Large-scale silver producer
Puna Operations Inc. is comprised of the Chinchillas mine and the Pirquitas property, which includes the Pirquitas processing facilities. Puna Operations is located in the Jujuy Province, Argentina.
The Chinchillas mine is a silver-lead-zinc deposit, which achieved commercial production in December 2018. It is expected to supply ore to the Pirquitas processing facilities over an 8-year active mining period. Open pit mining is conducted using conventional drill, blast, truck and loading operations. The ore is transported 40 kilometers to the Pirquitas processing facilities, which produce a silver-lead concentrate and a zinc concentrate that are shipped to international smelters.
The Pirquitas processing facilities have been in commercial production since 2009, processing ore from the San Miguel open pit, which concluded mining activities in January 2017 and currently hosts the tailings deposit facility.
Highlights of the operation include:
- Mineral Reserves: Mineral Reserves of 4.5 million ounces of silver at an average grade of 196 g/t and Probable Mineral Reserves of 30.7 million ounces of silverat an average grade of 161 g/t at the Chinchillas mine, with an additional 2.3 million ounces of silver in Chinchillas stockpiles and 1.3 million ounces of silver in Pirquitas stockpiles, as at December 31, 2018.
- Potential for mine life extension: Measured Mineral Resources of 6.6 million ounces of silver at an average grade of 130 g/t at the Chinchillas mine. Indicated Mineral Resources of 62.5 million ounces of silver at an average grade of 100 g/t at the Chinchillas mine and 18.6 million ounces of silver at an average grade of 292 g/t at the Pirquitas underground as at December 31, 2018.Mineral Resources are inclusive of Mineral Reserves.
- Delivered steady-state production: Produced 7.7 million ounces of silver, 24.0 million pounds of lead and 8.4 million pounds of zinc in 2019.
- 2020 Production guidance: Anticipated consolidated production of between 6.0 million ounces and 7.0 million ounces of silver, between 21.0 million pounds and 24.0 million pounds of lead, and between 7.0 million pounds and 9.0 million pounds of zinc in 2020.
Chinchillas Pre-Feasibility Study Highlights:
- Long mine life: Average annual silver equivalent production of 8.4 million ounces over an eight-year mine life and 4,000 tonne per day throughput.
- Attractive valuation: Post-tax net present value of $178 million using a 5% discount rate. Attractive post-tax internal rate of return of 29%.
- Low capital intensity: An estimated $81 million capital costs, based on initial capital expenditures, including owner’s costs and contingency. Capital cost estimates assume utilizing certain property, plant and equipment from the Pirquitas property.
Robert Gill, P.Eng., a Qualified Person and General Manager at Puna Operations, has reviewed and approved the foregoing disclosure on Puna Operations. Please refer to the technical report entitled "NI 43-101 Technical Report Pre-feasibility Study of the Chinchillas Silver-Lead-Zinc Project, Jujuy Province, Argentina" with a filing date of May 15, 2017 and an effective date of December 31, 2016, a link to which is provided below.
Mineral Resources are reported inclusive of Mineral Reserves. Please refer to our Mineral Reserves and Resources Table.
This page contains forward-looking statements. Please see the following link: Legal.