• Underground project construction progressing on budget and on schedule for first production targeting Q4 2019
• New technical report, including the open pit project pre-feasibility study, well-progressed with completion targeted for end of Q1 2019, and ongoing focus on capital efficiency and IRR maximizationExploration update:
• Regional survey work has led to new prospects being identified and the Company has subsequently staked approximately 5700 acres of unpatented claims, expanding the Pumpkin Hollow property by 32% to the east
• Discussions well underway regarding ECA-backed project finance facility to further optimize its balance sheet for the long-term
• Working capital facility and offtake arrangements also in progress
Matt Gili, Chief Executive Officer of Nevada Copper, stated, “We are very pleased that construction at Pumpkin Hollow remains on target for entering production in the fourth quarter of this year. As highlighted by our solid progress, our team is performing extremely well and we now have 250 employees, contractors and subcontractors active on site. In addition, we are continuing to execute on our longer-term development plans and have significantly expanded our mineral claims area to the east via staking.”
As at mid-February, with approximately 250 employees, contractors and subcontractors on site, the construction of the Pumpkin Hollow Underground Project is progressing on schedule, including:
Underground Works – consisting of the production shaft and shaft stations (east main shaft), the ventilation shaft (east north ventilation shaft) and lateral development.
- East Main shaft utilities installation completed ahead of schedule
- Lateral development on the 2850 level and 2770 level have advanced 322ft and 182ft respectively (exclusive of shaft station)
- East North Ventilation Shaft surface infrastructure is complete and shaft sinking has advanced to 150ft
Surface Works – consisting of processing plant, dry stack storage and all other surface facilities.
- Earthworks complete for the primary dry stack facilities
- Concrete foundations for the grinding and cyclone areas are well underway
The previously announced new technical report, including the open pit project pre-feasibility study, is well progressed with targeted completion by the end of Q1 2019. The Company continues to apply its philosophy of focusing on capital efficiency and IRR-maximizing staged development.
EXPLORATION ACTIVITY UPDATE
Regional survey work has led to new prospects being identified and the Company has subsequently staked approximately 5700 acres of unpatented claims, expanding the Pumpkin Hollow property by 32% to the east. The staked claims appear to have good porphyry-style alteration and copper mineralization at surface. The Company is currently mapping and sampling the newly-acquired claims area, in addition to following-up on additional areas of high-grade surface skarn mineralization on its property.
ENVIRONMENTAL & COMMUNITY ASSESSMENT UPDATE
As part of its ongoing commitment to community engagement the Company has recently prepared an updated Environmental and Community Assessment Summary which provides information on the studies that have been performed and the permits and authorizations in place to protect the environment and address any community-related issues. This report is available on the website at www.nevadacopper.com under the Community heading.
The Company is continuing discussions with potential export credit agency-backed project finance lenders with the objective to further optimize its balance sheet for the long-term. Such discussions may provide the opportunity to substantially reduce the cost of the Company’s debt service and attract strong finance partners for potential future open pit development. Discussions are also ongoing relating to associated agreements to complement such a project finance facility, including a working capital facility, and should it be required or preferable, other financing, such as a standby/overrun facility, as well as offtake arrangements.