According to a recent press release by Capstone Mining Corp., copper production of the company increased in the latter half of 2018 as a result of extracted grades that opens up multiple possibilities, as well as improving overall recovery.
Starting three months before and ending on June 30, the report states that the Canada-based mining company was able to produce a total of 20,000 mt of copper as a result of mining 13,400 mt at Pinto Valley, 3,100 mt at Minto’s open-pit mine and 3,500 mt at its Cozamin site. The production also produced additional by-products of molybdenum, lead, silver, gold and zinc. Capstone states that these results are in line with the company’s initial forecast range for 2018.
Managing to produce 19,200 mt of copper in 2018’s first quarter, the company is still inching its way to a total output of 90,000 mt for the entirety of this year, per Platts.
Although Pinto Valley is “running well,” Capstone CEO and president Darren Pylot stated that production at the valley is slightly “lower than expectations.” According to the Pylot, Cozamin outperformed in the first quarter, while the soon-to-be-sold Minto Explorations open-pit mine received lower grades. The report also states that Minto’s production output is due to a number of adjustments and modifications made to accompany the new upcoming owner. Still, the company expects production to increase before this year wraps up and is looking at opportunities to further boost the company’s output.
Earlier this February, Capstone announced that it’ll be selling the Minto mine to Pembridge Resources, an upstart company listed on the London Stock Exchange. Selling the mine for $37.5 million plus the standard adjustments on the day of closing for assets, the company will be using the money to pay their credit facility and hopefully expand more into the market. Furthermore, Capstone will also be effectively owning 9.9 percent of Pembridge’s $50 million in shares as an additional payment. The transaction for this sale is expected to close within a few weeks.
The Minto mine currently employs 146 Capstone employees and 141 contract workers, with some coming from Pelly Construction Ltd. The mine is one of the said company’s projects, and the project started all the way back in 1996.
But while the company is expected to stop operations on the Minto open-pit mine soon, operations designed to boost production are moving as planned. Back in June, Capstone added 15,000 mt of additional copper reserves to Cozamin following a drilling operation. According to the company, the drilling operation is done as an effort to lengthen the mine’s life.
The company was also met with positive results following an intensive year of drilling in the mine located at Zacatecas, Mexico, adding an additional 115,000 tons of copper in what is called as the Mala Noche Footwall Zone. As a result, Capstone remains highly optimistic about the decision to extend mining operations in the site well into the future, expecting more opportunities that can ultimately pay off to a more positive impact.
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