VANCOUVER, Feb. 23, 2017 /CNW/ - Euromax Resources Ltd ("Euromax" or the "Company") (TSX:EOX) (OTCQX:EOXFF) is pleased to provide an update with respect to its wholly owned Ilovica-Shtuka copper gold project in Macedonia, (the "Project").
Two key milestones have been achieved towards the granting of the exploitation permit. The first is the merger of the Company's two exploitation concessions, Ilovica 6 and Ilovica 11 (over which the Ilovica-Shtuka Project footprint extends), that has been approved by the Macedonian Ministry of Economy and submitted to the Government for ratification.
The second milestone is the approval of the Strategic Environmental Impact Assessment by the Macedonian Ministry of Environment within the process of the urbanization of the mine footprint.
An Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (ESIA) produced by Golder Associates to international standards and requirements has also been prepared. This follows the Macedonian Environmental Impact Assessment published last year and will facilitate project financing and requirements of various project stakeholders. The ESIA will be published on the Company's website during March 2017.
Mine Planning and Contract Mining
Following additional mine plan work completed during 2016 aimed at achieving a mine schedule with the required detail to start planning of operations, the Company initiated a Contract Mining tender process in November 2016. The tender was aimed at covering the first 7 years of mine life (i.e. the 2-year construction and pre-strip period plus 5 years of operation).
As a result of this tender process, the Company has received indicative offers from three international companies for the provision of Contract Mining Services. The Company is currently evaluating these bids, seeking clarifications and assessing the economic impact. However, the average cost per tonne mined of material during production from the bids received is US$ 1.79/t of material moved with capex of approximately US$ 58.5m (including prestrip costs), compared to the Company's Feasibility Study Technical Report (February 2016), which indicated US$ 1.62/t and capex of US$ 100.7m (including prestrip costs) over the same period.
Engineering, Procurement and Construction Contract ("EPC")
The Company has agreed to a binding Memorandum of Understanding (the "MoU") with Ausenco Engineering Canada Inc. ("Ausenco") for further initial detailed engineering and design and a framework to allow Ausenco to proceed through a two-step process to ultimately provide the Company with a Lump Sum Turnkey Price for the construction of the process plant and related infrastructure for the Project.
The first step is for Ausenco, on an open book basis, to provide the Company with a Guaranteed Maximum Price ("GMP") based on an agreed scope of work within 90 days of commencing the work to do so. Following the delivery of the GMP, provided only that the GMP is at or below the Project capital expenditure as per the Company's Feasibility Study Technical Report, Ausenco would proceed with the second step in preparing and negotiating with the Company a Lump Sum Turnkey EPC contract for the development of the Ilovica-Shtuka Project, the substantial terms of which are included in the MOU.
As per the MOU, the cost of Ausenco's work to deliver the GMP will be settled through the issuance of Euromax shares to Ausenco, at a premium to the share price immediately prior to delivery and announcement of the GMP. Based on the current market price, the amount of common shares to be issued to Ausenco in connection with the MoU would be less than 5% of those currently issued and outstanding. The commencement of Ausenco's work towards the GMP is contingent upon Euromax independently funding an agreed amount. The proposed issuance of common shares to Ausenco is subject to the final approval of the Toronto Stock Exchange.
Commenting on the announcement, Steve Sharpe, President & CEO stated:
"The strong support of the Macedonian authorities has yet again been shown by the approval of the merger of Concessions and Strategic EIA. The achievement of these Key Milestones, sets a very clear path to the timely development of the Ilovica-Shtuka Project. The offers for Contract Mining have come in at rates far lower than we had anticipated. With the potential for a US$40 million capex reduction, they seem a very compelling alternative to the owner operated mining plan presented in the Feasibility study. Finally, the faith in the project shown by Ausenco's willingness to not only guarantee a maximum price for the Project at or below the Feasibility Study Price, but further, to undertake the detailed engineering and design work required to deliver this price commitment in exchange for equity, issued at a premium, is not only a resounding endorsement of the technical and economic viability of the project, but also a definitive indicator of their confidence and ability to optimize and deliver value for the Euromax shareholders. In addition to a fixed price, Ausenco's ability to provide schedule and plant performance certainty will significantly enhance our ability to optimize and deliver the financing plan for the Project".
Ausenco is a private, diversified, engineering, construction and project management company, majority owned by Resource Capital Funds ("RCF"), providing services to the global resource and energy sectors. Ausenco's experience in precious and base metal projects ranges from conceptual studies for new project developments to execution with EPC or EPCM delivery.
Ausenco has delivered a number of projects under Lump Sum Turnkey contracts which provide cost, schedule and performance certainty often required by financiers and investors. Ausenco is currently completing the process plant and other support infrastructure for a gold project in Nova Scotia under a Lump Sum Turnkey contract and is often pioneering the entry into new jurisdictions and/or innovative technologies focused on the delivery of superior shareholder returns.
About Euromax Resources Ltd.
Euromax has a major development project in Macedonia and an exploration services company in Bulgaria. We are focused on building and operating the Ilovica-Shtuka copper/gold project in Macedonia, as well profitably deploying the wealth of exploration experience within our Bulgarian Exploration Services subsidiary.
This news release contains forward-looking information, such as statements relating to the development of the Project. Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Euromax to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. There are no assurances that the Project will be placed into production. Factors that could affect the outcome include, among others: the inability to raise the funds necessary to achieve the milestones or complete development of the Project and inability to raise the funds necessary to advance exploration activities; the actual results of development activities at the Project ; project delays; general business, economic, competitive, political and social uncertainties; future prices of metals; actual metal recovery; conclusions of economic evaluations; changes in project parameters as plans continue to be refined; accidents, labour disputes and other risks of the mining industry; political instability, terrorism, insurrection or war; delays in obtaining governmental approvals, necessary permitting or in the completion of development or construction activities. For a more detailed discussion of such risks and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements, refer to Euromax's filings with Canadian securities regulators available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
Although Euromax has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results to differ from those anticipated, estimated or intended. Forward-looking statements contained herein are made as of the date of this news release and Euromax disclaims any obligation to update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise, except as required by applicable securities laws.
For more information, please visit www.euromaxresources.com or contact:
SOURCE EurOmax Resources Ltd.