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

 

Quartz veins hosted in volcanic rocks

By Miguel A Heredia

During the thirty one week of the year (July 27th to August 2nd, 2020), at least 50 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with thirteen announcing financial rounds, eight communicating production and financial results, seven disclosing deals and corporate issues, six commenting on Mexican issues, six discussing social issues, five informing on exploration results, and five reporting on resources and developments. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Xavier Garcia de Quevedo, VP of Grupo Mexico, stated that the investment in the Mexican mining industry has decreased 36% between 2018 and 2019 and 68% in the last seven years. The research firm Americas Market Intelligence (AMI) stated that sustainability initiatives will boost financing for the mining sector. The dispute between the Tax Administration Service (SAT) and the Canadian mining company First Majestic is rapidly escalating to other levels. According to the Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), Mexico is the 9th world gold producer. Gold price exceeded USD $ 1,981.27 per Oz last Tuesday 28, 2020, reaching an all-time high. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Canuc recommenced exploration at its San Javier project, and Silver Spruce announced that its Phase 1 ground exploration program on the El Mezquite Au Project will be activated during the first week of August 2020.  In Sinaloa, Vizsla added a fourth drill rig at its Panuco project. In Durango, Mithril commenced a 5,000m drilling program at its Copalquin project.  ON MINING, Capstone, Coeur, Consolidated Zinc, Fresnillo, Newmont, and Starcore reported production and financial results from their Mexican operations. Sierra Metals announced restart of production at its Cusi mine in Chihuahua.  ON FINANCING, Advance Gold closed its previously announced private placement for gross proceeds of $720K (Tabasquena project, in Zacatecas).  Aztec Minerals closed the final tranche of its private placement for gross proceeds of CAD $955K (Cervantes project in Sonora). Golden Tag announced a non-brokered private placement financing led by Eric Sprott for aggregate proceeds of $5.6M (San Diego property in Durango). Impact Silver pronounced a brokered private placement financing for CAD $6M (Zacualpan Mining District in Mexico State). Kootenay announced a private placement financing for $5M (Columba project in Chihuahua). Silver Tiger closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $11M (El Tigre project in Sonora). Southern Silver reported a brokered offering of subscription receipts for aggregate gross proceeds of CAD $10M, and announced an additional CAD $4M equity raise (Cerro Las Minitas project in Durango). Stroud completed a non-brokered private placement financing for gross proceeds of $3M (Santo Domingo property in Jalisco).  Sonoro Metals announced that it increased its non-brokered private placement financing for up to $5M with the potential to add up to $3M of additional proceeds under the overallotment option. Gold Resource declared July monthly dividend to their shareholders (Arista mine in Oaxaca). Mag Silver signed an at the market offering sales agreement of common shares for gross proceed of up to USD $50M (Juanicipio project in Zacatecas). Candente applied to TSX for approval to extend the exercise period of 5M outstanding share purchase warrants issued pursuant to the private placement completed on August 12, 2016. (El Oro property in Mexico State). Monarca Minerals announced that it is proposing to settle an aggregate of approximately $380.6K owing to certain officers and directors and services providers through the issuance of an aggregate of approximately 7,612,000 common shares at an issue price of CAD $0.05 (Tejamen project in Durango).   ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Alamos Gold reported results of a positive internal economic study and announced construction decision on its fully permitted La Yaqui Grande project located in the Mulatos mining district. GoGold announced initial mineral resource estimate at its Los Ricos project in Jalisco, and updated the mineral reserve at the Parral Tailings operation, and the mineral resource estimate at its Esmeralda Tailings project located near Parral, Chihuahua. Consolidated Zinc advised that the environmental authority of Mexico has granted their approval for refurbishment of its Plomosas plant and construction and operation of the tailings storage facility. Ridgestone entered into a toll milling agreement to process bulk samples from historic dumps of the Alaska vein at its Rebeico project in Sonora.  ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Brigadier announced the appointment of its new special adviser (Picachos project in Sinaloa). Santacruz signed an option agreement with Grupo Peñoles to acquire the Zimapan property and related assets located in Zimapan, Hidalgo for a total consideration of USD $20M. Minera Alamos hired new VP project development and appointed new COO (Santana project in Sonora). Consolidated Zinc presented results from its annual general meeting of shareholders, and advised that a new constitution was approved and adopted by shareholders (Plomosas mine in Chihuahua). Candente launched the “CEO Verified” Discussion Forum on AGORACOM (El Oro property in Mexico State). Telson provided an update on filing annual 2019 audited and Q1, 2020 financial statements (Tahuehueto project in Durango).  ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, The Municipal Water and Sanitation Board of Chihuahua (JMAS) is extracting water from the Esmeralda and Arbolito mines to feed a dam in Parral Chihuahua. Minera Peñasquito supplies water to 5 thousand people of the communities of Cedros, Mesas, Charcos, Nuevo Peñasco and Palmas. Minera Saucito, a subsidiary of Fresnillo plc, received international certification for its commitment to the health and safety of its collaborators. Minera Penmont (Fresnillo plc), implemented a health model for the safety of its workers in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic (La Herradura mine in Sonora). Compañía Minera Cuzcatlán (Fortuna Silver) dissociated itself from the alleged environmental incident and reiterated its commitment to the communities in which it operates (San Jose mine, Oaxaca).

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Xavier Garcia de Quevedo, VP of Grupo Mexico, stated that the investment in the Mexican mining industry has decreased 36% between 2018 and 2019 and 68% in the last seven years, leading the country to fall in the international ranking of investment destination from position 5 to 29.
  • The research firm Americas Market Intelligence (AMI), concluded that sustainability initiatives will boost financing for the mining sector. This would represent an opportunity to transform the industry and create new business models in a more economic capital cycle.
  • The dispute between the Tax Administration Service (SAT) and the Canadian mining company First Majestic is rapidly escalating to other levels. The Attorney General’s Office, Carlos Romero Aranda, warned the taxpayer that it failed to accumulate the real income derived from the sale of silver to its related party Silver Trading Barbados Limited. First Majestic draws disputes with the SAT since the last administration because it is questioned what it paid as a result of the purchase of Primero Mining, owner of the San Dimas silver mine, in Durango. The mining company filed a lawsuit against Mexico in May under the Free Trade Agreement, prompting Andrés Manuel López Obrador to ask the Canadian government to enter into conciliation. But what is unheard of is that while the President asks his counterpart Justin Trudeau to sensitize First Majestic to pay about $ 180 million, there is already a tax lawsuit.
  • According to the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), Mexico is the 9th world gold producer. In 2019 the country produced 2.4M Oz Au with a value of approximately USD $2.87B.
  • Gold price exceeded USD $ 1,981.27 per Oz last Tuesday 28, 2020, reaching an all-time high. Investors bet on the precious metal, considered as a safe value amid uncertainty by the tensions between the United States and China and the recovery of the COVID-19 pandemic. This move is common among investors to protect themselves from risk when markets fall.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Canuc Resources Corporation, recommenced exploration at its San Javier project in Sonora. The company announced that it has initiated a geological mapping and systematic sampling program along the 3Km structural corridor of the San Javier Ag-Au project. Focus of the program is to locate and evaluate large scale breccia zones, particularly those that occur at the intersection of known veins and crosscutting fault structures.
  • Silver Spruce Resources Inc., announced that its Phase 1 ground exploration program on the El Mezquite Au Project will be activated during the first week of August 2020. Silver Spruce plans to conduct geological mapping on the entire property and additional rock sampling. It also will use the Terraspec hyperspectral tool for definition of alteration intensity of silicate, carbonate and hydrous oxide species. The mapping also will document any structural data which may be correlated with the known geophysical trends, and applied to the interpretation of the property-wide mapping. In addition, the company also will initiate scheduling for the requisite environmental permitting for drilling access and pads.
  • Vizsla Resources Corp., added a fourth drill rig at its Panuco project in Sinaloa, to test new targets on the Napoleon, Cordon del Oro and Animas vein corridors.
  • Mithril Resources Limited commenced a fully funded 5,000m drilling program at its Copalquin project which is expected to run until the end of 2020. This program has already started at the high-grade Au-Ag La Soledad-Refugio-Cometa targets, and will move to other targets such as Los Pinos, Los Reyes, and San Manuel-La Constancia.

ON MINING

  • Capstone Mining Corp., reported production results from its Cozamin mine in Zacatecas for the period Q2, 2020. The company produced 8.3M Lb Cu at a cash cost of $0.98 per Lb.
  • Coeur Mining Inc., released Q2, 2020 production and financial results from its Palmarejo mine in Chihuahua. The company processed 269,641 tonnes of 2.18 g/t Au and 139 g/t Ag, with metallurgical recoveries of 86% and 72.2% respectively, to produce 15.2K Oz Au and 867K Oz Ag. Costs applicable to sales were USD $686 and $8.13 per Oz Au and Ag respectively.
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd., mined 2,575 tonnes of 16.6% Zn, 9.5% Pb, and 66 g/t Ag and processed 2,201 tons of 16.6% Zn, 9.2% Pb, and 64 g/t Ag to produce 515.9K Lb Zn, 185.2K Lb Pb, and 30 Oz Ag, at a cash cost of $0.84 per Lb Zn. The company sold in this quarter 541 tonnes of Zn concentrate and 201 tonnes of Pb concentrate.
  • Fresnillo plc., announced production results from their Mexican operations for the period Hi, 2020. At Fresnillo mine, Zacatecas, the company processed 1,194,905 tonnes of 0.72 g/t Au, 196 g/t Ag, 1.14% Pb, and 2.12% Zn to produce 19.7K Oz Au, 6.8M Oz Ag, 25.3M Lb Pb, and 39.1M Lb Zn. At Saucito mine in Zacatecas, it processed 1,385,385 tonnes of 1.21 g/t Au, 210 g/t Ag, 1.02% Pb, and 1.84% Zn to produce 41.6K Oz Au, 8.14M Oz, 26.4M Lb Pb, and 39.12M Lb Zn. At Pyrites Plant in Zacatecas, the company processed 80,502 tonnes of 2.11 g/t Au and 252 g/t Ag to produce 1,795 Oz Au and 505K Oz Ag. At Cienega in Durango, it processed 657,893 tonnes of 1.65 g/t Au, 163 g/t Ag, 0.75% Pb, and 1.24% Zn to produce 32.4K Oz Au, 2.97M Oz Ag, 7.14M Lb Pb, and 10.8M Lb Zn. At San Julian Veins in Chihuahua-Durango border, the company processed 621,973 tonnes of 1.58 g/t Au and 115g/t Ag to produce 30.2K Oz Au and 2.1M Oz Ag while at San Julian Disseminated Ore Body, it processed 1,101,489 tonnes of 0.08 g/t Au, 137 g/t Ag, 0.39% Pb, and 1.1% Zn to produce 1,293 Oz Au, 4.15M Oz Ag, 7.5M Lb Pb, and 19.8M Lb Zn. At Herradura mine in Sonora. 8,130,282 tonnes of 0.82 g/t Au and 4 g/t Ag were processed to produce 205.7K Oz Au and 824K Oz Ag. At Noche Buena mine in Sonora, the company processed 3,330,054 tonnes of 0.54 g/t Au and 0.4 g/t Ag to produce 48.7K Oz Au and 19K Oz Ag. Consolidated results of the company were 383.3K Oz Au, 26.8M Oz Ag (including 1.3M Oz silverstream), 66.3M Lb Pb, and 108.9M Lb Zn. Total revenues of USD $ 1,054.2M, adjusted revenues of USD $1,125.1M, cost of sales of USD $733M, exploration expenses of USD $50.7M, and EBIDTA of USD $469.9M, and a profit for the period of USD $56.5M.
  • Newmont Corporation reported that 510K Oz Au, 28M Oz Ag, 190M Lb Pb, and 360M Lb Zn (880 Oz AuEq) were produced at its Peñasquito mine in Zacatecas during Q2, 2020, at cash cost and AISC of $565 and $770 per Oz Au produced respectively.
  • Starcore International Mines Ltd., released year end 2020 results from its San Martin mine in Queretaro. The company processed 229,800 tonnes of 1.82 g/t Au and 30.5 g/t Ag with metallurgical grades of 87.7% and 54.4% respectively, to produce 11.8K Oz Au and 121.8K Oz Ag (13-1K Oz AuEq) at cash and AISC of USD $66 and USD $1,149 per tonne milled respectively.
  • Sierra Metals Inc., announced restart of production at its Cusi mine in Chihuahua since it had remained in care and maintenance since April 1, 2020, due to the government-mandated shutdown to contain the advancement of COVID-19.

ON FINANCING

  • Advance Gold Corp closed its previously announced private placement for gross proceeds of $720K. Net proceed will be used for drilling its Tabasquena project in Zacatecas, as well as for general corporate purposes.
  • Aztec Minerals Corp., closed the final tranche of its private placement equity financing for gross proceeds of CAD $955K. Part of the net proceeds will be used to conduct exploration work on its Cervantes project in Sonora, and for general working capital purposes.
  • Golden Tag Resources Ltd., announced a non-brokered private placement financing led by Eric Sprott for aggregate proceeds of $5.6M. The offering is subject to an over-allotment option allowing Golden Tag to increase it to $7M, if fully exercised. Net proceeds will be used to fund advancement of its San Diego project in Durango, and for working capital and general corporate purposes.
  • Impact Silver Corp., pronounced a brokered private placement financing for CAD $6M (Zacualpan Mining District, Mexico State). Net proceeds will be used for exploration, development and general corporate purposes.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc., announced a private placement financing for gross proceeds of $5M. Net proceeds will be used for working capital requirements and other general corporate purposes (Columba and Copalito projects in Chihuahua and Sinaloa states respectively).
  • Silver Tiger Metals Inc., closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $11M, including $4M from Eric Sprott. Net proceeds will be used to continue exploration work on its El Tigre project in Sonora, and for general working capital purposes.
  • Southern Silver Exploration Corp., reported a brokered offering of subscription receipts for aggregate gross proceeds of CAD $10M, and announced an additional CAD $4M equity raise. Net proceeds will be used to acquire an additional 60% indirect working interest (for a 100% indirect ownership) in the company’s flagship Cerro Las Minitas in Durango, and for general working capital purposes.
  • Stroud Resources Ltd., completed a non-brokered private placement financing for gross proceeds of $3M. Net proceeds will be used to advance the company´s exploration properties located in Mexico and for general working capital purposes (Santo Domingo project in Jalisco).
  • Sonoro Metals Corp., announced that it increased its non-brokered private placement financing for up to $5M with the potential to add up to $3M of additional proceeds under the overallotment option. Net proceeds will be used principally to fund company´s previously announced exploration and development plans at its Cerro Caliche project in Sonora and project property maintenance payments, and secondarily for corporate and general administrative expenses.
  • Gold Resource Corporation, declared July monthly dividend of one third of a cent per common share to their shareholders (Arista mine in Oaxaca).
  • Mag Silver Corp., signed an at the market offering sales agreement of common shares for gross proceed of up to USD $50M (Juanicipio project in Zacatecas). Net proceeds will be primarily used to fund the completion of construction at its Juanicipio project in Zacatecas, with any remainder to fund further exploration at Juanicipio and other projects, and for working capital and general corporate purposes.
  • Candente Gold Corp., applied to TSX for approval to extend the exercise period of 5M outstanding share purchase warrants issued pursuant to the private placement completed on August 2016. The amended expiry date was August 12th, 2020 and if the extension is approved, the new expiration date will be August 12th, 2021. (El Oro property in Mexico State).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Alamos Gold Inc., reported results of the positive internal economic study completed on its fully permitted La Yaqui Grande project located in the Mulatos mining district and announced that it will begin the development of the project. The Mineral Reserves as of December 2019 of La Yaqui Grande deposit are 19.2M tonnes of 1.17 g/t Au and 16 g/t Ag, containing 724K Oz Au and 9.8M Oz Ag. Additionally, Measured and Indicated Resources are 1.3M tonnes of 1.01 g/t Au and 8 g/t Ag, containing 43K Oz Au and 340K Oz Ag. Highlights of the economic study include an average Au production of 123K Oz Au per year; AISC of $578 per Oz Au; NPV of $165M at a 5% discount rate and an after tax IRR of 41% using a base case Au cost of $1,450 per Oz or  a NPV of  $260M at a 5% discount rate and an after tax IRR of 58% using a base case Au cost of $1,750 per Oz; mine life of five years; and an initial capital of $137M to be spent over a two year period starting in H2, 2020. From the total investment, between USD $15-$20M will be spent during 2020 and the rest during 2021 and the first semester of 2022. Part of the resources will be used to build a heap leach pad, waste dump, water treatment plant, as well as the installation of a crushing circuit.
  • GoGold Resources Inc., announced initial mineral resource estimate at its Los Ricos project in Jalisco, and updated the mineral reserve at the Parral Tailings operation, and the mineral resource estimate at its Esmeralda Tailings project located near Parral, Chihuahua. At Los Ricos South, measured & indicated resource are 10M tonnes of 0.91 g/t Au and 119 g/t Ag (2.27 g/t AuEq or 199 g/t AgEq) for a total of 293K Oz Au and 38.05 M Oz Ag (728K Oz AuEq or 63.7M Oz AgEq), and inferred resources of 3.3M tonnes of 0.88 g/t Au and 112 g/t Ag (2.17 g/t AuEq or 190 g/t AgEq) for a total of 93K Oz Au and 11.78 M Oz Ag (227K Oz AuEq or 19.9M Oz AgEq). Los Ricos South mineral resource is amenable to open pit and bulk underground mining methods, and will form the base of a PEA expected to be completed by the end of 2020. At Parral Tailings, proven + probable reserves are 15.4M tonnes of 0.34 g/t Au and 33 g/t Ag (0.72 g/t AuEq or 64 g/t AgEq) for a total of 171K Oz Au and 16.6M Oz Ag (358K Oz AuEq or 31.6M Oz AgEq). At La Esmeralda Tailings, measured and indicated resources are 5.72M tonnes of 0.26 g/t Au and 49 g/t Ag (72 g/t AgEq) for a total of 48.4K Oz Au and 9.1M Oz Ag (13.3M Oz AgEq).
  • Consolidated Zinc Limited advised that the environmental authority of Mexico has granted their approval for refurbishment of its Plomosas plant in Chihuahua, and construction and operation of the tailings storage facility (TSF). The company is finalizing the costing for the plant refit and TSF build and expect to advise the findings of the study this quarter.
  • Ridgestone Mining Inc., entered into a toll milling agreement to process bulk samples from historic dumps of the Alaska vein at its Rebeico project in Sonora. Highlights include a fixed-price toll mining agreement with nearby Real Viejo flotation mill for up to 300 tonnes per day, and bulk samples planned to process historical surface dump material grading up to 16.85 g/t Au and 2.70% Cu. In addition, Ridgestone has also received bids from mining contractors to rehabilitate historical underground workings along the Alaska vein to facilitate underground and bulk sampling of zones where drill-hole intervals assayed 36.1g/t Au and 1.22% Cu over 1.5m, and 8.31gT Au and 2.41% Cu over 3.25m in 2018.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Brigadier Gold Ltd., announced the appointment of its new special adviser (Picachos project in Sinaloa).
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd., signed an option agreement with Grupo Peñoles to acquire the Zimapan property and related assets located in Zimapan, Hidalgo for a total consideration of USD $20M. Assets to be acquired pursuant to the Transaction include: The Zimapan mill facility which is a 75,000 dry metric tonnes (DMT) per month facility with zinc, lead and copper circuits; surface and underground infrastructure including electrical and other necessary infrastructure to carry on day to day operations; and 34 mining concessions covering an area of 5,139 hectares. To date, 14 mineral zones have been identified that are characterized as polymetallic replacement mineralization of Pliocene age. Within the mineral zones, Ag, Pb, Zn, and Cu minerals have preferentially replaced the carbonate host rocks and pre-existing skarn bodies to produce disseminated, semi-massive sulphide and massive sulphide bodies that occur in proximity to monzonitic intrusions and quartz-feldspar porphyry dikes.
  • Minera Alamos Inc., hired new VP project development and appointed new COO (Santana project in Sonora).
  • Consolidated Zinc Ltd., presented results from its annual general meeting of shareholders and advised that a new constitution was approved and adopted by shareholders (Plomosas mine in Chihuahua).
  • Candente Gold Corp., launched the “CEO Verified” Discussion Forum on AGORACOM. The forum will serve as the company’s primary social media platform to interact with both shareholders and the broader investment community in a fully moderated environment  (El Oro property in Mexico State).
  • Monarca Minerals Inc., announced that it is proposing to settle an aggregate of approximately $380.6K owing to certain officers and directors and services providers through the issuance of an aggregate of approximately 7,612,000 common shares at an issue price of CAD $0.05. The amount to be settled includes approximately $202K out of $350K in accrued directors’ fees and management and consulting fees owing to the company’s directors and officers, as the case maybe. (Tejamen project in Durango).
  • Telson Mining Corporation, provided an update on filing annual 2019 audited and Q1, 2020 financial statements. Telson expects to file the required annual and Q1, 2020 financials an MD & A by the July 30, 2020 deadline. (Tahuehueto project in Durango).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • The Municipal Water and Sanitation Board of Chihuahua (JMAS) is extracting water from the Esmeralda and Arbolito mines to feed a dam in Parral Chihuahua. The dam is currently at 13% of its capacity and in order not to cause ecological damage, it cannot be left dry. Water extracted from the mines also guarantees supply to a sector of the city.
  • Minera Peñasquito supplies water to 5 thousand people of the communities of Cedros, Mesas, Charcos, Nuevo Peñasco and Palmas. Regarding make water safe to drink, the company has four treatment plants, one inside the Peñasquito mine and three more outside, in the Cedros, Mesas and Charcos communities, from which potable water is distributed to the aforementioned localities.
  • Minera Saucito, a subsidiary of Fresnillo plc, received international certification for its commitment to the health and safety of its collaborators. The ISO 45001 Certificate: “Occupational health and safety management systems at work” was obtained from the international company BSI Group, based in the United Kingdom, whose services are: evaluating, certifying and training operating processes of different industries such as: mining, pharmaceutical, aerospace, entertainment, among others. The model stands out for its objective of reducing risks and injuries to collaborators derived from the processes associated with the exploration and exploitation of minerals. Minera Saucito is the first Fresnillo plc Unit to achieve this certification.
  • Minera Penmont (Fresnillo plc), implemented a health model for the safety of its workers in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. The company has taken a series of multidisciplinary medical and health activities aimed at promoting a culture of disease prevention and control, and the elimination of risk factors at work. The effectiveness and implementation of this type of model is recognized by the World Health Organization and allows comprehensive care within the mine that is committed to the well-being and safety of the workforce.
  • Compañía Minera Cuzcatlán (Fortuna Silver), dissociated itself from the alleged environmental incident and reiterated its commitment to the communities in which it operates, following up on the community’s concern about physical changes in the water of two recently built grazing ponds in the Ocotillo area, in the municipality of Magdalena Ocotlán. Later on, the Federal Attorney for Environmental Protection (PROFEPA) announced that it carried out an inspection of the built grazing ponds in the Ocotillo area and demarcated mining company from any responsibility for the damages in the water pools in Ocotlán (San Jose mine in Oaxaca).

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

On the picture above, quartz veins in a low sulphidation epithermal system in a prospect in Oaxaca, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

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

193By Jorge Cirett

During the 30th week of the year (July 20th to July 26th, 2020), at least 37 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. To note, six of those were exploration updates and strikingly twelve more were related to financing. These are either opening or closing rounds, and it is difficult to assign the total amount to any given week, but the announcements on this period add up to $23.4 M and C$168.5 M (dominated by Argonaut’s C$126.5 M and Discovery’s C$35 M). Clearly there is a spike in funds flowing to mining companies, probably supported by stronger metal prices on fears of an underperforming economy and heightened global tensions. ON MEXICO ISSUES, exploration is picking up in the country after the end of the Coronavirus lockdown, with several companies performing drilling programs. Alacero warned on excessive steel importation. ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Carlyle Commodities commenced its field program on Cecilia. In Chihuahua, Radius updated on the geology and geochemistry of its Plata Verde project, an interesting play. In Sinaloa, Kootenay Silver released good drilling results on its Copalito project. In Durango, Mithril Resources is about to drill Coplaquín. In Guanajuato, VanGold Mining is to start an underground drilling campaign at El Pinguico. In Zacatecas, Defiance Silver resumed its field program at San Acacio. ON MINING, Premier Gold and Fresnillo PLC presented Q2 2020 reports. Premier Gold is reducing its daily output and workforce at Mercedes. Peñasquito informed on its dealing with the Coronavirus pandemic. ON FINANCING, twelve companies made announcements regarding the opening or closing of financing rounds, or financing related news: Canasil Resources ($1.25 M), Orex Minerals ($1.1 M), VanGold Mining ($2.45 M), Golden Minerals ($7.5 M), VanGold Mining ($3.8 M), Sonoro Metals (C$5 M), Monarca Minerals (C$2 M), Discovery Metals (C$35 M), Advance Gold ($725 K), Argonaut Gold (C$126.5 M), Almaden Minerals ($2 M), Peal Mexico acquired $3.85 M of Magna Gold shares. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Discovery Metals released drill results from its Cordero project. Golden Tag Resources informed on strategic growth opportunities with its San Diego project in Durango. GoGold Resources released assay results from Los Ricos South project in Jalisco. GR Silver reported results from 17 historic drill holes from its Plomosas project in Sinaloa. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Prime Mining completed the acquisition of the Los Reyes project in Sinaloa. Santacruz Silver sold its Zacatecas properties to Zacatecas Silver Corp.. Evrim Resources sold its La Lola and Cumaro projects to a Mexican private company for an NSR. Redstar Gold acquired all shares of Heliodor Metals, which holds the Oso Negro, La Lola and Cumaro projects in Sonora. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Alamos Gold Peñasquito, Grupo Mexico and Fresnillo PLC donated medical equipment to communities near its operations. A virtual immersion program for kids was held in San Luis Potosí.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Exploration is picking up speed in Mexico after the end of the Coronavirus induced lockdown. Drilling programs are beginning or already underway at Cordero, Chihuahua (Discovery Metals), Pánuco in Sinaloa (Vizsla Resources), Álamos Silver in Sonora (Minaurum), Los Reyes in Sinaloa (Prime Mining), Las Minas in Veracruz (Mexican Gold), Cerro Caliche in Sonora (Sonoro Metals), Copalquín in Durango (Mithril Resources), Rodeo in Durango (Golden Minerals) and Nora in Durango (Canasil Resources).
  • Gold and silver prices are closing the week with highs not seen in several years. Gold was above $1,900 hundred an ounce by late Friday, while silver stood above $22.70 an ounce. The Coronavirus crisis, with the foreseen economic stimulus packages by several countries and the souring relations between China and the United States are seen as the reason for the continued upward trend.
  • Alacero (Asociación Latinoamericana de Acero) warned against the excessive importation of steel, in a moment when sales are just recovering.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Defiance Silver Corp. announced the resumption of its field program that includes core re-logging, surface and underground mapping, geochemistry and surface diamond drilling at its San Acacio project in Zacatecas.
  • VanGold Mining Corp. intends to initiate an underground drilling campaign to target extensions of high-grade mineralization at its Pinguico project in Guanajuato. The company also is to clear the El Pinguico shaft and sample the bottom of the backfill, with the aim to ship it to a nearby mill for processing.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc. released assay results from three more holes at its Copalito project in Sinaloa. Core length highlighted intervals comprise 56.0 m @ 58 gpt Ag (including 22 m @ 106 gpt Ag, which include 5.0 m @ 250 gpt Ag, 0.247 gpt Au); 10.3 m @ 80 gpt Ag, 0.90 gpt Au; 7.1 m @ 30 gpt Ag, 0.31 gpt Au; 13.1 m @ 347 gpt Ag, 0.22 gpt Au (including 3.2 m @ 1,297 gpt Ag, 0.28 gpt Au, which includes 1.0 m @ 2,830 gpt Ag, 0.14 gpt Au). To date 1,600 m of the 3,000 m program have been completed.
  • Radius Gold Inc. released results of recent detailed rock chip sampling and geological mapping at its Plata Verde project in Chihuahua. Multiple sub-horizontal breccia zones cemented by barite-calcite-silver chlorides, up to 75 m in diameter have been sampled in different levels, bounded by stockwork and fracture fill of massive to crustiform banded barite-calcite with silver chlorides, sulphosalts and native silver, and disseminated mineralization of sulphosalts within the volcanic host rock. The mineralization is exposed on the sides of a small creek, and covered by felsic volcanic rocks in three directions. The average silver value of 255 samples is 156 gpt Ag, while 74 samples on the breccias average 258 gpt Ag.
  • Mithril Resources Ltd. presented its quarterly activities report, in which the acquisition of Sun Minerals Pty Ltd. was completed, $5.92 M were raised and the drilling equipment moved to site at the Copalquín project in Durango. The next move is the completion of a 5,000 m diamond drilling campaign at Copalquín.
  • Carlyle Commodities Corp. mobilized crews for exploration of its Cecilia project in Sonora. “The Phase 1 exploration program has been designed to refine targeting at Cerro Magallanes which is a large rhyolite flow dome complex, host of several historic workings and multiple high-grade gold mineral occurrences”. Programmed work includes property scale mapping, a detailed structural mapping, processing and interpretation of Aster images, surface sampling and a 10 line-km induced polarization survey. Road rehabilitation and drill pad building to support a drill program on the phase 2 is also contemplated.

ON MINING

  • Premier Gold Ltd. reported production results for the second quarter of 2020. Its Mercedes mine operations in Sonora were halted at the end of March due to the Coronavirus pandemic, and a phased re-start commenced in June. An optimization plan was developed, including the consolidation of five mine portals to one, reducing the mining rate form to 2,000 to 1,200 tonnes per day and operation of the processing plant on a campaign basis, reduction of 40% of the employee base and 75% of the mining related contractors.
  • Fresnillo PLC presented its second quarter 2020 production report. During the period the company produced 13.6 M Oz Ag, 184.4 K Oz Au, 16,180 tonnes Pb, 26,726 tonnes Zn. On exploration, 135,000 m were drilled at the mines, as part of a 440,000 m program to convert resources into reserves. Additionally 39,000 m of exploration drilling was carried out as part of the 228,000 m program at projects. Interesting results were obtained at Fresnillo and Guanajuato, while negotiations continue with communities in other projects to obtain access for drilling. Fresnillo 2Q 2020 Production1
  • Minera Peñasquito informed 15,000 COVID tests have been applied since the re-commencement of activities on June 1, resulting seven positive cases during the past week and the protocol was followed to identify all persons they had contact with. The use of face masks has been agreed with the union, on all public spaces, with the exception of the dining room.

ON FINANCING

  • Peal Mexico S.A. de C.V. announced the acquisition of 11 M shares of Magna Gold Corp. under the terms of a settlement for an aggregate deemed consideration of $3.85 M in an agreement to settle an existing arbitration proceeding between the parties in relation to Magna’s San Francisco mine in Sonora. Peal now owns 16.9% of Magna’s issued and outstanding shares.
  • Canasil Resources Inc. announced a non-brokered private placement aiming to raise up to $1 M, same placement that was oversubscribed for total gross proceeds of $1.25 M (Nora, Durango).
  • Orex Minerals Inc. closed the final tranche of its non-brokered private placement for aggregate gross proceeds of $1.11 M, bringing the total aggregate proceeds to $2.1 M. (Sandra, Durango).
  • VanGold Mining Corp. has arranged a non-brokered private placement financing to raise up to $2.45 M (El Pinguico, Guanajuato).
  • Golden Minerals Co. is increasing its previously announced offering to raise up to $7.5 M in gross proceeds (Rodeo, Durango).
  • VanGold Mining Corp. expanded due to increased demand the size of its non-brokered private placement financing, for gross proceeds of $3.8 M (El Pinguico, Guanajuato).
  • Sonoro Metals Corp. is to undertake a non-brokered private placement to raise up to C$5 M in gross proceeds (Cerro Caliche, Sonora).
  • Monarca Minerals Inc. announced a non-brokered private placement to raise up to C$2 M (San Jose, Chihuahua).
  • Discovery Metals Corp. arranged a non-brokered institutional private placement to raise C$35 M, “ Eric Sprott has agreed to invest C$15,000,000 in the Private Placement,” (Cordero, Chihuahua).
  • Advance Gold Corp. announced it proposes to increase to $725 K its previously announced non-brokered private placement (Tabasqueña, Zacatecas).
  • Argonaut Gold Inc. closed its previously announced bought deal public offering for aggregate gross proceeds of C$126.5 M, thorough a syndicate of underwriters led by BMO Capital Markets (San Agustín, Durango).
  • Almaden Minerals Ltd. announced a proposed non-brokered private placement financing intended to raise up to $2 M (Ixtaca, Puebla).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Discovery Metals Corp. released results from eight holes at its Cordero project in Chihuahua. Highlighted core length intercepts comprise 5.3 m @ 225 gpt Ag 0.7 gpt Au, 5.1% Pb, 5.5% Zn (including 1.4 m @ 700 gpt Ag, 0.74 gpt Au, 16.1% Pb, 14.0% Zn); 4.3 m @ 365 gpt Ag, 0.55 gpt Au, 2.1% Pb, 4.0% Zn (including 1.5 m @ 489 gpt Ag, 0.82 gpt Au, 2.9% Pb, 11.1% Zn); 120.4 m @ 30 gpt Ag, 0.11 gpt Au, 0.4% Pb, 1.5% Zn; 134.6 m @ 23 gpt Ag, 0.05 gpt Au, 0.5% Pb, 1.1% Zn; 44.8 m @ 35 gpt Ag, 0.10 gpt Au, 0.7% Pb, 1.7% Zn; 0.8 m @ 1,992 gpt Ag, 0.79 gpt Au, 16.1% Pb, 14.2% Zn.
  • Golden Tag Resources Ltd. informed on strategic growth opportunities with its San Diego project in Durango. The project with 31.6 M Oz in indicated resources is fully permitted for drilling four key high priority target zones: 1849, Fernandez, Trovador and Arroyo. Drill intercepts in the Fernandez zone include 212 m @ 54 gpt Ag, 0.5% Pb, 1.3% Zn; 238 m q 64 gpt Ag, 0.8% Pb, 1.6% Zn; 257 m @ 66 gpt Ag, 0.7% Pb, 1.7% Zn; 186 m @ 53 gpt Ag, 0.5% Pb, 1.2% Zn. Mergers, strategic, corporate and project acquisitions are being evaluated, with a focus on silver.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. released the assay results from six diamond drill holes at the Los Ricos South project. Two holes were drilled at Rascadero, two at San Juan and two more at Las Lamas. Highlighted core length intersections comprise: 0 m @ 0.25 gpt Au, 59 gpt Ag; 16.7 m @ 1.32 gpt Au, 268 gpt Au (including 5.4 m @ 3.33 gpt Au, 673 gpt Ag); 21.5 m @ 0.21 gpt Au, 26 gpt Ag; 7.7 m @ 0.45 gpt Au, 65 gpt Ag; 8.9 m @ 0.8 gpt Au, 31 gpt Ag.
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. reported high-grade results from 17 historical drill holes from the San Juan area of its Plomosas property in Sinaloa. These results define a mineralized strike length of up to 1,000 m. Some of the highlighted true width intercepts comprise: 3.8 m @ 563 gpt Ag, 0.3 gpt Au, 1.6% Pb, 2.7% Zn; 2.5 m @ 846 gpt Ag, 0.8 gpt Au, 2.7% Pb, 6.0% Zn (including 0.9 m @ 2,300 gpt Ag, 2.1 gpt Au, 7.6 % Pb, 16.3% Zn); 3.3 m @ 335 gpt Ag, 0.1 gpt Au, 0.1% Pb, 0.2% Zn; 5.6 m @ 363 gpt Ag, 0.1 gpt Au, 0.8% Pb, 1.9% Zn; 10.7 m @ 226 gpt Ag, 0.3% Pb, 0.3% Zn; 2.8 m @ 141 gpt Ag, 0.3% Pb, 0.7% Zn.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Prime Mining Corp. completed the acquisition of the Los Reyes project (formerly Guadalupe de Los Reyes) in Sinaloa. The company made a US$1.5 M payment to Vista Gold Inc., after which Vista no longer retains two separate 2% net smelter royalties on production from open-pit or underground mining, or a back-in right to assume a 49% non-carried interest in any underground mining. “Prime is required to pay Vista an additional US$2,100,000 through two payments of: (i) US$1,100,000 no later than six months from the Acquisition Date; and (ii) US$1,000,000 no later than twelve months from the Acquisition Date. If the Company fails to make the two payments, Vista’s net smelter royalties and back-in right will be reinstated”.
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. entered into an agreement with Zacatecas Silver Corp. for the sale of a 100% interest in the Zacatecas properties for consideration of US$1.5 M and the issuance of 5 M shares of Zacatecas Silver. The Zacatecas properties comprise 149 mining concessions totaling approximately 7,826 ha in the Fresnillo Silver Belt, and include the Panuco deposit, which has an inferred resource of 3.95 M tonnes @ 153 gpt Ag, or 19.5 M Oz Ag, remaining open along strike.
  • Evrim Resources Corp. entered into an agreement with a private Mexican company to sell two non-core exploration properties in exchange of NSR royalties. La Lola is a 6,301 ha land package that covers the La Barra fluorite vein and El Cumaro is a 620 ha claim covering a low sulfidation epithermal field. Evrim will transfer 100% interest in the La Lola and Cumaro properties in exchange for 2% and 1% NSR respectively, and a 0.5 % NSR right on 7,053 ha of the Picachos claims, should the claims be acquired by the Mexican private company. Half of the La Lola NSR can be bought for US$1.75 M and half of the El Cumaro NSR by US$1.0 M.
  • Redstar Gold Corp. entered into a binding agreement to acquire 100% of the shares of Heliodor Metals Ltd., in which Redstar has agreed to issue 86.5 M shares for 100% of the outstanding Heliodor shares. Heliodor has interest in: the Oso Negro 1,500 ha project, which has three main veins and no drilling; The La Lola 5,400 ha land package which contains the 5 km long La Barra epithermal vein (see previous entry under Evrim); Cumaro “is the downthrown block of a large low sulphidation vein field”. Redstar has agreed to conduct a C$6.0 M private placement

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Alamos Gold donated medical equipment to the Sahuaripa municipality in Sonora.
  • Peñasquito donated medical equipment to several authority bodies in Zacatecas.
  • Grupo Mexico donated protection equipment to general hospitals in Cuautla and Axochiapan in Morelos.
  • The Instituto de Metalurgia de San Luis Potosí carried out a virtual immersion program for kids.
  • Fresnillo PLC continues to provide cleaning and medical supplies in Guadalupe y Calvo (Chihuahua), Caborca (Sonora) and Fresnillo (Zacatecas).

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: Silicified rocks signaling the paleo water table of a low sulfidation epithermal system in Queretaro. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

193

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

 

Visible Gold in a high sulphidation epithermal system

By Miguel A Heredia

During the twenty seven week of the year (June 29th to July 5tt, 2020), at least 41 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with eleven disclosing deals and corporate issues, nine announcing financial rounds, eight commenting on Mexican issues, six discussing on social issues, three informing on exploration results, two reporting on resources and developments, and two communicating production and financial results. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Miguel Angel Lucero Olivas, Senator of the Labour Party (PT), submitted for the consideration of the plenary, a proposal with Point of Agreement at the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation in regards to the 34 constitutional controversies promoted by the Government of the state of Chihuahua and various municipalities of Chihuahua, Sonora, Zacatecas and San Luis Potosí, regarding the mining Fund. Gerardo Duran Alarcon, Director of the Chihuahua Mining Cluster estimated that the mining industry projects a drop between 17-20% in production and 10% in exports during the current year compared to 2019.  Francisco Quiroga Fernandez reported that authorities of the Undersecretariat of Mines of the Ministry of Economy (SE), have been carrying out verification tours to corroborate compliance with health protocols. Alfredo Tijerina Guajardo, Director of the Mining Development Trust Fund (Fideicomiso de Fomento Minero) (FIFOMI) announced that it is granting resources to support exploitation work of small and medium sized mining firms. Javier Villarreal Gamez, Undersecretary of Labor of the National Committee of the Confederation of Workers of Mexico (CTM) stated that the government must give security to investment in mining. Francisco Quiroga Fernandez, Undersecretary of Mining stated that the Mining Industry in Mexico has made a great effort to maintain jobs and wages during the pandemic. According to the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), mining and metallurgical production fell 25.1% in April 2020 compared to April 2019.  ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Sonoro Metals announced plans for a 6,000m 2020 Phase 1 drill program at its Cerro Caliche project. In Chihuahua, Radius reported high-grade surface sampling results from its Amalia project. In Durango, Canasil announced the commencement of an initial core drill program to test Ag-Au targets at its Nora project.  ON MINING, Consolidated Zinc advised that it has returned to pre-COVID-19 production rates at its Plomosas mine and Aldama processing plant in Chihuahua. Gold Resource announced the milestones of a decade of production, generating over $1 billion in revenue and distributing over $114M in shareholder dividends from its Oaxaca Mining Unit in Mexico. ON FINANCING, Golden Goliath announced a private placement to raise gross proceeds of up to $2.5M (San Timoteo project, Chihuahua). Mag Silver entered into a sell agreement for gross proceeds of up to USD $50M (Juanicipio project, Zacatecas).  San Marco increased its previously announced non-brokered private placement to up to $3.5M (Chunibas project, Sonora). Oroco closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $1.65M (Santo Tomas project, Sinaloa). Radius received from Pan American a payment of USD $150K in partial fulfillment of the Amalia JV agreement. Telson increased its previously announced non-brokered private placement to up to $1.4M (Tahuehueto project, Durango). VanGold concluded its warrant acceleration bonus program in which 7,159,500 warrants were exercised for gross proceeds of $1,715,950 (Pinguico project, Guanajuato). Excellon signed a binding term sheet for a fully subscribed financing of CAD $8M through the private placement of secured convertible debentures of the company. ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Prime Mining released surface and underground sampling results from its Los Reyes project in Sinaloa. Endeavour reported drill results from the El Curso property at its Guanacevi mine in Durango. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Discovery Metals reported results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Cordero project, Chihuahua). Magna Gold granted stock options to certain officers, directors and consultants of the company (San Francisco Mine, Sonora). One World Lithium provided a default status report to approve a temporary management cease trade order (Salar del Diablo project, Baja California Norte). Silver Dollar appointed Mr. Perry Durning and Mr. Frank (Bud) Hillemeyer as technical advisors to the Company (La Joya property, Durango). Silver One announced the initiation of trading on the OTCQX (Peñasco Quemado project, Sonora). Argonaut and Alio completed merger to create a North American, diversified precious metals producing company (El Castillo mine, Durango).  Brigadier announced the appointment of Oscar Mendoza as special advisor Cuatro Ciénegas project, Coahuila). Canuc reported results from its annual general meeting of shareholders and appointed a new member to its board of directors (San Javier project, Sonora). Mammoth reminded shareholders of the granting of a Management Cease Trade Order (Tenoriba project, Chihuahua).  Sierra Metals reported results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Cusi mine, Chihuahua). Defiance confirmed that the Company’s management is unaware of any material change in the Company’s operations that would account for the recent increase in market activity (San Acacio project, Zacatecas). ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, Agnico Eagle launched its policy “Stay Safe Stay Watchful”, as countries where the company is operating are now cautiously emerging from the global blockade. Minera Penmont (Fresnillo plc) meets extraction regulations with new technology and innovative tools (La Herradura mine, Sonora). Minera Peña Colorada delivered the Medical Care Unit to the General Hospital of Manzanillo in Colima state. The Grupo Mexico Foundation donated over 45,000 medical supplies to the Zacatecas Health Secretariat, and three pressure ventilators to the regional hospital of Nueva Rosita, Coahuila. Minera san Julian (Fresnillo plc), delivered additional 4,000 face mask to the Municipal Council of Guadalupe y Calvo, Chihuahua.

 ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Miguel Angel Lucero Olivas, Senator of the Labour Party (PT), submitted for the consideration of the plenary, a proposal with Point of Agreement at the Supreme Court of Justice of the Nation in regards to the 34 constitutional controversies promoted by the Government of the state of Chihuahua and various municipalities of Chihuahua, Sonora, Zacatecas and San Luis Potosí, regarding the Mining Fund. The formal name of the well-known “Mining Fund” is the Fund for the Development of Mining Production Areas and is administered through of a financial instrument established by the 2019 Income Law, article 25 section IX. The total amount collected is MXP $4,320M.  The distribution will be made as follows:  80% (Fund for the Development of Mining Production Zones), that is to say approximately MXP $3,500M; 10% for the Ministry of the Economy (SE) and 10% for the Federal Government. (Note:  The SE has given its 10% to the Federal Government since last year.) The Ministry of Economy will distribute the 2018 Mining Fund resource directly or in coordination through an agreement with states, municipalities and other dependencies, and according to the guidelines.
  • Gerardo Duran Alarcon, Director of the Chihuahua Mining Cluster estimated that the mining industry projects a drop between 17-20% in production and around 10% in exports during the current year compared to 2019. He noted that expectations are given by the cessation of activities that the industry had due to the contingency, as well as by the exercise of a fiscal framework that does not favor investment, as well as for political, economic and insecurity issues. The fiscal framework is not new, since it arose from the 2013 tax reform in which it was decided to cancel the deductibility of investment in exploration. Virtually since then, investment started to slow down and this year it has practically stopped. The director said that exploration work involves a high amount of investment in dollars and if it does not obtain the expected results, it practically loses one hundred percent and that makes it unattractive to bet on the search for more deposits.
  • Francisco Quiroga Fernandez reported that authorities of the Undersecretariat of Mines of the Ministry of Economy (SE), have been carrying out verification tours in mining companies to corroborate compliance with health protocols in order to ensure that the restart of economic activity does not undermine the effort made by the authorities of different levels of government and society, as a whole, to face the challenge of COVID-19. He stated that verification tours have allowed corroborating that many companies are showing a great sense of co-responsibility. They are working together with health authorities, municipal presidents and workers’ representatives to reinforce the capacity for medical attention.
  • Alfredo Tijerina Guajardo, Director of the Mining Development Trust Fund (Fideicomiso de Fomento Minero) (FIFOMI) announced that it is granting resources to support exploitation work of small and medium sized mining firms. FIFOMI is focused mainly on providing low-interest rate loans to companies in the sector, basically those considered small, with annual turnover of up to MXP $200M, and medians with income of up to MXP $900M. He added that in mining there are three major phases to which financing is provided: exploration, development and exploitation, and that FIFOMI concentrates on the latter, since it is considered that the first two phases require so-called risk capital.
  • Javier Villarreal Gamez, Undersecretary of Labor of the National Committee of the Confederation of Workers of Mexico (CTM) stated that the government must give security to investment in mining. It is necessary that the Federal Government encourages, promotes and gives security to private investment in mining, through reforms, especially in fiscal matters, if necessary, because it would generate certainty, contrary to the prevailing situation at the moment. He stressed that mining is essential for national development, since it represents 3 percent of the country’s Gross Domestic Product and constitutes 8% of industrial GDP. He considered it difficult to forecast the pace of mining recovery in the remainder of 2020 and the prospects for 2021, but assured that the bet of all the sectors involved should be in favor of this industry remaining active. Noting that mining generates 370 thousand direct jobs and 2.3 million indirect jobs, which generates a production chain of 2.6 million total jobs, he commented that this sector is the source of raw materials for practically all industries in the country, from that of medications up to aerospace, just to name a few. He stressed that the jobs generated by mining are well paid, between 80 and 100% higher than in the rest of the industries, with contributions of profits that also far exceed the average of companies in other areas. Javier Villarreal, also general Secretary of the National Union of Workers of the Mining-Metallurgical Industry of the CTM, explained that the authorities must take actions to keep that sector growing.
  • Francisco Quiroga Fernandez, Undersecretary of Mining stated that, one month after the Mining Industry in Mexico has reactivated its activities, the mining sector has made a great effort to stay afloat in the face of adversity. He highlighted the effort that the sector has made to maintain the jobs and full wages of its workers. He also pointed out that only 75% of the workers have returned to the mines, while 25% more remain working from their homes, under the strict implementation of safe work and coordinated work with local authorities.
  • According to the National Institute of Statistics and Geography (INEGI), mining and metallurgical production fell 25.1% in April 2020 compared to April 2019, this caused by the suspension of operations in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic. This index that considers the activities of extraction, processing, smelting and refining of metallic and non-metallic minerals, decreased by 24.4% based on seasonally adjusted figures in the fourth month of 2020 compared to March. The INEGI reported that the production of non-coking coal decreased by 85.4% in an annual variation, while the production of lead decreased 53.3%, zinc 49%, gold 40.9%, coke 36.1%, pellets of iron 22.5%, silver 21.1% silver, fluorite 14.4%, gypsum and copper 10.8%. In contrast, sulfur was increased by 1.2%.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Sonoro Metals Corp., announced plans for a 6,000m 2020 Phase 1 drill program to test 20 targets at its Cerro Caliche project in Sonora. This program is part of the 50,000m of core and RC drilling announced previously by the company. The aim of the Phase 1 drill program is to test previously drilled, shallow, Au-bearing epithermal mineralization for the presence of deeper high-grade Au mineralization at elevations of 200-300m below surface. The Phase 1 drilling is expected to take up to five months.
  • Radius Gold Inc., reported high grade surface sampling results from its Amalia project in Chihuahua. Surface sampling from the untested California target have returned grades of up to 1.5 m @ 27 g/t Au. Radius has resumed the processing of the permits for stage 4 drilling at its Amalia project and expects to obtain them within the next six weeks.
  • Canasil Resources Inc., announced the commencement of an initial core drill program to test Ag-Au targets at its Nora project, which consists of structurally-controlled epithermal veins. The program will be focused on the undrilled Candy vein and Canasil plans to drill four sections, spaced over a strike length of 500m, all below high-grade Ag-Au samples from vein outcrops and rock dumps from earlier underground workings.

ON MINING

  • Consolidated Zinc Limited, advised that it has returned to pre-COVID-19 production rates at its Plomosas mine and Aldama processing plant in Chihuahua. Based on June production figures, the company anticipated the third quarter will be a better operational quarter than it has seen this year.
  • Gold Resource Corporation, the milestones of a decade of production, generating over $1 billion in revenue and distributing over $114 million in shareholder dividends from its Oaxaca Mining Unit in Mexico. “The Company announced commercial production from its Oaxaca Mining Unit (OMU) on July 1, 2010 estimating the Arista Mine’s life of mine at a minimum of nine years while only having three to four years of internally delineated resource at that time. Today, July 1, 2020, marks the milestone of one full decade of production from the OMU exceeding the Company’s then nine-year 2010 mine life estimate. With approximately four years of current proven and probable reserves, there is a strong possibility of a second decade of production ahead for the OMU”.

ON FINANCING

  • Golden Goliath Resources Ltd., announced a private placement to raise gross proceeds of up to $2.5M. The financing will consists of a combination of flow-through units priced at $0.20 with a half warrant priced at $0.30 and non flow-through units priced at $0.15 with a full warrant priced at $0.30 (San Timoteo project, Chihuahua).
  • Mag Silver Corp., entered into a sales agreement to raise gross proceeds of up to USD $50M.The sale of common shares will be made through “at the market distributions”. The company plans to use the net proceeds to fund the completion of construction of its Juanicipio project in Zacatecas, and for working capital and general corporate purposes.
  • San Marco Resources Inc., increased its previously announced flow-through non-brokered private placement from $2M to up to $3.5M, due to strong investor demand (Chunibas project, Sonora).
  • Oroco Resource Corporation, closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $1.65M. Net proceeds will be used to advance its Santo Tomas project in Sinaloa, including site preparation for an exploration drill program, the acquisition of surface rights and permits, a 3D IP geophysical survey, and general corporate purposes.
  • Radius Gold Inc., received from Pan American Silver Corp., a payment of USD $150K in partial fulfillment of the Amalia project JV agreement.
  • Telson Mining Corporation, increased its previously announced non-brokered private placement and now intends to rise $1.4M. Net proceeds will be used to advance the construction of its Tahuehueto mine in Durango and for general working capital.
  • VanGold Mining Corp., concluded its warrant acceleration bonus program announced May 27, 2020 and June 12, 2020 for share purchase warrants ranted in connection with the Company’s 2019 non-brokered private placement financing. In total, 17,159,500 warrants were exercised under the bonus program for 17,159,500 common shares at a price of $0.10 per share for gross proceeds of $1,715,950 (Pinguico project, Guanajuato).
  • Excellon Resources Inc., signed a binding term sheet for a fully subscribed financing of CAD $8M through the private placement of secured convertible debentures of the company. The proceeds will be used to repay the USD $6M bridge loan with Sprott Private Resource Lending II (La Platosa mine, Durango).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Prime Mining Corp., released surface and underground sampling results from the Tahonitas deposit within its Los Reyes property in Sinaloa. Significant results were obtained at TR-1 with 3.24 g/t Au and 46 g/t Ag over 10.5m, including 8.37 g/t Au and 55 g/t Ag over 3m; TR-2 with 0.72 g/t Au and 18 g/t Ag over 30m, including 1.86 g/t Au and 18 g/t Ag over 7.5M; and TR-3b with 1.78 g/t Au and 71 g/t Ag over 63m, including 11.68 g/t Au and 334 g/t Ag over 4.5m and 5.7 g/t Au and 292 g/t Ag over 6m. The current Tahonitas deposit is modeled as part of a conceptual open pit that includes the Zapote South deposit.
  • Endeavour Silver Corp., reported drill results from the El Curso property at its Guanacevi mine in Durango. A total of 18 drill holes were collared on the Santa Cruz vein, of which 12 hit high grades over mineable widths. Drilling highlights include the following intersections: hole UCM-27 with 3.25 g/t Au and 1,085 g/t Ag (1,410 g/t AgEq) over a true width (TW) of 10m, including 14.88 g/t Au and 5,500 g/t Ag (6,988 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 0.5m; hole UCM-26 with 1.87 g/t Au and 762 g/t Ag (948 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 5.1m, including 3.5 g/t Au and 2,026 g/t Ag (2,376 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 0.6m; and UCM-25 with 1.43 g/t Au and 986 g/t Ag (1,129 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 4.8m, including 7.3 g/t Au and 7,451 g/t Ag (8,181 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 0.5m.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Discovery Metals Corp., reported results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Cordero project, Chihuahua).
  • Magna Gold Corp., granted a total of 2, 250,000 incentive stock options to purchase common shares of the company to certain officers, directors and consultants of the company. Such options are exercisable at a price of $0.98 for a period of five years (San Francisco mine, Sonora).
  • One World Lithium Inc., provided a default status report to approve a temporary management cease trade order on the basis that it would be unable to file its annual consolidated financial statements, accompanying management’s discussion and analysis and related CEO and CFO certifications, for the year ended December 31, 2019 (Salar del Diablo project, Baja California Norte).
  • Silver Dollar Resources Inc., appointed Mr. Perry Durning and Mr. Frank (Bud) Hillemeyer as technical advisors to the Company. Perry and Bud formed La Cuesta International Inc. in 1993 and are recognized for their outstanding record of grassroots discoveries, particularly the San Sebastian, San Agustin, and Pitarrilla deposits in Durango, Camino Rojo in Zacatecas, and Los Gatos in Chihuahua.
  • Silver One Resources Inc., announced the initiation of trading on the OTCQX. The OTCQX Best Market provides value and convenience to U.S. investors, brokers and institutions seeking to trade Silver One shares under the ticker symbol SLVRF (Peñasco Quemado project, Sonora).
  • Argonaut Gold Inc., and Alio Gold Inc., completed the business combination to create a North American, diversified precious metals producing company with a strong portfolio of growth assets. Argonaut common shares will continue trading on the TSX, and Alio shares are expected to cease trading on the NYSE American on July 1, 2020 and be de-listed from the TSX after close of business on July 3, 2020 (El Castillo mine, Durango).
  • Brigadier Gold Limited, announced the appointment of Oscar Mendoza as special advisor to review and generate opportunities in Mexico that align with Brigadier’s plan for growth. (Cuatro Ciénegas project, Coahuila).
  • Canuc Resources Corporation, reported results from its annual general meeting of shareholders and appointed a new member of its board of directors (San Javier project, Sonora).
  • Mammoth Resources Inc., reminded shareholders of the granting of a Management Cease Trade Order (Tenoriba project, Chihuahua). “The company found it prudent to employ this Exemption, Instrument 51-502 which enables Mammoth excemptive relief to delay the filing of its audited annual financial statements, the accompanying management’s discussion and analysis, as well as the associated CEO and CFO certifications for the year ended January 31, 2019, due June 1, 2020 and that these filings are expected to be completed within the 45 day period, July 15, 2020”.
  • Sierra Metals Inc., reported results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Cusi mine, Chihuahua).
  • Defiance Silver Corp., confirmed that the Company’s management is unaware of any material change in the Company’s operations that would account for the recent increase in market activity (San Acacio project, Zacatecas).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Agnico Eagle Mines Limited, launched its policy “Stay Safe Stay Watchful”, as countries where the company operates are cautiously emerging from the global blockade. The company is helping communities and employees to stay safe as they embrace the “new normal.” In order to minimize the spread of this virus. At its Pinos Altos and la India mines in Sonora, Mexico, the decision was made to have the mine’s doctors work at the health centers in the surrounding communities, so they can examine local patients and make home visits to ensure that vulnerable members of the community receive adequate medical care.
  • Minera Penmont (Fresnillo plc), announced that it meets extraction regulations with new technology and innovative tools that allow the protection of the environment, the safety of employees in production plants and the protection of communities and their environment. Minera Penmont has the cyanide management permit from its creation and the origin of its mining activity, which was granted by the Ministry of Environment and Natural Resources (SEMARNAT). In addition, it has the authorization of COFEPRIS and all the permits requested by the General Law of Ecological Balance and Protection of the Environment (LGEEPA). In addition to the previous legislation, Fresnillo plc joined, since 2011, the Cyanide Code, an international voluntary program developed by the International Institute of Cyanide Management (ICMI). This Code was established in 2002 and aims to reduce the potential exposure of workers and communities to harmful concentrations of cyanide; In addition, ICMI conducts audits of processes to recertify Minera Penmont’s credentials every three years; meanwhile, the company exclusively purchases cyanide from manufacturers certified by the Institute. Based on this program, the company works under the following criteria: protect communities and the environment during cyanide transport; protect workers’ health and safety from exposure by this substance and train workers and emergency response personnel in its handling.
  • Consorcio Minero Peña Colorada S.A. de C.V., delivered the Medical Care Unit to the General Hospital of Manzanillo in Colima state. With an investment of MXP $ 4.6M the company carried out the transformation of this 1,200 m2 space, which consisted of conditioning and equipping 3 completely separate and independent medical care modules: general and specialty medical consultation, hospitalization area for men and women, and a dedicated space for major emergencies and observation. This facility has the capacity to serve up to 108 patients a day, originating from Manzanillo, Minatitlán and neighboring municipalities of Jalisco.
  • The Grupo Mexico Foundation, donated approximately 45,000 medical supplies to the Zacatecas Health Secretariat, and three pressure ventilators to the regional hospital of Nueva Rosita, Coahuila. The material received in Zacatecas was: 4,500 masks and 4,337 protective glasses, 4,000 aprons, 6,400 mouth guards, 32 goggles and 25,200 monitor electrodes. Also, nitrile gloves, antiseptic soap and intubation cannulas. All this will help the health authorities to face the current health contingency. In Coahuila, three pressure ventilators were delivered for the care of patients with COVID-19, although the medical director of the hospital pointed out that at the moment there has been no need to use these mechanical ventilators.
  • Minera San Julian (Fresnillo plc), delivered a third package with additional 4,000 face mask to the Municipal Council of Guadalupe y Calvo, Chihuahua, which are made by a sewing workshop in the town of Yerbitas. This personal protective equipment will be distributed to the population of the different towns of the municipality, with the objective of carrying out preventive work in the face of the COVID-19 pandemic.

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, visible gold (VG) in a high sulphidation epithermal system in a prospect in Sonora, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

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

186

By Jorge Cirett

During the 26th week of the year (June 22nd to June 28th, 2020), at least 30 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico. Notably, 6 of those were exploration updates and 6 more related to financing. ON MEXICO ISSUES, Mining and  Automotive industries are to operate even if there is a resurgence of Coronavirus cases. The Mining Fund Technical Committee approved US$11.6 M for 98 projects in 11 States. Canadian Mining companies are under pressure to pay disputed taxes. AMLO rejected the idea of nationalizing the lithium industry…. but declares the conditions on which those conditions are granted have to be reviewed (Keep in mind what’s been happening in the electricity industry).  ON EXPLORATION, in Sonora, Ridgestone completed a maiden drill program on its Rebeico project; Tarachi Gold acquired the Tarachi property in Sonora; Aztec Minerals identified multiple chargeability anomalies at its Cervantes project; Tocvan Ventures released strong results of its soil program on the Pilar project. Vizsla Resources released high grade drilling results from its Panuco project. GoGold Resources released results from three more drill holes at its Los Ricos South project.  ON MINING, VanGold Mining plans to clearing the shaft at the Pinguico property to provide access for sampling and eventually infill extraction. ON FINANCING, Southern Silver is eyeing a private placement to raise up to C$7 M. Aura Minerals authorized a dividend’s policy. First Mexican Gold granted 2.5 M options to directors, officers and consultants. Orex Minerals raised $989 K on the closing of the first tranche of its non-brokered private placement. Apollo Gold aims to raise up to $5 M. McEwen Mining refinanced its $50 M senior secured term loan facility.   ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, GR Silver Mining released drill results from historic holes at its Plomosas project in Sinaloa. Magna Gold filed a technical report on its San Francisco mine, in Sonora. SilverCrest Metals updated on the development of the Las Chispas project under the Coronavirus emergency. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Argonaut Gold and Alio Gold announced that COFECE, the last bureaucratic hurdle, has cleared the transaction on its merger. Riverside Resources disclosed additional funding from BHP on its generative copper exploration program in Sonora. Southern Silver Exploration signed an agreement to acquire Electrum Global Holdings’s 60% share on the Cerro Las Minitas project in Durango. Candente Gold mobilized a team for the due diligence on the El Dorado project and the SDA mill in Nayarit. Hochschild optioned the Los Cuarenta property in Sonora from Riverside Resources. Apollo Gold Corp. entered into a LOI to option the “Jalisco Group of properties” from First Majestic. ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY. Peñasquito donated medical supplies to the IMSS Hospital Número 12 in Concepción del Oro, Zacatecas. Esperanza Silver repaired the water supply system in San Agustín Tetlama, Morelos.

ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Mining and the Automotive industries to operate, even if there is a resurgence (hypothetical) of Coronavirus cases. Graciela Márquez, Economy Secretary, explained these industries are essential, and are to continue activities under any color of the health lights system.
  • The Mining Fund Technical Committee approved the funding of 98 projects for US$11.6 M ($260.9 M pesos) for pavement laying, sidewalk construction and water supply nets. The funds are to be distributed as follows: Sonora US$6.12 M, Zacatecas US$2.47 M, Durango US$1.08 M, Coahuila US$0.93 M, Chihuahua US$0.71 M, San Luis Potosí US$0.21 M, Aguascalientes US$90 K, Jalisco US$54 K, Michoacán US$45 K, Oaxaca US$32 K and Hidalgo US$14 K.
  • Canadian Mining companies are under pressure to pay disputed taxes to the Mexican government, according to University academics on the matter.
  • The president of Mexico, Andres Manuel Lopez Obrador, rejected the idea of nationalizing the lithium exploitation in the country. His comment comes regarding the ideas expressed by Victor Manuel Toledo, Environment Secretary and staunch opponent of mining. According to the president, there is already a legal framework for contracts and concessions by the government for the exploitation of mineral resources. However, he also stressed that the conditions on which those concessions are granted have to be reviewed.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Ridgestone Mining Inc. completed the maiden drill program at its Rebeico project in Sonora. Under the program 1,674 m were drilled in ten holes. Most of the holes tested the geometry of gold-copper mineralization on the New Year Zone. Core samples are being submitted to the lab.
  • Vizsla Resources Corp. released drilling results from two holes on the Napoleon vein corridor at the Panuco project in Sinaloa. Highlighted core-length intercepts comprise: 8.2 m @ 739 gpt Ag, 11.06 gpt Au; 2.0 m @ 1,527 gpt Ag, 24.9 gpt Au on one hole; 2.5 m @ 454 gpt Ag, 9.20 gpt Au; 5.1 m @ 309 gpt Ag, 8.00 gpt Au, 2.22% Pb, 4.75 % Zn; 1.8 m @ 186 gpt Ag, 15.63 gpt Au, 1.12% Pb, 7.73% Zn in the second hole. True widths are estimated at between 46-66% of down hole lengths.
  • GoGold Resources Inc. informed on the results from three diamond drill holes at the Los Ricos South project. The holes drilled at the San Juan, Rascadero and East veins returned core length intervals of 27 m @ 0.09 gpt Au, 28 gpt Ag (including 4.0 m @ 0.45 gpt Au, 89 gpt Ag); 39.0 m @ 0.45 gpt Au, 117 gpt Ag (including 11.0 m @ 1.40 gpt Au, 319 gpt Ag); 3.2 m @ 0.15 gpt Au, 25 gpt Ag.
  • Tarachi Gold Corp. commenced fieldwork at its Tarachi project in Sonora. Tarachi’s geological crews have begun a two-week field program of geological mapping and rock sampling of known mineral occurrences to verify historical work programs. Historical work includes drill intercepts of 5.0 m @ 34.5 gtp Au, 3.0 m @ 24.3 gpt Au; 1.32 m @ 110 gpt Au. The 2,560 ha project includes the San Javier, Pretoria, Chivitas, Jabali, Juliana, Texana and Tarachi concessions.
  • Aztec Minerals Corp. identified multiple chargeability anomalies on a 3-dimensional IP-Resisitivity survey completed last year at its Cervantes property in Sonora. Each of the 6 porphyry prospects along the corridor exhibit strong porphyry alteration and Au (Cu) mineralization, while none of the Jacobo, Purisima West, Purisima East and Estrella targets have ever been drill-tested .
  • Tocvan Ventures Corp. released results from the soil sampling survey undertaken at its Pilar property in Sonora. The results include values of up to 8 gpt Au and 317 gpt Ag, and collectively have highlighted the East Zone as a new focus area..

ON MINING

  • VanGold Mining Corp. plans to begin clearing the El Pinguico shaft at its El Pinguico project in Guanajuato. The mucking of the shaft will allow the company to sample the lower part of the old workings infill, which on surface averaged 1.75 gpt Au, 183 gpt Ag. It will also allow the inspection of underground drifts for extracting the mineralized material, and check on past producing high-grade stopes.

ON FINANCING

  • Southern Silver Exploration Corp. plans a fully marketed private placement aiming to gross proceeds for a minimum of C$7 M. The company entered into a definitive agreement with Electrum Global Holdings L.P. to acquire Electrum’s 60% ownership interest in Southern Silver Holdings Ltd. for current and future cash and share payments totaling US$15.0 M (Cerro Las Minitas, Durango).
  • Aura Minerals Inc. announced its board of directors approved a dividend policy (Aranzazu, Zacatecas).
  • First Mexican Gold Corp. granted 2.5 M options to directors, officers and consultants (Hilda, Sonora).
  • Orex Minerals Inc. closed the first tranche of its non-brokered private placement, for gross proceeds of $989 K (Sandra-previously Sandra Escobar-, Durango).
  • Apollo Gold Corp. is conducting a non-brokered placement aiming to raise up to $5 M in gross proceeds (Eztzatlan, Jalisco).
  • Mc Ewen Mining Inc. announced the refinancing of its $50 M senior secured term loan facility. “As part of the refinancing, Sprott Private Resource Lending II (Collector), LP has replaced Royal Capital Management Corp. as a lender and the administrative agent for the Term Loan; and Evanachan Limited, a corporation wholly-owned by Rob McEwen, remains a lender….. the maturity date of the Term Loan has been extended by two years to August 31, 2023” (El Gallo, Sinaloa).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • GR Silver Mining Ltd. Released drill results from historic holes at its Plomosas project in Sinaloa. These high-grade silver intercepts are outside the previously mined Pb-Zn-Ag-Au ore of the Plomosas mine area. Some of the highlighted true width (tw) intercepts comprise: 14.6 m @ 46 gpt Ag, 1.0 gpt Au, 1.7% Pb, 2.2% Zn; 5.4 m @ 326 gpt Ag, 1.9 gpt Au, 0.7% Pb, 1.2% Zn (including 1.9 m @ 900 gpt Ag, 1.9 gpt Au, 1.9% Pb, 3.2% Zn); 2.1 m @ 349 gpt Ag, 0.4 gpt Au, 2.3% Pb, 1.3% Zn); 2.7 m @ 1,469 gpt Ag, 0.5 gpt Au, 2.2% Pb, 3.2% Zn; 17.4 m @ 4 gpt Ag, 3.6 gpt Au; 2.2 m @ 398 gpt Ag, 0.3% Pb, 0.7% Zn; 32.8 m @ 32 gpt Ag, 0.9 gpt Au; 9.8 m @ 28 gpt Ag, 0.7 gpt Au, 4.2% Pb, 0.9% Zn; 13 m @ 13 gpt Ag, 2.8 gpt Au, 0.5% Pb, 1.4% Zn; 11.7 m @ 8 gpt Ag, 1.7 gpt Au, 0.4% Pb, 0.7% Zn.
  • Magna Gold Corp. filed an independent technical report for the San Francisco Gold project in Sonora.
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc. continues activities at its Las Chispas project in Sonora. A fully confined camp for 160 persons has been built at the site. All personnel is tested for COVID-19, and transported to the project once the negative results are received. Currently eight rigs are operating on the H2 program focusing on the high-grade resource expansion at the veins Babicanora (SE, NE, deep), Babi Sur (SE to depth), Babi Vista (all directions), Babicanora Norte (SE, NW, deep), Las Chispas (SE to depth), Giovanni (SE to depth), William Tell (all directions), and Varela (all directions). “Underground development has resumed, with a target of 500 metres per month by Q3, 2020, under confined camp conditions. The first ventilation raise in the Babicanora area has been completed. “. The feasibility study is progressing.

 

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Argonaut Gold Inc. and Alio Gold Inc. announced the receipt of the clearance decision from the Comisión Federal de Competencia Económica (COFECE) with respect to the pending merger between Argonaut Gold and Alio Gold. This approval “was the final government agency approval required before completing the merger, which is anticipated to occur between June 29, 2020 and July 3, 2020” (El Castillo, Durango; Ana Paula, Guerrero).
  • Riverside Resources Inc. announced the continuation of the exploration agreement with BHP Exploration Chile SpA for the funding of generative copper exploration in the copper producing belt of Sonora. “BHP will be providing Riverside with US$720,000 to commence the first half of the second year of the Program to continue to grow the portfolio of copper projects which is an increase of US$220,000 from the initial plan ”.
  • Southern Silver Exploration Corp. entered into a definitive agreement with Electrum Global Holdings L.P. to acquire Electrum’s 60% ownership interest in Southern Silver Holdings Ltd. for current and future cash and share payments totaling US$15.0 M to gain 100% interest in the Cerro Las Minitas project, in Durango. Payments include US$5M in cash and US$2 M in shares by September 2020 (less credit for deposit of C$1.35 M paid in June 2020), US$2 M in cash and US$2 M in shares six months from closing and US$2 M in cash and US$2 M in shares one year from closing Cerro Las Minitas, Durango).
  • Candente Gold Corp. mobilized a team for the due diligence process on its acquisition process from Magellan Acquisition Corp. of the San Dieguito de Arriba processing plant and the El Dorado project in Nayarit. The Eldorado epithermal vein trend has been traced for 3.5 km along strike, hosting multiple mineralized zones, including distinct high-grade veins and lower grade bulk tonnage stockwork zones extending over tens of meters in width in both the hanging wall and footwall of the vein system.
  • Riverside Resources Inc. entered into a definitive option agreement with Minera Hochschild de Mexico S.A. de C.V. for Riverside’s Los Cuarentas project in Sonora. Hochschild is to pay Riverside US$90 K on the signing of the agreement and invest US$8 M over four years in the property to earn 51%, upon which it can elect to earn an additional 24% by spending a further $3 M and producing a feasibility study. Upon completing the second phase earn-in, Riverside will have the option to sell its interest for US$20 M, while retaining a 1% NSR.
  • Apollo Gold Corp. entered into a non-binding letter of intent (LOI) with First Majestic Silver Corp. for a three-year earn-in option to acquire First Majestic’s “Jalisco Group of Properties”. Under the terms of the agreement Apollo will pay $250 K and issue 4.29 M shares and 1.5 M warrants on closing of the definitive agreement. A further $200 K and 1 M shares a year from closing and $300 K and 1 M shares two years from the closing date. Apollo commits to spend at least $1.25 M on the properties within 36 months of closing. The properties comprise 5,240 ha of mining concessions which include the Etzatlan, Ampora, La Calabaza, Piedra and Bola mines.

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Peñasquito donated medical supplies in the fight against Coronavirus to the IMSS Rural Hospital number 12 in Concepción del Oro, Zacatecas.
  • Esperanza Silver de Mexico repaired the water supply equipment supplying the 2,500 inhabitants of San Agustín de Tetlama community in Morelos.

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: Epithermal quartz-graphite vein, Hermosillo District, Sonora, Sonora. Picture by Jorge Cirett.

186

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

Ptygmatic folds

By Miguel A Heredia

During the twenty five week of the year (June 15th to June 21tt, 2020), at least 44 press releases were announced by companies working in Mexico, with twelve disclosing deals and corporate issues, ten announcing financial rounds, six commenting on Mexican issues, five informing on exploration results, five discussing on social issues, four reporting on resources and developments, and two communicating production and financial results, ON MEXICO ISSUES, Minera Fresnillo published a press release regarding the events of last Friday, June 12, when a group of people committed excesses in the vicinity of the Fresnillo mine in Zacatecas. Fresnillo plc announced recruitment of 130 mine workers who labored at the Francisco I Madero mine in Zacatecas.  Bacanora Lithium announced that it is set to start production at its Sonora project in Mexico in 2022, despite COVID-19 interruptions. Mexico has some of the largest undeveloped Ag deposits that have been slowed by economic weakness and price fluctuations. Senator Miguel Angel Lucero Olivas, president of the Mining and Regional Development commission, will present a point of agreement to maintain the Undersecretariat of Mining and, if possible, raise it to the Secretariat level. ON EXPLORATION, In Sonora, Magna Gold announced plans to conduct initial drill programs at its La Pima, San Judas and Veta Tierra projects. In Sinaloa, Vizsla added a second rig at its Panuco project, and Kootenay released drill results from the first core hole collared at its Copalito project. In Durango, Mithril provided an update on its Copalquin project.  In Jalisco, GoGold released drill results from nine holes collared at its Los Ricos South project. ON MINING, Magna Gold provided an update and reported production and financial results for May 2020 from its San Francisco mine in Sonora. Santacruz reported consolidated Q4 and full year 2019 production and financial results from their Mexican mine operations.  ON FINANCING, Aztec Minerals arranged a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of CAD $3M (Cervantes project, Sonora). Candelaria Mining entered in a medium term loan facility for USD $9M (Pinos project, Zacatecas).  Mammoth closed a non-brokered private placement for net proceeds of $141,250, which due to demand was increased to $167,475 (Tenoriba project, Chihuahua). Megastar closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $ 926,800 (Rama de Oro, Oaxaca). Telson formed a strategic funding alliance with Accendo Banco for USD $12M (Tahuehueto project, Durango). First Mexican closed the first tranche of its previously announced brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $1,235,229.73 (Guadalupe project, Sonora). GR Silver completed a bought deal private placement for gross proceeds of $9,153,000 (Plomosas project, Sinaloa). Magna Gold announced a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of up to $7,000,750 (San Francisco mine, Sonora).  Mexus announced that it has paid $178,855.49 to satisfy an outstanding debt obligation (Santa Elena mine, Sonora). One World Lithium approved a temporary management cease trade order which, if granted, will prohibit trading in securities of the Company by certain insiders of the Company, whether direct or indirect (Salar del Diablo project, Baja California Norte). ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT, Discovery Metals extended higher grade and expanded the drill program at its Cordero project in Chihuahua. Canuc announced that it signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with M3SH Technologies Inc., to distribute and sell technological solutions (San Javier project, Sonora). Magna Gold provided plans for its San Francisco mine in Sonora, and reported that a mine design has been completed and plans to advance a pilot test program for its Mercedes project in Sonora.  Sierra Metals released drill results and confirmed the discovery of a new high grade Ag area at its Cusi mine in Chihuahua. ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES, Bacanora Lithium received notification of the off-market transfer of a portion of the shares beneficially owned by Mark Hohnen (Sonora Lithium project, Sonora).  Fortuna Silver reported results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (San Jose mine, Oaxaca). Oroco announced that its shares have been approved to trade on the OTCQB Venture market in USA (Santo Tomas project, Sinaloa). Prime Mining announced key management changes and amended its Los Reyes option agreement in Sinaloa. Silver Dollar signed a letter of intent (LOI) to acquire La Joya project, Durango from First Majestic.  Newmont was ranked top miner in the 100 best corporate citizens list for 2020 (Peñasquito mine, Zacatecas). Torex announced management changes and results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (El Limón-Guajes mine complex, Guerrero). Tarachi Gold retained Digital 257 Technologies Inc., for digital media and capital market communication services and granted stock options to directors, officers and consultants of the compnay (Juliana project, Sonora).  SilverCrest presented results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Las Chispas project, Sonora). Silver Spruce granted 6.75M stock options to directors and consultants of the company (Pino de Plata project, Chihuahua). ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, Mining companies operating in Mexico have shown their support in different ways to face the COVID-19 pandemic. The Grupo Mexico Foundation donated preventive kits to the Fire Department, Red Cross and Civil Protection of the Sonoran capital, and delivered health and safety kits to the Taxco, Guerrero health sector.  Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold), delivered preventive material for the COVID-19 health contingency in the municipalities of Cocula and Valerio Trujano, in Guerrero State. Minera Penmont (Fresnillo plc), strengthened security protocols to guarantee safe and contagion-free workspaces for its collaborators. Mina San Dimas of First Majestic received medical equipment to face contingency for COVID-19.

 ON MEXICO ISSUES

  • Minera Fresnillo (Fresnillo plc), published a press release regarding the events of last Friday, June 12, when a group of people committed excesses in the vicinity of the Fresnillo mine in Zacatecas, in which there were arrests of armed persons. The company initiated legal proceedings before the competent authority. Minera Fresnillo reiterated its respect for union autonomy, and the application of the Mexican rule of law, in particular, current labor legislation. The company also pointed out that there is a disinformation campaign promoted by a group of people that has not been conducted by the institutional media established by the law.
  • Fresnillo plc, announced recruitment of 130 mine workers who labored at the Francisco I Madero mine in Zacatecas. The Francisco I Madero mine was indefinitely suspended a month ago but Fresnillo called them to present their documentation and participate in the contracting process to join the Fresnillo and Saucito mines in Fresnillo, Zacatecas. With this measure, the Mexican mining company will increase its base of collaborators, which will have a positive impact in the region, as 130 new direct and 520 indirect jobs will be generated.
  • Bacanora Lithium plc, announced that it is set to start production at its Sonora project in Mexico in 2022, despite COVID-19 interruptions. The company could benefit from the momentum of a “green recovery” after the pandemic that could spur growth in the electric vehicle market, according to the analyst. The USD $420M project, to be carried out through a 22.5: 77.5% JV with strategic partner Ganfeng Lithium, will be the first to produce significant volumes of lithium in Mexico. Production is estimated to approximate 17,500tonnes per year of lithium carbonate, doubling to 35,000 tonnes starting in 2026 following a USD $380M expansion.
  • Mexico has some of the largest undeveloped Ag deposits that have been slowed by economic weakness and price fluctuations. Four deposits with reserves totaling 178 B Oz Ag remain in the list: Cordero deposit in Chihuahua and owned by Discovery Metals, has resources for 595 M Oz Ag; Pitarrila in Durango, owned by SSR Mining with 552M Oz Ag, Metates in Durango, owned by Chesapeake with 526M Oz Ag; and La Preciosa in Durango owned by Coeur with 105M Oz Ag.
  • Senator Miguel Angel Lucero Olivas, president of the Mining and Regional Development commission, will present a point of agreement to maintain the Undersecretariat of Mining and, if possible, raise it to the Secretariat level. Mexico can gain strength thanks to mining and this is a key point of support for the economic reactivation of the country, therefore it is necessary to have a government agency that can lead and represent a strategic sector such as mining.
  • Undersecretary of Mining, Francisco Quiroga Fernández, assured that the six mines he visited in Sonora are free of COVID-19. He also verified that strict protocols are being applied. So far, there have been no confirmed or probable cases of COVID-19 in any of the resumed Sonoran mines. The Undersecretariat of Mining, previously had already visited other mines in the states of Durango, Chihuahua, Zacatecas, and Coahuila, pointed out that there have been no outbreaks or contagions of COVID-19.

ON EXPLORATION

  • Magna Gold Corp., announced plans to conduct initial drill programs at its La Pima, San Judas and Veta Tierra projects in Sonora. At La Pima, a highly prospective high-grade underground Ag project located 30km NE of the San Francisco open pit, Magna plans to commence a 2,000m core drill program once it completes the permitting process and surface ownership negotiations. At San Judas, located 50 km W of San Francisco open pit, it wants to initiate a first phase of RC drilling in Q4,2020, which will comprises 3,000m to test three of the seven priority targets identified to date. At Veta Tierra, located 5.5 Km NW of the San Francisco open pit, the company wants to re-initiate activities to complete an unfinished drill program that was commenced by Timmins Gold in 2013, which will include 2,000 of RC to test the lateral continuity of the Au mineralization indicated by previous drilling along a 300m trend of an exposed diorite intrusion.
  • Vizsla Resources Corp., added a second rig at its Panuco project in Sinaloa. The company recently resumed its 14,500m drilling program focused on testing over 20 initial drill targets on its unexplored Panuco mining district. To date, only approximately 4,500m have been drilled.
  • Kootenay Silver Inc., released drill results from the first core hole collared at its Copalito project in Sinaloa. The first hole (BDH-20-001) reached a depth of 105.2m and tested the eastern edge of the Cinco Señores vein, returning 106 g/t Ag over 22m, including 1.09 g/t Au and 244 g/t Ag over 3m and including 286 g/t Ag over 1m, and other interval of 0.25 g/t Au and 250 g/t Ag over 5m, including 0.1 g/t Au and 360 g/t Ag over 1m. The 3,500m drill program will continue with the next holes planned to test the Cinco Señores vein where chip sampling returned encouraging Au and Ag values such as 2.9 g/t Au and 426 g/t Ag over 3.2m; 0.24 g/t Au and 401 g/t Ag over 5.3m; 1,155 g/t Ag over 1m; 1.8 g/t Au and 396 g/t Ag over 1m; and 534 g/t Ag over 1m. Five additional principal veins of epithermal affinity remain to be drill tested.
  • Mithril Resources Limited, provided an update on the exploration activities at its Copalquin project in Durango. “A permit for the drill program was issued in 2019 and is being fast tracked and expanded to include additional drill target areas.  All drill pads have been constructed for the initial drill program with clear access tracks established.  Drilling support infrastructure is progressing as planned, ahead of the arrival of the drill rig in the coming weeks”. Drilling will begin at La Soledad target, where over 600m of vein have been mapped at surface with an additional 400m of vein splaying off towards the El Indio mine workings to the east. Drilling will continue at Los Pinos and Los Reyes targets, each with approximately 400m of vein mapped at surface.  These structures are the eastern extension of El Cometa. There are other interesting targets in the property but need further mapping and sampling to better define drill targets.
  • GoGold Resources Inc., released drill results from nine holes collared at its Los Ricos South project in Jalisco, including three at San Juan, four at the main Area, one at Rascadero and one at the East Vein. Significant intersections were encountered in hole LR-GG-174 (Main Area) with 2.56 g/t Au and 173 g/t Ag (4.86 g/t AuEq or 365 g/t AgEq) over 15m, including 8.33 g/t Au and 496 g/t Ag (14.94 g/t AuEq or 1,120 g/t AgEq) over 4.4m; hole LR-GG-169 (San Juan) with 3.18 g/t Au and 188 g/t Ag (5.68 g/t AuEq or 426 g/t AgEq) over 4.1m; and hole LR-GG-178 (East Vein) with 1.09 g/t Au and 97 g/t Ag (2.38 g/t AuEq or 178 AgEq) over 4.4m, including 1.88 g/t Au and 171 g/t Ag (4.17 g/t AuEq or 312 g/t AgEq) over 2.0m.

ON MINING

  • Magna Gold Corp., provided an update on its San Francisco mine in Sonora and reported May 2020 production and financial results. In this period, Magna produced and sold 2,349 Oz Au at an estimated cash cost of USD $607 per Oz, resulting in Au sales of USD $4.2M and an operating profit of USD $2.8M. It also announced the commencement of mining and processing fresh mineralized material in August.
  • Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd., reported Q4 and full year 2019 production and financial results from their Mexican mine operations. In Q4, 2019, Santacruz processed 220,154 tonnes to produce 1.32M Oz AgEq at a cash and AISC of USD $ 18.75 and $21.29 per Oz AgEq produced respectively. It reported revenues of USD $9,964 and a net loss of USD $16,017. In 2019 full year, the company processed 469,291 tonnes to produce 2.83M Oz Ag at a cash and AISC of USD $18.34 and USD $21.55 per Oz AgEq produced respectively. It reported revenues for USD $27,140 and a net loss of USD $20,432.

ON FINANCING

  • Aztec Minerals Corp., arranged a non-brokered private placement financing for gross proceeds of CAD $3M with sophisticated investors, shareholders and directors of the Company. Finder´s fees may be payable in cash and / or warrants on certain portions of the financing, subject to regulatory approvals. Part of the net proceeds will be used to conduct exploration work on its Cervantes porphyry Cu-Au project in Sonora and for general working capital purposes.
  • Candelaria Mining Corp., entered into a medium term loan facility with Accendo Banco S.A. for USD $9M. Funds will be used for financing construction of its Pinos project in Zacatecas and for working capital purposes.
  • Mammoth Resources Corp., closed a non-brokered private placement for net proceeds of $141,250, the same that due to demand was increased to $167,475. Gross proceeds will be used for working capital purposes, including corporate development expenses (Tenoriba project, Chihuahua).
  • Megastar Development Corp., closed a non-brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $926,800. Net proceeds will be used to continue exploration on multiple properties within the Oaxaca, Mexico Au-Ag belt optioned from Minera Zalamera S.A. de C.V. (Yautepec, Magdalena and Rama de Oro projects, Oaxaca).
  • Telson Mining Corporation, formed a strategic funding alliance with Accendo Banco for USD $12M. Funds will be used for the construction of the Tahuehueto mining project in Durango and general working capital purposes. Accendo also intends to purchase up to USD $500K of existing debt with Tahuehueto mining project´s suppliers and convert the debt into common shares of Telson. Additionally, Telson intends to conduct a non-brokered private placement for up to $750K.
  • First Mexican Gold Corp., closed the first tranche of its previously announced brokered private placement for gross proceeds of $$1,235,229.73 (Guadalupe project, Sonora).
  • GR Silver Mining Ltd., completed a previously announced bought deal private placement for gross proceeds of $9,153,000. GR plans to use the net proceeds to fund resource expansion and drilling at its Plomosas and San Marcial projects in Sinaloa, and for working capital and general corporate purposes. Brokers who helped with the financing will receive a cash commission of $636,660 and an aggregate of 2,358,000 non-transferable broker warrants at an issue price for a period of 12 months from the closing date of the offering.
  • Magna Gold Corp., announced a non-brokered private placement for net proceeds of up to $7,000,750 and includes lead investments by Eric Sprott and two mining industry participants. The net proceeds from the private placement will be used for working capital purposes in connection with the company’s existing projects. In connection with the private placement, certain parties may receive a finder’s fee payment equal to 6% of the gross proceeds of the offered shares (San Francisco mine, Sonora).
  • Mexus Gold US, announced that on June 13, 2020 it has paid $178,855.49 to satisfy an outstanding debt obligation (Santa Elena mine, Sonora).
  • One World Lithium Inc., approved a temporary management cease trade order which, if granted, will prohibit trading in securities of the company by certain insiders of the company, whether direct or indirect (Salar del Diablo project, Baja California Norte).

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

  • Discovery Metals Corp., released results from 8 drill holes, and extends higher grade at is Cordero project in Chihuahua. Highlights include hole C20-326 with 2,470 g/t Ag, 0.02 g/t Au, and 0.4% Zn (2,489 g/t AgEq) over 0.7m; hole C20-328 with 69 g/t Ag, 0.13 g/t Au, 1.1% Pb, and 1.9% Zn (197 g/t AgEq) over 51.9m, and 62 g/t Ag, 0.22 g/t Au, 1.2% Pb, and 1.3% Zn (174 g/t AgEq) over 62.2m; and hole C20-330 with 38 g/t Ag, 0.16 g/t Au, 0.8% Pb, and 0.8% Zn (112 g/t AgEq) over 85.5m. Based on results Discover has expanded its drilling program from 30,000-35,000m to 50,000-55,000m and will be focused on: 1) “Targeting of broad zones of breccia-hosted mineralization in the east and north-east of both mineralized corridors and 2) Testing of the width, grade and continuity of extensive high-grade vein systems identified in and adjacent to historical artisanal underground workings during the early history of the Project”.
  • Magna Gold Corp., provided an update on its Mercedes and San Francisco properties in Sonora. It reported that a mine design has been completed for its Mercedes project in Sonora, based on the initial drill program completed last year. It also reported that a suite of metallurgical tests work is currently underway. Magna´s objective is to extract 20K Oz Au with minimal associated operating and capital expenditures to provide additional information on the deposit that will guide future drilling and work programs. At San Francisco mine, it announced the execution of an initial four-month drill program in and around San Francisco and La Chicharra open pits to support the conversion of mineral resources to reserves. Magna also has retained Micon International Limited to complete a PFS to re-evaluate the resource model, examine potential operational improvements, and develop an optimized production schedule that incorporates all currently available drill data, updated operating costs and revised gold price assumptions. It is expected to be completed by the end of July, 2020.
  • Sierra Metals Inc., released drill results and confirmed the discovery of a new high grade Ag area called Northeast-Southwest system of epithermal veins at its Cusi mine in Chihuahua. The new high-grade silver vein system was discovered as a consequence of a combination of mine development work in recent months and confirmatory drilling. Significant drill intersections were encountered in hole DC20M658 with 0.1g/t Au, 304 g/t Ag, 0.34%Pb, and 0.25% Zn (327 g/t AgEq) over a true width (TW) of 9.35m; hole DC20M677 with 0.03 g/t Au, 1,140 g/t Ag, 0.37% Pb, and 0.36% Zn (1,163 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 4.90m; hole DC20M686 with 0.04 g/t Au, 428 g/t Ag, 0.46% Pb, and 0.76% Zn over a TW of 17.45m; and hole DC20M687 with 0.45 g/t Au, 890 g/t Ag, 1.74% Pb, and 3.2% Zn (1,151 g/t AgEq) over a TW of 0.85m.

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

  • Bacanora Lithium plc., received notification of the off-market transfer of a portion of the shares beneficially owned by Mark Hohnen, Executive Chairman of the Company. The transfer is ultimately to an existing superannuation pension fund of Mr. Hohnen (Sonora Lithium project, Sonora).
  • Canuc Resources Corporation, announced that it signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with M3SH Technologies Inc. This will allow Canuc to distribute and sell technological solutions enabling Canuc to facilitate application with mining and extractive industry clients (San Javier project, Sonora).
  • Fortuna Silver Mines Inc., reported results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (San Jose mine, Oaxaca).
  • Oroco Resource Corp., announced that its shares have been approved to trade on the OTCQB Venture market in USA under the symbol “ORRCF”, effective immediately (Santo Tomas project, Sinaloa).
  • Prime Mining Corp., announced key changes in executive management and board of directors, appointing its new CEO, Executive VP, and two new board members. The company also announced that it entered into an amendment to its option agreement on Los Reyes project in Sinaloa, with Vista Gold Inc. The amendment provides for the cancellation of all ongoing NSR and back-in rights held by Vista, in consideration for accelerating the final USD $1.5M option payment owing to Vista and completing a series of additional cash payments totalling USD $2.1M. “Upon the company making the option payment, Vista will no longer retain a capped NSR on production from open-pit mining and a perpetual NSR on production from underground mining.  In addition, Vista will no longer have the Back-in Right to assume a 49% non-carried interest in any underground mining project developed at the property”.
  • Silver Dollar Resources Inc., signed a letter of intent (LOI) to acquire an initial 80% of interest following the exercise of which it may earn an additional 20% for an aggregate 100% interest in La Joya project, Durango from First Majestic Silver Corp. To acquire an 80% interest in la Joya, Silver Dollar will make a cash payment of $1.3M over four years, issue shares equal to 19.9% of Silver Dollar´s then outstanding common shares within one year, incur $1M of exploration expenditures within the first five years, and grant First Majestic a 2% NSR. If Silver Dollar incurs the exploration expenditures within the first three years; however, First Majestic will waive the remaining $600K – or nearly half – of the cash option payments. Silver Dollar may exercise its second option and acquire the remaining 20% (for an aggregate 100%interest) of the La Joya property by providing notice to First Majestic within 30 days of earning the first 80% interest and issuing to First Majestic additional shares equal to 5% of Silver Dollar’s then-outstanding common shares within five years. If Silver Dollar does not provide such notice, Silver Dollar and First Majestic will enter into a joint venture.
  • Newmont Corporation, was ranked top miner in the 100 best corporate citizens list for 2020. It moved from 20th on last year´s list to 13th overall in 3BL Media´s (formerly Corporate Responsibility Magazine´s) 100 Best Corporate citizens (Peñasquito mine, Zacatecas).
  • Torex Gold Resources Inc., notified management changes and results from its annual general meeting of shareholders. It announced the appointment of its new CEO, Executive Chair, and Independent Director (El Limón-Guajes mine complex, Guerrero).
  • Tarachi Gold Corp., retained Digital 257 Technologies Inc., for digital media and capital market communication services. The Company will compensate Digital 257 $10K per month for three months of service. Tarachi also granted 2,735,000 incentive stock options to directors, officers and consultants of the company at an exercise price of $0.31 per share (Juliana project, Sonora).
  • SilverCrest Metals Inc., presented results from its annual general meeting of shareholders (Las Chispas project, Sonora).
  • Silver Spruce Resources Inc., granted 6.75M stock options to directors and consultants of the company with an exercise price of $0.05 per share (Pino de Plata project, Chihuahua).

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

  • Mining companies operating in Mexico, have shown their support in different ways to the communities where they operate to face the COVID-19 pandemic. According to the Mexican Mining Chamber (CAMIMEX), 26 mining companies that operate in 16 entities of the country have made different contributions to the sanitary emergency. The contributions have been of a different nature, including donations of medical equipment and personal protection kits, basic services such as water and electricity, medical services, pantries, etc.
  • The Grupo Mexico Foundation, donated preventive kits to the Fire Department, Red Cross and Civil Protection of Hermosillo, Sonora, in order to support public institutions that work daily for the benefit of the community in the face of the health contingency by COVID-19. The Grupo Mexico Foundation delivered 500 protection kits containing goggles, N95 masks to the Fire Department, 500 kits to Civil Protection, and 300 kits to the Red Cross Delegation in Hermosillo, Sonora. It also delivered 35 health and safety kits to the Taxco, Guerrero health sector such as the Adolfo Prieto General Hospital, the Mexican Red Cross Taxco delegation, the Mexican Institute of Social Security and Civil Protection. The donation consisted of 10 packages of safety kits that include tyvek suits, face shield and gloves, and the donation of 25 health kits consisting of tyvek suits, gloves, caps, shoe covers and disposable aprons.
  • Minera Media Luna (Torex Gold), delivered preventive material for the COVID-19 health contingency and surgical material to strengthen the health infrastructure in the Health Centers and Houses of the communities of Nuevo Balsas, Atzcala, Real del Limón and La Fundición, in the municipality of Cocula and Valerio Trujano and in the neighborhood of Tepecoacuilco, in Guerrero state.
  • Minera Penmont (Fresnillo plc), strengthened security protocols to guarantee safe and contagion-free workspaces for its collaborators. The protocols that the company has implemented have been in accordance with the guidelines defined by the Secretaries of Health, Economy and Labor of the Federal Government. Minera Penmont reinforced the cleaning tasks in all its facilities and disinfection of transport trucks for collaborators and suppliers. It placed disinfectant gel in areas of greater affluence and promoted the use of masks in offices and respirators in operating areas. In addition, it installed sanitary filters in which the health status of the personnel was evaluated with first-class equipment and the latest technology such as infrared thermometers and a thermal imager.
  • Mina San Dimas of First Majestic received medical equipment to face contingency for COVID-19 in the San Dimas communities through the company clinic. It received specialized medical equipment to care for patients with acute respiratory diseases, other equipment including oxygen concentrators, laryngoscopes, as well as a capnograph and a portable emergency ventilator that together have a market price of around USD $65K.

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, ptygmatic folds developed in a meta-sedimentary sequence in an orogenic Au prospect in Michoacan, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

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.

172

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

Phyllic alteration

By Miguel A Heredia

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

ON MEXICO ISSUES

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

ON EXPLORATION

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

ON MINING

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

ON FINANCING

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

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

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

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

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

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

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

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

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

 

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

phreatic breccia

By Miguel A Heredia

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

ON MEXICO ISSUES

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

ON EXPLORATION

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

ON MINING

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

ON FINANCING

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

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

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

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

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

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

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

 

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

On the picture above, a phreatic breccia in an epithermal hot spring prospect in Guanajuato, Mexico.  Photo by Miguel A Heredia.

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

IMG_4731

By Jorge Cirett

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

ON MEXICO ISSUES

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

ON EXPLORATION

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

ON MINING

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

ON FINANCING

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

ON RESOURCES AND DEVELOPMENT

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

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

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

ON DEALS AND CORPORATE ISSUES

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

ON SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY

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

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

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

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