Vancouver-based Sabina Gold & Silver Corp (CN: SBB) has set aside C$8.5 million (US$6.45 million) to advance development of its proposed C$415 million Back River gold project in southwestern Nunavut but could spend up to $25 million if it can finally clear permitting hurdles. Investor optimism is returning.
Sabina was one of Canada’s best performed mining equities of the past 12 months (to January 31) despite a rollercoaster 2016. The stock is up about 46% since January 10 after the minister of indigenous and northern affairs Canada (INAC) ordered a review of a Nunavut Impact Review Board report blocking permitting progress at Back River.
Sabina has since received NIRB advice on its final environmental impact statement for the project, which it expects to file soon. That could pave the way for the company to proceed to the next permitting stage.
Its shares plunged 43% last June when the NIRB originally blocked its path despite the company claiming it had followed EIS guidelines and had solid local community support for the project.
Now the new NIRB review of its revised EIS and recommendation to the minister will determine this year’s rate of progress. Sabina had about $40 million in the bank at the end of 2016, so no shortage of cash to advance Back River.
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