Your Treasure Map to Western Canadian Gold
In case you hadn't noticed, British Columbia boasts quite a concentration of incredibly prospective gold and copper properties in various stages of development to suit every kind of precious metal investor.
To introduce you to the area's golden potential, I have prepared this survey of the province's most exciting potential gold mines. I hope you appreciate the first of what I hope will become a systemic survey of the world's greatest metal resource hotspots.
Your Treasure Map to Gold's Mother Lodes
"Diving right in with the smallest of all these golden prospects, New Gold's New Afton is the only one that is presently under construction. This underground mine is expected to achieve full production during late 2012, and yield 85,000 ounces of gold per year for a 12-year mine life. With power lines and natural gas pipelines already crossing the property, the company has a convenient head start on energy infrastructure. With powerful feasibility-study metrics including a cash cost of negative $852 per ounce after copper and silver by-product credits, New Afton is a slam dunk for New Gold. Longer-term investors will have their radars attuned to the company's nearby Ajax-Python property, which already boasts a 1-million-ounce measured and indicated mineral resources just 10 kilometers from New Afton."
"Meanwhile, Terrane Metals has issued a positive construction decision for its Mt. Milligan project, and now seeks to raise some C$915 million in project financing to complement the C$40 million credit facility floated by 60% equity stakeholder Goldcorp (NYSE: GG). Although the required sum is large compared to Terrane's market capitalization, here again the robust economics of the mine plan stand in favor of a successful outcome against the apparent odds. Construction costs are expected to be recuperated after just four years of a 22-year mine life."
While preparing the article, I came with an idea. I hadn't realized just how closely situated Silver Standard's Snowfield and Brucejack properties are to Seabridge's famous KSM project. They appear close enough to me on a map to warrant consideration of folding all the properties together into a single mining camp that would boast M&I resources of 63 million ounces of gold, 116 million ounces of silver, and 10 billion pounds of copper. Any miner holding that kind of resource would rule the metals world. With SA eager to sell KSM and through an all-stock deal, and SSRI focused on two other development projects, I think a move to fold those projects into each other to establish the premier mining camp of the 21st century would be a game-changing coup for any deep-pocketed miner.
It will be interesting to see if that's how it ultimately plays out.
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