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Mon. 20 Sep 2021, 7:04am ETBenzinga
In: News

Equinox Gold Corp. (TSX:EQX) (NYSE:EQX) ("Equinox Gold" or the "Company") is pleased to announce the results of a Pre-Feasibility Study ("PFS") for an expansion at the Company's 100%-owned Aurizona Gold Mine ("Aurizona") located in Brazil. By mining the underground and satellite open-pit deposits concurrently with the existing Piaba open-pit, the expansion would extend the Aurizona mine life to 11 years with average annual production of 137,000 ounces ("oz") of gold per year and total life-of-mine ("LOM") production of 1.5 million oz of gold. Peak production in years 2026 to 2029 averages more than 160,000 oz of gold per year.

Updated Mineral Reserve and Resource estimates for Aurizona, incorporating the new underground and open-pit deposits and offsetting 18 months of mining depletion, show a 73% increase over the December 31, 2019 estimate with 1.7 million oz of Proven & Probable Mineral Reserves grading 1.60 grams per tonne ("g/t") gold plus 868,000 oz of Measured & Indicated Mineral Resources (exclusive of Reserves) grading 1.49 g/t gold.

AURIZONA EXPANSION HIGHLIGHTS

  • After-tax NPV5% of $314 million at $1,500/oz gold and $600 million at $1,800/oz gold
  • $464 million after-tax LOM cumulative net cash flow at $1,500/oz gold and $830 million at $1,800/oz gold
  • $803/oz average LOM cash costs
  • $944/oz average AISC from 2024 onward and $1,058/oz average AISC LOM
  • 1.5 million oz LOM gold production at an average recovery of 90.5%
    • More than 160,000 oz peak average annual gold production from 2026 to 2029
    • 137,000 oz average annual gold production (LOM)
  • 1.7 million oz Proven & Probable Mineral Reserves grading 1.60 g/t gold
  • $154 million underground mine initial capital costs, including $20 million contingency
  • 11-year mine life with additional expansion potential from further exploration success

Christian Milau, CEO of Equinox Gold, stated: "Incorporating the Aurizona underground and satellite deposits into our mine plan will nearly double the Aurizona mine life, increase annual production and generate almost $1 billion of net cash flow at current gold prices. I am incredibly proud of what our team has accomplished at Aurizona. The expansion will create additional economic and social opportunities for our community partners and substantial value for our shareholders, with significant potential for further growth as we continue to explore what could eventually be a multi-decade mine."

Scott Heffernan, EVP Exploration of Equinox Gold, stated: "Exploration continues to unlock the potential at Aurizona. We have successfully replaced reserves from nearly three years of mining and provided an additional 70% growth of both mineral reserves and mineral resources. We expect to demonstrate additional growth at Aurizona with ongoing exploration focused on mine life extension through infill drilling and conversion of resources to reserves, plus significant near-mine, underground and regional exploration to further develop this mining district as a cornerstone asset for Equinox Gold."