económica (“COFECE”) with respect to the pending merger between Equinox Gold and Leagold. COFECE approval was the final government agency approval required before completing the merger, which is anticipated to occur in the second week of March” (Los Filos, Guerrero).
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. announced the signing of the definitive binding share purchase agreement to acquire all the shares of Minera La Rastra S.A. de C.V. from First Majestic Silver Corp., and the ownership of the Plomosas Silver project in Sinaloa. The 8,515 ha project includes the old Plomosas mine, four targets at the drill/resource stage and 16 exploration targets and and exploration database with more than 500 historical drill holes.
  • Prime Mining Corp. signed a long-term surface access agreement on its Guadalupe de Los Reyes property in Sinaloa. The agreement signed with the Ejido Tasajera, envisions an initial 15-year term that can be extended for another 15 years. Under the terms of the agreement US$38.3 K were paid on signature, with a following payment of US$20K on year four and US$30 K on year five. If construction begins prior to the fifth year, the annual payment increases to US$30 K, and the payment under commercial production to US$200 K.
  • Chesapeake Gold Corp. announced it has an option to acquire El Duraznito project in Durango, which is 18 Km East of First Majestic’s San Dimas mine. Chesapeake is to pay US$228 K in instalments to two concession owners for three years to gain a 60% participation at El Duraznito, and US$500 K to obtain an additional 20%. At the start of commercial production Chesapeake is to make a final payment of US$550 K to the vendors.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines, Inc. Provided an update on the status of the legal proceedings related to a disputed royalty on one of its extracting mining concessions at the San Jose mine in Oaxaca. Fortuna initiated legal proceedings against the Dirección General de Minas (DGM) to contest the procedure taken by the DGM to cancel one of its mining concessions if the disputed royalty plus VAT is not paid before March 15, 2020. A permanent stay of execution (amparo) was granted, but the final ruling might take months and the company might be required to pay the disputed royalty.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • INFONAVIT executives from the Zacatecas Direction provided the Peñasquito mine with two awards for its excellent compliance with the payments of dues to the housing fund of its workers.

Content like what you have just read can be seen at https://gambusinoprospector.com/ and at LinkedIn’s Mexico Mineral Exploration Group.

On the image below: Hydrothermal breccia sealed by silica in a thermal spring in Baja California, picture by Jorge Cirett.

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