BLACK RIVER-MATHESON – A new gold mining project in the Matheson area will be able to begin production next year after it managed to clear one of the last major hurdles keeping the mine from going forward.
Sage Gold has inked a deal with Primero Mining that will allow them to send ore from their Clavos Mine to the Black Fox-Stock Mill located just 10 kilometres away. Finding a mill to process their ore was one of the final steps required to secure financing to reopen Clavos, which is a preexisting mine that has been inactive for years.
With the processing deal in place, and $11.5 million dollars of financing secured, First Nations consultations completed, and all the geological surveying done, Sage vice president Bill Love said the company can finally begin the work of getting Clavos ready to begin an expected seven years of gold production.
“All the elements that are required to do this project have been put in place … it all sort of came together at the right time, so we did the deal,” said Love. “It’s a major step for us. The mill is very close to Clavos and the fellow who ran the mill when St. Andrews Goldfields (was operating Clavos) is still there, so they know the Clavos ore. It’s a very convenient and simple solution for us.”
Sage has been waiting since 2012, when it acquired its 60% stake in the Clavos Mine, for the right time to begin mining at the site. With a rebound in gold prices making it economically worth the expense of restarting the mine, the crucial step was to secure financing.
“When raising project financing, we knew we would have to find a toll mill to process the ore. To put our own mill on Clavos would have been an expensive and very lengthy permitting process,” recalled Love. “We had been talking off-and-on with Primero — and Brigus Gold before that — about stock, and the situation turned out that they were going to have space at their mill.”
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