On February 24, 2016, the Company released results of an independent NI 43-101 Feasibility Study for the Buriticá project. The Feasibility Study contains the Company’s initial Mineral Reserve statement and economic analysis demonstrating project viability, and highlights that the Buriticá project will be host to an economically robust, high-grade underground gold mine, which includes a mineral reserve for the combined Yaraguá and Veta Sur vein systems totaling 3.7 million ounces of gold and 10.7 million ounces of silver (13.7 million tonnes grading 8.4 g/t gold and 24.3 g/t silver).
Feasibility Study Highlights
(all dollar amounts in US dollars)
Feasibility Study Summary
|Gold Price||$1,200 per ounce|
|Silver Price||$15 per ounce|
|Total Resource Tonnes to be Mined||13,717,000|
|Processing Rate (tonnes per day)||2,100, increasing to 3,000 by third year|
|Mine Life||14 years|
|Gold Grade||8.4 g/t|
|Silver Grade||24.3 g/t|
|Gold Recovery Rate||94.1%|
|Silver Recovery Rate||59.9%|
|Total Gold Ounces Recovered||3,492,000|
|Total Silver Ounces Recovered||6,425,000|
|Initial Project CAPEX||$389.2 million|
|Contingency (included within Initial Project CAPEX)||$35.4 million|
|LOM Sustaining Capital Costs||$272.5 million|
|Processing Costs including Tailing Storage Facility||$26.16/tonne|
|Cut-Off Grade|| 4.0 g/t Au (Veta Sur)
3.8 g/t Au (Yaraguá)
|Effective Tax Rate||33.0%|
(1) Dilution calculated as below cut-off grade tonnes divided by total tonnes mined.
The Feasibility Study’s base case uses a gold price of $1,200 per ounce of gold and generates an after-tax net present value (NPV5%) of $0.86 billion, an Internal Rate of Return of 31.2%, and an average after-tax cash flow from operations of $133 million per year of operation.
Summary of Buriticá Project Economics by Precious Metal Price
|Gold Price ($/oz)||$1,000||$1,100||$1,200||$1,300||$1,400|
|Silver Price ($/oz)||$12||$13||$15||$16||$17|
|After-Tax Net Cash Flow||$991 million||$1.22 billion||$1.44 billion||$1.67 billion||$1.89 billion|
|After-Tax NPV5(1)||$560 million||$710 million||$860 million||$1.01 billion||$1.16 billion|
|Payback Period (years)||3.0||2.6||2.3||2.0||1.8|
|Exchange Rate (US$:COP)||2,850||2,850||2,850||2,850||2,850|
(1) NPV is discounted to September 1, 2016.
All dollar amounts are in U.S. dollars.
Mineral Reserves from the Feasibility Study are derived from the Mineral Resource Estimate for the Yaraguá and Veta Sur vein systems set out in the technical report entitled “Buriticá Project NI 43-101 Technical Report Feasibility Study Antioquia, Colombia” dated March 29, 2016 with an effective date of February 24, 2016, led by independent consultants JDS Energy & Mining, Inc. The Mineral Reserves are based on 271,003 metres of drill core sampling and 7,215 metres of underground sampling (as at May 11, 2015).
Combined Yaraguá and Veta Sur Mineral Reserve Estimate
Notes: Based on cut-off grades of 3.8 g/t for Yaraguá and 4.0 g/t for Veta Sur, $950 per ounce gold price, and US$:COP exchange rate of 1:2,850. Rounding of some figures may lead to minor discrepancies in totals.
Mining and Processing
The Feasibility Study provides the basis for the Buriticá project execution and operating plan, which includes a multiple ramp access underground mining operation, whole ore cyanide leach processing facility, dry-stacked filtered tailing and related infrastructure. The operating plan includes mining and processing beginning at 2,100 tpd, with ramp-up to 3,000 tpd by year three. The mine is designed to develop two high grade zones initially, in order to minimize pre-production development time and capital as well as maximize early revenues. The mining methods selected for Buriticá were chosen to maintain mining flexibility and selectivity for the various anticipated ground conditions. Most of the Mineral Reserve will be mined by either long-hole open stoping (59% stoping plus 25% stope development) on 15-metre sublevels, or overhand cut-and-fill (15%) with average mining costs of $57.21/tonne over the 13.8 year expected mine life. Some shrinkage stope extraction will be applied to the narrower, more isolated veins. Paste fill made from a mixture of tailing and cement will provide the primary backfill material, with unconsolidated waste rock used in cut-and-fill stopes. An internal raise system will direct ore and waste to the existing Higabra tunnel, which is the main haulage level daylighting adjacent to the planned process plant location. The filtered tailing and waste rock not used for backfill will be placed into a single tailing storage facility; the integrated tailing storage facility design will allow the waste rock to be utilized for stability and erosion protection.
Capital costs for the Buriticá project were estimated under the assumption that any acquisition costs or expenditures by the Company prior to this Feasibility Study are deemed “sunk” costs, and are therefore not included in the analysis, other than for their impact on taxes.
Pre-Production Capital Cost Estimate
|Capital Costs||$ million|
|Underground Development, Infrastructure and Mine Equipment||95.3|
|Process Plant and Tailings Facility||115.8|
|General Site Facilities and Equipment and Site Development||43.7|
|Water Treatment Plant||12.6|
|VAT (including $14.9 million available as income tax credits)||19.5|
|Owners and Project Indirect Cost and EPCM||86.0|
|Total (including Contingency of $35.4 million)||389.2|
Sustaining capital costs over the balance of the mine-life total $272.5 million, predominantly attributable to continued underground development, equipment rebuilds and replacement, and the ramp-up from 2,100 tpd to 3,000 tpd in the third year of commercial production.
LOM Unit Operating Cost Estimate
|G&A (including refining and transportation)||18.22|
|Total Operating Costs||111.59|
Total and LOM All-in Sustaining Cash Cost Estimate
|Total Cash Costs(1)||$M||$1,435|
|Closure, Reclamation & Remediation(2)||$M||$10|
|Sustaining Capital Expenditure||$M||$272|
|All-In Sustaining Cash Costs||$M||$1,717|
|Gold Sales||000’s payable oz||$3,489|
|LOM All-In Sustaining Cash Costs per Ounce||$/payable oz||$492|
|Total All-In Sustaining and Construction Costs per Ounce||$/payable oz||$604|
(1) Net of silver credits totalling $27.50 per Au ounce.
(2) Net of salvage ($7.4M).
The Feasibility Study was prepared, under the direction of JDS Energy & Mining, Inc., by leading independent industry consultants, all Qualified Persons (QP) under NI 43-101. A complete list of the consultants and QPs contributing to the Feasibility Study is included in the technical report entitled “Buriticá Project NI 43-101 Technical Report Feasibility Study Antioquia, Colombia” dated March 29, 2016 with an effective date of February 24, 2016. A copy of the technical report can be accessed under the Company’s SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com or on this website.
The technical information in this section has been approved by Donald Gray, BSc. Mining Engineering and MSc. Civil Engineering, Chief Operating Officer of the Company and a QP under NI 43-101.