Solitario Exploration & Royalty (NYSE Amex: XPL; TSX: SLR) is on track to become one of the newest U.S. gold producers. The Mt. Hamilton gold project in eastern Nevada is a development-stage project with permitting expected to be completed in mid-2014. Measured and Indicated Resources have nearly doubled since acquisition and Solitario is now evaluating a ten-year, 60,000 oz./year production schedule. Initial production is scheduled for early 2016. An optimized mining and processing plan for the project is nearly complete and shows that total operating cash costs will be under $600 per ounce and initial capital costs will be less than $80 million, making it an attractive project at today’s gold price.
The high-grade Bongará zinc project in Peru is joint ventured with Votorantim Metais, the fifth largest zinc producer in the world. Nearly $60 million has been spent on the property to date where recent drilling results identified some of the highest grade intercepts in the history of the project. The initial NI 43-101 compliant resource estimate for the project reported M&I Resources of 2.8 million tonnes grading 15.5% zinc equivalent and Inferred Resources totaling 9.1 million tonnes grading 12.4% zinc equivalent. Solitario’s 30% interest is fully funded through the start of production by our partner, Votorantim, making it a dilution-free project to Solitario and its shareholders..
Our focus is on gold and silver, but we have advanced projects with platinum-palladium, zinc and lead. Solitario’s success has been fueled by its ability to identify large-potential early stage exploration properties and subsequently leverage these successes into partnerships with senior mining companies including Anglo Platinum (Pedra Branca PGM project, Brazil) and Votorantim Metais. In 2014, our partners will spend over $11 million on our projects. With this business strategy we greatly reduce financial risk and minimize shareholder dilution, while continuing to build a pipeline of exploration projects.
• Mt. Hamilton: Gold Project, USA
• Bongará: Zinc-Lead-Silver, Peru
• Pedra Branca: Platinum-Palladium, Brazil
Gold-Silver Exploration Projects
• Pachuca Norte: Silver-Gold, Mexico
• Yanacocha: Gold-Silver-Copper, Peru
• Mercurio: Gold, Brazil
• Anglo Platinum: world’s largest platinum producer
• Votorantim Metais: world's 5th largest zinc producer