Location: Central Slovakia
Gold in the Ground: 1.32 Moz Au Eq. JORC Code (2004)
ARC Minerals Stake: 100%
Stage: Undergound Mining Permit re-issued, mining operations have recommenced
Project Investment to date: ~$30 millionDevelopment of alternate leaching processes. Surface & underground mining permitted
Kremnica Mining License Area
In June 2017, Ortac/AR Minerals was re-issued with a small-scale underground mining permit and recommenced mining operations on the licence. In accordance with Slovak regulations, having fulfilled its obligations, ARC's rights to exploit the Šturec ore deposit located in the Kremnica Mining License Area have been re-validated for a minimum period of three years. The Company will now focus on concluding agreements with its potential local JV partner, before implementing and executing a strategy that will generate long term value for all stakeholders.
Mining Re-established: In June 2014, and after a gap of nearly 20 years, ARC was successful in re-establishing mining operations on the Kremnica Mining License area. ARC now has the right to operate a small scale underground mining operation on the Mining License area. Šturec Project - ARC's 100% owned vision for the future development of the Kremnica Mining License Area.
The Šturec Project is a JORC Code (2004) compliant mineral resource of 1.36 Moz of gold equivalent. It is located in central Slovakia approximately 1.5Km north east of the town of Kremnica and, as the crow flies, 17km west of central Slovakia's largest city, Banská Bystrica. The Šturec project is easily accessed from the international airports at Vienna and Bratislava by driving northeast along the motorway between Vienna/Bratislava and Banská Bystrica.A Pre-Feasibility Study (‘PFS’) of the mining aspects of the Šturec Project was completed by SRK Consultants (UK) in April 2013. The PFS was in turn built upon an earlier Scoping Study completed by SRK in January 2012; both studies confirmed the economic viability of the Šturec Project. SRK PFS confirms the economic viability of the Šturec Project - Ortac continues to advance our flagship project.
Since the PFS and with the objective of working with the local community and stakeholders to develop win-win sustainable mining solutions with which to bring the benefits of the project to fruition, Ortac has continued to advance the project as follows;
June 2014 Ortac applies for and was granted an underground mining application.
August 2014 Ortac started mining and extracted sufficient material for testing and processing work.
September 2014 Ortac announces it is working with CMC Chimie S.R.L and interested third parties on the development of a CMC patented cyanide-free processing technology. At around the same time, in September 2014, the Slovak Parliament approved an amendment to the Slovak Mining Law banning the use of cyanide leaching technology in gold processing;
December 2014 Ortac announces that results from a bulk sample were encouraging and demonstrated good recoveries using the CMC test process.
June 2017 Ortac re-issued with a small scale underground mining permit
July 2017 Ortac commenced mining operations
Gold mining commenced at Kremnica in the 8th century and historical output total 46,000kg (1.5 million ounces) of gold and 208,000kg (6.7 million ounces) of silver. Production was mostly from underground mine workings but also from small open pits. From 1948 gold mining in Kremnica was controlled by the State. During the period 1981- 1987 at the behest of the Rudne Bane the State Owned Mining Company, the Slovak Geological Survey carried out extensive exploration in the Kremnica area , drilling 34 holes for over 25,000m and identifying the Šturec zone as the main area of interest. Subsequently, and until its divestiture in 1992 as part of the break up and privitisation of Rudne Bane, an open pit was established which produced 50,028 tonnes of ore from Sturec, averaging 1.54 g/t Au. At the same time extensive exploratory adit development program was undertaken with a view to further developing knowledge of the Šturec resource.
The geology of the Kremnica region is well established. The Šturec zone is continuously mineralised for 1,200m along strike, is typically 100 to 150m wide and extends to a known depth of at least 300m. The main part of the Šturec zone is the Schramen Vein, which is up to 100m wide along a 500m strike section and accounts for some 90% of the gold contained in the present measured and indicated mineral resources. It is a massive to sheeted quartz vein that strikes almost due north, generally dips steeply to the east, and thins to the north, south, and at depth. Some additional exploration is required to clarify the extent and continuity of hanging wall and footwall mineralisation in the Šturec zone.JORC Mineral Resource Estimate. The Company completed an updated mineral resource estimate for its Šturec deposit in May 2012 which provided a total JORC Code (2004) compliant mineral resource of 1.36 Moz of gold equivalent. This mineral resource was the basis for the 2013 PFS.
Mineral Resources for the Šturec Deposit Classified in Accordance with the JORC Code (2004) – Snowden, May 2012
Notes: The open pit resource is defined as mineralised material greater than a 0.40g/t Au Eq cut-off grade, which lies within a 0.26g/t Au Eq defining economic open pit shell. The underground resource is defined as mineralised material that lies outside the defining open pit shell and has a cut-off grade in excess of 2.85g/t Au Eq. Gold Equivalent grades are calculated using a 50:1 ratio of silver to gold values. Rounding may result in discrepancies in the table.
In April 2013 Ortac and SRK completed a PFS of the Šturec Project. The results of the PFS confirm the economic viability of the Šturec Project. Highlights of the study include: a Net Present Value (‘NPV’) at 8% discount rate (pre-tax) of US$195 million (post tax US$145 million) and Internal Rate of Return (‘IRR’) of 30%, at US$1,343/oz Au Eq net price. Cash operating costs of US$555 per oz Au Eq. Projected project life of 11 years with average annual production of 71,000 oz Au Eq and pre-production capital expenditure of US$124 million, including 15% contingency on processing and infrastructure items. In addition, the completion of the PFS enables Ortac to declare maiden JORC Code (2004) compliant ore reserves for the Šturec deposit:
Notes: The proven and probable open pit ore reserves are based on measured and indicated mineral resources after applying appropriate modifying factors derived from the 2013 PFS. Mineral resources are inclusive of the ore reserves.