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McEwen Mining: 2023 Production and Guidance for 2024

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McEwen Mining: 2023 Production and Guidance for 2024

 

 

 

 

 

McEwen Mining Inc. (NYSE: MUX) (TSX: MUX) is pleased to report full year and fourth quarter 2023 production results that represent a significant improvement year-over-year and compared to prior quarters. Consolidated production in Q4 2023 was 49,850 gold equivalent ounces(1), and full year production for 2023 was 154,600 GEOs. These results were consistent with our latest forecast (Q3 results press release dated Nov 8, 2023) and within our guidance range for the year (press release dated Mar 14, 2023).

 

Gold Bar production accelerated during Q4 and the month of December, making new records for the quarter and the month, through the addition of mining crews and the completion of the heap leach pad expansion. At Fox, production continued steady above 10,000 GEOs. San José production continued to strengthen throughout the year, past the operational challenges of the first quarter.

 

Chart 1: 2023 Quarterly Production – Gold Bar, Fox, San José and Consolidated (GEOs)

 

 

In 2023, Gold Bar produced 43,700 gold ounces, within guidance range, Fox produced 44,450 gold ounces, also within guidance range, and San José produced 65,650 GEOs, slightly below guidance range (see Table 1).

 

Table 1: Consolidated Production Summary
 
  Q4
2022
Q4
2023(3)
Full Year
2023(3)
2023
Guidance
Consolidated Production      
Gold (oz) 28,970 42,400 128,650 123,000-139,000
Silver (oz) 702,000 635,650 2,166,850 2.3M-2.6M
GEOs(1) 37,280 49,850 154,600 150,000-170,000
Gold Bar Mine, Nevada      
GEOs 7,940 19,800 43,700 42,000-48,000
Fox Complex, Canada      
GEOs 9,870 10,200 44,450 42,000-48,000
San José Mine, Argentina (49%)(2)      
Gold Production (oz) 11,170 11,700 39,700 39,000-43,000
Silver Production (oz) 700,850 635,650 2,166,850 2.3M-2.6M
GEOs 19,420 19,150 65,650 66,000-74,000
         

 

Our consolidated production is recovering after experiencing a challenging period from 2020. Looking ahead, while we forecast lower production in 2024, the historic production trend remains positive.

 

Chart 2: Historic Consolidated Annual Production (Thousand GEOs)

 

 

2024 Production and Cost Guidance

 

For 2024, we expect to produce in the range of 130,000 to 145,000 GEOs attributable to MUX from all operations (see Table 2). The reduction compared to 2024 is primarily driven by lower output from our Fox operation and from San José, which is operated by our partner Hochschild Mining. We are currently evaluating potential areas for enhancing production and profitability, and we will update our guidance accordingly once any further improvements are implemented.

 

Table 3: 2024 Production & Costs per GEO Guidance
   
  2024
Guidance
100% Owned Mines (Gold Bar and Fox)  
GEOs 80,000-85,000
Cash Costs/GEO $1,350-1,450
AISC/GEO $1,550-1,650
Gold Bar Mine, Nevada  
GEOs 40,000-43,000
Cash Costs/GEO $1,450-1,550
AISC/GEO $1,650-1,750
Fox Complex, Canada  
GEOs 40,000-42,000
Cash Costs/GEO $1,225-1,325
AISC/GEO $1,450-1,550
49% Owned San José Mine  
GEOs 50,000-60,000
Cash Costs/GEO $1,300-1,500
AISC/GEO $1,500-1,700
   

 

At Fox in 2024, we will be starting the development of underground ramp access to the Stock orebodies, particularly Stock West, which will become the primary source of feed following the completion of mining the Froome deposit in 2026. This capital investment is partially funded by the US$16.1 million flow-through financing completed in December 2023.

 

At Gold Bar in 2024, the first half of the year is expected to deliver higher production relative to the second half, due to a scheduled waste stripping phase in the Pick pit, in preparation for the 2025 mining program. The mining sequence continues to be optimized.

 

McEwen Copper

 

Twenty drill rigs are currently on site at Los Azules and over 36,000 meters (118,000 ft) of drilling have been completed so far this season, to advance all areas that contribute to the upcoming Feasibility Study (FS), which is expected to be published in Q1 2025.

 

At the Los Azules Project, we’ve made significant progress. Our drilling program is over halfway complete, with 36,000 meters drilled out of the 55,000 planned for our comprehensive feasibility study. The work necessary for the completion of the feasibility study includes mineral resource estimation, metallurgical testing, equipment selection, final completion and cost estimation of design for the mine and our facilities. Additionally, we will work to advance our power and road infrastructure plans and establish preliminary site-wide water balance including pit dewatering.

 

On the ground, we’ve made tangible progress with the drilling program, construction of our winter camp and improvements to the exploration road facilitating year-round operations. We’re also on track with environmental permitting, reflecting our commitment to responsible development.

 

Financially, we’ve been diligent in protecting our treasury. The majority of our funds have been invested in depository receipts of foreign and major Argentinean corporations, to shield us from devaluation. This strategic move ensures that the Los Azules project’s financial backbone stays robust in supporting our project development.

 

“We are adapting to a changing environment in Argentina, recognizing the importance of current political and economic reforms for the future stability and growth of the nation. Mining is a vital component of Argentina’s economy and, under the right conditions, one that is poised to grow significantly and support the country’s economic recovery,” said Michael Meding, VP of McEwen Copper and General Manager of the Los Azules Project.

 

Notes:
(1)   ‘Gold Equivalent Ounces’ are calculated based on a gold-to-silver price ratio of 84:1 for Q1 2023, 83:1 for Q2, 2023, 82:1 for Q3 2023, 85:1 for Q4 2023. 2023 production guidance is calculated based on an 85:1 gold-to-silver price ratio.
(2)   The San José Mine is 49% owned by McEwen Mining Inc. and 51% owned and operated by Hochschild Mining plc. Production is shown on a 49% basis.
(3)   El Gallo Mine (on care and maintenance) produced 704 GEO and 797 GEO in Q4 and FY2023, respectively, from plant and pond cleanout.

 

Technical Information

The technical content of this news release related to financial results, mining and development projects has been reviewed and approved by William (Bill) Shaver, P.Eng., COO of McEwen Mining and a Qualified Person as defined by SEC S-K 1300 and the Canadian Securities Administrators National Instrument 43-101 “Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.”

 

Reliability of Information Regarding San José

Minera Santa Cruz S.A., the owner of the San José Mine, is responsible for and has supplied the Company with all reported results from the San José Mine. McEwen Mining’s joint venture partner, a subsidiary of Hochschild Mining plc, and its affiliates other than MSC do not accept responsibility for the use of project data or the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

 

ABOUT MCEWEN MINING

 

McEwen Mining is a gold and silver producer with operations in Nevada, Canada, Mexico and Argentina. In addition, it owns 47.7% of McEwen Copper which owns the large, advanced stage Los Azules copper project in Argentina. The Company’s goal is to improve the productivity and life of its assets with the objective of increasing its share price and providing a yield. Rob McEwen, Chairman and Chief Owner, has personally provided the company with $220 million and takes an annual salary of $1.

 

Posted February 13, 2024

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