The junior explorer has received all necessary approvals from the state’s regulators to advance work at the company’s 51%-owned zinc-copper-gold-silver project, where a recently completed preliminary economic assessment outlined a high-margin underground mining operation.
Vancouver-based Constantine said it is planning to excavate nearly 2,000 metres of underground ramp for a drill platform and gain access to further data, in addition to 30,000 metres of underground exploration drilling.
The plan of operations also includes approval to place the resulting waste rock at surface, construct and operate settling ponds and a land disposal system for underground seepage waters and build any necessary facilities for below-surface excavation.
Constantine and its joint venture partner Dowa Metals & Mining Co Ltd are targeting June 2020 to begin underground exploration work, pending unanimous approval from the joint venture’s members and securing funding for the project.
A “considerable amount” of road access and other ground-work preparation has been completed that will allow an early start to underground construction in 2020, the company said in a statement.
"We would sincerely like to thank all those involved in the application, review, public comment and granting of this set of permits that will allow us to advance the Palmer zinc/copper project to the next phase," said Constantine’s CEO, Garfield MacVeigh.
"From application to approval, the seven-month process is the culmination of input from many experts and interested stakeholders to formulate a responsible underground exploration plan."
The preliminary economic assessment on Palmer outlined a mine life of 11 years after two years of pre-production and operating cost of US$54.2 per ton, generating US$354 million in pre-tax net present value and a 24% internal rate of return.
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