Feasibility Study Results for Sierra Gorda Project
VANCOUVER, BC - Quadra FNX Mining Ltd. has entered into a definitive agreement to form a Joint Venture with Sumitomo Metal Mining Co. Ltd. and Sumitomo Corporation to develop the world-class Sierra Gorda copper-molybdenum project in Chile. Quadra FNX will retain a 55% interest in the JV. Concurrently, the Company also announced the results of a positive feasibility study which confirms a robust, large-scale, low cost mine in a mining friendly jurisdiction. Board of Director's approval to proceed with the project has been given.
JV HIGHLIGHTS: Quadra FNX and Sumitomo to form 55%/45% JV to develop the Sierra Gorda project in Chile, subject to normal anti-trust approval; Sumitomo to contribute the next $724 million of JV equity after closing; Sumitomo to arrange a minimum $1.0 billion project financing non-recourse to Quadra FNX or, if not available, to provide to the project an $800 million loan non-recourse to Quadra FNX; Quadra FNX plans to provide its proportional share of the remaining JV funding requirements estimated at approx. $650 million through cash on hand and debt. JP Morgan has been engaged to arrange corporate debt financing for the Company.
FEASIBILITY STUDY HIGHLIGHTS: Production from current sulphide reserves average: 483 M lbs of copper (Cu), 25 M lbs of molybdenum (Mo) and 64 kozs of gold (Au) per annum over a 20 year mine life. Mo production will be 54 M lbs per year during the first three years of operation; Expected life of mine cash cost of $1.15 per pound of Cu, with $0.56 per pound of Cu in the first five years (net of by-product credits); 20 year mine life is based on current sulphide resources, with upside potential to process an additional 237 Mt of oxide resources; Initial throughput rate 110,000 tonnes per day ("tpd"), with expansion after three years to 190,000 tpd; Base Case after-tax NPV (8%) of $780 million; Spot Case after-tax NPV (8%) of $5.1 billion; Initial capital cost estimated at $2,877 million, with first production scheduled for 2014; Expansion capital of $818 million is expected to be funded from project cash flow. Paul Blythe, the President and CEO of Quadra FNX commented "The JV with Sumitomo and the development of Sierra Gorda will provide Quadra FNX with a large, long life, low cost copper project which will allow us to move past our strategic objective of 500 million pounds of annual copper production. We are proud to be able to announce a partnership with a world class organization like Sumitomo, which will bring a wealth of experience, knowledge, and financial strength to the development and operation of the Sierra Gorda project. We now have the team and a financing structure in place which will allow us to bring the project into production. In addition, the project debt structure, non-recourse to Quadra FNX, leaves us with the flexibility to pursue other growth opportunities, including the recently announced Victoria project in Sudbury." The company's address is Suite 2414, Four Bentall Centre, 1055 Dunsmuir Street, P.O. Box 49185, Vancouver, BC V7X 1K8, 604-689-8550, fax: 604-689-8556.