Toronto, Ontario, November 24, 2015 Continental Gold Inc. (TSX:CNL; OTCQX:CGOOF) (“Continental” or the “Company”) is pleased to provide an update on the permitting process for its flagship Buriticá project in Antioquia, Colombia and its designation as a Project of National Strategic Interest (“PINES”) to Colombia.
On November 20, 2015, the National Government of Colombia published Decree 2220, 2015 regulating in detail Article 51 of Law 1753, which was passed by Congress on June 9, 2015. Law 1753 defines the National Development Plan for Colombia from 2014-2018, and Article 51 establishes that the national environment authority (ANLA) is the competent authority to review and approve environmental applications for PINES projects. Decree 2220 specifically applies to the Buriticá project, which is classified as a PINES project. The publication of this decree is the final legal process required to facilitate the filing of an updated environmental application amendment (“EIA”) for the Buriticá project with ANLA.
“This new decree provides Colombia mining projects which are part of the PINES program a clear path forward to complete environmental permitting with the National Government and reach commercialization. We look forward to the day that new large-scale gold deposits, such as Continental’s Buriticá project, commence production and contribute significantly to Colombia’s mining sector, economic growth and social development”, stated Santiago Ángel, President of the Colombian Mining Association (ACM).
Leon Teicher, Executive Chairman of Continental, stated: “The Colombian government has been invariably supportive of the Buriticá project as it is aligned with the government’s national strategic objectives and could, once in full production, approximately double the legal production of gold in Colombia. We expect that, through the PINES program (which is designed to efficiently move projects through the Colombian legal process), ANLA will commence a thorough review of the Company’s comprehensive EIA amendment application upon submission.”
The Company remains on track to file the application for the amendment to its EIA with ANLA in January 2016 and, as a member of the PINES program, the application will be reviewed on a priority basis. The Company anticipates the completion of permitting prior to the end of H1 2016, keeping the estimated project timeline on schedule.
As at November 4, 2015, the Company maintains a healthy balance sheet with cash and cash equivalents (including doré inventory) of approximately US$34 million, which is sufficient capital to execute the Company’s business objectives for 2016 and into H1 2017. Additionally, management is currently evaluating the potential for increasing production at its pilot-scale mining operation under its current permits, as well as cost-saving initiatives.
About Continental Gold
Continental Gold Inc. is an advanced-stage exploration and development company with an extensive portfolio of 100%-owned gold projects in Colombia. Formed in April 2007, the Company – led by an international management team with a successful track record of discovering and developing large high-grade gold deposits in Latin America – is focused on advancing its high-grade Buriticá gold project to production. On June 24, 2015, the Company announced an updated mineral resource estimate for the Buriticá project, prepared in accordance with National Instrument 43-101 (“NI 43-101”), based on 271,003 metres of drilling and sampling (as at May 11, 2015). This estimate covers the Yaraguá and Veta Sur vein systems, with a combined Measured mineral resource of 0.89 million tonnes of mineralized material containing 0.54 million ounces of gold grading 19 g/t gold, 1.58 million ounces of silver grading 55 g/t silver, and 13.4 million pounds of zinc grading 0.7% zinc, and a combined Indicated mineral resource of 12 million tonnes of mineralized material containing 3.94 million ounces of gold grading 10.2 g/t gold, 12.4 million ounces of silver grading 32 g/t silver, and 112.6 million pounds of zinc grading 0.4% zinc. The combined Inferred mineral resource is 15.6 million tonnes of mineralized material containing 4.5 million ounces grading 9.0 g/t gold, 14.7 million ounces of silver grading 29 g/t silver and 91 million pounds of zinc grading 0.3% zinc.
The scientific and technical information contained in this press release has been reviewed and approved by Donald Gray, Chief Operating Officer of the Company, who is a qualified person within the meaning of NI 43-101.
For additional information on the Buriticá project, please refer to the technical report, prepared in accordance with NI 43-101, entitled “Independent Technical Report and Resource Estimate on the Buriticá Gold Project 2015” and dated August 7, 2015 with an effective date of May 11, 2015, led by independent consultants Mining Associates Limited. The technical report is available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com, on the OTCQX at www.otcmarkets.com and on the Company website at www.continentalgold.com. Additional details on the rest of Continental’s suite of gold exploration properties are also available at www.continentalgold.com.
This press release contains or refers to forward-looking information under Canadian securities legislation, including statements regarding the application and potential approval of the EIA, future plans and objectives of the Company, modifying the EIA, completion of environmental permitting, exploration and mine development plans, and having sufficient capital to execute business objectives, and is based on current expectations that involve a number of significant business risks and uncertainties. Forward-looking statements are subject to other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from expected results. Readers should not place undue reliance on forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from any forward-looking statement include, but are not limited to, an inability to advance the Buriticá project to the next level, failure to convert estimated mineral resources to reserves, capital and operating costs varying significantly from estimates, the preliminary nature of metallurgical test results, delays in obtaining or failures to obtain required governmental, environmental or other project approvals, political risks, uncertainties relating to the availability and costs of financing needed in the future, changes in equity markets, inflation, changes in exchange rates, fluctuations in commodity prices, delays in the development of projects and the other risks involved in the mineral exploration and development industry. Specific reference is made to the most recent Annual Information Form on file with Canadian provincial securities regulatory authorities for a discussion of some of the factors underlying forward-looking statements. All of the forward-looking statements made in this press release are qualified by these cautionary statements, and are made as of the date hereof. The Company assumes no responsibility to update them or revise them to reflect new events or circumstances other than as required by law.