TORONTO: June 8, 2015. First Nickel Inc. (“First Nickel”, “FNI” or the “Corporation”) (TSX: FNI) announces the discontinuation of underground ramp development at its Lockerby nickel/copper mine, located in the Sudbury basin in Ontario (“Lockerby”).
As disclosed in the Company’s filings for the first quarter of 2015, considering low nickel prices and production levels of the Lockerby mine, the Company has evaluated a range of options from continuing the current operating plan at Lockerby to discontinuing ramp development and mining only the ore remaining on and above the 6800-foot level. Primarily as a result of continued weakness in nickel prices, the Company has decided to discontinue ramp development at this time.
The remaining economic ore on and above the 6800-foot level is expected to be mined out in the third quarter of 2015, at which time the mine will either be put on care and maintenance or closed. The accounting implications of this change will be reflected in the Company’s interim financial statements for the second quarter of 2015, which will be filed in early August.
Mr. Thomas M. Boehlert, President and CEO of FNI, commented, “Our employees at Lockerby have worked long and hard to make the mine a success. However, the operation is simply not economic at the current market price of nickel. We will now shift our focus to maximizing production of the remaining ore and then transitioning to care and maintenance or closure. The company is currently in discussion with its secured lenders regarding alternatives with respect to its outstanding indebtedness in light of the expected timing of cessation of mining at Lockerby.”
FNI is a Canadian mining and exploration company. FNI’s mission is to be the most dynamic North American emerging base metal mining company in which to work and invest and to be respected in the communities in which it operates. FNI owns and operates the Lockerby Mine in the Sudbury Basin in northern Ontario, which reached full production during 2013. FNI’s shares are traded on the TSX under the symbol FNI.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
First Nickel Inc.
President & CEO
T: 416-362-7050 x 225
First Nickel Inc.
T: 416-362-7050 x 226