Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd. (TSX-V: SCZ) reports its Q2 2023 production results from its Bolivar mine , Porco mine, Caballo Blanco Group of mines and the San Lucas ore sourcing and trading business, all located in Bolivia, and the Zimapan mine located in Mexico.
Arturo Préstamo, Executive Chairman of Santacruz, commented, “During the quarter the Company maintained steady production levels, despite a temporary interruption in plant feed haulage at the Mexican operation. This was offset by higher grade ore sourced by San Lucas. In the first half of the year, Santacruz has produced just over 11 million silver equivalent ounces. We have also been making progress on capital projects aimed at streamlining our operations, such as the integration ramp at Caballo Blanco, and our team is focused on finding additional opportunities to further improve operations at each mine.”
Santacruz processed 443,969 tonnes of material in Q2 2023, a slight decrease from the previous quarter. Silver equivalent ounces produced of 5,569,535 included 1,786,461 ounces of silver, 2,824 tonnes of lead, 22,281 tonnes of zinc and 297 tonnes of copper. The slight decrease in material processed was offset by an increase in silver production from San Lucas, which resulted in silver equivalent ounce production being in line with the previous quarter.
During the same period last year, 435,119 tonnes of material was processed, and 4,922,055 silver equivalent ounces was produced. While total material processed was relatively consistent when comparing Q2 2023 to Q2 2022, increased production from the higher-grade Bolivian operations offset reduced production from the lower grade Mexican operation, resulting in an increase in silver equivalent ounces.
The Company also made progress on operational efficiency projects at its various mines. At Bolivar, water handling infrastructure servicing the Central Zone was upgraded, which should alleviate production interruptions experienced from this area in Q2 and allow for more consistent production going forward. In addition, the integration ramp connecting the Tres Amigos and Colquechaquita mines at the Caballo Blanco remains on track for completion in Q1 2024. The integration ramp consists of approximately 1,177 meters of development, including primary ramp and auxiliary drives, and is more than 60% complete. This is expected to facilitate increased productivity from Colquechaquita and total production from the Caballo Blanco Group of mines by providing trackless access to Colquechaquita and eliminating the bottleneck created by the current shaft.
Second Quarter 2023 Production Summary – Consolidated
Q2 vs Q1
Q2 vs Q2
|2023 YTD||2022 YTD(1)(2)||Change
’23 vs ’22
|Material Processed (tonnes milled)||443,969||482,497||(8 %)||435,119||2 %||926,466||662,689||40 %|
|Silver Equivalent Produced (AgEq ounces) (3)||5,569,535||5,644,383||(1 %)||4,922,055||13 %||11,213,918||6,535,775||72 %|
|Silver Ounces Produced||1,786,461||1,769,520||1 %||1,410,485||27 %||3,555,981||1,880,314||89 %|
|Lead Tonnes Produced||2,824||3,043||(7 %)||2,825||– %||5,867||4,169||41 %|
|Zinc Tonnes Produced||22,281||22,463||(1 %)||20,433||9 %||44,744||26,591||68 %|
|Copper Tonnes Produced||297||415||(28 %)||329||(10 %)||712||537||33 %|
|Development Metres||10,922||10,573||3 %||9,807||11 %||21,495||13,379||61 %|
Second Quarter 2023 Production Summary – By Mine
|Bolivar (4)||Porco (4)||Caballo
|Material Processed (tonnes milled)||66,689||46,085||74,268||85,258||171,668|
|Silver Equivalent Produced (AgEq ounces) (3)||961,580||689,902||1,211,475||1,827,724||878,854|
|Silver Ounces Produced||424,664||195,509||399,811||495,344||271,133|
|Lead Tonnes Produced||302||214||825||635||849|
|Zinc Tonnes Produced||3,323||3,098||4,804||8,315||2,741|
|Copper Tonnes Produced||N/A||N/A||N/A||N/A||297|
|Average head grades per mine:|
|Metal recovery per mine:|
|(1)||On March 18, 2022 the Company closed the acquisition of all Bolivian assets from Glencore and the results of the Bolivian Operations are included in the consolidated results of the Company from that date.|
|(2)||Production from March 18, 2022 to June 30, 2022.|
|(3)||Silver Equivalent Produced (ounces) have been calculated using prices of $21.86/oz, $0.91/lb, $1.52/lb and $3.67/lb for silver, lead, zinc and copper respectively applied to the metal production divided by the silver price.|
|(4)||Bolivar and Porco are presented at 100% production, whereas the Company records 45% of revenues and expenses in its consolidated financial statements.|
|(5)||The Caballo Blanco Group consists of the Colquechaquita, Tres Amigos and Reserva mines.|
Wayne Corso, Chief Operating Officer of the Company is a qualified person under NI 43-101 and has approved the scientific and technical information related to operational matters contained in this news release.
About Santacruz Silver Mining Ltd.
Santacruz Silver is engaged in the operation, acquisition, exploration, and development of mineral properties in Latin America. The Bolivian operations are comprised of the Bolivar, Porco and the Caballo Blanco Group, which consists of the Tres Amigos, Reserva and Colquechaquita mines. The Soracaya exploration project and San Lucas ore sourcing and trading business are also in Bolivia. The Zimapan mine is in Mexico.
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