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Belo Sun Announces Positive Feasibility Study for Its Volta Grande Gold Project

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Belo Sun Announces Positive Feasibility Study for Its Volta Grande Gold Project

 

 

 

 

 

Belo Sun Mining Corp. (TSX:BSX) announces the completion of a Feasibility Study on its 100% owned Volta Grande Project located in Brazil.
 

Highlights include (all results are reported in U.S. dollars):

 

 
 
--  Gold production of 205,000 oz averaged over a 17 year mine life 
--  Post-tax Internal Rate of Return of 26% using a gold price of $1,200/oz 
--  Post-tax Net Present Value of $640 million at a 5% discount rate 
--  Initial capital costs of $298 million, including pre-production costs 
--  Average cash operating costs of $618/oz and all-in sustaining costs of
    $779/oz 
--  Proven and Probable mineral reserves of 3.8 million ounces of gold 
 
                                                                            
 
Table 1: Summary of Volta Grande Economic Results by Gold Price  
           
                                                                            
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                             High Case          Base Case           Low Case
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Gold Price (per oz)             $1,300             $1,200             $1,100
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Pre-Tax NPV (5%)        $1,147 million       $918 million       $688 million
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Pre-Tax IRR                        43%                36%                29%
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Post-Tax NPV (5%)         $830 million       $640 million       $447 million
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Post-Tax IRR                       32%                26%                20%
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
 

 

 

The Feasibility Study was prepared in accordance with the definitions set out in National Instrument 43-101 (NI 43-101) of the Canadian Securities Administrators. The Feasibility Study capital and operating cost estimates for the Volta Grande Project are summarized below.

 

 
 
                                                                            
Table 2: Volta Grande Project Capital Expenditure Estimates Breakdown (Post 
 - Tax)                                                                     
                                                                            
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Initial Capital                                                             
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Process & Infrastructure                                        $244 million
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Mining                                                           $20 million
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Pre-Production Costs - Process                                    $3 million
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Pre-Production Costs - Mining                                    $32 million
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Total - Initial Capital                                         $298 million
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Total - Expansion Capital                                        $63 million
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Average Sustaining Capital over life of mine               $7.3 million/year
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
 
 
 
Table 3: Summary of Volta Grande Project Operating Cost Estimates           
                                                                            
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Average Life-of-Mine Operating Cost                                         
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Mining                                                   $10.89/tonne milled
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Processing                                                $7.26/tonne milled
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G&A                                                       $0.84/tonne milled
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Total Operating Cost                                     $18.72/tonne milled
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Cash Operating Cost                                                  $618/oz
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All in Sustaining Cost                                               $779/oz
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Peter Tagliamonte, President and CEO of Belo Sun, commented, “The completion of the Feasibility Study marks an important milestone as Belo Sun moves towards its goal of becoming a significant low cost gold producer. The Project delivers positive results in all the areas we believe are important to investors, delivering a long life project with initial production spanning over 17 years; robust economics at reduced and current gold prices; and fundable capital. Also the geological setting of the property suggests a strong potential for the mine life to be extended beyond the projected 17 years presented in the Feasibility Study, making this a cornerstone mining Project. This economic robustness should allow us to internally fund exploration and development activities to realize additional opportunities and achieve growth. We believe the Project provides a strong foundation for building and growing the company in a mining friendly jurisdiction.”

Volta Grande Mineral Reserves
 

The mineral reserves for the Volta Grande Project are based on the conversion of measured and indicated mineral resources within the current Feasibility Study mine plan. Measured mineral resources are converted directly to proven mineral reserves and indicated mineral resources to probable reserves. The total fully diluted mineral reserves for the Volta Grande Project are shown in Table 4.

 

 
 
                                                                            
Table 4: Volta Grande Project Proven and Probable Reserves(i)               
                                                                            
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Classification          Tonnes (t)   Gold Grade (g/t)    Contained Gold (oz)
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Proven                  41,757,000               1.07              1,442,000
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Probable                74,212,000               0.98              2,346,000
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Proven + Probable      115,969,000               1.02              3,788,000
----------------------------------------------------------------------------
 

(i)This mineral reserve estimate is as of March 25, 2015 and is based on the new mineral resource estimate dated March 2015. The mineral reserve calculation was completed under the supervision of Gordon Zurowski, P.Eng of AGP Mining Consultants Inc, who is a Qualified Person as defined under NI 43-101. Mineral reserves are stated within the final design pit based on a $1020 gold price pit shell with a $1,200 gold price for revenue. The cutoff grade was 0.37 g/t for Ouro Verde and 0.40 g/t for Grota Seca. The mining cost averaged $10.90/tonne milled, processing was $7.25/tonne milled and G&A was $0.84/tonne milled. The process recovery averaged 93%. The exchange rate assumption applied was R$3.10 equal to US$1.00 The Feasibility Study only considers the Volta Grande open pit mineralized zones. The Feasibility Study does not include the South Block. Mineral resources that were part of the March 2015 mineral resource associated with South Block and underground mineral resources were left outside of the scope of the Feasibility Study.
 

Mining
 

The Feasibility Study considers open pit mining using a 100% owner operated equipment fleet including trucks, loaders and drills. The mine has been designed to deliver an initial 3.5 million tonnes per year (10,000 tonnes per day) of mill feed and expand to 7 million tonnes per year (20,000 tonnes per day) reaching full production in Year 3. The Feasibility Study contemplates a mine that will extract ore over a 17-year period not including eight months of pre-production stripping. The Feasibility Study optimizes the mine plan for the first 11 years with a delivered head grade of 1.30 g/t. Material from the last three months of pre-production stripping will be used to commission the process plant.
 

The average strip ratio for the life of the mine is estimated at 4.3:1. Open pit bench heights of 10 meters will be mined and ore hauled with 136-tonne haul trucks and matching loading equipment. Best practice grade control drilling will be done with reverse circulation drilling and rock sampling on mine benches prior to blasting. This provides the greatest flexibility for grade control during operations while maintaining reasonable mine operating costs and production capability.
 

During the mining operation a stockpile will be maintained adjacent to the primary crushing plant to be used as supplemental feed as required to meet production targets, weather events and as mill feed in the later years of the operation. Waste rock will be hauled to dedicated waste management facilities near the open pits.
 

Metallurgy
 

Extensive feasibility level test work was completed by SGS, using representative run-of-mine composites, that confirmed the material from the Volta Grande mineral deposits is amenable to a conventional crush, grind, gravity concentration, leach and carbon-in-pulp (CIP) flow sheet.
 

Test work results indicated that 40% to 50% of the gold will be recovered in a gravity concentrate. The overall estimated gold recovery based on all ore types being processed during the life of mine is 93%.
 

The Company also completed feasibility level test work of bond work indices, JK drop weight and SMC tests. These results were used to model the crushing and grinding circuits that confirmed the run-of-mine material is amenable to semi-autogenous (SAG) and ball mill grinding circuit configuration.
 

Infrastructure
 

The Volta Grande Project is located in Para State, approximately 60 kilometres south-east of the city of Altamira. Altamira is a major regional centre with a population of 150,000 and is serviced by a local airport and the Trans-Amazonian Highway. Altamira acts as the service center for many large industrial projects in the region.
 

The climate in the area of the Project is tropical with a rainy season from January to April and a dry season from May to December. The mean temperature is constant throughout the year (25 degrees C to 30 degrees C) and the relative humidity ranges from 65% to 85%.
 

Access to the mine site from the city of Altamira is by an existing 60 kilometer road that is paved for the first 30 kilometers. The remaining 30km of access road will be upgraded and paved during the mine operation.
 

Power for the Project will originate from a sub-station located 20 kilometres away and will be brought to the mine project by a 230 kV power line.
 

Water requirements for the Project will be provided by capturing precipitation and surface run-off. The water collected in storage ponds and augmented by reclaimed water from the tailings management facility will be sufficient to meet the operating requirements.
 

Management Team Strengthened
 

The Company is also pleased to announce the appointment of Stephane Amireault as Vice-President of Exploration. Mr. Amireault, MScA, P.Eng., holds a master’s degree in Applied Sciences from Ecole Polytechnique of the University of Montreal and is a member in good standing of the Ordre des Ingenieurs du Quebec. Mr. Amireault has over 25 years of experience in mineral exploration, particularly in Central and South America. He was formerly the Vice-President of Exploration for Sulliden Gold Corporation Ltd. until its acquisition by Rio Alto Mining in 2014.
 

“Mr. Amireault’s technical strength, proactive managerial experience, and exploration success, along with his long history of working in South America, will be invaluable to the Company and the Geological Team as we transition the Volta Grande Project from its current exploration phase into the development and operational phase,” commented, Peter Tagliamonte, President and CEO of Belo Sun.
 

 
About the Company

 

Belo Sun Mining Corp. is a Canadian-based mineral exploration and development company with a portfolio of gold-focused properties in Brazil. Belo Sun’s primary focus is advancing and expanding its 100% owned Volta Grande Gold Project, located in Para State.

Posted March 31, 2015

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