ROAD TOWN, TORTOLA, BRITISH VIRGIN ISLANDS--(Marketwire - Feb. 9, 2012) - White Tiger Gold ("White Tiger" or the "Company") (TSX:WTG) announces 2011 production results for the Company's portfolio of operating mines, namely, the Savkino Gold Project in Russia, the Lamaque Mine in Val d'Or, Quebec and the San Juan Gold Mine in Peru.
- All three operations achieved improvements in production over 2010;
- Savkino increased production to 18,500 ounces of gold, and reported a 287% increase in proven and probable mineral reserves, which supports the Company's plan to double production in 2013;
- Lamaque increased ore production by 76%, and long-hole dyke stoping operations have re-commenced to reach higher tonnage rates and grade; and
- San Juan increased ore production by 28%, and an increase to 30,000 ounces of gold production is projected for 2012.
"Since the completion of the business combination with Century Mining Corporation, significant progress has been made by the Company, particularly in relation to the re-commencement of long-hole dyke stoping operations at Lamaque, and we believe 2012 will be a defining year for White Tiger and its portfolio of assets," said Daniel Major, President and CEO of White Tiger. "White Tiger is forecasting marked improvement in production 2012 for both the Lamaque and San Juan Mines with increased mill throughput and increased grades. In addition, the Company has already reported an increase in proven and probable reserves at Savkino and has started a program intended to expand production at Savkino in 2013, and in 2012 we are planning on completing updated technical reports for Lamaque and Nasedkino, that, based on current data, are expected to provide an increase in mineral reserve and resource estimates which will allow us to maximize our asset base."
The Savkino heap leach operation achieved improved year-over-year production performance in 2011, despite unseasonable weather in the third quarter that negatively impacted heap kinetics for an extended period. In addition, on January 4, 2012, the Company announced that its exploration drilling campaign had resulted in proven and probable mineral reserves of approximately 13 million tonnes (proven: 1,292 kt; probable: 11,760 kt) grading at 1.05 g/t Au (proven: 0.98 g/t Au; probable: 1.05 g/t Au), containing 439,000 ounces of gold (proven: 41 koz; probable: 398 koz), which represented a 287% increase in the mineral reserve estimate contained in the Company's previous technical report. These estimates are supported by a National Instrument 43-101 technical report, dated December 13, 2011, entitled "Mineral Reserve and Resource Estimates of the Savkino Deposit, Zabaikalsky Territory, Russian Federation", a copy of which is available under the Company's SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com. As a result of the updated mineral reserve estimates, White Tiger intends in 2012 to focus on the expansion of the Savkino Gold Mine in order to double annual production starting in 2013.
|Processed Ore Tonnes||447,000||605,443||-|
|Average grade (g/t Au)||1.33||1.30||-|
|Gold produced (oz)||15,157||18,508||-|
|Forecast production (Au oz)||-||-||20,000|
The Company's Lamaque underground operation had a difficult year in 2011. Although ore production showed marked improvement year-over-year, it remained below management's expectations. In addition, production at Lamaque was negatively impacted by lower than expected ore grade in 2011. In 2011, the Lamaque Mine focused on capital development in the North Wall in order to access the dyke stopes, while operations in the Lamaque flats focused on stope development and improving operational performance, especially dilution control, the benefits of which were noted in the fourth quarter. Century Mining's financial constraints through much of 2011 negatively impacted production, as it was forced to halt operations on the North Wall for a period, thereby delaying the start of long-hole stoping.
In February 2012 the Company re-commenced long-hole ore stoping at the Lamaque Project, in an effort to provide a substantial increase in ore feed. Accordingly, the Company is forecasting an improved average production rate of 1,750 ore tonnes per day in 2012, with further improvement planned in 2013. In addition, the Company has expanded the senior mining team at Lamaque to provide improved technical and operational supervision. These improvements have positively impacted the Lamaque Mine with noted improvements in mining operations in the Lamaque flat stopes and in improved ore grades. The Company is forecasting gold production of 56,000 ounces in 2012, as ore tonnage from the North Wall increases.
|Processed Ore Tonnes||157,561||276,356||-|
|Average grade (g/t Au)||2.87||1.79||-|
|Gold produced (oz)||14,419||14,627||-|
|Forecast production (Au oz)||-||-||56,000|
The Company's San Juan Gold Mine had year-over-year increases in ore production and total gold production in 2011. However, due to permitting delays, production results did not meet management's expectations for higher grade ore zones. The Company is planning on increasing the milled throughput to an average of approximately 510 tonnes per day in 2012, from 352 tonnes in 2011. This is to be achieved through modifications to the existing process plant, and the opening up of three new mining areas. In addition, the mine is now able to access the higher-grade ore zones that it was not able to mine in 2011. The impact of these changes is expected to result in gold production increasing to 30,000 ounces in 2012.
|Processed Ore Tonnes||113,439||125,229||-|
|Average grade (g/t Au)||6.28||5.42||-|
|Gold produced (oz)||19,224||19,779||-|
|Forecast production (Au oz)||-||-||30,000|
In addition, the Company reported positive results from its exploration programs at its Nasedkino and Pridneprov (Drevniy Prospect) Projects in Russia.
On September 27, 2011, the Company announced the first update on its 40,000 meter drilling program at Nasedkino, which contained the assay results for 80 drill holes comprising 8,866 meters.
In-fill drilling on Gora 5 and Zhelanny, designed (in part) to increase the conversion of historical Russian approved C1 + C2 gold resources into National Instrument 43-101-compliant mineral resources, has shown that excellent continuity exists between the wide spaced historical drilling results and the new assay results reported in the Company's September 27, 2011 news release entitled "White Tiger Gold Announces Positive Drilling Results on Its Nasedkino Gold Project". As previously reported, drilling at the Gluharinny prospect discovered a new zone of gold mineralization, with the best intersection including 8.2 meters averaging 2.22 g/t Au and 18.56 g/t Ag in drill hole 659. Further details regarding results of such in-fill drilling are set out in the September 27, 2011 press release that can be found under the Company's SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com.
As reported in the Company's November 28, 2011, press release entitled "White Tiger Reports Wide Gold Mineralised Zones at Devniy Prospect", three drill holes drilled at the Drevniy Prospect encountered a wide zone of gold mineralization ranging from 68 to 119 meters in width, with grades ranging from 0.79 to 1.05 g/t Au. The width and grade of the gold mineralization appears to increase with depth. Further details regarding results of the Company's diamond drilling at Drevniy are set out in the November 28, 2011 press release that can be found under the Company's SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com.
Michael Page, B.Sc, M.Sc., FAusIMM, a geological consultant to the Company, is a Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101, and has reviewed and approved those sections of the press release related to Lamaque and San Juan and has verified the associated data disclosed in this press release.
Mr. Stanley C. Bartlett, PGeo., Managing Director for Micon International Co Limited, is independent of the Company and a qualified person within the meaning of National Instrument NI 43-101 and has reviewed and approved those sections of the press release related to Nasedkino, and Pridneprov and has verified the associated data disclosed in this press release.
Dr. Alexander Sobolev, Ph.D, MAIG, Director, Geological Audit and Consulting Department JSC TOMS Engineering (St. Petersburg) and a qualified person within the meaning of National Instrument NI 43-101 and has reviewed and approved those sections of the press release related to Savkino and has verified the associated data disclosed in this press release.
About White Tiger
The Company is a TSX-listed mining and exploration company, focused on mine expansion and the development of mineral resources in Canada, the Russian Federation, and Peru. The Company currently operates the Lamaque Mine in Val D' Or, Quebec; Savkino heap leach gold operation located in southeastern Siberia; and the San Juan Gold Mine in San Juan Valley, Peru. Plans are underway to expand gold production at each of Lamaque, San Juan and Savkino and to develop a gold-copper mine at the Company's Nasedkino property situated in Chita Region in southeast Siberia with the goal of becoming a mid-tier gold producer. The Company also holds three additional early-stage gold exploration licenses in prospective geological environments located in central and northeast Siberia.
Caution Concerning Forward-Looking Information
This news release contains forward looking statements within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and forward-looking information within the meaning of applicable Canadian securities laws (collectively, "
") relating, but not limited to, White Tiger's expectations, intentions and beliefs (including, without limitation, statements regarding White Tiger's projects and licence areas, exploration, development and production plans and targets, projected production, mineral resource and mineral reserve estimates, exploration results, future plans and objectives, including the expansion of the Savkino Gold Mine, plans to increase gold production at the Savkino, Lamaque and San Juan gold mines, the potential for increasing and/or upgrading the Company's mineral resources, plans regarding the preparation of new technical reports for the Company's Nasedkino and Lamaque projects, anticipated improvements in ore grades and the planned level of output at the Lamaque Mine, anticipated improvements in ore grades and the planned level of throughput at the San Juan Mine, plans regarding modifications to the San Juan processing plant and the opening up of new mining areas and plans to convert historical Russian approved C1 + C2 gold resources into National Instrument 43-101-compliant mineral resources).
Words such as "may", "will", "should", "anticipate", "plan", "expect", "believe", "estimate" and similar terminology are used to identify forward-looking statements. Such statements are based on assumptions, estimates, opinions and analysis made by the management of White Tiger in light of their experience, current conditions and their expectations of future developments as well as other factors which they believe to be reasonable and relevant . Forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements. Risks and uncertainties that may cause actual results to vary include but are not limited to: changes in equity and debt markets; inflation; uncertainties relating to the availability and costs of financing needed to continue development, production and exploration activities; development, production and exploration costs varying significantly from estimates; gold production varying significantly from estimates; delays in the development of, and/or production from, the Company's projects and licence areas; failure to establish increased mill throughput and increased grades for both Lamaque and San Juan Mines; that planned modifications to the San Juan processing plant and/or the establishment of three new mining areas at San Juan fail to result in the anticipated increase in mine throughput; unexpected geological or hydrological conditions; the speculative nature of mineral exploration and development, including the uncertainty of reserve and resource estimates; operational and technical difficulties, including the failure of major mining and/or milling equipment; the availability to White Tiger of suitable financing alternatives; the ability of White Tiger to service its existing debt facilities; fluctuations in gold and other commodity prices; success of future exploration and development initiatives; competition; operating performance of facilities; environmental and safety risks, including increased regulatory burdens, seismic activity, weather and other natural phenomena; inability in, or delays in, obtaining necessary permits and approvals from government authorities; risks relating to labour and other exploration, development and operating risks; changes to and compliance with applicable laws and regulations, including environmental laws; political, economic and other risks arising from White Tiger's activities in Russia; fluctuations in foreign exchange rates; as well as other risks and uncertainties which are more fully described in White Tiger's Annual Information Form dated March 30, 2011 and its annual and quarterly Management's Discussion and Analysis and in other filings made by White Tiger with Canadian securities regulatory authorities and available at www.sedar.com.
Any forward-looking statement speaks only as of the date on which it is made and, except as may be required by applicable laws, White Tiger disclaims any intent or obligation to update any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or results or otherwise. Although White Tiger believes that the assumptions inherent in the forward-looking statements are reasonable, forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and accordingly undue reliance should not be put on such statements due to the inherent uncertainty therein.