Updates Mineral Resource And Mineral Reserve Estimates
Dundee Precious Metals Inc.(TSX: DPM) has announced a mine life extension for the Chelopech mine in Bulgaria.
The Mineral Resource and Mineral Reserve estimates for DPM’s Ada Tepe mine in Bulgaria and Timok gold project in Serbia remain unchanged from the estimates previously reported in October 2020 and February 2021, respectively.
- 10% net addition to Mineral Reserves: Successfully added 3.9 million tonnes (Mt) to Mineral Reserves, which more than offset 2020 production depletion of 2.2 Mt for a net addition of 1.7 Mt. Relative to the previous Mineral Reserve estimate, this represents an increase of 10% in tonnage and an increase in metal content of 5% for gold, 13% for silver and 3% for copper;
- Mine life extended to 2029: Proven and Probable Mineral Reserves of 1.7 million ounces (Moz.) of gold and 344.4 million pounds (Mlbs.) of copper supports an optimized mine life that extends to 2029 as well as the Company’s previously issued three-year outlook for Chelopech;
- 22% increase to Measured and Indicated Mineral Resources: Measured and Indicated Mineral Resources, exclusive of Mineral Reserves, increased 22%, representing a 3.2 Mt net increase in tonnage and an increase in metal content of 12% for gold and 6% for copper, further adding to the potential to extend mine life, if such Mineral Resources are converted to Mineral Reserves;
- Additional potential with in-mine and brownfield exploration: Significant drilling program planned for 2021, including 44,000 metres of in-mine drilling and 38,000 metres of drilling on prospective brownfield targets.
“We continued our strong track record of extending mine life at our Chelopech mine in 2020, with net additions to our Mineral Reserves and Mineral Resources compared with 2019 estimates,” said David Rae, President and Chief Executive Officer of Dundee Precious Metals.
“With Mineral Reserves that now extend to 2029, an updated Mineral Resource base and increased in-mine and brownfield exploration drilling, we believe there is strong potential for this trend to continue at Chelopech.”
Updated Mineral Resource and Mineral Reserve Estimate
The updated Mineral Resource and Mineral Reserve estimate for the Chelopech mine reflects the conversion of Mineral Resources to Mineral Reserves, as well as a strategic mine plan optimization process that was completed in Q3 2020. The strategic optimization process included an analysis of multiple mine schedules at various cut-off values (“CoV”), with the primary objectives focused on optimizing net present value and the life of mine (“LOM”). Of the overall increase to Mineral Reserves, approximately 20 to 25% was added as a result of the conversion of new Mineral Resources generated by in-mine drilling activities, with the balance of the increase resulting from the optimisation of the CoV and other design parameters.
Total Proven and Probable Mineral Reserves at Chelopech of 1.7 Moz. of gold and 344.4 Mlbs. of copper support an eight-year mine life that extends to 2029, prior to any further conversions from existing Mineral Resources or additional exploration success.
The table below shows the current LOM plan, reflecting the updated Mineral Reserves estimate. The updated LOM plan adds approximately 228,000 oz. of gold production and 43 Mlbs. of copper production between 2021 and 2029, relative to the previous mine plan outlined in the technical report for Chelopech entitled “NI 43-101 Technical Report – Mineral Resource and Reserve Update, Chelopech Mine, Bulgaria” dated March 30, 2020.
In 2020, approximately 45,000 metres of Mineral Resource development diamond drilling were completed, with a focus on grade control drilling to better define the shape and volume of existing orebodies and to test for new mineralization along modeled trends. Drilling was concentrated on targets in the upper levels of the Chelopech deposit, and the program resulted in the addition of two new ore bodies to the Mineral Resource inventory.
The 2021 Mineral Resource development strategy for Chelopech will focus on the upper levels of Blocks 5, 8,17, 25, 144, 145, 149 and 700. Extensional and exploration drilling targets include an area south-east from Block 8, which is a largely unexplored target that exhibits prospective structural and alteration indicators. Drilling at target 19NE will test for narrow lenses of sulphide mineralisation, branching out from the main Block 19 orebody. Additionally, target areas peripheral to Blocks 25, 146, 147, 148 and 151 that exhibit prospective structural trends will be tested. A map of key extensional and exploration targets for the year is shown below.