TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Sep 23, 2013) - Lundin Mining Corporation (LUN.TO)(OMX:LUMI) ("Lundin Mining" or the "Company") today provides a progress update on the continued development of the high grade Eagle nickel/copper mine located in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan.
Since the completion of the acquisition on July 17th, 2013, all development activities have accelerated and the project continues to track on or ahead of budget and schedule. Progress development highlights include:
- Project engineering is 99% complete
- Construction is on track and exceeds 55% complete, with overall project progress approximately 65% complete. Work in progress includes a high level of activity on regional road upgrades, final site civil works, concrete installation and steel erection.
- All major equipment is scheduled to arrive on site prior to year end 2013
- The rail car lease agreement was signed in September
- Evaluation of bids for the mining contract is on track to achieve contractor mobilization prior to year end
- Bids for ore haulage during operations are being evaluated, award is expected during October
- Total number of employees and contractors on site has increased to 400
- The mine access ramp is well advanced more than half way down the ore body. Mine surface facilities commissioning is targeted for completion by Q2/14
- Mill construction activities are on track to support mill commissioning targeted for Q4/14
- As previously reported, total contained nickel and copper in the Proven and Probable Reserves at Eagle have increased by 7% and 4% respectively from the December 2012 estimate to 5.3 million tonnes grading 3.1% nickel and 2.5% copper, with by-product platinum, palladium, gold and cobalt.
- The capital cost to complete the project including contingency was re-confirmed at no greater than $400 million (from July 17th). About half of these costs are already committed as fixed price contracts and most of the balance of costs are time based. Schedule improvements if achieved, could mean lower overall costs.
- The schedule to production was also re-confirmed and there is a high level of confidence to commence production in Q4/14 or better, with full commercial production expected in Q2/2015
- The project is being financed by cash flow from existing operations and a recently announced expanded debt facility with the Company's lending syndicate.
The Company will be hosting a site tour to Eagle for investors/analysts on September 25-26.
Mr. Paul Conibear, President and CEO commented, "We are pleased to see the rapid progress being made at Eagle and the ongoing high level of community support as this new major investment advances in the Upper Peninsula. Our efforts to ramp up the project quickly have gone well and we remain confident in our ability to deliver the project on or ahead of schedule and budget. The Company's focus remains on ensuring that all development activities continue to meet or exceed all targets, resulting in a new high quality mining operation producing significant levels of metal production and revenue by the end of next year. "
About Lundin Mining
Lundin Mining is a diversified base metals mining company with operations and projects in Portugal, Sweden, Spain and the U.S.A. producing copper, zinc, lead and nickel. In addition, Lundin Mining holds a 24% equity stake in the world-class Tenke Fungurume copper/cobalt mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo and in the Freeport Cobalt Oy business, which includes a cobalt refinery located in Kokkola, Finland.
On Behalf of the Board,
Paul Conibear, CEO
Forward Looking Statements
Certain of the statements made and information contained herein is "forward-looking information" within the meaning of the Ontario Securities Act. Forward-looking statements are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties which could cause actual events or results to differ from those reflected in the forward-looking statements, including, without limitation, risks and uncertainties relating to foreign currency fluctuations; risks inherent in mining including environmental hazards, industrial accidents, unusual or unexpected geological formations, ground control problems and flooding; risks associated with the estimation of Mineral Resources and Reserves and the geology, grade and continuity of mineral deposits; the possibility that future exploration, development or mining results will not be consistent with the Company's expectations; the potential for and effects of labour disputes or other unanticipated difficulties with or shortages of labour or interruptions in production; actual ore mined varying from estimates of grade, tonnage, dilution and metallurgical and other characteristics; the inherent uncertainty of production and cost estimates and the potential for unexpected costs and expenses, commodity price fluctuations; uncertain political and economic environments; changes in laws or policies, foreign taxation, delays or the inability to obtain necessary governmental permits; and other risks and uncertainties, including those described under Risk Factors Relating to the Company's Business in the Company's Annual Information Form and in each management discussion and analysis. Forward-looking information is in addition based on various assumptions including, without limitation, the expectations and beliefs of management, the assumed long term price of copper, nickel, lead and zinc; that the Company can access financing, appropriate equipment and sufficient labour and that the political environment where the Company operates will continue to support the development and operation of mining projects. Should one or more of these risks and uncertainties materialize, or should underlying assumptions prove incorrect, actual results may vary materially from those described in forward-looking statements. Accordingly, readers are advised not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements.