Taseko Mines Limited is pleased to announce that recently completed technical work on the Florence Copper Project has resulted in a significant improvement in project economics.
Russell Hallbauer, President and CEO of Taseko, stated, “In addition to the permitting milestones achieved over the past months, we are very pleased with the outcome of the latest engineering work which has increased the net present value (NPV) of the project to US$920 million. Contributing to the higher NPV is an 11% increase in average annual copper production, combined with slightly lower operating costs and pre-production capital. With annual copper production of 81 million pounds and pre-production capital of US$200 million, Florence Copper is one of the least capital intensive copper projects in the world.”
- Pre-tax net present value of US$920 million at a 7.5% discount rate
- Pre-tax internal rate of return of 44% with a 2.3 year payback
- Operating costs of US$1.10 per pound LME grade cathode copper
- Total life of mine production in excess of 1.7 billion pounds of copper
- Average annual production of 81 million pounds of copper for the life of mine 21 year mine life
- Total pre-production capital cost of US$200 million
- Long-term copper price of US$3.00 per pound
“Two important parameters for any copper leaching process are copper recovery and acid consumption,” continued Mr. Hallbauer. “The copper recovery estimate of 70% from the 2013 technical report as well as the acid consumption estimate have both been confirmed with the more detailed testing.”
“As we continue to perform additional technical work on our Florence Copper Project, the project is not only being de-risked, but operational and environmental attributes which were already very strong, are improving. It is our goal to commence construction on the production test facility in 2017 and advance this project towards being a second cash-flowing asset for Taseko,” concluded Mr. Hallbauer.
Since Taseko’s acquisition of the Florence Copper Project, two important project development initiatives have been finalized which verify and expand upon the extensive technical work undertaken by the previous owners. A two-year long in-series pressurized cell leach test was completed. This test was designed to more closely replicate in-situ leaching conditions and provide information on a larger scale than previous leach tests. The results have verified and greatly increased the confidence in the metallurgical input data used to simulate the performance of the project once it reaches production. In parallel with the leach test, an optimization of the project well field development sequence was performed. The entire project was then re-simulated and re-costed using updated inputs including the verified leach performance data.
The well field sequence developed for the optimized project plan increases copper production in the first five years of operations by 50%, compared with the previous project plan, and requires less preproduction capital than previously estimated.
The changes to the development plan have also resulted in an increase in the Florence Copper ore reserves. There was no change to the mineral resources.
For further information on Taseko, please visit the Taseko website at www.tasekomines.com
or contact: Brian Bergot,
Investor Relations –
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