First Majestic sees growth on three fronts: Production, reserves, efficiency
(First posted June 2012)
The La Parrilla Silver Mine is 100% owned and operated by First Majestic Silver. (TSX: FM)
The La Parrilla Silver Mine began operations in 2004; it was the first mine developed by First Majestic Silver.
Since then, the company has continued to expand mine capacity, grow resources and reserves and improve efficiency throughout the project area.
La Parilla consists of underground silver, lead and zinc mining operations as well as a dual-circuit flotation and cyanidation processing mill.
In 2011, First Majestic invested $40M to expand the capacity at the mill from 850 to 2,000 tpd.
This has allowed for increases in throughput longer leaching times and higher recovery rates.
Silver production is expected to increase by 100% to 3 million ounces per year plus significant amounts of lead and zinc.
La Parrilla is a complex of underground mines surrounding the mill, including the Los Rosarios, La Rosa, Vacas, Quebradillas and San Marcos mines.
Since taking control of the property, First Majestic has drilled more than 100,000 metres in over 450 drill holes.
Ore deposits consist mainly of veins and limestone replacement deposits with mineralization in both oxides and sulfides.
Based on a successful drill program in 2011, total proven and probable reserves increased to 51.8 million silver equivalent ounces while total measured and indicated resources and Inferred resources registered 8.8 million and 73.1 million silver equivalent ounces, respectively.
This dramatic increase to reserves resulted in La Parrilla’s life of mine being extended to over 14 years.
(Silver equivalency includes silver, gold, lead and zinc. These estimates are based on the following prices: Ag – $23.85/oz, Au – $1,300/oz, Pb -$1.00/lb and Zn – $1.00/lb)
Five drill rigs are currently active and continue to discover additional resources.
First Majestic’s exciting new development focus at La Parrilla includes connecting the five mines with a modern underground ore haulage system.
Presently the five mines are accessible only by above ground roadways.
With the construction of a new, 5 km electric powered railcar system ore from the underground working areas will be conveyed via rail cars to a main hoisting shaft at the Rosarios mine, nearest to the mill.
This consolidation of mining operations will remarkably improve operational efficiencies; lower costs by eliminating the need for vehicular transportation of ore; and could potentially allow for further expansion of milling capacity in the years ahead.
La Parrilla’s current land package stretches across approximately 70,000 hectares, nearly the size of the entire New York City metropolitan area.
The known ore bodies lie within a 3,500 hectare area around the mill and the remaining 66,500 hectares has never been explored using modern techniques.
However, in late 2011, First Majestic sent two teams of five geologists on exploration missions across this vast expanse of prospective land.
The teams discovered more than a dozen previously unknown historic spanish mines on the southern area of the property.
2012 will mark the first time that the regional geological anomalies within this large land package will be drilled.
First Majestic Silver is confident that continued success at La Parrilla will be beneficial to its shareholders, local residents and economic partners.
Lead by a highly experienced management team, First Majestic is well on its path to becoming the next senior silver producer.
Go to www.FirstMajestic.com today to find out more about this and other First Majestic operations.