Quadra Mining Ltd.
TSX : QUA

Quadra Mining Ltd.

October 13, 2009 09:00 ET

Quadra Announces Third Quarter 2009 Production Results

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Oct. 13, 2009) - Quadra Mining Ltd. ("Quadra" or "the Company") (TSX:QUA) announces the production results for the third quarter of 2009 from its three wholly owned mines, the Robinson Mine ("Robinson") located in Ely, Nevada, the Carlota Mine ("Carlota") located in Globe-Miami, Arizona and the Franke Mine ("Franke") located in northern Chile. Combined production was 44.3 million pounds of copper and 21,142 ounces of gold produced for the three months ended September 30, 2009.

Robinson

Robinson produced 33.6 million pounds of copper and 21,142 ounces of gold during the third quarter of 2009. This was substantially on target, despite the mine not having full access to the Veteran pit hypogene until midway through the quarter. The hypogene ore in the Veteran pit is required for blending with the supergene ore from the Wedge pit to deliver concentrate grades and recoveries as planned. Mining of hypogene ore from the Veteran Pit resumed as expected in mid August, following implementation of additional slope monitoring and control measures as agreed with MSHA. The copper and gold production for the year is expected to be substantially in line with revised guidance of 130 million pounds of copper and 100,000 ounces of gold.

Sales in the quarter were adversely affected by the need to defer one sale of concentrate because of low production in the second quarter and the stockpiling of some lower grade concentrate produced in the third quarter. This is being blended back into the system.

Key operating and sales metrics are shown below:



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Robinson Operation Q4 2008 Q1 2009 Q2 2009 Q3 2009 LTM(i)

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Operating Metrics:
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Copper production 34.5 36.7 22.9 33.6 127.7
(Million lbs)
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Gold production (ozs) 26,913 34,649 18,031 21,142 100,735
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Waste mined (Tonnes 000's) 13,527 8,379 11,606 12,138 45,650
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Ore milled (Tonnes 000's) 3,358 3,407 3,165 3,555 13,571
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Copper grade (%) 0.69 0.65 0.58 0.75 0.67
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Gold grade (g/t) 0.48 0.42 0.25 0.26 0.35
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Copper recovery (%) 68.1 75.4 56.3 57.4 63.7
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Gold recovery (%) 52.2 75.4 70.4 71.4 65.3
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Sales Metrics:
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Copper sales (Million lbs) 29.2 34.5 24.2 21.1 109.0
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Copper price at end of period $1.33 $1.83 $2.32 $2.79 $2.79
($US/lb)(2)
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Provisionally priced 51.0 43.2 27.7 18.6 51.0
copper(1) - beginning of
period (Million lbs)
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Average settlement price for $1.83 $1.56 $2.14 $2.42 $1.74
prior period sales subject to
final pricing during period
($US/lb)
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Gold sales (ozs) 22,844 30,258 23,152 18,268 94,522
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Average gold price during $796 $908 $922 $966 $897
period ($US/oz)(3)
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(i) Last twelve months
Notes:

(1) Copper that has been sold but has not been subject to final pricing.
Under current sales contracts, final pricing for copper sales is
generally set at least four months after the time of shipment
(2) The average price used to value provisionally priced copper
(3) Average daily price of the London am/pm fix


Carlota

Carlota produced 6.6 million pounds of copper during the third quarter. This was expected and in line with previous quarters. Production was again below mine plan estimates in part because of lower than scheduled ore mined and in part because of lower than anticipated flow rate through pad material. Ore mined was affected by additional work required on the ultimate pit wall above the Pinto Creek Diversion, which required the reallocation of mining equipment to complete the diversion on schedule, delaying access to higher grade ore. During the quarter higher grade mixed oxide and chalcocite bearing ores at the top of the Cactus pit orebody were encountered. Weathering and alteration features of this mixed ore have continued to show slower than planned percolation rates due to fines. We believe this zone to be a feature of the top of the ore zone, as prior testwork below in the main portion of the orebody did not indicate percolation or recovery challenges. Review of existing drill logs and additional drilling are in progress to further evaluate this issue.

While improving the leach solution rate remains a work in progress, copper production is expected to increase to approximately nine million pounds in the fourth quarter.

Key operating and sales metrics are shown below.



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Carlota Operation Q1 2009 Q2 2009 Q3 2009 YTD

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Operating Metrics:
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Copper production 6.6 6.8 6.6 20.0
(Million lbs)
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Waste mined (Tonnes 000's) 4,518 4,997 4,689 14,204
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Ore placed (Tonnes 000's) 1,732 1,325 1,427 4,484
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Copper grade (%) 0.25 0.29 0.35 0.29
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Sales Metrics:
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Copper cathode sales 5.9 7.9 6.1 19.9
(Million lbs)
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Average realized price for $1.49 $2.01 $2.55 $2.02
the period
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Franke

Franke continued to ramp up with first copper harvested in July and a total of 4.1 million pounds of copper cathode produced in the quarter, virtually all of it LME grade A. While the primary crusher feeder design continues to limit production, the operating team has managed to increase throughput to the point where, with the portable crusher now on site to supplement the installed crusher, Franke should be able to approach design ore capacity during the fourth quarter of 2009. A redesign of the feed system is in progress. The pond issues are substantially resolved and are not expected to impact ramp up. Copper production in the last quarter is expected to be in the six to eight million pound range.

In association with finalizing plant modifications, Franke is actively pursuing all permits required to move from construction and start-up to full commercial operating status. This process is expected to be completed by the end of 2009.

Key operating metrics are shown below. First shipments to customers began in late September however no sales were recorded during the quarter.



------------------------------------------------
Franke Operation Q3 2009 YTD

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Operating Metrics:
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Copper produced (Million lbs) 4.1 4.1
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Waste mined (Tonnes 000's) 1,528 1,528
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Ore placed (Tonnes 000's) 552 552
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Copper grade (%) 0.8 0.8
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Paul Blythe, President & CEO of Quadra said, "We have now made the operating changes required at Robinson to the Veteran pit and have full access again. As with the supergene in Veteran in 2005 and 2006, concentrate grade continues to be challenging with the Wedge pit supergene ore but is expected to deliver as planned. The average concentrate grade in the third quarter was 24.8% Cu. Because of the Veteran issue, we stockpiled some lower grade concentrate, which we have been progressively blending back into the system, with some short term impact on sales volumes. Stripping of the Ruth pit began during the quarter.

At Carlota, the diversion channel is on schedule and associated mining above the channel is complete, allowing the operation to focus on mining of ore. The impact of lowering tonnage to the pad represents approximately 70% of the production shortfall compared to our original guidance so far in 2009. The percolation of solution through the leach pads remains at about 75% of that contemplated by the feasibility study. We are still studying options with respect to blasting and pad construction, but the main driver is the fines content of the ore. As previously, we see this as a working capital issue rather than a recovery issue and are accelerating the next stage of pad construction to ensure that we have adequate pad area."

Paul Blythe continues, "At Franke we remained on plan, harvesting just over 4 million pounds during the quarter. We are through most of the construction issues, other than the primary crusher feed system where we are still working on the most appropriate design. We want to get this right and decided during the quarter to bring in a portable crushing unit to provide additional capacity while we worked through the issue, which we now see as involving more than the crusher feeder. This should allow us to get close to design capacity in the interim and we can continue like this indefinitely. The other start-up issues, particularly the ponds, are resolved or will be resolved with no expected impact on production. As the mine development moves into higher grade ore and the plant throughput increases, we expect to be close to design cathode production in one or two more quarters."

"During the quarter, we published the results from the Sierra Gorda scoping study which incorporated an updated technical report as well as a preliminary economic assessment. To summarize, the study supports an open pit and concentrator operation processing 111,000 tonnes of mill feed per day and producing between 250 and 400 million pounds of copper per annum over a 25 year mine life at an average cash cost of $0.79 per pound. The project would also have significant molybdenum production, averaging 33 million pounds per year over the first eight years, and declining thereafter. This high level of molybdenum production results in an average cash cost of $0.34 per pound produced during these first eight years. We are moving forward with pre feasibility and feasibility studies as well as permitting and are building up the study team. We also continued to advance our discussions with potential partners."

Paul Blythe concludes, "Overall, we made progress at all three operations and are well placed for 2010, when we are expecting copper prices to improve further on the back of a global recovery."

During the quarter, the company sold all marketable securities held for a modest gain. The third quarter financial results will be announced on November 12th, 2009. Dial in details of the accompanying conference call will be issued under separate release.

About Quadra Mining Ltd. (TSX:QUA)

Quadra is a British Columbia corporation based in Vancouver and is a mining company whose principal assets are the Robinson Mine in Nevada, producing copper and gold, the Carlota Mine in Arizona, producing copper cathode, the mechanically complete Franke SX/EW heap leach project in northern Chile undergoing commissioning testing, the Sierra Gorda advanced exploration copper-molybdenum project in Chile and the Malmbjerg molybdenum development project in Greenland. The Company has the goal of becoming a mid-tier base metals development and operating company with interests in a number of advanced exploration, development and producing properties.

This Press Release contains "forward-looking information" that is based on Quadra's expectations, estimates and projections as of the dates as of which those statements were made. This forward-looking information includes, among other things, statements with respect to Quadra's business strategy, plans, outlook, long-term growth in cash flow, earnings per share and shareholder value, projections, targets and expectations as to reserves, resources, results of exploration (including targets) and related expenses, property acquisitions, mine development, mine operations, mine production costs, drilling activity, sampling and other data, estimating grade levels, future recovery levels, future production levels, capital costs, costs savings, cash and total costs of production of copper, gold, molybdenum and other minerals, expenditures for environmental matters, projected life of Quadra's mines, reclamation and other post closure obligations and estimated future expenditures for those matters, completion dates for the various development and operational stages of Quadra's mines, availability of water for milling and mining, future copper, gold, molybdenum and other mineral prices (including the long-term estimated prices used in calculating Quadra's mineral reserves), end-use demand for copper, currency exchange rates, debt reductions, timing of expected sales and final pricing of concentrate sales, the percentage of anticipated production covered by option contracts or agreements, anticipated outcome of litigation and personnel issues. Generally, this forward-looking information can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as "outlook", "anticipate", "project", "target", "believe", "estimate", "expect", "intend", "should", "scheduled", "will", "plan" and similar expressions. Forward-looking information is subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause Quadra's actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking information and is developed based on assumptions about such risks, uncertainties and other factors set out herein, including but not limited to:

- uncertainties relating to fluctuations copper and other metal prices;

- uncertainties related to the possible recalculation or reduction in the Company's mineral reserves and resources;

- uncertainties related to actual capital costs, operating costs and expenditures, production schedules and economic returns from the Company's mining projects;

- uncertainties related to the current global financial conditions;

- uncertainties related to the availability of future financing necessary to undertake mining, processing, development and exploration activities on Quadra's properties;

- Quadra's substantial reliance on the Robinson Mine for revenues;

- uncertainties related to Quadra's ability to expand or replace depleted reserves;

- risks related to the integration of businesses and assets acquired by Quadra, including the recent acquisition of Centenario;

- inherent hazards and risks associated with mining operations;

- inherent uncertainties associated with mineral exploration;

- uncertainties related to the competitiveness of the mining industry;

- risks associated with Quadra being subject to government regulation, including changes in regulation;

- risks associated with Quadra being subject to extensive environmental laws and regulations, including a change in regulation;

- risks associated with Quadra's need for governmental license and permits;

- risks that Quadra's title to its property could be challenged;

- political and country risk;

- risk of water shortages and risks associated with competition for water;

- Quadra's need to attract and retain qualified personnel;

- risk of shortages of key supplies, including tires;

- increases in off-site transportation and concentrate processing costs;

- Quadra's dependence on one railroad and one port to ship copper from the Robinson Mine;

- risks associated with the mineralogy, and particularly complex mineralogy at the Robinson Mine;

- risks related to the stability of mine pit walls;

- risks related to the need for reclamation activities on Quadra's properties, including the nature of reclamation required and uncertainty of costs estimates related thereto;

- uncertainties related to the amount of funding required to achieve full production levels at the Franke Mine;

- uncertainties related to production ramp-up at the Carlota Mine;

- risks associated with costs of operating supplies, including sulphuric acid;

- inherent risks associated with existing and future litigation;

- risks associated with taxation;

- risks related to Quadra's shareholder rights plan;

- risks associated with potential conflicts of interest;

- risks in the nature of investments; and

- risk related to hedging contracts and exposure to the credit risk of counterparties.

A discussion of these and other factors that may affect Quadra's actual results, performance, achievements or financial position is contained in the filings by Quadra with the Canadian provincial securities regulatory authorities, including Quadra's Annual Information Form. This list is not exhaustive of the factors that may affect our forward-looking information. These and other factors should be considered carefully and readers should not place undue reliance on such forward-looking information. Quadra disclaims any intent or obligations to update or revise publicly any forward-looking statements whether as a result of new information, estimates or options, future events or results or otherwise, unless required to do so by law. The forward-looking information in this press release which relates directly or indirectly to the revision of prior forward looking information is subject to all of the material factors and assumptions disclosed at the time the Company stated the prior forward-looking information.

Contact Information

  • Quadra Mining Ltd. - Media and Investor Relations Contact
    Sophie Taylor
    Manager, Investor Relations
    (604) 689-8550, ext. 310
    or
    Quadra Mining Ltd. - Media and Investor Relations Contact
    Derek White
    Executive Vice President, Business Development
    (604) 689-8550, ext. 307