Update June 11, 2013.
We have the official confirmation that Los Azules is NOT on a fire sale any more by McEwen Mining. This asset will see its day and proper valuation now, starting with the new PEA to be released in Q3 of this year.
McEwen Mining: "As a result of our lower capital requirements, the rationale for selling Los Azules has effectively been eliminated. As a result, Los Azules has been removed from the sale process, which began in January. Los Azules is a significant copper deposit that we believe will command a better price in the future."
Update May 31, 2013.
Finally, we have something positive to report related to Argentina. Continued development of Pascua Lama will attract further interest to Los Azules Copper project.
Chile president gives nod to huge gold mine
"AFP - Chile's visiting president said Thursday that Canadian firm Barrick Gold can resume operations at its massive gold mine in Chile as long as environmental rules are followed.
Construction of the Pascua Lama project, which Barrick Gold launched in 2009, was suspended in April when a Chilean court accepted a complaint filed by indigenous groups on environmental grounds.
Chile's environmental authorities on May 24 also slapped a $16.4 million fine on Nevada Mining Company SpA, a Barrick Gold subsidiary, for "serious" violations at the unfinished gold mine.
Barrick "will be able to continue (as long as it is) compliant with all the environmental legislation and procedures and standards that has been set by the Chilean government," Chilean President Sebastian Pinera said.
The president, speaking at a joint news conference with Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper, noted 23 environmental areas where Barrick "will have to improve their behavior."
"The company has agreed to that," he said.
Chilean residents near the mine, located close to the border with Argentina, have long complained about possible environmental damage to waterways from the massive open pit mining project, one of the largest in the world.
Barrick Gold, the world's largest gold producer, planned to spend up to $8.5 billion on the mine, and hoped to start production there next year."
This new move by Rob McEwen can be very positive for the company and means that now Los Azules will not be up for the fire sale just to finance the El Galo II and the proper bids for the projects will be welcomed by end of Q2. El Galo II can now be developed without throwing out the Los Azules to the first buyer coming alone. PEA is due in Q3 and we can have dramatically different markets by then as well.
In the big economic picture Yen was rising against the US dollar from overnight and, as we have twitted before - Watch The Gold Now. Gold has it fireworks today and is UP 35 dollars or 2.6%. Over-shorted stocks like McEwen Mining do not need a second reminder about the explosive nature of Junior Mining - company is on fire today with 5.5 million shares traded only in US (Canada was closed today) and is UP 18.9% to 2.33 dollars. Tomorrow will be interesting day with Canadian markets open - we need the follow through action now with Gold and Miners to confirm the April Gold Low.
Meanwhile TNR Gold insiders continue to accumulate:
|As of 11:59pm ET May 19th, 2013|
|Securities||Nature of transaction||# or value acquired or disposed of||Price|
|May 17/13||May 17/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||39,000||$0.050|
|May 17/13||May 16/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||27,000||$0.060|
|May 17/13||May 15/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||8,000||$0.060|
|May 17/13||May 14/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||176,000||$0.060|
|May 17/13||May 13/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||29,000||$0.060|
|May 17/13||May 13/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||221,000||$0.055|
|Apr 24/13||Apr 19/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||250,000||$0.070|
|Apr 17/13||Apr 16/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||33,000||$0.070|
|Apr 17/13||Apr 15/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||50,000||$0.070|
|Apr 17/13||Apr 12/13||Listov, Alexander||Direct Ownership||Common Shares||10 - Acquisition in the public market||28,000||$0.070|
TNR Gold Corp. Advises of McEwen Mining's Increased Resource Estimate for Los Azules Copper Project TNR.v, MUX
"Los Azules is a large undeveloped copper porphyry system located in western
San Juan Provincewithin a belt of porphyry copper deposits that straddles the Chilean/Argentine border. This belt contains some of the world's largest copper deposits, including Codelco's El Teniente and Andinamines, Anglo American's Los Bronces mine, Antofagasta PLC's Los Pelambres mine and Xstrata'sEl Pachón project, among others. Los Azules is one of the world's largest, highest grade, undeveloped copper-porphyry deposits not owned by a major base metals company."
"Action with McEwen Mining was quite interesting this week and, particularly, on Friday. Stock has refused to follow the Gold that day and stubbornly was climbing higher all day. Rob McEwen was making some of his magic on Thursday at the conference call after the Q1 update and McEwen Mining Shareholders meeting will be taken place next week. Chief Owner has promised release from one of the exploration program before it and Los Azules new resource estimate is due by the end of May. According to his facebook page, Rob was on the road last few weeks talking to numerous Investment Banks..."
PI Financial Corp. Engaged as Financial Advisor for Sale of TNR Gold's Back-in Right to the Los Azules Copper Project, Argentina TNR.v, MUX
Author: Kip Keen
Posted: Friday , 17 May 2013
Posted: Friday , 17 May 2013
HALIFAX, NS (MINEWEB) -
McEwen Mining (NYSE: MUX) had said it is considering what to do with its El Gallo II silver-gold project in Mexico - specifically, how to finance the estimated $170 million capital cost or optimize the project's scope to something within its means. Failing here, El Gallo II would certainly head to McEwen Mining's back burner.
The main hurdles for McEwen Mining are this: it doesn't have enough cash to build it on its own and financing markets are tough. Meantime, gold and silver prices continue to fall. Thus, in a conference call last week, McEwen Mining President and CEO Rob McEwen said that although the project was still moving ahead, with permitting in the works, construction might not start later this year as it has hoped.
Making deferral seem all the more possible was the uncertain future of McEwen Mining's Los Azules copper-gold project in Argentina, now on the auction block. While McEwen hasn't capitulated in the search for a buyer for Los Azules, he sounded pragmatic about the ongoing sale process: There's interest, but a crowd isn't swelling at the door.
In part, the problem here is that the appetite for undeveloped mega copper-gold projects is somewhat tepid and meantime there's a glut of assets, some operating, up for sale. Thus juniors with large undeveloped copper-gold deposits for sale face stiff competition.
But a third path at El Gallo II may keep the project alive - neither deferral nor the $170 million Plan A. You might call it the mother of all mine optimization plans.
El Gallo II was, as outlined in a feasibility study late last year, to be a 5,000 tonne per day open-pit operation with milling and whole-ore leaching. It would exploit 38 million silver @ 101.3 g/t Ag and 46,102 ounces gold @ 0.12 g/t Au in reserves.
But in an update today McEwen Mining said it might forego a standalone operation completely, with a processing plant and whole ore leaching, and instead ship El Gallo II ore to El Gallo I, McEwen Mining's operating heap-leach gold-silver mine about five kilometres away
The benefit of doing so comes down to a trade-off. Far less capital costs - expansion rather than new building - in exchange for what would likely be far lower recoveries. In the El Gallo II feasibility study last year McEwen Mining estimated it could get 84 percent silver and 83 percent gold recoveries in a standalone El Gallo II operation with whole-ore leaching.
However, put the same ore, trucked and crushed, on a leach pad at El Gallo I and the silver recoveries, based on McEwen Mining's metallurgical testing, could drop by about a third to half that of standalone El Gallo II. McEwen stated that “early column tests returned between 45-62 percent silver.”
Thus El Gallo II - Los Azules sale or no - and terrible financing markets be damned - could still become a reality. For McEwen Mining the key question now becomes: Is the trade-off worth it?"
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