Almaden Minerals (TSX: AMM)(NYSE: AAU) owns 100% of the Tuligtic project in Puebla State, Mexico. Tuligtic covers the Ixtaca Gold-Silver Deposit, which was discovered by Almaden in 2010.
The Ixtaca Deposit currently hosts a proven and probable reserve of 65.1 million tonnes grading 0.62 g/t Gold and 37.7 g/t Silver or 1.29 million ounces of Gold and 78.8 million ounces of Silver.
In May 2017, Almaden filed a Preliminary Feasibility Study (PFS) of the Ixtaca deposit, which estimates an economically robust project generating an after-tax IRR of 41% using US$1250/oz Gold and US$18/oz Silver prices. The project would produce a total of 1,043,000 ounces of gold and 70.9 million ounces of silver over a 14 year mine life.
The PEA demonstrates that Ixtaca is one of Mexico’s premier precious metals deposits. Almaden's focus is now on advancing project engineering in a careful and deliberate manner and concurrently optimizing project design. In addition, significant exploration potential remains at Ixtaca and Almaden intends to turn its focus to this aspect of the project as market conditions allow.
Key highlights of the PEA Update include (using US$1,250/oz Au and US$18/oz Ag):
- Pre-tax NPV(5%) of $484 million and internal rate of return of 54%;
- After-tax NPV(5%) of $310 million and internal rate of return of 41%;
- Initial Capital of $117 million;
- After-tax payback of initial capital in 2.2 years;
- Total LOM production of 1.04 million ounces of gold and 70.9 million ounces of silver doré produced on site (2.07 million gold equivalent ounces, or 143 million silver-equivalent ounces at a 69:1 silver to gold ratio);
- Average annual production over the first 9 years of 88,780 ounces gold and 5.47 million ounces silver (168,100 gold equivalent ounces, or 11.6 million silver equivalent ounces);
- Operating cost $706 per gold equivalent ounce, or $10.20 per silver equivalent ounce;
- All-in Sustaining Costs (“AISC”), including operating costs, sustaining capital, expansion capital, private and public royalties, refining and transport of $862 per gold equivalent ounce, or $12.50 per silver equivalent ounce.
- Proven and Probable Minerals Reserves of 65 million tonnes averaging 0.62 g/t gold and 37.8 g/t silver (average head grade of 1.16 g/t gold equivalent using a 69:1 silver to gold ratio)
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