Adventus Zinc enters into option agreement with Salazar Resources on the Curipamba Copper-Zinc-Gold Project
Friday, Sep 15, 2020
Adventus Zinc Corporation (“Adventus”) and Salazar Resources Limited (“Salazar”) are pleased to announce that they have entered into a definitive option agreement (the “Option”) whereby Adventus may earn a 75% interest in Salazar’s Curipamba Project (the “Project”) located in Ecuador by funding exploration and development expenditures of US$25 million over the next five years. A feasibility study is expected to be completed within 3 years, after which Adventus is required to fund 100% of the development and construction expenditures to commercial production.

Adventus and Salazar plan to jointly explore for volcanic massive sulphide (“VMS”) as well as hydrothermal gold-silver style deposits within the Project’s approximately 21,500 hectare concession area, alongside working on the completion of a feasibility study, which is on the path towards potential future production at the Project. In addition to the Project, both companies are excited to announce that they have also formed an exclusive exploration alliance to explore for additional zinc-related deposits in Ecuador outside of the Project area.

Highlights of the Project

  • Project hosts the PEA-stage El Domo deposit. The most recent NI 43-101 El Domo resource released by Salazar consists of an indicated mineral resource of 6.08 Mt grading 2.33% Cu, 3.06% Zn, 0.28% Pb, 2.99 g/t Au and 55.8 g/t Ag and an inferred mineral resource of 3.88 Mt grading 1.56% Cu, 2.19% Zn, 0.16% Pb, 2.03 g/t Au and 42.9 g/t Ag, which can be viewed in the January 16, 2020, “CURIPAMBA PROJECT – EL DOMO DEPOSIT AMENDED AND RESTATED PRELIMINARY ECONOMIC ASSESSMENT CENTRAL ECUADOR,” prepared by Gustavo Calvo Martin, M.Sc.A., P. Geo and Adam Johnston, B. Eng, FAusIMM (the “2015 PEA”).
  • The 2015 PEA (prior to subsequent positive changes to the mining tax code) outlined an open pit and underground mining project with a 30% IRR (for further particulars, please refer to the 2015 PEA, a copy of which was filed on SEDAR on January 21, 2020). Adventus and Salazar believe significant opportunities exist to grow the size of the Project, while also improving the IRR. The Project is expected to produce separate copper, zinc and lead concentrates, with significant precious metals credits, which will be exported from the port of Guayaquil to international markets. Mineral resources that are not mineral reserves do not have demonstrated economic viability. Mineral resource estimates do not account for mineability, selectivity, mining loss or dilution. The 2015 PEA is preliminary in nature, includes inferred mineral resources that are considered too speculative geologically to have the economic considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as mineral reserves, and there is no certainty that the 2015 PEA will be realized. There is also no certainty that the inferred mineral resources will be converted to measured and indicated categories through further drilling, or into mineral reserves once economic considerations are applied.
  • The El Domo deposit is sub-horizontal, with approximate dimensions: 900 metres long, 300-500 metres wide and 10 metres thick, starting 35 metres from surface. It is located in low-lying hills approximately 35 km from the Pan-American highway with multiple road access routes. Several potential power and water infrastructure options have been identified, with Ecuador having one of the lowest power costs in Latin America.
  • Adventus and Salazar believe significant exploration potential exists to expand the El Domo deposit and to find additional deposits within the greenfield project, which was discovered in 2008. During 2017, Salazar completed approximately 10,000 m drill program including step-out drilling, highlighted by a step-out hole of 16.6 metres averaging 3.66 g/t Au, 117.40 g/t Ag, 4.88% Cu and 5.36% Zn (see Salazar’s May 15, 2020 press release). There are several discrete high priority exploration targets near the El Domo deposit, including an undrilled 15 metre channel sample of 39 g/t Au and 741 g/t Ag (see Salazar’s April 25, 2020 press release).
  • With funding from Adventus, a detailed airborne geophysical program on the full land package is expected to be completed for the first time, followed by regional exploration to discover new deposits. The airborne geophysical program is expected to commence in Q4 2017.

Christian Kargl-Simard, President and CEO of Adventus, commented, “Adventus is excited to become involved in such a high-quality exploration and development project and exploration alliance with a strong local partner in Salazar. This alliance represents an important step for Adventus towards its goal of becoming a leading global zinc exploration and development company. We are excited to invest and operate in Ecuador since the country has demonstrated its renewed commitment to economic growth by creating a welcoming climate for mining investment. Fredy Salazar has developed a sound reputation in Ecuador as a geologist involved in several significant discoveries, and as a steward of the Project among its local stakeholders. We look forward to working closely with Fredy and his team to create value for our respective shareholders and the people of Ecuador.”

Fredy Salazar, President and CEO of Salazar, commented, “Salazar is pleased to be working with Adventus to advance the Curipamba Project to the development stage. Adventus was chosen as our partner as Adventus is a strong and well-backed financial partner who can assist us in developing the Project. We look forward to implementing our planned work programs at the Curipamba Project and are confident this agreement will ensure long term returns to Salazar’s shareholders. In addition to the work at the Project we have already begun planning for exploration of additional zinc-related deposits in Ecuador outside of the Project area. We have identified several opportunities and the funding from Adventus will allow us to rapidly advance our prospect generation work programs.”

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