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Silver Mountain Delivers Positive Preliminary Economic Assessment For Its Reliquias Project, Peru; Pre-Tax NPV 5% Of C$107 million, Pre-Tax IRR Of 57%, And Payback Of 1.8 Years

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Silver Mountain Delivers Positive Preliminary Economic Assessment For Its Reliquias Project, Peru; Pre-Tax NPV 5% Of C$107 million, Pre-Tax IRR Of 57%, And Payback Of 1.8 Years

 

 

 

 

 

Key Highlights – Preliminary Economic Assessment

  • Pre-Tax Net Present Value, C$107 million1 at 5% discount rate, and Pre-Tax Internal Rate of Return of 57%
  • After-Tax Net Present Value, C$85 million1 at 5% discount rate, and After-Tax Internal Rate of Return of 51%.
  • Construction time of 10 months
  • Payback Period of 1.8 years
  • Profitability ratio (Initial CAPEX/NPV) of 2.5 times
  • Average annual metal production of 2.2 million ounces AgEq per year
  • Initial CAPEX of US$24.8 million
  • All-in Sustaining Cost2 of 17 US$/Oz AgEq
  • Benefits from existing and fully permitted infrastructure

 

Silver Mountain Resources Inc. (TSX-V: AGMR) (OTCQB: AGMRF) is pleased to announce the results of a Preliminary Economic Assessment of its 100% owned Reliquias Project, Huancavelica department, central Peru. The PEA shows Reliquias to be a robust silver and base metals project with significant infrastructure in place. Restarting operations at this historic past producer could position Silver Mountain as the next producer in Peru, taking advantage of a favourable metals market.

 

Alvaro Espinoza, CEO of Silver Mountain, stated: “This PEA reflects 18 months of diligent work by our team, highlighting a strong business case for Reliquias as a future silver producer in Peru and supported by favourable market conditions. Essential infrastructure, including a tailings facility, is already in place, and permitting is progressing as planned. This is reflected in a reduced initial CAPEX of US$24.8 million and a short payback period of less than two years considering a conservative silver price of US$24 per ounce. Silver Mountain’s experienced technical team, led by Richard Contreras and known for developing deposits like Panamerican Silver’s Morococha mine, ensures that our mine plan and methods are achievable and cost-effective. We are on track with our development timeline and budget. Furthermore, the exploration potential within our 60,000 hectare land package holds potential for significant resource expansion through future drilling, setting the stage for increased production over time.  

 

The results of the PEA will be disclosed in an independent technical report in accordance with National Instrument 43-101 – Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects and prepared by independent consulting firm RECURSOS RESERVAS Y EVALUACIONES MINERAS S.A.C. with specific subject matter expertise including Plenge Laboratorios for metallurgical test work, Airex, as ventilation consultants, DTC as geotechnical consultants, and Apeg for mine planning. A NI 43-101 compliant technical report in respect of the PEA will be filed on SEDAR+ within 45 days of this news release.

 

Note: The PEA is preliminary and includes Inferred Mineral Resources that are considered too speculative geologically to have the economic considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as Mineral Reserves, and there is no certainty that the preliminary economic assessment will be realized. Mineral Resources are not Mineral Reserves and do not have demonstrated economic viability.

 

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1 Based on a US$ to C$ exchange rate of 1.3498.
2 AISC is a non-IFRS financial ratio that does not have any standardized meaning prescribed under IFRS and therefore may not be comparable to other issuers. Please refer to “Non-IFRS Measures”.

 

Discussion of Preliminary Economic Assessment

 

A summary of the key financial information for the PEA is provided in Table 1.

 

Table 1: Key financial information from the Reliquias Project PEA.

 

A Life of Mine (LOM) operating summary for the updated PEA is shown in Table 2.

 

Table 2: Operating summary and main assumptions used for the Reliquias Project PEA.

 

The Project is planned as an underground mine operation. For the PEA, the annual mining rate will be up to 322 ktpa. Production of both the bulk and zinc concentrates will begin simultaneously, each feeding separate processing circuits. The LOM is 9 years. Two separate mining methods, Bench and Fill Stoping, and Sublevel Stoping, have been selected for Reliquias, considering the existing infrastructure and the ventilation and drainage plans.

 

Production is assumed to commence following 10 months of refurbishment and commissioning of the existing flotation plant. The mine plan for Reliquias is based on mining a total of 2.4 million tonnes with a head grade of 3.71 oz / t silver, 0.32 g / t Au, 2.45% Zn, 1.62% Pb, and 0.26% Cu over a 9-year LOM using an NSR cut-off of $85.64 / t. A lower marginal cut-off grade of $74.28 / t was used, whereby lower grade blocks adjacent to existing infrastructure were incorporated into the resource base. Mining dilution is variable, depending on the stope sizes, and rates between 17% and 36% were applied.

 

Processing of the polymetallic mineralization will be through a conventional crushing and grinding circuit followed by froth flotation, concentrate thickening, and filtration in the existing plant. Two products, a bulk concentrate, and a zinc concentrate will be produced. Metallurgical test work indicates a bulk concentrate grading 69.88 oz/t Ag, 31.09 % Pb and 4.88 %Cu. The zinc concentrates grade 53.45 %. Table 3 below shows the concentrate grades and recovery assumptions for both products.

 

Table 3: Concentrate grades and metallurgical recoveries for the Reliquias Project

 

Note: The recoveries have changed compared to those published in January 2024 (Bulk concentrate recoveries of 88% Ag, 75% Au, 93% Pb, and 91% Cu, and Zinc concentrate recovery of 84% Zn), considering a mineral blend most suitable for the first three years of LOM operation, where the main contributors are the Matacaballo, Sacasipuedes, Ayayay, and Vulcano veins.

 

 

Infrastructure

 

Access

There is a good existing road network from the Project to the Peruvian coast. The Project lies approximately 250 km from the Port of Callao, the main hub for concentrate exports in the country. The road leaving the Project is an all-weather gravel road that connects to a bitumen road to the coast and then to the Port of Callao via the Pan-American highway.

 

Tailings and Mine Waste Management

The existing tailings storage facility is permitted to store up to 770,000 m3, equivalent to four years of production. An old open pit is permitted to store up to 200,000 m3 of waste material, enough for the LOM of the deposit.

 

Power, Water

The Project is connected to an existing substation belonging to Consorcio Energético Huancavelica (CONENHUA), a private company dedicated to power generation and distribution. Potable water is supplied through existing pipes from approved sources to two large storage tanks. Finally, the existing mine hosts an operational water treatment facility that collects, stores, processes, and recirculates water for the metallurgical process.

 

Capital and Operating Costs

 

The major components of the initial capital expenditure of US$24.8 million include US$21.5 million for underground development and US$2.1 million for processing plant refurbishment. The low capital expenditure for the plant reflects the current state of the facility, which can be quickly put back into full operation. Total sustaining capital is US$32.3 million over the 9-year mine life. The major components of sustaining capital are US$12.6 million for lateral development and US$4.7 million for increasing the capacity of the tailings dam.

 

The estimated capital costs, over the life of the Project, are as follows in Table 4.

 

Table 4: Capital expenditure costs for the Reliquias Project

 

Numbers may not add up due to rounding errors.

 

The total operating cost over the life of mine is US$ 207.9 million, and the breakdown is shown in table 5.

Table 5: LOM operating costs for the Reliquias Project

 

Sensitivity Analysis

 

During the PEA study, an initial sensitivity analysis was conducted, focusing on metal pricing parameters within practical ranges. This analysis elucidates how each variable affects essential project financial indicators like NPV and IRR.

 

Opportunities and Exploration Potential

 

The Reliquias deposit has not been fully delineated by exploration drilling, and the extension of several of the veins remain open along strike and at depth. Opportunities for additional value at Reliquias include, but are not limited to:

i. Potential to extend individual vein systems both along strike and at depth with more drilling.
ii. Potential to find different styles of mineralization under the large alteration areas found in the Brownfields targets identified by Company geologists.
iii. Exploration potential for large porphyry-style mineralization under mineralized tourmaline breccias at the Yahuarcocha and Caudalosa targets which have not been reflected in the PEA.

 

Furthermore, the Caudalosa mine, located adjacent to the flotation plant used for Reliquias, hosts a historical resource equivalent to a 38 Moz of contained silver ounces. An aggressive drill program is planned in the near term to convert these resources into current resource and incorporate them quickly into the mine plan.

 

Resource Estimate

 

The mineral resource  estimate  for  the  PEA  was  prepared  in  accordance  with NI  43-101 and CIM Standards and is set forth in the  technical  report  entitled “NI 43-101 Technical Report: Mineral Resource Update, Reliquias Mine” dated March 8, 2024 and with an effective date of January 1, 2024 and available on the Company’s profile on SEDAR+ at https://sedarplus.ca.

 

Technical Background and Qualified Persons

 

All scientific and technical information contained in this news release has been reviewed and approved by Gerardo Acuña FAusIMM (CP), Principal Consultant (Mining Engineering) who is a Qualified Person as defined in NI 43-101.

 

About Silver Mountain 

 

Silver Mountain Resources Inc. is a silver explorer and mine developer planning to restart production at the Reliquias underground mine and undertake exploration activities at its prospective silver camps at the Castrovirreyna Project in Huancavelica, Peru.

 

Figure 1: Projected Annual and Cumulative LOM Post-Tax Unlevered Free Cash Flow (C$M) (CNW Group/Silver Mountain Resources Inc.)

 


Table 5: LOM operating costs for the Reliquias Project (CNW Group/Silver Mountain Resources Inc.)

 


Silver Price & Au Price (CNW Group/Silver Mountain Resources Inc.)

 

Posted May 15, 2024

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