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

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By Jorge Cirett

During the 24th week of the year (June 8th to June 14th, 2020), at least 35 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. Notably, 8 of those were exploration updates and 9 related to financing. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Senator Miguel Lucero and a coalition of mining unions proposed the creation of the Mining Secretariat, against the presidential bid to close the Sub-Secretariat of Mining. The Mexican president asked publicly the Canadian ambassador for help to get Canadian mining companies to pay due taxes. First Majestic asked the Canadian ambassador to intervene on the tax dispute. Copper prices have reached $2.60 per pound. Two rival unions were involved in a brawl in Fresnillo, Zacatecas. Francisco Quiroga Sub-Secretary of Mining informed that mines in Mexico are free of confirmed Coronavirus cases. All mines have procedures in place to detect and control outbreaks on transport and work sites. ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Silver Viper resumes drilling at La Virginia; Aztec Minerals updated on exploration at its Cervantes project; Colibri presented assay results from grab samples at the Evelyn project. In Chihuahua, Kootenay Silver recommenced drilling at Columba. In Sinaloa, Kootenay Silver restarted drilling at the Copalito property. In Durango, Mithril Resources prepares to drill the Copalquin project. In Jalisco, GoGold Resources began drilling Los Ricos North project. ON MINING, Mexus Gold continues mining at its Santa Elena property. Peñoles is to invest one billion dollars in 2020 in its mining operations. Fresnillo PLC reported on payments to governments of Mexico and Peru. ON FINANCING, Minaurum closed a private placement netting $4.21 M. Discovery closed the second and final tranche of its private placement, accruing C$25 M. Silver Viper commenced trading on the OTCQB in USA. Sonoro Metals realized a third MOU on its Cerro Caliche project, Sonora. Starcore paid its debts and is now debt free. Consolidated Zinc is to raise $0.57 M to purchase equipment. Vangold accelerated the warrant program relating to its 2019 placement. Prime Mining completed the offering for C$10 M. Mag Silver now holds 19.9% of Reyna Silver.   ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Mexican Gold started the fieldwork needed to complete the environmental baseline report at its Las Minas property in Veracruz. Minera Alamos reported more drill results from its Santana project in Sonora. Capstone updated on the mineral resources of its Cozamin mine in Zacatecas, showing a nice increase. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Magellan Gold is leaving Mexico. Mithril Resources appointed new CEO and Chief Geologist. Sonoro Metals postponed its general meeting. Evrim Resources and Renaissance Gold are merging into a new entity named Orogen Royalties. Silver Spruce optioned the El Mezquite property in Sonora. GR Silver Mining filed on SEDAR the amended technical report on its San Marcial project. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Grupo Mexico, Fresnillo PLC, Argonaut Gold, Bylsa Drilling, Asociación de Real de Minas de San Javier, SilverCrest, Alamos Gold, Agnico Eagle, EMS, Molymex, Metallorum-Autlán, FLSmidth, First Majestic, Gruminex, Peñoles, Barimont, MAC Distribuciones, Dynapro Pumps, Cobre del Mayo, Minera Capela, Peña Colorada and Newmont Corp. informed on a large  array of investments and measures that benefit the mining communities.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Senator Miguel A. Lucero (president of the mining and regional development commission in the senate) proposed the creation of the Mining Secretariat. This was his viewpoint in the rumors that the president Lopez Obrador is about to disappear several sub secretariats on grounds of saving resources. He stressed that the mining industry operates in over 200 municipalities that deserves close attention.
  • The Union Nacional de Sindicatos MineroMetalurgicos de Mexico asked the president Lopez Obrador to evaluate the creation of a Mining Secretariat, to foster national and foreign investment and generate jobs.
  • The President of Mexico, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador (AMLO) asked publicly the Canadian ambassador for help to get Canadian mining companies to pay due taxes. He stated that the debts are clear and that there is no point on the mining companies to seek legal complaints.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp. has asked Canada’s ambassador to Mexico to intervene in an escalating tax dispute with President Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador’s government. “We’ve been trying to get somebody to the table to finally put this behind us,” First Majestic CEO Keith Neumeyer told Reuters. Neumeyer said the company had proposed three settlement offers since 2018 before launching the trade challenge last month. “Each of the offers has been rebuffed”.
  • Copper prices grew 25% from its March minimums, reaching US$2.60 per Lb thanks to the Chinese recovery.
  • Rival Unions in Fresnillo, Zacatecas, participated in a brawl that resulted in several persons conducted to a nearby hospital for medical care. This arises for a rivalry between the Sindicato Nacional Minero Metalúrgico (FRENTE) and the Sindicato Independiente for representation of workers at the Fresnillo mine.
  • Francisco Quiroga, Sub-Secretary of Mining informed that mines in Mexico are free of confirmed Coronavirus cases. All mines have procedures in place to detect and control outbreaks on transport and work sites.

ON EXPLORATION

  • VanGold Mining Corp. completed a bulk sample and metallurgical test at its Pinguico project in Guanajuato. The 1,039 tonne bulk sample was processed at Endeavour Silver Corp’s Bolañitos mill in Guanajuato, with an average grade of 1.23 gpt AuEq, and a recovery rate of 75.2% Au, 60.4% Ag.
  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp. resumes exploration at its La Virginia project in Sonora. “The recently renewed work program continues Phase II drilling at the El Rubi discovery area, where systematic testing of the structure is being conducted on 50m sectional step outs. A second drill will test exploration targets in and around the El Rubi location”.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. recommenced drilling at its Columba project in Chihuahua. The initial holes of the remaining 5,200 meters of the phase II 7,000 m program “will focus on expanding the F-vein by following-up on positive results from the first 10 holes of the Program…… Beyond augmenting previously drilled areas the Program will investigate untouched veins mapped out by Kootenay’s geological team”.
  • Aztec Minerals Corp. updated on the exploration of the Cervantes project in Sonora, in advance of the signing of the 65/35 joint venture agreement with Kootenay Silver Inc. Highlights from the 2017 drilling program at the California target include the following intercepts: 160 m @ 0.77 gpt Au (including 80 m @ 1.04 gpt Au, 0.11% Cu); 139 m @ 0.71 gpt Au (including 20 m @ 2.10 gpt Au, 0.16% Cu); 118 m @ 0.63 gpt Au (including 43 m @ 1.18 gpt Au, 0.16% Cu); 122 m @ 0.60 gpt Au (including 62 m @ 0.88 gpt Au, 0.06% Cu); 170 m @ 0.42 gpt Au (including 32 m @ 0.87 gpt Au, 0.06% Cu). Other targets include Purisima East, Estrella, Purisima West and Jasper. Preliminary metallurgical tests have shown 85.1% to 87.7% Au recovery in oxide, 77.9% Au recovery in mixed oxide/sulfide and 51.2% in sulfide.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. recommenced drilling at its Copalito property in Sinaloa. The 3,000 m drill program was halted due to the Coronavirus lockdown when only one 105.2 m hole had been completed. Over 10 kilometres of untested vein strike has been mapped, with strike lengths up to 2 km and widths from 0.5 m to 15 m. Previously reported grab and channel samples have returned up to 3,770 gpt Ag, 8.2 gpt Au, 17.4% Zn, 9.9% Pb and 1.5% Cu.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. began drilling at the La Trini target, part of the Los Ricos North project in Jalisco. Historical intersections by Tumi Resources include: 24.4 m @ 6.4 gpt Au, 1,629 gpt Ag; 18.3 m @ 3.1 gpt Au, 150 gpt Ag; 6.1 m @ 2.8 gpt Au, 174 gpt Ag; 19.7 m @ 4.9 gpt Au, 193 gpt Ag; 14.1 m @ 4.9 gpt Au, 261 gpt Ag; 10.5 m @ 5.7 gpt Au, 188 gpt Ag.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd. prepares to drill its Copalquin project in Durango. “Drilling and helicopter support contracts have been signed with mobilisation of equipment commencing in June 2020…… Previous drilling has identified three areas with underground mineable grades over potentially mineable widths. These areas are El Refugio, La Soledad and El Cometa (which also include open pit resource potential). Mithril’s drilling campaign will systematically test each of these high-priority areas and will also drill test Los Reyes, Los Pinos, and later La Constancia and the important San Manuel multi-level mine workings”.
  • Colibri Resource Corp. received assays from samples collected on the western part of the Evelyn property in Sonora. The western part of the project is mostly covered by a thin veneer of alluvium and colluvium. More than 50 grab samples have been taken from small areas of sub-crop and outcrop exposed through the cover. “Three samples returned values greater than 2.0 g/t Au, 6 samples returned values greater that 0.25 g/t Au, and a total of 15 samples returned anomalous Au” up to 27.5 gpt Au.

ON MINING

  • Mexus Gold US. continues mining and expects to put 1,800 tons of material in the leach pads by the end of this week, on its Santa Elena mine in Sonora (not to mistake for First Majestic Santa Elena mine, also in Sonora).
  • Industrias Mineras Peñoles. is to invest one billion dollars in Mexico this year, regardless of the economic downturn by the Coronavirus pandemic.
  • Fresnillo PLC. reported on payments done to Mexico and Peru governments derived from its operations in both countries. The company paid in Mexico a total of US$233.7 M in Mexico, of which US$28.6 M were from licences and mining concessions fees.Fresnillo PLC Report on Payments to Governments1

ON FINANCING

  • Minaurum Gold Inc. announced the closing of the previously announced non-brokered private placement, for gross proceeds of $4.21 M, with the prominent participation of Sprott Global Resources Investments Ltd. (Alamos Silver, Sonora).
  • Discovery Metals Corp. closed the second and final tranche of its non-brokered private placement for aggregate proceeds of C$25 M. “The Company also announces it has received approval by the Mexican government to resume operations at its Cordero project with strict COVID-19 health and safety protocols”. The company has over $40 M in cash on its balance sheet (Cordero, Chihuahua).
  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp. commenced trading on the OTCQB Venture Market in the United States (La Virginia, Sonora).
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. executed a third memorandum of understanding (MoU) for the finance and development of its proposed Cerro Caliche Heap Leach Pilot Operation. As of February 28, 2020, Sonoro had received two executed MoUs regarding project debt financing and EPC services for its proposed Cerro Caliche heap leach (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Starcore International Mines Ltd. reported that the company paid out CAD$3 M of secured bonds plus accrued interest of CAD$235.4 K. In addition to this, the company also repaid a US$1 M loan. The payments were made from the Company’s cash flow generated from mine operations and prior asset sales (San Martin mine, Queretaro).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. announced firm commitments to raise a further $0.57 M via a single tranche placement. “Funds raised from the Placement will be applied towards the purchase of equipment to increase efficiencies at Plomosas, working capital and offer costs” (Plomosas, Chihuahua).
  • VanGold Mining Corp. announced that to date the warrant acceleration program in connection with the company’s 2019 placement has rendered $1.16 M in gross proceeds of which $650 K were accrued by the exercise of warrants by Vangold’s directors and officers. “…funding for a portion of the exercise of warrants by directors and officers was facilitated through the sale of a portion their existing share holdings” (El Pinguico, Zacatecas).
  • Prime Mining Corp. announced the completion of the offering for gross proceeds of C$10 M (Los Reyes, Sinaloa).
  • Mag Silver Corp. has acquired 14.55 M shares of Reyna Silver Corp., owning to date 19.9% of its outstanding shares.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Mexican Gold Mining Corp. announced “that fieldwork towards completing an environmental baseline study has commenced at the Las Minas project. Drilling at Las Minas is scheduled to commence in early July”.
  • Minera Alamos Inc. reported more drilling results from its Phase II program at its Santana project in Sonora. The results further expand mineralization to the SW, and confirm the depth potential previously identified. Highlighted core length intervals comprise: 202.7 m @ 0.51 gpt Au; 105.6 m @ 0.31 gpt Au, 50.9 m @ 0.34 gpt Au; 90.0 m @ 0.40 gpt Au; 43.3 m @ 0.61 gpt Au; 42.5 m @ 0.36 gpt Au; 62.5 m @ 0.31 gpt Au, 188.2 m @ 0.28 gpt Au.
  • Capstone Mining Corp. updated the mineral resource estimate for the Cozamin mine in Zacatecas.cozamin-june2020-resource-estimate-update1cozamin-june2020-resource-estimate-update21

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Magellan Gold Corp. is redirecting its focus toward opportunities within the United States. “the company has divested all of its Mexico operations through the sale of its subsidiary Magellan Acquisition Corp.”. Among the operations divested is the SDA mill and the El Dorado property, both in Nayarit.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd. appointed John Skeet as its new CEO and Hall Stewart as its Chief Geologist (Copalquin, Durango)
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. postponed its annual general meeting to September 4, 2020 (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Evrim Resources Corp. and Renaissance Gold Inc. entered into an agreement to combine in a merger of equals “in which Evrim will acquire all of the outstanding common shares of Renaissance through a share exchange transaction to create a new company, to be named Orogen Royalties Inc. Orogen will focus on project generation as has been the history of both Evrim and Renaissance but with a renewed focus on organic royalty creation and royalty acquisition” (royalty in Ermitaño, Sonora).
  • Silver Spruce Resources Inc. signed a binding option agreement with Colibri Resources Corp. to acquire 50% interest in its wholly owned Mexican subsidiary Yaque Minerals S.A. de C.V., which holds the El Mezquite project in Sonora. El Mezquite is 12 Km NE of the Santana property, currently under mine development by Minera Alamos. To obtain 50% interest Silver Spruce has to pay US$82.5 K by September 1, 2020, US$127.5 K by September 1, 2021, and CDN$500 K for a debenture due in October 2023. The company will have the option to pay US$107.5 K by December 31, 2020 to complete the cash acquisition for a discounted total of US$190 K. Minimum work expenditures total US$600 K on the four year term of the agreement. A 1% royalty to the original vendors of the property can be purchased for US500 K at any time.
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. filed on SEDAR its amended technical report on resources estimation of its San Marcial project in Sinaloa. There are 12 amendments in different parts of the report, with no material differences on the resource estimation.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • In Sonora more than 125 thousand persons in 30 municipalities and 47 rural communities have received support by 13 mining companies and six service providers: Grupo México, Fresnillo Plc, Argonaut Gold, Bylsa Drilling, Asociación de Real de Minas de San Javier, SilverCrest, Alamos Gold, Agnico Eagle, EMS, Molymex, Metallorum-Autlán, FLSmidth, First Majestic, Gruminex, Peñoles, Barimont, MAC Distribuciones, Dynapro Pumps and Cobre del Mayo).
  • The mining sector in Mexico strives nowadays for social co-responsibility between community, government and enterprises, where the communities define their needs and priorities, the government complies with its responsibilities and enterprises promote and provide resources, organize community committees and develop executive projects.
  • The world day of the environment was held in Teloloapan, Guerrero, with the presence of Efrén Romero, municipal president, Army members and Minera Capela executives.
  • In Cuencamé, Durango, a road work investment of 11 million pesos was inaugurated by Luly Martínez. Municipal president. The investment was made possible with resources from the Mining Fund.
  • Agnico Eagle received the Environmental Excellence Award from the Mining Association in Canada, for its work in Pinos Altos, Chihuahua, where was developed an ultra-high density grazing initiative.
  • Peña Colorada builds a medical facility in Manzanillo. With an investment of 4 M pesos, the facility will count with an area for patient care, and another area for the rest of the medical personnel, as this new building is by the side of the Hospital General de Manzanillo.
  • Newmont Corp. published its 2019 sustainability report. The report displays all the work planned and done by the company as it strives to better its environmental, social and governmental imprint in Mexico.
  • Bylsa Drilling efforts on social responsibility on the communities neighboring the Las Chispas and Alamos Silver projects in Sonora were commended by governor Claudia Pavlovich.
  • The Mining Fund provided the resources to build the Doctores Avenue in Fresnillo, Zacatecas. The 27.14 million pesos invested funded 670 m of paving and drainage construction.
  • Grupo Mexico restated its compromise on the state of Chihuahua with the donation of a termo-cycler to the State Health Laboratory. Previously the company had donated five mechanical ventilators to the University Central Hospital, same that shortly is to receive 25 non-invasive ventilators more.

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.

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

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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 First Week of March, 2020

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

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By Jorge Cirett

During the 8th week of the year (February 17th to February 23rd, 2020), at least 35 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, the Sonora Economy Secretariat remarked that several investments are to strengthen the mining industry in 2020. Camimex pointed that mining companies are to invest more than US$200 M in exploration during 2020. Grupo Mexico is to return to the government the mining concession on which the disaster struck Pasta de Conchos mine is located. Camimex is to pursue its “zero accidents” goal. ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Colibri Resources has received the permit to drill at the Evelyn project; Riverside Resources reported on field work and sampling at Los Cuarentas; Aloro received a new drilling permit for its Los Venados project. In Chihuahua, Kootenay Silver commenced the phase II drilling program at its Columba project. In Durango, Commander Resources reported on a geophysical survey at Pedro’s project. In Zacatecas, Excellon Resources informed on the exploration status of its Evolución project. In Guanajuato, Vangold secured land access and land use permits on its El Pinguico project. In Jalisco, GoGold Resources launched a second exploration project at Los Ricos District in Jalisco: Monte El Favor.  ON MINING, Starcore International, Americas Gold and Silver,  Torex Gold, First Majestic Silver, Pan American Silver and Fortuna Silver reported Q4 and full year 2019 financial and/or production results. ON FINANCING, Hecla Mining is to redeem $475 M of 7.25% senior notes. Canuc Resources, San Marco Resources and Ridgestone Mining closed various stages of non-brokered private placements for $850 K, C$784.8 K and $715.2 K, respectively. Kootenay Silver is now on the 2020 TSX Venture 50tm. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Golden Minerals announced promising results from metallurgical test work on concentrates from its Velardeña property. Excellon informed on exploration results on its Platosa mine in Durango. SilverCrest Metals announced a new discovery of a high-grade zone on another vein of the Babicanora area of its Las Chispas property in Sonora. Coeur Mining and Alamos Gold reported mineral reserves and resources to the end of 2019, including figures from Palmarejo (Chihuahua) and the Mulatos District (Sonora), respectively. Goldplay Exploration provided an update on drilling at San Marcial, Sinaloa. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Tamino Minerals filed a law suit against an individual, in Sonora. Telson informed on the resignation of its CEO, Jose Antonio Berlanga, and the appointment of Ralph Shearing as interim CEO. Sonoro financing discussions were interrupted by the Coronavirus outbreak in China. Mexican Gold and New Found Gold terminated their binding agreement for the acquisition of New Found Gold. GoGold entered into an agreement to acquire The Monte del Favor project in the Los Ricos District in Jalisco. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Fresnillo PLC supports three teams in a robotic regional fair. Grupo Mexico supports social and infrastructure projects in Sombrerete, Zacatecas, with over 300 activities that benefit 3,00 inhabitants. Fresnillo PLC and Frisco are among the companies that integrate the Environmental Protection Club in Zacatecas.).

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Jorge Vidal, head of Sonora’s Secretaría de Economía (Economy Secretariat), stated that several investments are to strengthen the mining industry during 2020 in Sonora. He pointed that the investment by Bacanora minerals in the lithium project in Bacadehuachi is one of these, and another one is the investment of the Buenavista zinc project in Cananea, which is to generate 500 jobs with the investment of MXN$350 M pesos (US$18.8 M).
  • Mining companies are to invest more than US$200 M in exploration in 2020. Fresnillo is to reduce its exploration budget to US$135.1 M, from US$150 M on 2019, with about half of those funds to be used in the conversion of resources to reserves. Pan American Silver focuses on brownfield exploration with a budget of US$20 M for the year, on which La Colorada Skarn is to see a 44,000 m drilling program. First Majestic has an exploration budget of US$28.2 M, to be spent in San Dimas (Durango), Santa Elena (Sonora), La Encantada(Coahuila), La Parrilla (Durango) and Del Toro (Zacatecas). Torex Gold is to conduct an infill drilling program that will cost US$13 M on its Media Luna project (Guerrero). Agnico Eagle is to spend US$33.9 M in exploration during 2020, highlighting the funding of the Santa Gertrudis project in Sonora with US$10.4 M and a 42,000 m drilling program at its Pinos Altos mine in Chihuahua.
  • Grupo Mexico is to return to the government the mining concession on which the Pasta de Conchos mine is located. The move is in response to the presidential request to facilitate the retrieval of the remains of over 65 miners deceased in 2006 on the mine located in Coahuila.
  • The Cámara Minera de México (Camimex) vowed to pursue the “zero accidents” goal, pointing that in 2018 the associated companies reported an accident rate of 1.63, which is 3.7% lower than in 2017, and below the national average of 2.04 registered by the Instituto Mexicano del Seguro Social (IMSS).

ON EXPLORATION

  • Excellon Resources Inc. informed on exploration of its 45,000 hectares Evolución property in Zacatecas. Highlights include the expansion of the Lechuzas zone along strike and down dip, and broad intersections of Ag-Pb-Zn, like: 18.7 m @ 27 gpt Ag, 0.8% Pb, 1.1% Zn, 0.1 gpt Au (103 gpt AgEq), including 2.0 m @ 105 gpt Ag, 3.5% Pb, 4.2% Zn, 0.3 gpt Au (416 gpt AgEq); 1.5 m @ 290 gpt Ag, 6.9% Pb, 5.9% Zn, 0.2 gpt Au (779 gpt AgEq); 4.5 m @ 51 gpt Ag, 1.9% Pb, 2.9% Zn, 0.1 gpt Au (244 gpt AgEq); 3.3 m @ 55 gpt Ag, 1.1% Pb, 1.9% Zn (172 gpt Ag). Excellon plans to incorporate all recent work into an updated mineral resource estimate for the project.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. has commenced a 7,000 m phase II core drilling program at its Columba project in Chihuahua. The follow up drilling will focus on the results of last year’s 41-hole, 6,853 m program which targeted six different veins on the property. Highlighted results from that program comprise: 1.15 m @ 775 gpt Ag; 4.83 m @ 230 gpt Ag; 2.90 m @ 519 gpt Ag; 11.0 m @ 133 gpt Ag (including 5.0 m @ 245 gpt Ag); 2.1 m @ 699 gpt Ag; 1.75 m @ 755 gpt Ag, 1.16 gpt Au; 6.25 m @ 244 gpt Ag; 11.5 m @ 415 gpt Ag (including 4.0 m @ 721 gpt Ag); 4.63 m @ 301 gpt Ag; 39.9 m @ 159 gpt Ag (including 7.45 m @ 650 gpt Ag).
  • Colibri Resource Corp. informed it has received the required drilling permits for its Evelyn project in Sonora. Drill pad construction and other required infrastructure are to commence immediately, followed by drilling.
  • Commander Resources Ltd. reported results from a 70 line-km induced polarization survey (IP) at the Pedro’s project in Durango. The 1,750 ha project was acquired in 2006 from Bearing Resources Ltd. Hematite stained silica rich ridges of angular chalcedony fragments and silicified sedimentary rocks within an angular coarse breccia comprise the outcrops within the Ahuichila conglomerate, within a soil anomaly 4 Km by 1 km and rock chip samples of up to 2.3 gpt Au. Past drilling focused on a Carlin target intercepted up to 10.5 m @ 0.51 gpt Au in oxidized silicified conglomerate.
  • Vangold Mining Corp. has secured a surface land access agreement, and a surface land use agreement for its El Pinguico mine in Guanajuato. The 15-year land access agreement was signed with the Ejido Calderones, providing a short access route to the project, whereas the land use permit was signed with a local land owner for 89.6 hectares.
  • Riverside Resources Inc. reported on field work and sampling at its Los Cuarentas project in Sonora. Selective rock sampling from dumps, float, channel and rock chips returned five of sixteen samples with more than 5 gpt Au: 25.7 gpt Au, 4 gpt Ag; 10.2 gpt Au, 9 gpt Ag; 6.8 gpt Au, 65.1 gpt Ag, 6.27 gpt Au, 120 gpt Ag; 5.3 gpt Au, 6 gpt Ag; 5.1 gpt Au, 75 gpt Ag. Three primary targets have been identified for a prospective drill program in 2020: Santa Rosalia, Santa Rosalia Sur and El Sombrero.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. launched a second exploration project located on the Los Ricos District, called Monte del Favor, in Jalisco. Gogold now owns 35 concessions covering 22,493 hectares in a 35 km trend. The new concessions come with a legacy database of 50 drill holes with highlighted intercepts of: 24.4 m @ 6.4 gpt Au, 1,629 gpt Ag; 28.3 m @ 3.1 gpt Au, 150 gpt Ag; 6.1 m @ 1.1 gpt Au, 201 gpt Ag; 6.1 m @ 2.8 gpt Au, 174 gpt Ag; 20.3 m @ 0.4 gpt Au, 225 gpt Ag.
  • Aloro Mining Corp. informed a new drilling permit has been granted by SEMARANT (The Secretariat of Environment and Natural Resources) for its Los Venados project in Sonora. The permit granted the drilling of 15 holes and the construction of up to 3.38 Km of drill roads. Drilling is to focus in the south area of the project, where a hole cut 32 m of blind strong silicic alteration with brecciated vuggy silica an sulfides, with 7.6 m @ 1.13 gpt Au, 32 gpt Ag.

ON MINING

  • Starcore International Mines Ltd. released production results for the quarter ending on January 31, 2020. In its San Martin mine in Queretaro, 58.3 K tonnes were milled @ 1.84 gpt Au, 30 gpt Ag, recovering 90.1% Au, 50.9% Ag, to produce 3,425 Oz AuEq.
  • Americas Gold and Silver Corp. presented production figures from 2019 and guidance for 2020 of its mining operations, including figures from its Cosalá property in Sinaloa. At Cosalá, 613.8 K tonnes were processed @ 50 gpt Ag, to produce 572 K Oz Ag, 43.3 M Lb Zn and 16.4 M Lb Pb, or 4.68 M Oz AgEq, at cash cost ($18.31) and AISC ($10.90) per Oz Ag produced. Improved access to the Upper Zone at the San Rafael mine will tap higher silver grades in 2020.
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc. reported fourth quarter and fill year 2019 financial and operating results. For the last quarter of 2019, Torex Gold produced 121,151 Oz Au at its El Limón-Guajes mine in Guerrero, at cash cost $617 per Oz and all-in sustaining cost of $767 per Oz, generating EBITDA of $102.2 M and repaying $82.5 M of debt during the period. For the year, Torex produced 454,811 Oz Au at cash cost of $619 per Oz and an AISC of $805 per Oz Au, generating EBITDA of $330.3 M and repaying $164.4 M of debt. Total debt now stands at $174.9 M, while cash at hand is $161.8 M. The Media Luna project resource estimate was updated to 2.24 M Oz AuEq at a grade of 5.5 gpt Au in the indicated category and 4.23 M Oz AuEq at 4.23 gpt Au in the inferred category.
  • First Majestic Silver Corp. announced financial results for the Q4 and year 2019. During the quarter 626.6 K tonnes were processed to produce 3.35 M Oz Ag, 33,176 Oz Au, 0.9 M Lb Pb, or 6.23 M Oz AgEq at cash cost $3.37 per Oz and an AISC of $12.25 per Oz. The production figures for the year are in the table below. The company ended 2019 with cash and cash equivalents of $169 M. First Majestic production 20191
  • Pan American Silver Corp. reported financial results for the year 2019, including figures from its Mexican operations. At La Colorada mine in Zacatecas 768.7 K tonnes were milled @ 361 gpt Ag, 3.10% Zn, 1.65% Pb to produce 8.2 M Oz Ag, 4.61 K Oz Au, 20.97 K tonnes Zn, 11.15 K tonnes Pb, at cash cost $4.30 and AISC of $5.00 (net of by-products). At Dolores, in Chihuahua, 6.78 M tonnes were place on the heaps @ 38 gpt Ag, 0.60 gpt Au, to produce 5.1 M Oz Ag, 117.6 K Oz Au at a cash cost of $3.09 and an AISC of $15.45.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines, Inc. provided 2020 production, cost and capital expenditure guidance for 2020, including figures for its Mexican operations. At San Jose, in Oaxaca, the company aims to produce between 6.6 and 7.3 M Oz Ag, and between 41 and 45 K Oz Au, at a cash cost of US$65.6 to US$72.5 per tonne, and an AISC between US$9.6 to US$11,7 per Oz AgEq. The plan is to process 1.06 M tonnes @ 223 gpt Ag, 1.39 gpt Au, with a capital investment of US$17.1 M, including US$12.2 M for sustaining capital expenditures and US$4.9 M for brownfields exploration programs which include 17,600 m of drilling.

ON FINANCING

  • Hecla Mining Co. announced its agreement to sell $475 M aggregate principal amount of 7.25% senior notes. The notes will mature in February 2028, with the company intending to use the net proceeds together with cash on hand to redeem all of its outstanding 6.875% senior notes due 2021. (San Sebastián, Durango).
  • Canuc Resources Corp. closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $850 K, with three officers of the company participating (San Javier, Sonora).
  • San Marco Resources Inc. closed its over-subscribed non-brokered placement, raising C$784.8 K (Espiritu, Sonora).
  • Ridgestone Mining Inc. closed the first tranche of the non-brokered private placement to raise $715.2 K on gross proceeds (Rebeico, Sonora).
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. has been recognized in the 2020 TSX Venture 50tm as one of the top 50 performing companies on the TSX Venture Exchange (Columba, Chihuahua).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Golden Minerals Co. announced promising results of metallurgical test work on pyrite-arsenopyrite flotation concentrates from its Velardeña properties in Durango. “Gold and silver recoveries of 91% and 92%, respectively, were obtained from cyanide leaching of the bio-oxidized concentrate samples. BIOX* achieved 93% oxidation on the concentrate sample in batch tests, which the Company believes should translate to a 5 to 6-day retention time in a commercial bio-oxidation plant”.
  • Excellon Resources Inc. informed on exploration results at its Platosa mine in Durango. Surface drilling of the NE-1S manto returned high-grade intersections, like 6.6 m @ 1,178 gpt Ag, 6.7% Pb, 8.4% Zn, 0.2 gpt Au. A large hydrothermal system was discovered 11 km from the Platosa mine at the Jaboncillo target, where drilling is aimed to start in the first half of 2020.
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. announced a new discovery and additional drill results from the Babicanora Norte vein at its Las Chispas property in Sonora. The discovery drill hole intercepted 2.0 m (tw) @ 6,418 gpt AgEq on a faulted extension that received the name of Area 200, on the Babicanora Norte vein, which is now the highest-grade vein in the project. The initial high-grade footprint of this zone is 500 long by 125 m in height, on the vein that is now known for more than 2.0 km. The area 200 shows an average estimated true width (tw) of 1.5 m @ 16.11 gpt Au, 2,166 gpt Ag (3,375 gpt AgEq). Highlighted results for this press release comprise 1.4 m @ 90.22 gpt Au, 9,422 gpt Ag (16,189 gpt AgEq); 2.4 m @ 45.71 gpt Au, 5,577 gpt Ag (9,006 gpt AgEq); 1.6 m @ 75.78 gpt Au, 7,662 gpt Ag (13,345 gpt AgEq).
  • Coeur Mining Inc. reported 2019 mineral reserves and resources, including figures from its Mexican operations. At Palmarejo, in Chihuahua, infill drilling helped replace mining depletion. Proven and probable reserves stand at 11.67 M short tonnes (st) @ 1.83 gpt Au, 135 gpt Ag; measured and indicated resources stand at 8.76 M st @ 1.49 gpt Au, 122 gpt Ag and inferred resources of 6.47 M st @ 1.77 gpt Au, 127 gpt Ag. These amount to 693 K Oz Au, 5.6 M Oz Ag as reserves, 425 K Oz Au, 34.5 M Oz Ag as measured and indicated resources and 367 K Oz Au, 26.3 M Oz Ag as inferred resources.
  • Minera Peña Colorada informed that the Peña Colorada mine in Colima received the visit of PROFEPA (Procuraduría Federal de Protección al Ambiente) and SEMARNAT (Secretaría de Medio Ambiente y Recursos Naturales) personnel to review the compliance of the company on the different permits it has received.
  • Alamos Gold Inc. Reported mineral reserves and resources to year end 2019, including figures from its Mexican Operations. Mineral reserves at Mulatos decreased by 154 K Oz to 1.56 M Oz, with mining depletion partially offset by an 81 K Oz increase at La Yaqui Grande. The exploration budget was increased to $7 M with 14,000 m of drilling planned around near mine targets as well as at La Yaqui Grande and El Carricito. A number of regional exploration targets were identified with the aid of a VTEM survey carried out in 2018.Alamos Gold Mineral Resources to 201911
  • Goldplay Exploration Ltd. provided an update on exploration and drilling of its San Marcial project in Sinaloa. The last holes of 2019 returned 28.7 m @ 92 gpt Ag, including 13.75 m @ 154 gpt Ag in the Faisanes target. At the Guacamayo target 0.60 m @ 138 gpt Ag, 0.56 gpt Au, confirm mineralization 30 m east of the current resource area. Due diligence has commenced on the potential acquisitions of the Plomosas (First Majestic Silver Corp.) and La Trinidad (Mako Mining Corp.).

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Tamino Minerals Inc. has filed a law suit against an individual in Sonora. (El Volcán, Sonora).
  • Newmont Corp. appointed Jim Cooper as General Manager of the Peñasquito unit in Zacatecas.
  • Telson Mining Corp. informed its Chief Executive Officer and member of the Board of Directors, Jose Antonio Berlanga, has resigned due to personal reasons. Mr. Ralph Shearing has been appointed as Interim Chief Executive Officer for the company (Campo Morado, Guerrero).
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. informed discussions regarding debt finance and engineering, procurement and construction contracts with China-based EPC companies has been postponed due to the COVID-19 outbreak (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Mexican Gold Mining Corp. announced, along New Found Gold Corp., that they have mutually terminated the binding agreement to acquire all of the issued and outstanding shares of NFGC (Las Minas, Veracruz).
  • GoGold Resources Inc. entered into an agreement to acquire a second project located on the Los Ricos District, called Monte del Favor, in Jalisco. The agreement is to acquire 49% of 5 concessions in consideration for US$225 K, and an option to acquire the remaining 51% by paying US$210 K on the second anniversary. The seller will retain 1% NSR on the property, which the company may repurchase by paying US$1 M.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Fresnillo PLC supports science, technology and youthful innovation. As part of the regional robotic fair “FIRST” on the La Laguna region, Fresnillo is to support three teams. The sponsored teams are from Turuachi, Chihuahua, Ciénega de Nuestra Señora, Durango and Fresnillo, Zacatecas. One other team from Caborca, Sonora, is to participates in an international competition in Arizona.
  • Grupo Mexico supports social and infrastructure projects in Sombrerete, Zacatecas. Every year the company performs 300 activities that benefit 3,000 inhabitants. The social programs and productive activities take place in Sombrerete, San Martin, Villa Insurgentes, Ojo de Agua, Charco Blanco, Santa Rita and José de Félix communities. Also, a seed-capital program has financed 29 projects to benefit 20 schools.
  • Peñoles, Fresnillo PLC, and Grupo Frisco among the companies to integrate the Environment Protection Club in Zacatecas. More than 25 companies are to be members of this club, promoted by the State governor, and that will also have universities (Benemérita Universidad Autónoma de Zacatecas and Instituto Politécnico Nacional), the Secretaría de Agua y Medio Ambiente and federal authorities as its memebers.

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: The old train bridge between Nacozari and the Pilares mine, in Sonora, picture by Jorge Cirett

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

Sulphur crystals in an epithermal hot spring system

By Miguel A Heredia

During the fifth week of the year (January 27th to February 2nd, 2020), at least 33 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with nine discussing issues on social responsibility, eight disclosing deals and corporate issues, five communicating production results, four announcing financial rounds, three reporting on resources and developments, three informing on exploration results, and one commenting on Mexican issues.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, Jorge Vidal Ahumada, Minister of Economy of Sonora State, announced that more of USD $500M will be invested in Sonora in 2020.  ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Ridgestone reported high-grade rock sampling from its Rebeico project, and Azure provided a report of the activities carried out during the period Q4, 2019 at its Sara Alicia project. In Chihuahua, Consolidated Zinc identified a high-grade Au system nearby its Plomosas mine.  ON MINING, Excellon, and Santacruz announced Q4 and annual 2019 production results from their Mexican operations. Telson resumed full scale mining and milling operation at its Campo Morado mine in Guerrero. Mexus reported that additional material has been crushed and placed on the leach pad at its Santa Elena mine in Sonora.  Endeavour provided 2020 production and cost guidance for their Mexican mining operations.  ON FINANCING, Azure completed a $4M placement to conduct an aggressive exploration program on its Alacrán project in Sonora, and also announced that it received payments for MXP $16.5M from the Mexican Tax Office for the recovery of IVA (GST). Millrock announced its plan to conduct a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to $1M (Batamote project, Sonora). Gold Resource declared January 2020 monthly dividend for its shareholders (Arista mine, Oaxaca).  Telson has been marketing a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds for up to CAD $3M (Campo Morado mine, Guerrero).  ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Azure announced results from the activities performed at its Alacrán and Oposura project in Sonora in the period Q4, 2019. Great Panther announced 2019 exploration results and 2020 plans for its Mexican operations. Minera Alamos entered into a purchase agreement to acquire a crushing system for its Santana mine in Sonora. Endeavour updated 2019 mineral reserve and resource estimate for its three Au-Ag Mexican mines. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Bacanora Lithium announced results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Bacanora project, Sonora). Plata Latina entered into an agreement with Electrum for its three Mexican properties (Vaquerias, Palo Alto, and La Joya). Minaurum signed an option to acquire 100% of the Aurifero Gold project in Sonora, expanding its land control in the Alamos mining district. Mexican Gold announced that it entered into a binding letter agreement to complete business combination with New Found Gold (Las Minas, Veracruz). Equinox Gold and Leagold shareholders approved merger to create a premier Americas Au producer (Los Filos mine, Guerrero). Minera Alamos entered into a purchase agreement to acquire a crushing system for its Santana mine in Sonora. Mithril announced results from their 2019 activities, which consisted mainly on the Sun Minerals acquisition and the exclusive option to acquire 100% of the Copalquin project in Durango. Fortuna provided an update on the status of disputed royalty in one of its extractive mining concessions in its San Jose mine in Oaxaca. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, The Mexican President, Luis Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) thanked Peñoles for joining the program “Youth Building the Future”. Governor of Sonora, Claudia Pavlovich Arellano, opened the Community House of Argonaut Gold Inc in La Colorada, Sonora. A labor agreement between the municipality of Guadalupe and Calvo, Chihuahua and Fresnillo plc (San Julian mining company) was signed to hire personnel to work at the mine. Fresnillo plc demonstrates Social Responsibility since it works on four strategic axes including education, health, capacity development, and environmental care. Grupo Mexico delivered seed capital in Nueva Rosita, Coahuila, and presented a large urban development project for San Luis Potosi. Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold) supported local communities nearby its Mexican mining operation in Guerrero with medical equipment. Minera Peñasquito (Newmont Goldcorp) delivered tractors and agricultural equipment to the inhabitants of the Ejido El Vergel in the municipality of Mazapil, Zacatecas. Newmont Goldcorp was recognized for its high social, environmental and corporate governance performance, which places it as a leader in the mining sector worldwide.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • The Minister of Economy of Sonora, Jorge Vidal Ahumada announced that more than USD $500M will be invested in Sonora in the mining sector in 2020.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Ridgestone Mining Inc., reported high-grade rock sampling results of 188 samples collected at its Rebeico project in Sonora in an area of 200m by 100m with widths between 1-3m. Highlights include up to 12.95 g/t Au, with 8 samples returning > 4 g/t Au, 30 samples returning > 1 g/t Au, and 33 samples returning between 0.1-1.0 g/t Au. It also reported that 73 samples returned >0.1% Cu, with 14 samples returning >0.4% Cu with a peak of 0.65% Cu. High Bi values associated with Au and Cu suggests a proximal intrusion-related mineralized system. Mineralization is hosted by brecciated andesite with variable amounts of gossan ± magnetite ± quartz, as well as chloritized and fractured andesites peripheral to the brecciated zones.
  • Azure Minerals Limited, provided a report of the activities carried out during the period Q4, 2019 at its Sara Alicia project in Sonora. It acquired 100% of the Sara Alicia II mining concession. Azure had acquired the original Sara Alicia mining concession in 2017 but also it was recognized that a second, adjoining mining concession named Sara Alicia II had been cancelled by the mining registry. After almost 2 years later, the Federal Appeal Court ruled the cancellation was invalid and title of the concession was restored to a local Mexican family who had owned both Sara Alicia mining concessions since the 1930s. For a consideration of USD $80K, a purchase agreement between the owners and Azure was executed and 100% ownership of the Sara Alicia II concession was transferred to Azure. With the control of the ground now confirmed, the company plans to conduct geological mapping, sampling and a geophysical survey in H1, 2020.
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd, identified with regional exploration, a high-grade Au system located 3 -5Km NW of its Plomosas mine. Rock chip sampling at La Chona-Enrique and Potrero targets returned encouraging results with grades of 2.55 g/t Au; 4.77 g/t Au; 7.42 g/t Au; 27.5 g/t Au, and 61 g/t Au, and 2.19% Cu; 2.88% Cu, 2.91% Cu, and 4.06% Cu. La Chona-Enrique areas consist of narrow quartz-calcite-hematite veins with malachite from 0.3-1.2m wide, which have been interpreted to be mesothermal in origin. Potrero target consists of a dominant felsic intrusive that appears to be responsible of the brecciation and alteration of the host rock. Mapping and sampling of these target areas is ongoing in order to define drill targets.

ON MINING

  • Excellon Resources Inc., announced Q4 and annual 2019 production results from its Platosa mine in Durango. The company mined 19,622 tonnes and processed 19,828 tonnes of 435 g/t Ag, 4.8% Pb, and 6.4% Zn, recovering 91.7%, 80.2%, and 76.5% respectively to produce 259.3K Oz Ag, 1.7M Lb Pb, and 2M Lb Zn. During the full year, the company mined 74,876 tonnes and processed 75,247 tonnes of 497 g/t Ag, 4.8% Pb, and 6.9% Zn, recovering 89.9%, 79.4%, and 80.8% respectively, to produce 1.05M Oz Ag, 6.1M Lb Pb, and 8.4M Lb Zn.
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd., reported Q4 and full year 2019 production and financial results from their Zimapan, Veta Grande and Rosario mining operations. During Q4, 2019, the company processed from its Zimapan mine in Hidalgo State, 161,071 tonnes of 72 g/t Ag, recovering 66.4%, to produce 248.6K Oz Ag, 1.56M Lb Pb, 5.8M Lb Zn, and 1.1M Lb Cu (996K Oz AgEq at a grade of 282 g/t AgEq). During the full year 2019, the company processed 243, 313 tonnes of 73 g/t Ag, recovering 69.9%, to produce 400K Oz Ag, 2.6M Lb Pb, 9.1M Lb Zn, and 1.8M Lb Cu (1.6M Oz AgEq at a grade of 284 g/t AgEq). From its Veta Grande mine in Zacatecas, it processed 36,111 tonnes of 102 g/t Ag, recovering 45%, to produce 53.6K Oz Ag, 116 Oz Au, 620K Lb Pb, and 1.2M Lb Zn (193.7K Oz AgEq at a grade of 297 g/t AgEq). During the full year 2019, it processed 149.9K tonnes of 105 g/t Ag, recovering 47.1%, to produce 237.7K Oz Ag, 457 Oz Au, 2.4M Lb Pb, and 4.4M Lb Zn (761K Oz AgEq at a grade of 286 g/t AgEq). During Q4,2019 Santacruz processed from its Rosario mine in San Luis Potosi, 22,972 tonnes of 64 g/t Ag, recovering 90.6%, to produce 43.1K Oz Ag, 163 Oz Au, 195K Lb Pb, and 849K Lb Zn (134.5K Oz AgEq at a grade of 214 g/t AgEq). During the full year 2019, it processed 76,088 tonnes of 65 g/t Ag, recovering 93.4%, to produce 149.7K Oz Ag, 642.9K Lb Pb, and 3M Lb Zn (465.6K Oz AgEq at a grade of 218 g/t AgEq).
  • Telson Mining Corporation, resumed full scale mining and milling operation at its Campo Morado mine in Guerrero. The initial production after resuming operations is for 1,750 tonnes per day but intending to increase it to 2,000 tonnes per day or more in the coming weeks.
  • Mexus Gold US, crushed and placed additional material from Don Julio vein on the heap leaching pad of its Santa Elena mine in Sonora. The Julio and Lucky Strike open pit keep expanding with 1.2-9 g/t Au and an overall average of 4 g/t Au.
  • Endeavour Silver Corp., provided 2020 production and cost guidance for its Mexican mining operations. The table below shows figures for each of its three Au-Ag mines in Mexico:

Endeavour also announced that it plans to spend $5.4M drilling 18,500m of core on brownfield projects, greenfield exploration and development of its mines and projects.

ON FINANCING

  • Azure Minerals Limited, completed a $4M placement to conduct an aggressive exploration program on its Alacrán project in Sonora. Gross proceeds will be used to perform drilling to increase mineral resources at its Bonita deposit, conduct greenfield exploration and target definition at its Alacrán project, and to restart metallurgical testwork on its Mesa de Plata and Loma Bonita deposits. The company also mentioned that it received payments for MXP $ 16.5M from the Mexican Tax Office for the recovery of IVA (GST).
  • Millrock Resources Inc., announced its plan to raise gross proceeds from a non-brokered private placement for up to $1M (Batamote project, Sonora). Gross proceeds will be used to advance exploration on their current projects as well as to generate new ones.
  • Gold Resource Corporation, declared January 2020 monthly dividend of one-third of a cent per common share for its shareholders (Arista mine, Oaxaca).
  • Telson Mining Corporation, has been marketing a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds for up to CAD $3M. It has completed subscription agreements for total proceeds of approximately CAD $1.89M and is planning to conduct a first tranche initial closing on proceeds ones the TSX approve it (Campo Morado mine, Guerrero).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  •  Azure Minerals Limited, announced results from the activities performed at its Alacran and Oposura project in Sonora in the period Q4, 2019. At Alacrán, the company commenced an RC infill and expansion drilling program at its Loma Bonita deposit which is open for expansion in several directions. The goal is to increase the current Au and Ag resources which count for 32.2M Oz Ag and 150K Oz Au. To date, 10 RC holes have been collared and the most significant drill intersects are in hole MDPD-025 with 0.56 g/t Au and 27 g/t Ag over 29.6m: hole MDPD-035 with 0.37 g/t Au and 8 g/t Ag over 12.6m; and hole ALA-17-004 with 0.47 g/t Au and 27 g/t Ag over 63.0m. The company also reported channel sampling results of a road cutting in Loma Bonita which returned 3.6 g/t Au over continuous 35.5m wide, and several high grades results from the sampling of historical mine dumps located 11.5-2km S and SE of the Cerro El Alacrán porphyry hosted Cu-Au-Mo ore body. 21 samples were collected with 10 samples returning > 1 Kg Ag (average of 1.07Kg Ag/t), 17 samples with >1 g/t Au (average of 4.43 g/t Au), 10 samples returning over 1% Cu (average of 0.95% Cu), 12 samples returning > 10% Pb (average of 14.9% Pb), and 10 samples returning  over 10% Zn(average of 9.3% Zn). At Oposura, Azure continued to trial, asses and advance several processing for producing saleable bulk concentrate of 35% Zn, 20% Pb, and 140 g/t Ag, as well as to produce separate high grade Zn and Pb concentrates. It also is considering off-take options for direct shipping ore and bulk concentrates.
  • Great Panther Mining Limited, announced 2019 exploration results and provided 2020 plans for its Mexican mining operations. At San Ignacio mine, Guanajuato, the company drilled 7,535 m in 30 in-fill holes. Most significant drill intersections were encountered in hole ESI19-253 with 2.84 g/t Au and 125 g/t Ag (352 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.15m; hole ESI19-254 with 5.78 g/t Au and 6 g/t Ag (469 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.20m; hole ESI19-267 with 3.69 g/t Au and 191 g/t Ag (486 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.09m; hole ESI19-276 with 1.63 g/t Au and 292 g/t Ag (422 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 1.38m; and hole ESI19-277 with 20.53 g/t Au and 816 g/t Ag (2,458 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.59m. 2020 plans for San Ignacio will comprise up to 8,500m of in-fill drilling as well as to test additional exploration targets. An update of the mineral resource estimate will be presented in Q1, 2020. At its Guanajuato mine, the company took the decision to put on hold the production in 2019 in order to focus on finding higher grade resources. Great Panther drilled 126 in-fill holes for a total of 8,832 m., mainly underground. Additionally, the company geologists have re-mapped and sampled most accessible areas to develop multiple targets. Significant drill intersection were encountered in hole UGPM19-017 with 1.3 g/t Au and 364 g/t Ag (468 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 3.52m; hole UGPM19-020 with 3.93 g/t Au and 77 g/t Ag (398 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 5.63m: hole UGP-028 with 2.58 g/t Au and 1,042 g/t Ag (1,249 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 2.51m; hole UGDP19-002 with 3.16 g/t Au and 457 g/t Ag (710 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 5.89m; hole UGDP19-013 with 4.32 g/t Au and 863 g/t Ag (1,209 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 4.96m; hole SP19-003 with 3.97 g/t Au and 1,436 g/t Ag (1,754 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 3.53m; and hole UGV19-010 with 2.45 g/t Au and 472 g/t Ag (668 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 2.30m. The 2020 in-fill drilling program will consists of 14,400m focused on building mineral resources along the Veta Madre structure. An update of the Guanajuato mineral resource estimate will be released in Q1, 2020. At its Topia mine in Durango, the company drilled 25 in-fill holes for a total of 5,344 m to build mineral resources. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole ST19-238 with 0.28 g/t Au, 5,507 g/t Ag, 25.2% Pb, and 6% Zn (6,966 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.31m; hole ST19-246 with 0.31 g/t Au, 2,768 g/t Ag, 5.2% Pb, and 1.6% Zn (3,112 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.33m; hole ST19-249 with 0.2 g/t Au, 4,840 g/t Ag, 26.8% Pb, and 9.9% Zn (6,582 g/t AgEq) over a true width of 0.1m; and hole ST19-251 with 0.25 g/t Au, 2,099 g/t Ag, 14.2% Pb, and 12% Zn (3,411 g/t AgEq) over a true width 0.17m. The 2020 drilling program will consists of 2,500m focus on building mineral resources. Great Panther plans to release an updated mineral resource estimate in July, 2020.
  • Minera Alamos Inc., entered into a purchase agreement with Mako Mining Corp, Marlin Gold Mining Ltd., and Oro Gold de México S.A. de C.V., to acquire a complete crushing, screening, and agglomeration system to facilitate future production growth at its Santana mine in Sonora.
  • Endeavour Silver Corp., updated 2019 mineral reserve and resource estimate for its three Au-Ag Mexican mines. Mineral reserves at December 31, 2019 are shown in the below table:

Mineral resources at December 31, 2019 are shown in the below tables:

Mineral resources are exclusive of and in addition to mineral reserves.

 ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Bacanora Lithium plc, announced results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Bacanora project, Sonora).
  • Plata Latina Minerals Corporation, entered into an agreement of assignment of mining concessions of its three Mexican properties with The Electrum Group. The three mining properties are Vaquerias, in Jalisco State which consists of two mining concessions totaling 4,411 Ha; Palo Alto, in Aguascalientes State, which comprises three mining concessions totaling 4,722 Ha; and La Joya, in Hidalgo State, which consists of one mining concession of 924 Ha. Electrum will pay USD $100K for each property, and will have exclusive rights for a period of four months to evaluate the three properties, commencing on January 20, 2020 and ending on May 20, 2020. Electrum has agreed to reimburse Plata Latina the remaining 2019 semi-semester mining duties on the three properties up to a maximum amount of USD $50K. It also will pay mining duties to cover the mining duties of the first semester 2020. Electrum has already commenced their due diligence on the properties, and will have the right to exercise its option to acquire any or all of the three properties.
  • Minaurum Gold Inc., signed a five-years option agreement to acquire 100% of the Aurifero Gold project in Sonora and expanding its land control in the Alamos mining district where its Alamos Silver project is located. “Aurifero contains a swarm of Au &-Ag-bearing epithermal veins within a NW/SE-trending zone measuring 3 km long and more than 400 m wide. Satellite imagery and ground reconnaissance geology indicate that the alteration signature is similarly widespread”. Several campaigns of shallow RC and core drilling have been conducted since the 1980s totaling over 8,000 metres, all of them averaging less than 100 m deep; the deepest reaching a vertical depth of 135 m from surface.  “There are currently a number of operators conducting small-scale mining on the project.  Under the option agreement, the miners are restricted to a maximum mining depth of 100 m”. Significant drill intercepts from historic drilling were encountered in hole DMDDH-01 with 18.37 g/t Au over 3.1m; hole 07-MN-10, with 3.12 g/t Au over 24.5m; hole CI-35 with 1.47 g/t Au over 48m; hole CI-09 with 3.65 g/t Au over 58m; and hole CI-34 with 2.42 g/t Au over 24m. The option agreement signed by Minaurum is in exchange for USD $2.7M for the 100% of a block of mining concessions which cover 1,198 Ha. The option does not include royalty.
  • Mexican Gold Corp., entered into a binding letter agreement to complete business combination with New Found Gold Corp. The resulting company will be very well capitalized and be focused on exploring and conduct multiple drilling campaigns on their properties and advance Las Minas project in Veracruz. Under the terms of the agreement, New Found is required to complete a minimum of CAD $10Mfinancing, and post-transaction, the company will have approximately CAD $19M in working capital.
  • Equinox Gold Corp., and Leagold Mining Corporation, shareholders approved merger to create a premier Americas Au producer. On closing of the transaction, Leagold will receive 0.331 of an Equinox Gold share for each Leagold share held. Current Equinox Gold and Leagold shareholders will own approximately 55% and 45% respectively of the merged company. Transaction is expected to close in February 2020, subject to approval of TSX and NYSE (Los Filos mine, Guerrero).
  • Minera Alamos Inc., entered into a purchase agreement with Mako Mining Corp, Marlin Gold Mining Ltd., and Oro Gold de México S.A. de C.V., to acquire a complete crushing, screening, and agglomeration system to facilitate future production growth at its Santana mine in Sonora. The purchase price of this agreement is for CAD $1.2M in staged payments. CAD $300K upon execution of the agreement, CAD $700K on the closing date (April 30, 2020 or such other date on or before September 30, 2020), and CAD $200K on the earlier date of the shipment of the equipment.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd., announced results from its 2019 activities, which consisted mostly on the Sun Minerals Pty Ltd acquisition and the exclusive option to acquire 100% interest in the Copalquin project in Durango. Due diligence has been completed and Mithril expects to complete the acquisition of Sun Minerals for the March 2020 quarter.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc., provided an update on the status of a dispute royalty of 3% that a former owner of one of its extracting concessions in its San Jose mine in Oaxaca granted to the Mexican Geological Service (SGM). In 2018, the company, supported by legal opinions of three independent law firms, concluded that none royalty should be paid and commenced administrative and legal proceedings against the General Direction of Mines (GDM) in order to remove reference to the royalty on the title register. “Fortuna Silver has recently received notice from the GDM seeking to cancel the mining concession if the royalty, in the Mexican pesos equivalent of US$30 million plus VAT (being the amount of the claimed royalty from 2011 to 2019), is not paid before March 15, 2020. The company will be initiating legal proceedings to contest the cancellation procedure and also to stay the cancellation process. In the event that the company is unsuccessful in cancelling the action taken by the GDM or in obtaining a stay of execution, it may be required to pay, or post a bond or other security, up to the amount claimed, in order to preserve the mining concession. In that case the company would immediately thereafter proceed with dispute proceedings. If the company is required to pay the royalty or post security it will do so from available working capital”.

 ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • The Mexican President, Luis Manuel López Obrador (AMLO) thanked Peñoles, for joining the program “Youth Building the Future”, which guarantee the right to young people to study , work and be trained as good citizens. AMLO, along with the General Director of Peñoles, the Governor of Coahuila, and the Secretary of Labor gathered in Laguna Del Rey, Coahuila with 61 scholars in the frame of the celebration of the first anniversary of this program. Scholars thanked the support and the opportunity to receive training and after which they hope to get a job in Peñoles. Fernando Alaniz, General Director of Peñoles commented that this program is not only seen in the financial result sheet but also in the responsibility and commitment towards the community.
  • Governor of Sonora, Claudia Pavlovich Arellano, opened the Community House of Argonaut Gold Inc in la Colorada, where it will offer arts, music, drawing, painting, handicraft and confectionery workshops, as well as workshops of values, school for parents, addiction prevention and emotion management, all totally free for the population.
  • The municipality of Guadalupe y Calvo Chihuahua, Chihuahua and Fresnillo plc (San Julian mining company), signed a labour agreement to hire local personnel to work at the mine, based on their knowledge and qualifications. Local authorities commented that this is already a second stage of hiring, being 45 people placed in the previous one, so it is expected to place a good number of elements in this new stage.
  • Fresnillo plc, demonstrates Social Responsibility since it works on four strategic axes including education, health, capacity development, and environmental care. It has sustainability as its policy, as it is a company dedicated to the exploration, exploitation and benefit of minerals, and is committed to guaranteeing a safe and healthy place for its staff and its environment, establishing good relations with neighboring communities. In Education, 36 young people who study robotics have received support and advice, and approximately 2,600 children are being beneficiated with a program that foster the reading culture. In Health, more than 3,000 people from several communities were attended in 2019 without any cost. This social program will continue in 2020. In Capacity Development, in sports, Fresnillo has organized since 9 years ago, the 5Km race which started with 200 runners and now participate more than 2,000; it has a soccer academy, and a year ago, an agreement was signed with a professional soccer team (Santos Laguna) to grant 300 children and young people to be in the academy. The company also support in other sports such as baseball, basketball, etc.  In addition, more than 200 women from different communities are trained, who are taught courses in crafts, pastry, beauty culture, and sewing and are given the material. In addition, more than 40 people who have small businesses are trained. In Environment, Fresnillo plc takes care of the water and operates two waste water treatment plants. It also has two tree nurseries that give the year more than 70,000 trees of which a large part of them are planted in all the mines and others are donated to the community.
  • Grupo Mexico, delivered Seed Capital to inhabitants of Nueva Rosita, Coahuila, to learn a trade and improve the quality of life of people. Seed Capital is an initial financing method that aims to develop a business idea with growth possibilities and is delivered in kind. The company is providing seeds in projects that seek the growth of the communities where it has mining operations. Grupo Mexico also presented a large urban development project for San Luis Potosi. This project will generate 20,000 jobs and build 7,500 houses in an area of 470 Ha. It was also announced that the urbanization of the site where Industrial Minera Mexico operated will be a new development hub for 30,000 people and will have wind power road electricity supply and also includes the reforestation of 20,000 trees in the area. It will have shopping centers, universities, research centers and hospitals. This is the most ambitious urban project for San Luis Potosi in recent years and will start in this same 2020.
  • Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold), supported Nuevo Balsas and surrounding communities nearby its Mexican mining operations in Guerrero with high-tech medical equipment delivered to the NGO “Curando Mexico”.   This social program “Curando México” aims to offer the most vulnerable population an accessible high quality health service.
  • Minera Peñasquito (Newmont Goldcorp), invested MXP $9M and delivered tractors and agricultural equipment to the inhabitants of the El Vergel Ejido, located in the municipality of Mazapil, Zacatecas. This project began three years ago, however, with the delivery of seven tractors and agricultural equipment, such as threshing machines and harvesters, among others, a new stage will begin in the cultivation fields of the region. Other actions that were carried out were preparing farmland, operating wells, technifying the irrigation system, as well as providing the inhabitants of El Vergel with seeds to cultivate.
  • Newmont Goldcorp, was recognized for its high social, environmental and corporate governance performance, which places it as a leader in the mining sector worldwide. Newmont was recognized by 3 independent entities for their high managerial performance, social responsibility, and coordinated actions to combat climate change and the promotion of women in the workplace. Newmont scored high in a variety of dimensions, including quality management, social responsibility, long-term investment, personnel management and innovation.

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, sulphur crystals in an epithermal hot spring prospect in Guanajuato, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

 

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Third Week of December, 2019.

Phyllic alteration

By Miguel A Heredia

During the fifty-one week of the year (December 16th to December 22th, 2019), at least 28 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with nine announcing financial rounds, seven disclosing deals and corporate issues, five discussing social issues, four reporting on resources and developments of their properties, two communicating production and financial results, and one commenting on Mexican issues.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, Mexico mining production showed signs of recovery. ON EXPLORATION, no relevant news. ON MINING, Starcore presented production and financial results for the second quarter ended October31, 2019 from its San Martin mine in Queretaro. Premier provided a year end operations update (Mercedes mine, Sonora).  ON FINANCING, Defiance extended its loan until December 21, 2020 for a balance of $1.2 M (San Acacio project, Zacatecas). Alamos Gold announced renewal of a normal course issuer bid, and an increase of a credit facility from USD $400M to USD $500M (Mulatos mine, Sonora). Orla finalized a credit agreement for USD $125M for the development of its Camino Rojo project in Zacatecas. First Mining closed a non-brokered flow-through equity financing for $2M (San Ricardo project, Sonora).  SilverCrest closed a CAD $92M bought deal financing, including CAD $12M over allotment option exercised in full (Las Chispas project, Sonora). Golden Minerals sold two non-strategies Mexican exploration properties to Industrias Peñoles for $3M. Mexus paid off two loan agreements which were coming due (Santa Elena mine, Sonora). Mithril announced its plan to raise up to A$4.9M by way of an entitlement issue to shareholders (Copalquin project, Durango). ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Argonaut presented a positive PFS for its Cerro Del Gallo project in Guanajuato, and increased company´s mineral reserves by 48%. Coeur provided an update on its exploration program at Palmarejo mine in Chihuahua. Azure commenced a 7,000m RC resource expansion drilling at its Loma Bonita deposit in Sonora. Industrias Peñoles commenced extraction and grinding tests at its Capela mine (former Rey de Plata mine) in Teloloapan, Guerrero. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Discovery Metals announced the appointment of its new VP of Corporate Development and Investor Relations (Cordero project, Chihuahua). Equinox Gold and Leagold entered into a definitive agreement to combine in an at-market merge (Los Filos mine, Guerrero). Goldplay entered into a letter of intent agreement with Mako Mining Corp., to acquire 100% of the shares of Marlin Gold Mining Ltd. (San Marcial project, Sinaloa). Oroco presented results from its special annual general meeting for shareholders (Santo Tomás project, Sinaloa). Prize Mining announced the resignation of its CEO and the appointment of its replacement (Manto Negro project, Coahuila).   Mithril entered into an exclusive option agreement to acquire all the issued share capital of Sun Minerals Pty Ltd., which holds an exclusive option to earn up to 100% interest in the high grade Copalquin Au & Ag project in Durango.    ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, Zacatecas Mining Cluster held its second Talent Meeting with participation greater than the 30 people who previously registered to participate in the event. Ladies Committee of the AIMMGM and Outlet Minero promoted the environmental education in Zacatecas. Grupo Mexico participated in the conference of preventive culture in San Luis Potosi. Minera Peñasquito held Christmas celebration in Mazapil, Zacatecas. It also informed about the progress of the social programs that the mining company performs in the 25 communities of direct influence.

 ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Mexico mining production, showed signs of recovery, at a time when companies move forward with their efforts to face the problems that hinder operations in a series of large mines. General production increased 1.0% in October compared to the same month last year, led by increases in Pb, Zn, and Ag, according to the INEGI statistics agency. The October increase was largely due to the improvement experienced by three metals. Pb production increased 22.7% to 26.1M Lb, Zn production rose to 12.2% to 78.5M Lb, and Ag production rose to 11.6% to 10.3M Oz. The hike occurs despite a major disruption during October at the Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas, one of Mexico’s largest producers of Au, Ag, Pb, and Zn.

ON EXPLORATION

  • No relevant news.

ON MINING

  • Starcore International Mines Ltd., presented production and financial results for the second quarter ended October 31, 2019 from its San Martin mine in Queretaro. It milled 54,100 tonnes of 1.78 g/t Au and 34 g/t Ag to produce 2,700 Oz Au and 31.1K Oz Ag (3,100 Oz AuEq), at a cash cost of USD $71 per tonne milled or USD $1,259 per Oz AuEq, and AISC of USD $1,527 per Oz AuEq Starcore had Au & Ag sales of CAD $ 5.8M, a loss of CAD $1.1M, or CAD $0.02 per share, and an EBITDA of (CAD $342) for the six months period ended October 31, 2019.
  • Premier Gold Mines Limited, provided a year-end operations update. The company reported that the successful 2019 drill campaign resulted in the discovery of higher-grade zones located near existing mine workings, and plans are emplaced to benefit from them. Also, it plans to enter in identified near-mine areas in the Lupita extension and Marianas in order to multiple the numbers of headings and stopes, allowing for more flexibility and increased production. At the end of Q3, 2019, year-to-date mine production totaled 47.6K Oz Au and 146.5K Oz Ag, with total co-product cash costs of $973 per Oz Au and co-product AISC of $1,226 per Oz Au.

ON FINANCING

  • Defiance Silver Corp, announced that it has extended the loan for an additional year until December 21, 2020, with a reduction of $500K. The balance on extension is $1.2M at a rate of 10% per year (San Acacio project, Zacatecas).
  • Alamos Gold Inc., announced its intention to make a normal course issuer bid permitting Alamos to purchase for cancellation up to 28.7M class A common shares, representing 10% of the company´s public float of the common shares as of December 11, 2019, being 287.3M common shares issued and outstanding. The price for any repurchased common shares will be the prevailing market price at the time of the purchase. All common shares purchased by Alamos will be cancelled. In addition, the company increased the size of a credit facility from USD $400M to USD $500M on more favourable terms. “The increase in our facility on more attractive terms is a reflection of the increased scale of Alamos as well as our strong operating and financial outlook. Combined with our existing cash, this further strengthens our financial flexibility with no debt and nearly US$700 million of available liquidity,” said Jamie Porter, Chief Financial Officer (Mulatos mine, Sonora).
  • Orla Mining Ltd., finalized a credit agreement for USD $125M for the development of its Camino Rojo project in Zacatecas. The credit comprises three tranches: an initial tranche for USD $25 M once the agreement is closed and two subsequent tranches for USD $50M each available once Orla satisfies certain conditions, including the receipt of key permits required for the development of Camino Rojo. After the closing of the credit facility, the board of directors has approved the start of construction spending at Camino Rojo, allowing the continuation of detailed engineering and the ordering of long lead items, such as the crushing system. Commencement of project construction has also been approved, subject to receipt of all required permits. By the way, SEMARNAT has granted to Orla the approval of the change of land use permit, one of the two key permits required for the development of its project.
  • First Mining Gold Corp., closed a non-brokered flow-through equity financing for $2M. Gross proceeds will be used to fund exploration programs of their mining properties (San Ricardo project, Sonora).
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc., closed a CAD $92M bought deal financing, including CAD $12M over allotment option exercised in full. Gross proceeds will be used to continue the exploration and development of its Las Chispas project in Sonora.
  • Golden Minerals Company, sold two non-strategies Mexican exploration properties to Industrias Peñoles for $3M. The Mogotes and Pistachon properties are located near the Velardeña mine in Durango. None of the claims contain any identified mineral resources. The cash received will be used to advance key exploration projects in Mexico and Nevada.
  • Mexus Gold US, paid off two loan agreement which were coming due. The company does not have the funds to hire additional crew to run all aspects of the mine continuously, so it is seeking the necessary funds by selling a portion of its non-producing properties, selling equipment not needed at the mine site, and/or funding from its shareholder base. It also is considering selling a small royal interest in its Santa Elena mine in Sonora.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd., announced its plan to raise up to A$4.9M by way of an entitlement issue to shareholders. Net proceeds will be used to complete a drilling program at Copalquin project, Durango, and to continue work on the company´s existing projects.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Argonaut Gold Inc., presented a positive PFS for its Cerro Del Gallo project in Guanajuato. It increased company´s mineral reserves by 48%, and measured and indicated Au mineral resources by 36%. The project has 91,754,000 tonnes of 0.56 g/t Au, 13 g/t Ag, and 0.09% Cu to contain a total of 1.64M Oz Au, 39.1M Oz Ag, and 192.15M Lb Cu. Metallurgical recoveries are 60%, 53%, and 43% respectively. Cerro Del Gallo is a low-cost asset, with estimated cash cost of $597 per Oz Au sold and AISC of $677 per Oz Au sold. The project has an after-tax internal rate of return of $20% and a NPV at a 5% discount rate of $175M, assuming metal prices of $1,350 for Oz Au and $16.75 for Oz Ag. Argonaut plans to produce as an average 64K Oz Au, 1.3M Oz Ag, and 5.4M Lb Cu per year, and has estimated a life of mine of 15.5 years.
  • Coeur Mining Inc., provided an update on its exploration program carried out at its Palmarejo mine in Chihuahua, which has been focused on resource expansion drilling. Highlights from the 2019 drilling campaign at Palmarejo includes positive infill results at the western and southern portions of the Guadalupe mine complex, including hole DC3-ZPA-0010 with 12.8 g/t Au and 1,047 g/t Ag over 5.7m; new resource expansion intercepts from the northern portion of the Independencia mine complex, including hole VIDH-120, with 1.5 g/t Au and 179 g/t Ag over 9.3m; and new resource expansion intercepts from the northeastern most portion of the Independencia mine complex, with hole BVDH-039 with 1.1 g/t Au and 165 g(/t Ag over 5m. “Coeur’s geologic team also expanded its footprint in the district by mapping and sampling exposures of new veins southwest and northeast of the two underground mining complexes as well as new veins west and east of the legacy open pit mine. Coeur expects to seek drill permits for several new areas in 2020 based on positive surface trace-element geochemistry and alteration results”.
  • Azure Minerals Limited, commenced a 7,000m RC resource expansion drilling program at its Loma Bonita deposit in Sonora, where a channel sampling in a road returned 3.6 g/t Au over 35.5m. Alacran project includes Mesa de Plata and Loma Bonita deposits. Initial focus is on growing the Alacran Au & Ag resource of 32.2M Oz Ag and 150K Oz Au. Loma Bonita deposit is open for expansion in most directions with good drill intersections of Au including hole MDPC-131 with 2.8 g/t Au and 33 g/t Ag over 47m; hole MDPC-096 with 1.6 g/t Au and 21 g/t Ag over 67m; and hole MDPC-102 with 1.1 g/t Au and 89 g/t Ag over 44m. In addition, Azure is continuing to undertake reconnaissance and follow-up work throughout the Alacran project where first pass surface sampling of historical dumps returned high grades of Au-Ag and base metals with maximum values of 24.1 g/t Au, 3,675 g/t Ag, 33.5% Pb, 21% Zn, and 2.3% Cu.
  • Industrias Peñoles S.A.B.de C.V., commenced extraction and grinding tests at its Capela mine (former Rey de Plata mine) in Teloloapan, Guerrero. Capela mine is expected to begin operations in 2020 with a daily production of 4,500 tonnes per day. According to the general director of Industrias Peñoles, Fernando Alanís Ortega, the mine located in Teloloapan required an investment of USD $340M.

 ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Discovery Metals Corp., announced the appointment of its new VP of Corporate Development and Investor Relations (Cordero project, Chihuahua).
  • Equinox Gold Corp., and Leagold Mining Corporation, entered into a definitive agreement to combine in an at-market merge, creating one of the top Au producing companies operating entirely in the Americas. The combined entity will continue as Equinox Gold. “Pursuant to the Transaction, Leagold shareholders will receive 0.331 of an Equinox Gold share for each Leagold share held (the “Exchange Ratio”). This implies at-market consideration of C$2.70 per Leagold common share, using closing prices for both Equinox Gold and Leagold common shares on the Toronto Stock Exchange on December 13, 2019. At closing, existing Equinox Gold and Leagold shareholders will own approximately 55% and 45% of the merged company, respectively, on an issued share basis”. (Los Filos mine, Guerrero).
  • Goldplay Exploration Ltd., entered into a letter of intent (LOI) agreement with Mako Mining Corp. to acquire 100% of the shares of Marlin Gold Mining Ltd. (San Marcial project, Sinaloa). Marlin owns, amongst other assets, Oro Gold de Mexico, S.A. de C.V. , a Mexican company that owns the La Trinidad mine facilities, currently being decommissioned. Oro Gold also controls 100% of nine concessions totaling 104,094.5 ha located adjacent to Goldplay’s existing portfolio in the historic Rosario gold-silver Mining District, Sinaloa, Mexico. “Under the LOI, upon payment of $50K by Goldplay to Mako the parties have agreed to a binding exclusivity and non-solicitation period from the signing of the LOI until December 31, 2020, or such later date as the parties may agree, which is binding on the parties. Exclusivity will otherwise terminate on the early of the completion of the proposed acquisition or earlier termination of the LOI or the definitive agreement, as the case may be”. The terms of the transaction are subject to negotiation and will include a nominal cash payment to Mako and the issuance of a small NSR royalty to Mako on the concessions currently owned by Oro Gold. Goldplay will assume all remaining tax liabilities of Oro Gold.
  • Oroco Resource Corp., presented results from its special annual general meeting of shareholders (Santo Tomás project, Sinaloa).
  • Prize Mining Corporation, announced the resignation of its former CEO and the appointment of the new CEO (Manto Negro project, Coahuila).
  • Mithril Resources Limited, entered into an exclusive option agreement to acquire all the issued share capital of Sun Minerals Pty Ltd., which holds an exclusive option to earn up to 100% interest in the high grade Copalquin Au & Ag project in Durango. Copalquin contains 32 known historic Au and Ag underground mines including the La Soledad and El Refugio mines. Historic drilling highlights project’s exploration potential with multiple high-grade drill intercepts including hole UC-03 at el Cometa mine with 45.16 g/t Au and 118 g/t Ag over 17.77m; hole UC-024 at El Refugio mine with 6.54 g/t Au and 140 g/t Ag over 7.9m; and hole MP-07-101 with 28.99 g/t Au and 2,350 g/t Ag over 4.53m.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • The Zacatecas Mining Cluster (CLUSMING), held its second Talent Meeting with participation greater than the 30 people who previously registered to participate in the event. The goal of the Talent Meeting is to identify personnel with the skills and attitudes necessary for certain companies in the mining industry (mines and suppliers or contractors), and be part of a talent group that can be subsequently hired by companies, according to their profiles.
  • The Ladies Committee of AIMMGM and Outlet Minero, promoted the environmental education in Zacatecas. Attendees gave a brief talk to the groups about culture for sustainable development, highlighting the importance of carrying out actions such as recycling and reusing objects to make new creations at school and at home. Likewise, about the importance of mining and its presence in objects such as pencils, benches, blackboards, among others, that makes everyday life possible. In this context, the Outlet Minero team organized a Christmas tree contest made with recycling and reused material.
  • Grupo Mexico, promoted preventive measures against hydro metereologic phenomena in San Luis Potosi during the conference of preventive culture. Some emergency brigade collaborated in the event with five members, who gave prevention talks with the community of San Luis Potosí and made a demonstration with a fire truck and own safety equipment. SEMARNAT, Civil Protection, and San Luis Potosi Fire Department participated in this conference of preventive measures.
  • Minera Peñasquito, held Christmas celebration in Mazapil, Zacatecas, where the company distributed thousand of toys in 25 communities belonging to the mine´s area of influence. “Minera Peñasquito is not just about removing the ore, about removing the Au. The responsible mining that we want to do cannot work without working with the community. For us being part of the community is a priority, throughout the year, with social investment, entrepreneurship or infrastructure works. It’s fundamental, “said Nelson Núñez, sustainability manager at Newmont-Goldcorp”.
  • Minera Peñasquito, informed to the community leaders about the progress of the social programs that the mining company performs in the 25 communities of direct influence. Among the programs to be reported, the rehabilitation of houses in Nuevo Peñasco was highlighted in infrastructure, which benefited 22 people from that community, as well as maintenance of roads in Santa Rosa, Cuitláhuac, La Mejorada, Charcos, Cedros y Mesas, as well as the maintenance and operation of wells for human consumption in El Vergel and plants and wells in Mesas, Cedros y Charcos. Regarding social responsibility, the company informed about the project “Together We Left a Legacy” that improves the conditions of educational, social infrastructure and promotes sports. This year furniture was delivered to 17 schools to benefit 1,137 students, as well as Ejidos to benefit 310 people. There was talk of Peñasquito Open Doors, a program that offers guided tours so that members of neighboring communities know about the mining operation. 71 sports academies were also held, supporting 70 teams, with 1,224 beneficiaries where 830 uniforms were delivered. Another important item is the educational scholarships, which grant economic incentives to students from primary to university. There are two types of scholarships: by agreement, which in 2019 allowed the delivery of 411 supports, and scholarships of excellence, which is open call and that this year, benefited 192 students. For the entrepreneurs there is the “Ideas con Valor program”, for the creation and strengthening of micro businesses, which supported 120 families with the participation of 300 people. Through the ‘Local Employment Program”, 765 people from the communities surrounding the operation have been hired, who through specific training were able to develop the capabilities required for the mining operation.

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 an IOCG project in Jalisco, Mexico. Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Second Week of December, 2019

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By Jorge Cirett

During the 50th week of the year (December 9th to December 15th, 2019), at least 18 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Bacanora Minerals lithium deposit in Sonora is considered the biggest resource of the metal in the world, according to Francisco Quiroga, Mining sub-secretary. Camimex calls to maintain the competitivity of the mining sector, as it is being threatened by a environmental tax proposal. Newmonts Goldcorp´s Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas is to lift Mexican gold production in 2020, according to BNamericas. Camimex invited the secretary of the environmental agency (SEMARNAT), Victor Manuel Toledo to visit one of the mining units, for him to review what sustainable mining is. He will also be visiting Hermosillo and Ures, meeting with authorities of the municipalities affected by a toxic leak on 2014. ON EXPLORATION, in Chihuahua, Mammoth Resources updated on exploration efforts by partner Centerra at its Tenoriba project; Kootenay Silver released good drilling results on its Columba property. ON MINING, Alamos Gold and Golden Minerals released results for the third quarter 2019. GoGold released results on the year ending in September 2019. ON FINANCING, Advance Gold closed the second tranche of its private placement for gross proceeds of $42 K. Azure Minerals announced the receipt of A$467 K of VAT back taxes (dating to 2016) from the government. Tamino Minerals is planning to become “Pink Current” very soon on the OTC. Odyssey Marine Exploration obtained commitments for up to $4.2 M.   ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Candelaria Mining released results on 15 new holes from the Mirador mine at the Altagracia project in Oaxaca. Pan American Silver announced an initial resource estimate, on the polymetallic  skarn deposit at La Colorada, of 72.5 M tonnes @ 44 gpt Ag, 0.17% Cu, 2.02% Pb, 4.40% Zn, remaining open in most directions, and containing over 100 M Oz Ag. Defiance Silver updated on exploration efforts at its San Acacio project in Zacatecas and at its Tepal project in Michoacán. Prime Mining released surface road cut and trench assays from its Guadalupe de los Reyes project in Sinaloa. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Tamino Minerals has signed a LOI on the Ofelia property, in Sonora. Discovery Metals informed Eric Sprott now owns 21% interest in the company. Newmont Goldcorp announced a deal with the Cedros community on water resources. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. A mining gathering was held in Banamichi, Sonora. The Asociación de Mineros de Sonora celebrated its 40th anniversary. The first “Comité de Desarrollo Regional para las Zonas Mineras” was created in Sonora, to recommend the use of the Mining Fund in certain infrastructure projects in mining areas. Dr. Vagón, Grupo Mexico’s health itinerant clinic was at La Junta, and soon to be moved to the nearby Ciudad Cuauhtémoc, both in Chihuahua. The Consorcio Minero Benito Juárez and the Fundación Bécalos Televisa delivered 120 scholarships to excellency students. A fair was held in Tayoltita, Durango, to bring awareness of the mining work and environment to inhabitants and family members of mine workers. Minera Media Luna is showing a strong support for education in Guerrero, with shcolarships, internships and support to local schools. The Sonora miners association (AMSAC) signed an agreement with the Consejo Regulador del Bacanora, to source agave saplings on its greenhouses to the agave growers. The Mexican gray wolf has left the list of extinct species in the wild, moving to the category of species on extinction risk.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • The lithium deposit in Sonora is the major project of its type in the World, according to Francisco Quiroga, Sub-Secretary of Mining, on an interview by a journalist known country wide. He cautioned on not hurrying up to celebrate, as the lithium still has to be extracted, and be metallurgically separated of the other minerals present in the ore (In this project, unlike other, lithium is contained in a clay). This project is assumed to have 243 M tonnes of lithium, surpassing the Thacker Pass deposit in Nevada, the second lithium deposit, with reserves of 179 M tonnes of lithium. The deposit is co-owned by the English company (not Canadian, as stated in the note) Bacanora Lithium and the Chinese Ganfeng Lithium, and located in the Bacadehuachi municipality (tens of kilometers from the Campo Verde Protected Natural Area and the Chihuahua border).
  • Camimex calls for maintaining the competitivity of the Mining Sector in Sonora. The call was made by Karen Flores, Camimex head, on the first Universitary Mining Gathering held in Banamichi, Sonora. She called for a proposal to tax mining operations on environmental grounds to be repelled. Such tax would transform Sonora in one of the more expensive places to mine, in an industry that is already heavily regulated and taxed. According to the authorities, mining in 2018 provided more than 46 billion pesos (US$2.36 billion) in taxes, 9,000 billion pesos (US$461 M) in rights and more than 4,500 billion pesos (US$230 M) in resources for the Mining Fund.
  • Newmont Goldcorp’s Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas is to lift Mexican gold production in 2020, when production by other big players is to decline. The combined production by the three biggest producers in Mexico, Fresnillo, Newmont Goldcorp, and Alamos Gold should reach 1.59 M Oz Au, above the 1.22 M Oz Au mines in 2019. This is a 30% increment year on year, achievable if the companies reach their mid-point guidelines. According to BNamericas this figure is more than half the 3.15 M Oz Au to be produced by more than 20 companies in Mexico. Fresnillo’s production reached 923 K Oz Au in 2018, expects to produce 885 K Oz in 2019, 785 K Oz in 2021 and 665 K Oz in 2022; the decline motivated by the end of production at the Noche Buena mine and less production at Herradura. Meanwhile, Peñasquito expects to produce 575 K Oz Au in 2020 , and a little bit more in 2021, before production starts to decline due to lower grades. Alamos Gold expects to produce 150 – 160 K Oz Au during 2019 in Mulatos, while the Chanate mine is to produce only 5 K Oz. Minera Frisco and Agnico Eagle have seen their gold production dwindle in 2019, while Torex Gold reached 138 K Oz Au produced during the third quarter, and the company expects to sell 430 K Oz Au this year. Leagold also is to increase production at Los Filos, expecting to double on the 200 K Oz Au forecasted for this year.
  • Camimex invited Victor Manuel Toledo, secretary of the environment and natural resources (SEMARNAT) to visit one of the mining units, for him to review what sustainable mining is. Earlier in the day, in the morning presidential conference, Toledo stated that Semarnat is not against mining: “For Semarnat there is not good or bad mining, revisions have to be on a case by case basis, and confirm through inspection its adherence to norms”.
  • Victor Manuel Toledo, secretary of the environment and natural resources (SEMARNAT) is to be in Hermosillo in December 18th for the presentation of a book on the toxic leakage of 2014, and in Ures to meet with affected parties and authorities of municipalities within the Rio Sonora basin.
  • Alberto Orozco, president of the Sonora Mining Cluster, praised the visit that Victor Manuel Toledo (Environmental Secretary) is to make next week to a mining unit in Sonora. Orozco stressed the presence in Sonora of companies highly involved in the social and economic development of the producing regions in a sustainable manner. He also pointed that the Sonoran mining production is 36% of the national production, contributing with 18% of the State gross domestic product.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Mammoth Resources Corp. updated on exploration efforts at its Tenoriba project, funded by partner Centerrea Gold Inc.. Field logistics have been set, all historical geologic data compiled for Centerra’s review and interpretation and a 3D model is under preparation; all un-assayed core was sent for analysis, and the previous drill program permit is being closed, and a new one is to be prepared. Strong argillic, argillic and minor vuggy silica is present on volcanic rocks on a 4 to 6 Km long belt, with geophysics re-processing pointing to a larger target than previously envisaged, and a new 30 line-Km survey is being planned. A large soil anomaly highlights the eastern part of the corridor. Mammoth is working on community consultation processes with the two ejidos (communal lands) involved.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. released results from six holes drilled at its Columba project in Chihuahua. Highlighted intervals comprise: 25.85 m @ 200 gpt Ag (including 11.5 m @ 415 gpt Ag, which includes 4.0 m @ 721 gpt Ag, which includes 1.9 m @ 982 gpt Ag) in silicified breccias in proximity to a lithological contact; 6.25 m @ 67 gpt Ag (including 2.09 m @ 172 gpt Ag); 3.0 m @ 314 gpt Ag (including 0.63 m @ 776 gpt Ag); 59.8 m @ 48 gpt Ag (including 9.57 m @ 146 gpt Ag); 6.63 m @ 103 gpt Ag and 1.0 m @ 124 gpt Ag. Several of the intercepts are in quartz veins in rhyolite, as quartz stockworks and as quartz-barite veins.

ON MINING

  • Alamos Gold Inc. released some production figures for 2019, including data on its Mexican production. At Mulatos, in Sonora, during the first nine months of this year 20 K tonnes per day were stacked @ 0.92 gpt Au, with a recovery of 67%, to produce 108 K Oz Au at cash cost $772 and a mine-site AISC of $861. Production from the Mulatos district is expected to total 150-160 K Oz Au in 2020, with ore mined from the Mulatos, El Victor and San Carlos open pits, as well as new production from Cerro Pelon. “A total of $7 million has been budgeted at Mulatos for exploration in 2020 which includes 14,000 m of drilling focused in the Mulatos near-mine, Carricito and La Yaqui Grande areas. A number of regional exploration targets have been identified in 2019 from the property-wide VTEM geophysical survey that was completed in late-2018. A focus of the 2020 regional exploration program will be to further evaluate these targets through systematic mapping, sampling, and ground geophysics”.
  • Golden Minerals Co. released results for the third quarter 2019. During the period Golden reported revenue of $1.9 M related to the lease of Velardeña’s oxide mill and costs of $0.6 M related to the services provided under the terms of the lease, for a net operating margin of $1.3 M. Exploration expenses were $0.9 M, Velardeña care and maintenance $0.4 M, administrative expenses $0.7 M for a total loss of $1.8 M for the quarter. Last October Golden entered into an agreement with Magellan Gold Corp. to sell the company’s option to earn a 100% interest in the Santa Maria and Las Marias exploration properties in Chihuahua. Cash and cash equivalents of $2.9 M by the end of the period.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. announced financial results for the year ending 2019. During the last quarter period the company acquired the Los Ricos project in Jalisco, for share consideration of $5.4 M and cash $4.5 M, of which $3.9 M is payable over three years. During the period the company sold 1 M Oz Ag and 8,752 Oz Ag, produced 1.78 M Oz AgEq, had income of $8.1 M at an AISC of $14.82 per Oz AgEq and cash cost $11.80 per OZ AgEq, a gain of $11.8 M on the sale of the Santa Gertrudis project royalty and has a net working capital of $13.1 M.

ON FINANCING

  • Advance Gold Corp. closed the second and final tranche of the private placement previously announced, for gross proceeds of $42 K (Tabasqueña, Zacatecas).
  • Azure Minerals Ltd. announced that the Mexican tax office has paid this week the amount of MX$6.19 M, approximately A$467 K. This is the interest component from a previous payment, bringing the total received by Azure to A$1.23 M. The payments are the result of the successful resolution of the company’s legal action for the recovery of IVA (the equivalent to GST, or VAT) dating to the 2016 financial year. A fee of 15% is payable to the legal and tax advisors involved (Alacrán, Sonora).
  • Tamino Minerals Inc. is planning to become Pink Current very soon on OTC markets, abiding to OTC disclosure lines. As of the end of September 2019, the company has 370.6 M shares, of which Pedro Villagran holds 138.8 M and Joseph Berry 33 M.
  • Odyssey Marine Exploration, Inc. obtained commitments for up to $4.2 M in funding in two separate arrangements. A group of existing shareholders is to provide up to $2 M in funding ($539 K already submitted) as advance against a portion of multi-million dollar payment Odyssey expects to receive within the next six months, related to a previously completed ship-wreck project. In addition, “a term sheet has been executed and definitive agreements are being drafted with the group that has already committed up to $6.5 million in non-recourse legal funding for the NAFTA action for up to an additional $2.2 million” (Bay of Ulloa, Baja California Sur).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Gold Resource Corp. released drill results from 15 holes from the Mirador mine area in the Altagracia project in Oaxaca. The Mirador mine is 16 Km NW from the Company’s Aguila project and processing facilities. Highlighted results comprise: 9.21 m @ 0.24 gpt Au, 260 gpt Ag (including 0.73 m @ 0.58 gpt Au, 1,085 gpt Au); 1.38 m @ 4.39 gpt Au, 1,455 gpt Ag; 1.08 m @ 1.81 gpt Au, 2,190 gpt Ag; 5.99 m @ 1.04 gpt Au, 206 gpt Ag (including 1.54 m @ 2.02 gpt Au, 590 gpt Ag); 3.72 m @ 1.44 gpt Au, 910 gpt Ag (including 1.0 m @ 2.84 gpt Au, 2,610 gpt Ag); 2.67 m @ 1.10 gpt Au, 354 gpt Ag.
  • Pan American Silver Corp. announced an initial mineral resource estimate for the large polymetallic deposit discovered in 2018 at La Colorada mine in Zacatecas. The inferred mineral resource is 72.5 M tonnes @ 44 gpt Ag, 0.17% Cu, 2.02% Pb, 4.40% Zn, remaining open in most directions and containing 102 M Oz Ag, 3.2 M tonnes of Zn, 1.5 M tonnes of Pb, and 121 K tonnes of Cu. Most of this mineralization is contained within a larger mineralized skarn 500 m x 600 m, between 600 and 1,700 m of depth. To make the geologic interpretation and resource estimation, 65 drill holes totalling 54,000 m of drilling were utilized.
  • Defiance Silver Corp. updated on exploration efforts to be made at its San Acacio project in Zacatecas. Targeted core re-logging and selective re-assay is on-going and will continue through 2020, while field exploration involves surface geochemistry outside the resource area, systematic underground mapping and sampling and regional targeting are carried out.
  • Defiance Silver Corp. announced OreQuest has been planning an exploration program at Tepal, in Michoacan. The aim is to follow up on high-grade drill results as the 1.42 m @ 25 gpt Au, 565 gpt Ag of last year campaign, which is coincidental with highly anomalous surface geochemistry and an untested chargeability anomaly.
  • Prime Mining Corp. released results from surface exploration at it Los Reyes property in Sinaloa. The trenching program has an advance of 25% with highlighted results of 5 m @ 1.0 gpt Au, 11 gpt Ag; 10.5 m @ 2.0 gpt Au, 18 gpt Ag; 16.5 m @ 2.5 gpt Au, 40 gpt Ag; 36.0 m @ 1.84 gpt Au, 13 gpt Ag; 34.5 m @ 4.2 gpt Au, 21 gpt Ag; 13.5 m @ 1.54 gpt Au, 37 gpt Ag in rod cuts, and 9 m @ 0.92 gpt Au, 22 gpt Ag; 4.5 m @ 2.66 gpt Au, 30 gpt Ag; 13.5 m @ 1.42 gpt Au, 49 gpt Ag; 13.5 m @ 1.59 gpt Au, 28 gpt Ag; 7.5 m @ 1.84 gpt Au, 37 gpt Ag; 16.5 m @ 1.04 gpt Au, 23 gpt Ag; 15.0 m @ 5.58 gpt Au, 23 gpt Ag in trenches. The company is working with the database of 493 historic drill holes to establish a new 43-101 compliant resource (currently holding 380 K and 155 K Oz Au in the indicated and inferred categories respectively).

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Tamino Minerals Inc. informed it has singed a letter of intent (LOI) on the Ofelia property in Sonora. The LOI terms state four years of staged payments totalling US$1 M plus a 2% NSR, and provides a 90-day term for due-diligence work.
  • Discovery Metals Corp. announced that with the conversion of 3.3 M subscription receipts to shares, Mr. Eric Sprott owns now approximately 21% interest in the company (Cordero, Chihuahua).
  • Newmont Goldcorp. announced that the Peñasquito mine and the nearby San Juan Cedros community (one of 25 neighbouring communities) in Zacatecas, agreed to an infrastructure solution for sustainable water availability for the community. The 30-year water agreement includes additional water wells to supplement the 600 K liters per-day reverse osmosis drinking water plant the company built in 2018.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • A Mining Gathering was held in Banamichi, Sonora, with more than 600 attendees, mostly students, with the purpose of letting them know the opportunities for internships and employment in mining units. Among the attendees were also governors of mining states, the ambassadors of mining countries, Congress representatives, Union leaders, 14 majors and representatives for mining companies, mining associations and mining communities.
  • The Asociación de Mineros de Sonora (Sonora’s Miners Association, or AMSAC) celebrated its 40th The celebration included a series of presentations and a formal dinner. Among the speakers were Francisco Quiroga (Mining Sub-secretary), Karen Flores (Camimex), Ernesto [Ríos (Americas Mining) and Lourdes McPherson (Argonaut Gold).
  • The first “Comité de Desarrollo Regional para las Zona Mineras (Mining Zones Development  Committee) was created in Hermosillo, Sonora. The finality of such committees is to assess and approve investment projects derived from the Mining Fund, incorporating all interest groups. The committee is integrated by:Comite Fondo Minero11The fist session is to be held in February 28, 2020, and the second on August 28, 2020.
  • Dr. Vagón is to be at La Junta, Chihuahua. From the 12 to the 16 of December, 2019. Among the services to be provided are: general consult, dermatology, pediatric care, geriatric care, odontology, chiropractic, physic rehabilitation, optometry, audiometry, mastography, colposcopy, family planning, lab test, diabetics clinic, psychology and nutrition. This itinerant train-mounted clinic has the capacity to Attend 550 persons daily.
  • The Safety, Environment and Social Responsibility Fair San Dimas 2019, was held on December 6 in Tayoltita, Durango. The different departments of the First Majestic mine displayed details on their work on the mining process, in a didactic and entertaining way, to workers, suppliers, municipality and State authorities, as well as their families and local inhabitants. Radio Plata (Silver Radio) was commissioned, the first radio station to be located in the vicinity, is part of the company’s Centro Cultural, where educative, social and cultural activities are to take place.
  • Minera Media Luna is showing a strong support for education in Guerrero. With support from local authorities in Cocula, the Instituto Tecnológico de Iguala, the Universidad Tecnológica Autónoma del Norte de Iguala, the State government, the Instituto Estatal para la Educación de Jóvenes y Adultos de Guerrero and the general population in Cocula, the company has: installed programs for diminishing the educative lag in primary and secondary education; taken 36 students in internships from local universities; supported 86 students through scholarships; invested $500 K pesos along with the Cocula municipality for the hiring of primary education personnel; participated in the Fourth Week of Mining on the Universidad Autónoma de Guerrero…. And several other programs in education not posted here for lack of space.
  • AMSAC, the Sonora Miners Association, signed an agreement with the Consejo Regulador del Bacanora (Regulatory Council for Bacanora, a spirits drink). Under this agreement , several mining companies are to grow the needed agave saplings for the production of Bacanora in their green houses, to be transplanted in the field by the agave growers.
  • Minera Peña Colorada presented the “Ilustred Guide to Wildlife in the Minatitlan Microbasin”, at the Feria Internacional del Libro 2019, in Guadalajara, Jalisco. This work was accomplished with the support of the Universidad Nacional Autónoma de México, and the Benemérita Universidad de Puebla.
  • The Mexican gray wolf has left the list of extinct species on the wild, moving to the category of species on extinction risk. This is the result of an international effort among the USA and Mexican governments, with the participation of Grupo Mexico. The declaration comes after 12 liberations and the documentation of 9 successful litters with some 30 puppies on the wild. Grupo Mexico, as well as other mining companies, has an UMA (Environmental Management Unit) that take care and reproduce threatened species.
  • Dr Vagón, Grupo Mexico’s health train, is to be on Ciudad Cuahutémoc, Chihuahua, from December 18 to December 22. The 17 train carriages itinerant clinic has the capacity to attend 600 persons per day, providing for a wide array of services, like diagnostics, ailment prevention, dermatology, odontology, physical rehabilitation, optometry, audiometry, psychology, nutrition, diabetes and chiropractic treatments.

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: Sheeted quartz veinlets from an orogenic gold project in Oaxaca. Picture by Jorge Cirett

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The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the Fourth Week of October, 2019.

 

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By Miguel A Heredia

During the forty-three week of the year (October 21st to October 27th, 2019), at least 42 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with eleven disclosing deals and corporate issues, ten announcing financial rounds, seven commenting on Mexican issues, six informing on exploration results, three communicating production results, three reporting on resources and developments of their projects, and one discussing issues on social responsibility.  ON MEXICO ISSUES, Napoleón Gómez Urrutia, a mining union leader and senator for the Morena party proposed to increase the taxes to mining concessions to levels of 20-30%.  Fernando Alanís, president of the Cámara Minera de México (CAMIMEX), reported that 244 Canadian companies stopped investing in Mexico. At the AIMMGM Mining convention in Acapulco, the CONAGO (Conferencia Nacional de Gobernadores) and the federal government were at disagreement on the use of the Mining Fund. Camimex expects the “Mesa de Minería” (Mining Forum) is installed before year’s end. Newmont-Goldcorp re-started up production at its Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas. ON EXPLORATION, In Baja California Norte, One World Lithium announced the continuation and progress of the phase 3 drilling program at its Salar del Diablo project.   In Sonora, Aloro mobilized crews to sample high grade Au veins on the northwest side of its Los Venados project, and Agnico Eagle provided an exploration update of its Santa Gertrudis project. In Chihuahua, Radius Gold and Pan American Silver commenced the phase 3 drilling program at its Amalia project. In Zacatecas, Galore reported the completion of 1,667.20m of core drilling at its Dos Santos project.  In Jalisco, GoGold reported drill results from six new holes from its Los Ricos project. ON MINING, Agnico Eagle, Fresnillo, and Excellon reported Q3, 2019 production and financial results from their Mexican operations. ON FINANCING, Galore closed a first tranche of a private placement for gross proceeds of CAD $187K and implemented a shares for services agreement on its drill contract (Dos Santos project, Zacatecas). One World Lithium reported that its previously announced non-brokered private placement (Sept 05, 2019), will be replaced by a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $1M (Salar del Diablo project, Baja California Norte).  VVC closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of CAD $2M (Kaity project in Samalayuca, Chihuahua). Silver Viper closed a private placement financing to raise gross proceeds for $4M (La Virginia project, Sonora). Orla entered into a commitment letter for up to USD $125M project finance facility (Camino Rojo project, Zacatecas). Vista Gold received the third option payment from Prime Mining for the Guadalupe de Los Reyes property in Sinaloa. Newmont-Goldcorp declared a quarterly dividend of $0.14 per share of common stock (Peñasquito mine, Zacatecas). Gold Resource increased 100% its instituted annual dividend from $0.02 to $0.04 per common share (Arista mine, Oaxaca). ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Golden Minerals outlined progress at its Velardeña and Rodeo properties in Durango. Minera Peñoles informed that is to start operations at its Capela mine in Guerrero. Endeavour reported infill drill results from its Parral project in Chihuahua.  ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Alien Metals appointed Novum Securities Ltd as its joint corporate broker with immediate effect (San Celso project, Zacatecas). Defiance Silver appointed a couple of OreQuest consultants as technical advisors to work on its San Acacio project in Zacatecas. Impact granted stock options to directors, officers, and employees (Zacualpan mining district, State of Mexico).   Oroco announced special general meeting of its shareholders to be held on December 19, 2019 (Santo Tomas project, Sinaloa). Vangold announced changes on its board of Directors and appointed its corporate secretary (El Pinguino mine, Guanajuato). Tamino Minerals was invited to list on the Mexican Stock Exchange (El Volcan project, Sonora). Torex responded a recent letter to its shareholders and stakeholders (Limon-Guajes, Guerrero). Sonoro advanced discussions with China-based companies to develop and finance its Cerro Caliche project in Sonora. Magellan entered into an option agreement with Golden Minerals to acquire 100% interest in Santa Maria project in Chihuahua. Santacruz Silver appointed a new director to its Board (Veta Grande, Zacatecas). Ternium received from PROFEPA, the certification as a clean industry (Tecomán plant in Colima).  ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, In Aconchi, Sonora, the Orquesta La Caridad from Grupo Mexico offered a concert to 250 attendees by 110 children and young people, the first on its Rio Sonora tour. Doctor Vagón, the Health Train of Fundación Grupo México, arrived in San Pedro, Coahuila from October 23 to 26 to give medical attention to the residents of the municipality.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Napoleón Gómez Urrutia, a mining union lider and senator by Morena proposed to increase the taxes to mining concessions to levels of 20 to 30%, sustaining that countries like Peru, Bolivia or Chile are at those levels. That declaration was done while he was defending the federal government intention to use the Mining Fund to other means that what it was imposed for: helping develop mining communities. The leader of the Morena senators is to present an integral initiative for the mining sector. Why don’t we raise the taxes to mining, to the rights on mineral exploitation, to the mining concessions taxes?, asked Gómez Urrutia. Ricardo Monreal, a presidential hopeful considered the proposal to be correct, and asked for its formalization.
  • Fernando Alanís, Camimex (Cámara Minera de México) president said that 244 Canadian companies stopped investing in Mexico. Camimex is fighting for the 100% deductibility of exploration expenses, as it is a strong deterrent on exploration investment, where the most risk of the industry is concentrated.
  • At the AIMMGM Mining convention in Acapulco, the CONAGO (Conferencia Nacional de Gobernadores) and the federal government were at disagreement on the use of the Mining Fund. While the governors fight for the said funds to remain on the states and municipalities, the federal government proposed that 85% of the resources are directed to the Secretaria de Educación Pública (SEP), by reforming the Ley Federal de Derechos (Federal Law on Duties) starting on 2020. The federal proposal allows full discretionally use of the where the funds are used, even in areas where no mining is conducted. In 2018 alone, $3,840 M pesos (about US$202 M) were accrued on the Mining Fund.
  • Camimex expects the “Mesa de Minería” (Mining Forum) is installed before year’s end, and can start to work with the federal government, so the mining sector is heard and doubts and misunderstandings can be cleared. Subjects to address include the social, the environment, regulation of the investment compromise, and the fiscal issues. Camimex stressed the mining in Mexico pays about 46 percent in taxes.
  • Newmont-Goldcorp, re-started up production at its Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas, following the lifting of the illegal blockade on October 8, 2019. “With the support of the State and Federal governments, including an ongoing police presence, the Company has commenced an approximately 10-dayprocess of bringing back the operation to full production”.

ON EXPLORATION

  • One World Lithium Inc., announced the continuation of the phase 3 drilling program at its Salar del Diablo project in Baja California Norte. Four boreholes are planned for a total of 2,400 meters (about 8,000 feet) of exploration drilling. The company reported that the first borehole reached a depth of 220m. Target depths of up to 600 meters are expected to be achieved.
  • Aloro Mining Corp., is to sample high-grade gold veins on the northwest of the Los Venados property in Sonora. In this area lies a 3.5 km vein system up to 400 m in width that has been partially mapped. Results from early sampling have results of up to 32 g/t Au and 49 g/t Ag.
  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited, provided an update of the exploration program carried out at its Santa Gertrudis project in Sonora. Drilling at Santa Gertrudis has extended the Amelia deposit in the Trinidad zone to 800m strike length, with highlight intercepts of 6.4 g/t Au over 7m and 9.6 g/t Au over 6m.
  • Radius Gold Inc., and Pan American Silver Corp., commenced the phase 3 drilling program at its Amalia project in Chihuahua. Pan American is now operating the project and expects to drill a minimum 2,500m of core drilling.
  • Galore Resources Inc., reported the completion of 1.667.20m of core drilling at its Dos Santos project in Zacatecas. Drilling results are still pending to be released.
  • GoGold Resources Inc., reported results from six new diamond drill holes including four from the San Juan zone, the first step out hole testing the El Troce area, and one from the Main area at its Los Ricos project in Jalisco. At San Juan, hole LRGG-19-050 intersected 0.39 g/t Au and 76 g/t Ag (1.41 g/t AuEq) over 45.3m, including 1.01 g/t Au and 242 g/t Ag (4.23 g/t AuEq) over 6.2m,and hole LRGG-19-051 intersected 0.4 g/t Au and 86 g/t Ag (1.55 g/t AuEq) over 24m. At El Troce, hole LRGG-19-053 intersected 1.53 g/t Au and 164 g/t Ag (3.72 g/t AuEq) over 10.1m, including 5.22 g/t Au and 489 g/t Ag (11.75 g/t AuEq) over 2.8m. At the Main area, hole LRGG-19-055 intersected 0.58 g/t Au and 75 g/t Ag (1.59 g/t AuEq) over 14.4m.

ON MINING

  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited, reported Q3, 2019 production and financial results from their Mexican operations. At Pinos Altos mine, Chihuahua, it processed 519K tonnes of 2.22 g/t Au to produce 34.8K Oz Au at a total cash cost of USD $745 per Oz Au produced. At Creston Mascota mine in Chihuahua, the company processed 284K tonnes of 0.78 g/t Au to produce 9,596 Oz Au at a total cash cost of USD $668 per Oz Au produced. At La India mine, Sonora, Agnico processed 1.1M tonnes of 0.77 g/t Au to produce 18.4K Oz Au at a total cash cost of USD $872 per Oz Au produced.
  • Fresnillo plc, presented Q3 2019 production results from their Mexican operations. Consolidated production results for the Q3, 2019 reached 13.3M Oz Ag (including Silverstream for 659K Oz Ag), 209.7K Oz Au, 34.9M Lb Pb, and 56.8M Lb Zn. At Fresnillo mine, Zacatecas, the company processed 648,646 tonnes of 183 g/t Ag, 0.99 g/t Au, 1.24% Pb, and 2.14% Zn, to produce 3.4M Oz Ag, 15.6K Oz Au, 15.8M Lb Pb, and 22.9M Lb Zn. At Saucito mine, Zacatecas, it processed 703K tonnes of 207 g/t Ag, 1.22 g/t Au, 0.84% Pb, and 1.38% Zn, to produce 4M Oz Ag, 21K Oz Au, 11M Lb Pb, and 14.9M Lb Zn. At Pyrites Plant, Fresnillo processed 38,572 tonnes of 314 g/t Ag and 2.44 g/t Au, to produce 285K Oz Ag and 954 Oz Au. At Cienega mine, Durango, it processed 335,493 tonnes of 1.78 g/t Au, 151 g/t Ag, 0.81% Pb, and 1.35% Zn, to produce 17.8K Oz Au, 1.4M Oz Ag, 4.1M Lb Pb, and 6.2M Lb Zn. At San Julian mine in Chihuahua-Durango border, the company processed 321,798 tonnes of 1.39 g/t Au and 108 g/t Ag, to produce 13,711 Oz Au and 1M Oz Ag from veins, and 559,693 tonnes of 0.07 g/t Au, 130 g/t Ag, 0.41% Pb, and 1.35% Zn, to produce 523 Oz Au, 2M Oz Ag, 4M Lb Pb, and 12.8M LB Zn from the disseminated ore body. At the Herradura mine, Sonora, Fresnillo processed 5,591,746 tonnes of 0.71 g/t Au and 3 g/t Ag, to produce 102,439 Oz Au and 412K Oz Ag. At the Noche Buena mine, Sonora, it processed 3,215,167 tonnes for a total volume hauled of 11,447,273 tonnes with grades of 0.58 g/t Au and 0.25 g/t Ag to produce 37,570 Oz Au and 14K Oz Ag.
  • Excellon Resources Inc., announced Q3, 2019 production results from its Platosas mine, Durango. Excellon milled and processed 17,235 tonnes of 512 g/t Ag, 4.4% Pb, and 6% Zn to produce 257.5K Oz Ag, 1.3M Lb Pb, and 1.65M Lb Zn, with metallurgical recoveries of 87.2%, 77.7%, and 76.5% respectively.

ON FINANCING

  • Galore Resources Inc., closed a first tranche of a private placement for gross proceeds of CAD $187K.The company also implemented a cash + shares for services agreement with COMEFIN S DE RL DE CV, to conduct the diamond core drilling programs at Galore’s 100% owned El Alamo and Los Gemelos projects (Dos Santo project, Zacatecas).
  • One World Lithium Inc., reported that its previously announced non-brokered private placement (Sept 05, 2019), will be replaced by a non-brokered private placement of unsecured convertible notes for gross proceeds of $1M (Salar del Diablo project, Baja California Norte).
  • VVC Exploration Corporation, closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of CAD $2M. The proceeds of the Financing will be used for exploration and development on the Kaity Property in Mexico, including diamond drilling, land use permits and associated costs, metallurgical bench testing of the copper mineralization, and investigation, evaluation and implementation of the Gloria Pilot Mining Project (Kaity project in Samalayuca, Chihuahua).
  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp., closed a private placement financing to raise gross proceeds for $4M. Net proceeds will be used to continue exploration and development of its La Virginia Au-Ag in Sonora and for general corporate and working capital purposes.
  • Orla Mining Ltd., entered into a commitment letter with Trinity Capital Partners Corporation, with respect to a secured project finance facility of USD $125M for the development of its Camino Rojo project in Zacatecas.
  • Vista GoldCorp., received the third $1.5M option payment from Prime Mining Corporation for the Guadalupe de Los Reyes project in Sinaloa.
  • Newmont-Goldcorp, declared a quarterly dividend of $0.14 per share of common stock, payable on December 27, 2019 to holders of record at the close of business on December 5, 2019.
  • Gold Resource Corporation, announced it has increased 100% its instituted annual dividend from $0.02 to $0.04 per common share. This increases the monthly dividend to one-third of a cent per common share for October 2019 payable on November 25, 2019 to shareholders of record as of November 12, 2019 (Arista mine, Oaxaca).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Golden Minerals Co. informed it is working on a new PEA on its Velardeña properties in Durango, to reflect better metal prices and new metallurgical processes. At Rodeo, also in Durango, Golden plans to initiate a small drilling program to provide better definition on its 46 K Oz Au resource. At Yoquivo, in Chihuahua, Golden has the permits to initiate a drill program to test several epithermal veins early in 2020.
  • Minera Peñoles informed that is to start operations at its Capela mine in Guerrero. The Capela mine is a US$340 M investment that is to generate 1,000 direct jobs and at least 1,400 indirect ones. Mining generates more than 10 thousand direct jobs and 50 thousand indirect jobs, making it the second most relevant economic activity in the state.
  • Endeavour Silver Corp., reported infill drill results from 10 underground holes collared on the Veta Colorada vein at its Parral project in Chihuahua. Every hole intersected strong Ag mineralization below the lowest mine level. Recent drilling highlights include 308 g/t Ag over 11.6 m true width n hole VCU-16. “Several drill holes intersected two mineralized zones, the Veta Colorada and the HW Veta Colorada in the hanging wall, with a total true width of mineralization up to 16.5 m in hole VCU-17, with 226 g/t Ag over 7.6m true width, including 593 g/t Ag over 0.5m true width, and 254 g/t Ag over 8.9m true width, including 1,355 g/t Ag over 0.5m true width”.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Alien Metals Ltd., appointed Novum Securities Ltd as its joint corporate broker with immediate effect (San Celso project, Zacatecas).
  • Defiance Silver Corp., appointed a couple of OreQuest consultants as technical advisors to execute the ongoing exploration program at its san Acacio project in Zacatecas.
  • Impact Silver Corp., granted stock options to directors, officers, and employees for the purchase of 2M shares in its capital at the above market price of $0.36 per share (Zacualpan mining district, State of Mexico).
  • Oroco Resources Corp., announced that its special general meeting for shareholders will be held on December 19, 2019 to consider and vote on a resolution to approve the Company’s option to acquire Altamura Copper Corp.(Santo Tomas project, Sinaloa).
  • Vangold Mining Gold, informed about changes on its Board of Directors and expanded the role in the company of its CFO to become in its corporate secretary (El Pinguico mine, Guanajuato).
  • Tamino Minerals, has been invited to list on the Mexican Stock Exchange. If Tamino can achieve the listing, it may have a solution to combat its shortage of investment capital and advance their exploration projects (El Volcan, Sonora).
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc, responded a recent letter to its shareholders and stakeholders to confirm its long-term strategy to develop a sustainable, multi-asset, mining business by executing operationally to generate strong free cash flow from its Limon-Guajes mine in Guerrero, de-risking and bringing Media Luna project, Guerrero into production, and delivering the full potential of its innovative Muckahi Mining System to the benefit of all Torex shareholders.
  • Sonoro Metals Corp., continued advancing its discussions with China-based engineering, procurement and construction companies regarding plans to develop and finance a proposed heap leach pilot operation for its Cerro Caliche project in Sonora.
  • Magellan Gold Corp., entered into an option agreement with Golden Minerals Company to acquire 100% interest in the Santa Maria project in Chihuahua by making a cash payment of USD $1M to Golden at closing, and pay Golden a 6.5% NSR based royalty from all production until a total of USD $3M has been paid under the royalty agreement, the royalty is then reduced to a 3.0% NSR based royalty for the balance of the property life.
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd., appointed a new director to its Board (Veta Grande, Zacatecas).
  • Ternium, received from PROFEPA, a certification as a clean industry for the 6th consecutive year, established by the Mexican Standard, NMX-AA-162-SCFI 2012, Regulation of the General Law of Ecological Balance and the Protection of the Environment in matters of Self-Regulation and Environmental Audits. The certification was granted to the Alzada pelletizing plant and Tecomán station, both located in Colima.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • In Aconchi, Sonora, the Orquesta La Caridad from Grupo Mexico offered a concert to 250 attendees by 110 children and young people from Nacozari, the first on its Rio Sonora tour.
  • Doctor Vagón, the Health Train of Fundación Grupo México, arrived in San Pedro, Coahuila from October 23 to 26 to give medical attention to the residents of the municipality. The Health Train will offer general consultations, dermatology, pediatrics, dentistry, chiropractic and physical rehabilitation, Comprehensive service for women (mastography, colposcopy), comprehensive diabetic patient clinic, comprehensive service for women, nutrition, psychology, optometry, family planning, geriatrics, audiometry, laboratory tests and cabinet studies, all for free.

 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, barite crystals in a rhyolite tuff from a prospect in Chihuahua, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the First Week of October, 2019

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The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the First Week of October, 2019

By Jorge Cirett

During the 40th week of the year (September 30th to October 6th, 2019), at least 20 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Gold production declined 2.8% in 2018. On the illegal blockade at the Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas, the president of Mexico asked for both parties to solve their differences (not pronouncing himself on the illegality of the blockade). Frisco and Cemex suffered big losses at the Mexican stock exchange. ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Magna Gold signed a LOI on the San Judas project in Sonora; Colibri Resource is to complete mapping and sampling on its Evelyn project. In Sinaloa, Kootenay Silver signed a surface access agreement on the Copalito project. In Zacatecas, Alien Metals is eyeing a drill program on its San Celso project.  ON MINING, Alien Metals presented financial results for the first semester 2019. Torex Gold produced 138,100 Oz Au at El Limon-Guajes mine in Guerrero during the Q3 2019. ON FINANCING, Southern Silver, Millrock Resources and Alien Metals granted 3.25 M, 1.88 M and 7 M incentive options respectively to officers, directors, employees and consultants. Fortuna Silver closed a bought deal financing for US$40 M. Azure Minerals raised $4 M. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, GoGold resources released results for one more hole at its Los Ricos project in Jalisco. Premier Gold released results on drilling at the Lupita extension on its Mercedes mine in Sonora. Goldplay disclosed channel surface sample results at its San Marcial property in Sinaloa. Silver Bull provided results from eleven more drill holes at the Sierra Mojada project in Coahuila (halted by an illegal blockade). ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Magna Gold signed a LOI on the San Judas project in Sonora. Silver Bull halted exploration at its Sierra Mojada project in Coahuila, due to an illegal blockade by a mining cooperative demanding a royalty payment on a property that is not in production. Fortuna Silver terminated the option on Prospero Silver’s Pachuca SE project in Hidalgo. Millrock and Riverside entered into a definitive agreement on the La Union, Los Cuarentas, El Pima, El Valle, and Llano del Nogal projects in Sonora. Santacruz Silver approved the acquisition of the remaining 50% of PCG Mining S.A. de C.V., parent company of Carrizal Mining, S.A. de C.V.. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. No relevant news.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Gold production in Mexico declined by 2.8% in July 2019. This is the 28th consecutive month of production contractions, the longest since 1981, according to INEGI (Instituto Nacional de Estadística y Geografía). In 2016 the production declined by 5.2%, in 2017 another 13.6% and a further 9.7% in 2018. Mineral products with annual increments include zinc at 10.7%, iron pellets with 2.9%, lead with 2.5%, sulphur with 1.6% and coal with 0.8%.
  • On Peñasquito’s illegal blockade, Mexico’s president, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, asked both parties two solve their differences in the conflict that has now more than two weeks (he did not mention the blockade being illegal). Newmont Goldcorp has offered more than US$25 M in investments, amount that the blockaders reckon as lacking. The Peñasquito mine produced 272,000 Oz Au last year, and had re-started production in mid-June after a first illegal blockade by truckers wanting to get a contract and locals accusing the company of water availability issues.
  • To the 3rd of October Frisco and Cemex have suffered big losses in the Mexican stock exchange (S&P/BMV IPC), 13.76% and 6.24% respectively, under the current commercial instability between USA and the European Union. Frisco is one of the biggest mining companies in Mexico, with operations in Baja California, Sonora, Chihuahua, Zacatecas and Aguascalientes (although Frisco is also known for its scant releases on reserves and resources). Cemex is the biggest Mexican cement producer, with operations internationally.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Magna Gold Corp. signed a LOI to explore the San Judas project in Sonora. The two mineral concessions cover 2806 ha underlain by a Precambrian basement composed of granite, gneiss, pegmatites and schist. “The entire sequence is affected by multiple deformations and the emplacement of intrusions such as leucocratic granites and andesitic dikes”. Gold mineralization is associated with quartz-breccia veins, quartz veins and “quartz stockworks emplaced along a series of parallel, foliated, low-angle shear zones within the igneous-metamorphic sequence”. Assays in an historical rock chip sample database have values of up to 230 gpt gold.
  • Colibri Resource Corp. contracted Auro Metallum Geology Consulting Services of Hermosillo, in Sonora, to complete a geological mapping study of its 506 ha Evelyn Gold Project near Caborca in Sonora. Recent sampling has returned up to 4.8 gpt Au from abundant quartz in sub-crop in a new zone identified by soil sampling.
  • Alien Metals Ltd. updated on the exploration of its San Celso and Los Campos projects in Zacatecas. At San Celso a next step of work will examine a drill program funded by a third party to test the strike extension of the main veins, and the depth extension below the existing workings.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. signed a surface access agreement with the local ejido at the Copalito project in Sinaloa. Said agreement allows the company to mapping, sampling, geophysics, trenching and drilling. The 3,700 ha project covers a low sulfidation epithermal system with numerous veins, traced over up to 2 km of length, and 0.5 to 15 meters in width. Sampling has returned assays of up to 8.2 gpt Au, 532 gpt Ag, 17.4% Zn, 9.9% Pb and 5.1% Cu.

ON MINING

  • Alien Metals Ltd. presented its financial results for the first semester of 2019. As of the end of the period the company had total assets of US$1.2 M, of which US$0.4 M was cash, and current total liabilities for US$0.1 M (Donovan 2, Zacatecas).
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc. announced gold production of 138,100 ounces of gold during Q3 2019, on track to meet it 2019 production guidance of 430,000 ounces. During the period plant throughput averaged 12,370 tonnes per day (tpd), underground mining 1,110 tpd, open pit mining 14,270 tpd (El Limon-Guajes, Guerrero).

ON FINANCING

  • Southern Silver Exploration Corp. granted 3.25 M incentive stock options to directors, officers and consultants, exercisable at $0.27 per common share for a period of five years. The rolling incentive stock option plan was also approved, pursuant to which a maximum of 10% of the issued shares will be reserved for issuance under the plan. (Cerro Las Minitas, Durango).
  • Millrock Resources Inc. approved a grant of stock options to employees, officers, directors and advisers to the company, granting a total of 1.88 M stock options exercisable at $0.09 for five years. The company is also to settle debt owed for deferred cash compensation to certain officers, directors and employees by issuing 819 K Millrock shares (Batamote, Sonora).
  • Alien Metals Ltd. granted 7 M options to its technical director, Brill Brodie. All shares are exercisable from 1 October 2019, of which 3 M can be exercised at 0.22 pence, 3 M at 0.30 pence and 4 M at 0.45 pence (San Celso, Zacatecas).
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. closed the previously announced bought deal offering of senior subordinated unsecured convertible debentures for an aggregate principal amount of US$40 M. “The Debentures mature on October 31, 2024 and will bear interest at a rate of 4.65% per annum, payable semi-annually in arrears on the last business day of April and October in each year, commencing on April 30, 2020. The Debentures will be convertible at the holder’s option into common shares in the capital of the Company” at a conversion price of US$5.00 per share (San José, Oaxaca).
  • Azure Minerals Ltd. raised $4 M (before costs) through a placement to institutional and sophisticated investors “to relaunch an aggressive exploration push on the Alacrán silver and gold projects” in Sonora. Azure is to undertake drilling to increase mineral resources at the Loma Bonita Au-Ag deposit, today standing at 150 K Oz Au, 4.8 M Oz Ag in 5.4 M tonnes @ 0.9 gpt Au, 28 gpt Ag.

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • GoGold Resources Inc. released results from one more hole completed on the San Juan area of its Los Ricos project in Jalisco. The hole returned 21.0 m @ 1.38 gpt Au, 146 gpt Ag (3.33 gpt AuEq), including 5.0 m @ 4.36 gpt Au, 436 gpt Ag (10.2 gpt AuEq). The San Juan area is located 400 m NW from the Los Ricos Main area.
  • Premier Gold Mines Inc. released results from its drilling program focused on delineating new mineral resources in the Lupita Extension at its Mercedes mine in Sonora. Highlighted results comprise 3.6 m @ 7.18 gpt Au, 54 gpt Ag; 1.8 m @ 24.24 gpt Au, 179 gpt Ag; 3.4 m @ 8.86 gpt Au, 67 gpt Ag; 3.1 m @ 13.65 gpt Au, 80 gpt Ag. The Neo target is 400 m north of San Martin is a possible extension of the Diluvio system, with one of three drill holes returning 3.1 m @ 13.65 gpt Au, 80 gpt Ag.
  • Goldplay Exploration Ltd. disclosed results from channel sampling on the Faisanes target of the San Marcial project in Sinaloa. The samples were cut by saw along the access road walls and road surface, returning 10 m @ 98 gpt Ag, 0.06 gpt Au) 0.6 m @ 587 gpt Ag, nil Au; 1.0 m @ 214 gpt Ag, nil Au; 1.1 m @ 42 gpt Ag, nil Au; 1.0 m @ 41 gpt Ag, 0.26 gpt Au.
  • Silver Bull Resources Inc. provided results from eleven more drill holes from its Sierra Mojada project in Coahuila. Highlights from the holes comprise: 17.1 m of oxide mineralization @ 120 gpt Ag, 0.43% Cu (including 1.35 m @ 539 gpt Ag, 0.27% Cu and 2.25 m @ 198 gpt Ag, 1.66% Cu and 0.55 m @ 403 gpt Ag, 1.6% Cu); 5.2 m of sulfide mineralization @ 149 gpt Ag, 0.87% Cu, 4.67% Zn. Due to an illegal blockade by a cooperative of miners who hold a royalty on two claims, the drill program has been paused.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Magna Gold Corp. entered into a binding letter of intent (LOI) with the private owners of the two mining concessions forming the 2,806 ha San Judas project in Sonora. The deal involves payments of US$50 K on signature of the definitive agreement, US$50 K on the first year, US$100 K on the second year, US$150 K on the third year, US$300 K on the fourth year and US$1.,03 M on the fifth year, all figures plus VAT.
  • Silver Bull Resources Inc. halted all work on the Sierra Mojada project in Coahuila due to a blockade by a cooperative of local miners called Sociedad Cooperativa de Exploración Minera Mineros Norteños, S.C.L.. The company has an agreement with the said cooperative on two mineral concessions in the eastern part of the Sierra Mojada project, under which they have the right of a 2% production royalty. Since 2014 the cooperative filed a suit fighting for payment of the royalty, notwithstanding the lack of production from the property. The cooperative also demands payments of wages for individuals that have not worked for the company, neither received employment commitments from Silver Bull. The cooperative has now illegally blockaded access to the project in an attempt to force a settlement before the final ruling. “Silver Bull is working with authorities to resolve the situation in a safe, fair, and timely manner”.
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. announced the termination of the Pachuca SE property option agreement signed previously with Prospero Silver Corp. (San José, Oaxaca).
  • Millrock Resources Inc. entered definitive agreements to sell the La Union, Los Cuarentas, El Pima, El Valle, and Llano del Nogal claim blocks to Riverside Resources Inc., as well a copy of its exploration database and exploration vehicles also to Riverside. Consideration paid to Millrock is $35 K cash and 150 K Riverside shares, and a 0.5% NSR on the El Pima, El Valle and Santa Rosalia (conditional on this one) claims. “Millrock has retained the El Batamote copper porphyry project and this will be the sole focus of Millrock’s exploration effort in Mexico going forward” (Batamote, Sonora).
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. shareholders approved in its last annual general meeting held in October 1, 2019, the re-election of directors, the auditor of the company and the approval of the existing 10% rolling stock option plan. Also approved was the acquisition of the remaining 50% of the outstanding shares of PCG Mining S.A. de C.V. from a non-arm’s length party in consideration for the issue of 30 M common shares of the company. Upon completion of the transaction the company will own 100% of PCG, which is the parent holding company of Carrizal Mining, S.A. de C.V..

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • No Relevant News.

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: Sheeted quartz veining in metamorphic rocks from an orogenic gold project in Oaxaca. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

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The Mining and Exploration News in Mexico: Highlights on the First Week of September, 2019

IMG_0970aBy Jorge Cirett

During the 36th week of the year (September 2nd to September 8th, 2019), at least 20 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. ON MEXICO ISSUES Karen Flores Arredondo was appointed General Director of CAMIMEX. VVC Exploration is searching for financing to start operations at Samalayuca.  ON EXPLORATION, in Baja California, One World Lithium is to conduct a field visit to its Salar del Diablo project. In Sonora, Minera Alamos announced the discovery of a new target, Gold Ridge. In Chihuahua, Ethos Gold released results on 16 RC holes at the Purisima project. In Coahuila, Prize Mining released assay results of several targets on a 20 km long trend. In Zacatecas, Galore received assays for the first two holes at El Alamo target of its Dos Santos project; Advance Gold completed an IP survey at the Tabasqueña project; Alien Metals released exploration results at San Celso, Los Campos and Donovan 2. ON MINING, Argonaut Gold completed a fourth water well, and now has the capacity to sustain production at 30 K tonnes a day at San Agustin, Zacatecas. ON FINANCING, Mexican Gold granted 650 K stock options. Defiant Silver seeks to extend the expiry date of some warrants. SilverCrest Metals granted options for 975 K shares. Telson Mining received conditional approval for a US$12 M loan. Southern Silver Corp.  closed the final tranche of financing for gross proceeds of $1.1 M. Silver Viper intends to raise up to $3.0 M through a private placement financing round. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, GoGold released results for four more holes at its Los Ricos project in Jalisco. Pan American Silver reported all-inclusive reserves and resources of 203.3 M Oz Ag, 2.16 M Oz Au on its La Colorada, Dolores and La Bolsa properties. Minera Alamos received one more permit to start construction at its Santana project in Sonora. Goldplay Exploration released underground channel sampling results from San Marcial, Sinaloa. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Mexican Gold Corp. appointed new directors and announced an incoming new resource estimate for Las Minas, Veracruz. Consolidated Zinc acquired the remaining 10% of the Plomosas mine rights to gain a 100% interest. The company also announced a favourable court ruling on a land use agreement for the Plomosas mine.   ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. No relevant news.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • The sectional president from Samalayuca, Chihuahua, Javier Melendez Cardona, was interviewed on the coming mining investment on La Gloria by VVC Exploration Corp. He explained the project is in the financing stage of a process that is to greatly benefit the local communities.
  • Karen Flores Arredondo is appointed CAMIMEX’s (Cámara Minera de México) General Director as of September 15, 2019. Flores Arredondo has recently worked for Agnico Eagle in Mexico, and has held posts with other private enterprises and government agencies related to the Mining Industry.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Prize Mining Corp. released assay results from surface sampling at its Manto Negro project in Coahuila. The sampling on the Apache, San Jose and Las Curvas concessions returned up to 1.3 m @ 3.86% Cu, 44 gpt Ag; 1.2 m @ 2.62% Cu, 58 gpt Ag; 1.8 m @ 2.31% Cu, 28 gpt Ag and six chip samples running 7.7% to 29.3% Cu and 190 to 759 gpt Ag. At San Jose a best sample interval of 1.8 m @ 2.3% Cu, 28 gpt Ag and up to 17.1% Cu and 1,689 gpt Ag from dumps. At Las Curvas the best mineralised interval was 2 m @ 2.5% Cu, 33 gpt Ag and up to 23% Cu, 710 gpt Ag from dumps. Prize is pursuing a mineralised horizon over 20 km in length in the Formation San Marcos red-bed sandstone below the Cupido Formation limestone.
  • Ethos Gold Corp. released results of the completed 16 reverse circulation (RC) drill campaign at its Purisima project in Chihuahua. At the site Ethos targeted shallow gold mineralisation in epithermal banded quartz veining and associated silicification and stockworks. Highlighted results include 3.05 m @ 0.76 gpt Au; 7.62 m @ 0.52 gpt Au; 9.14 m @ 0.43 gpt Au, 14 gpt Ag; 6.10 m @ 0.40 gpt Au, 9 gpt Ag; 15.24 m @ 0.50 gpt Au; 6.10 m @ 0.50 gpt Au. Ethos decided to terminate the Purisima option agreements.
  • Galore Resources Inc. received assays for the first two core holes at El Alamo target, part of its Dos Santos project in Zacatecas. Highlighted results comprise 3.40 m @ 3.46 gpt Au, 3 gpt Ag (including 1.20 m @ 8.89 gpt Au); 10.90 m @ 14 gpt Ag (including 1.0 m @ 88 gpt Ag); 9.15 m @ 2.02 gpt Au, 5 gpt Ag. The results also define intervals tens of meters in width with anomalous silver in the 1-10 ppm range. Galore informs these results, along with some other tracer elements, support the view that this is the upper part of an epithermal system.
  • Minera Alamos Inc. announced the identification of Gold Ridge, a new mineralised zone on its Santana property in Sonora. One third of 147 rock samples collected exhibit grades >0.10 gpt Au, ranging from 0.1 gpt to 3.6 gpt Au and 5 gpt Ag to 669 gpt Ag, with the mineralised surface covering an area of 1,000 m x 200 m located 2-3 km from the currently planned heap leach operations at Santana.
  • Advance Gold Corp. completed a 3D induced polarization (IP) geophysical survey on its Tabaqueña project in Zacatecas. The 9.6 line kilometre survey highlighted a 250 wide by 800 m long continuous chargeability anomaly.
  • One World Lithium Inc. announced the visit of Mike Rosko of Montgomery & Associates to the Salar del Diablo project in Baja California, along with the president and director of OWL. The visit is to include previous and proposed drill site locations as well as surface geological features.
  • Alien Metals Ltd. released results from recent exploration at its San Celso, Los Campos and Donovan 2 projects in Zacatecas. At San Celso, further assays include 18 anomalous samples averaging 272 gpt Ag, with a high of 1,275 gpt Ag. At Los Campos, 14 anomalous samples averaged 185 gpt Ag, with a peak of 547 gpt Ag. At Donovan 2, a sample returned 2.68 gpt Au.

ON MINING

  • Argonaut Gold Inc. completed the fourth water well at its San Agustin operation in Durango. The new well demonstrated sufficient water capacity to meet the needs of the operation to run at 30 K tonnes per day of ore, which is planned for the fourth quarter of 2019.

ON FINANCING

  • Mexican Gold Corp. granted 650 K stock options to an officer and an employee of the company (Las Minas, Veracruz).
  • Defiant Silver Corp. intends to seek TSX Venture Exchange approval to extend the expiry date of 6.19 M warrants, previously issued, by one year (San Acacio, Zacatecas).
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. granted stock options for 975 K shares to directors, officers, employees and consultants of the company (Las Chispas, Sonora).
  • Telson Mining Corp. received conditional approval for a US$12 M medium term loan from an international investment bank to finalize construction at Tahuehueto, Durango.
  • Southern Silver Exploration Corp. closed the final tranche of the previously announced private placement, for gross proceeds of $1.1 M. In total the company closed two tranches for gross proceeds of $4.2 M (Cerro Las Minitas, Durango).
  • Silver Viper Minerals Corp. intends to overtake a private placement financing to raise gross proceeds of up to $3.0 M (La Virginia, Sonora).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • GoGold Resources Inc. released results for three more diamond drill holes at Los Ricos main area and the first hole drilled at the San Juan target of its Los Ricos project in Jalisco. Highlighted drill core intervals comprise 6.2 m @ 1.17 gpt Au, 158 gpt Ag; 15.5 m @ 0.53 gpt Au, 84 gpt Ag (including 2.7 m @ 2.04 gpt Au, 217 gpt Ag); 17.1 m @ 1.59 gpt Au, 364 gpt Ag (including 5.6 m @ 3.81 gpt Au, 818 gpt Ag) at Los Ricos and 16.9 m @ 0.54 gpt Au, 68 gpt Ag (including 5.0 m @ 1.46 gpt Au, 148 gpt Ag) at the San Juan target.
  • Pan American Silver Corp. reported mineral reserves of 557 M Oz Ag, 5.1 M Oz Au, of which 141.6 M Oz Ag and 1.58 M Oz Au are in its three properties in Mexico: La Colorada, Dolores and La Bolsa. Reserves and resources all inclusive comprise 148.3 M Oz Ag, 129.8 K Oz Au at La Colorada in Zacatecas, 45.4 M Oz Ag, 1,383.5 K Oz Au at Dolores in Chihuahua and 9.6 M Oz Ag, 651.7 K Oz Au at La Bolsa in Sonora.Pan American Silver Reserves1
  • Minera Alamos Inc. received the ETJ (Estudio Tecnico Justificativo) for the Santana Gold project in Sonora. Combined with the previously approved MIA (Manifiesto de Impacto Ambiental) the company holds all the necessary rights to initiate construction of commercial scale operations at Santana.
  • Goldplay Exploration Ltd. released results from underground channel sampling in a re-opened old adit at the Faisanes target of its San Marcial project in Sinaloa. A zone of 11 m @ 155 gpt includes 6 m @ 232 gpt Ag, ending in mineralisation at the deepest sampled point within the tunnel. “The Company is reviewing plans to extend the tunnel beyond this high-grade Interval”.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Mexican Gold Corp. announced the appointment of Matt Liard as Vice President Exploration, Sonny Bernales as Senior Geologist and Michael Kanevsky as CFO. The company outsourced an updated 43-101 resource estimate with an underground cut-off grade, that should be released in October 2019 (Las Minas, Veracruz).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. entered into a binding agreement with Retec Guaru S.A. de C.V. under which CZC is to acquire the remaining 10% interest in the Plomosas mine in Chihuahua. “The purchase consideration for the acquisition of the Retec interest in MLAZ is a 1% Net Smelter Return Royalty (the “Royalty”) from the sale of zinc and lead concentrates produced from Plomosas”. Completion of the agreement is expected by 30 September 2019.
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd. announced that the Appeals Court of Chihuahua ruled in favour of the company’s subsidiary regarding a dispute over a land use agreement with a local rancher in place for its Plomosas mine in Chihuahua.

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 veinlet on an orogenic gold project in Oaxaca. Picture by Jorge Cirett

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