First Majestic Silver Corp. (TSX: FR) (NYSE: AG) announces total production in the first quarter of 2020 reached 6.2 million silver equivalent ounces consisting of 3.2 million ounces of silver and 32,202 ounces of gold. As previously announced on April 6, 2020, the Company has withdrawn its 2020 production and costs guidance as a result of Mexico’s Ministry of Health’s Federal Decree to temporarily suspend all mining operations until April 30, 2020.
FIRST QUARTER HIGHLIGHTS
“Strong production from our three operating mines reached 6.2 million silver equivalent ounces in the first quarter, or 9% above our previously suspended guidance,” said Keith Neumeyer, President and CEO. “Our San Dimas, Santa Elena and La Encantada mines were all operating above guidance prior to Mexico’s Federal Decree to suspend all mining activities in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. While we support the actions being taken, we continue to engage in discussions with Federal and State authorities to raise awareness on the importance of silver mining as an essential business.”
|Ore processed/tonnes milled||599,142||812,654||-26%||626,482||-4%|
|Total production – ounces of silver eqv.||6,195,057||6,273,677||-1%||6,233,412||-1%|
|Silver ounces produced||3,151,980||3,331,388||-5%||3,348,424||-6%|
|Gold ounces produced||32,202||32,037||+1%||33,176||-3%|
|Pounds of lead produced||0||2,661,088||-100%||914,370||-100%|
|Pounds of zinc produced||0||1,265,438||-100%||0||0%|
Total ore processed during the quarter at the Company’s three silver mines amounted to 599,142 tonnes, representing a 4% decrease compared to the previous quarter. The slight decrease in tonnes processed compared to the prior quarter was primarily due to lower volumes at Santa Elena following a seven day planned mill maintenance program as well as the suspension of milling activities at Del Toro, partially offset by higher volumes at San Dimas.
Consolidated silver grades remained on budget averaging 185 g/t compared to 189 g/t in the previous quarter. In addition, consolidated gold grades in the quarter averaged 1.74 g/t compared to 1.71 g/t in the prior quarter.
Consolidated silver and gold recoveries averaged 89% and 96% in the first quarter, consistent with the previous quarter. The Company continues to expect recoveries to remain strong aided by the installation of a new 3,000 tpd HIG mill at San Dimas and the ongoing HIG mill optimization program at Santa Elena aimed at further reducing the feed grind size into the plant. In addition, the Company began testing low-grade tailings through its new microbubble flotation research and development facility at La Parrilla. Preliminary test results have indicated the potential to significantly increase metallurgical recoveries and produce a high-grade concentrate with material previously deemed as uneconomic.
In response to COVID-19, the Company quickly implemented several control measures to assist in preventing the spread of a potential virus outbreak. Some of these measures include social distancing, the cancellation of any non-essential visits to the mines, comprehensive sanitation measures for the workplace and company transportation, and pre-screening for virus symptoms. Additionally, access restrictions to limit travel in and out of the local communities have been implemented. To date, First Majestic has not experienced any incidents related to COVID-19 at its sites or corporate offices. The Company continues to actively engage with local communities and other stakeholders to reduce the risk of COVID-19 from entering our host communities. Programs are being implemented to increase awareness about the virus, promote good hygiene and responsible social interactions to prevent and/or contain the spread of the virus within our areas of influence.
MINE BY MINE PRODUCTION TABLE
|Mine||Ore Processed||Tonnes per Day||Ag Grade (g/t)||Au Grade (g/t)||Ag Recovery||Au Recovery||Ag Oz Produced||Au Oz Produced||Equivalent Ag Ounces|
*Certain amounts shown may not add exactly to the total amount due to rounding differences.
*The following prices were used in the calculation of silver equivalent ounces: Silver: $16.90 per ounce, Gold: $1,583 per ounce.
At the San Dimas Silver/Gold Mine:
At the Santa Elena Silver/Gold Mine:
At the La Encantada Silver Mine:
Q1 EARNINGS ANNOUNCEMENT
The Company is planning to release its first quarter 2020 unaudited financial results on Thursday, May 14, 2020.
About First Majestic Silver
First Majestic is a mining company focused on silver production in Mexico and is aggressively pursuing the development of its existing mineral property assets. The Company presently owns and operates the San Dimas Silver/Gold Mine, the Santa Elena Silver/Gold Mine and the La Encantada Silver Mine.
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