Abacus Mining and Exploration Corp.
TSX VENTURE : AME

Abacus Mining and Exploration Corp.

March 25, 2008 08:00 ET

Abacus, New Gold and Teck Cominco Sign Definitive Agreements on the Afton-Ajax Project

Abacus Pursuing 40-60,000 TPD Cu-Au Surface Mining Operation by 2010

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - March 25, 2008) - Abacus Mining & Exploration Corp. ("Abacus" or "the Company") (TSX VENTURE:AME) is pleased to announce that it has signed definitive agreements with New Gold Inc. ("New Gold") (TSX:NGD)(AMEX:NGD) and Teck Cominco Limited ("Teck Cominco") (TSX:TCK.A)(TSX:TCK.B)(NYSE:TCK) relating to the Company's Afton-Ajax Project, located near Kamloops, British Columbia. These agreements resolve certain issues related to land access, surface and mineral rights so that Abacus can vigorously pursue development of a large-scale surface mining operation at the Afton-Ajax Project, with production planned in 2010.

"These agreements enable us to move aggressively toward development of the Afton-Ajax Project," said Doug Fulcher, Abacus President and Chief Executive Officer. "Abacus is focused on consolidating the Ajax East and West pits into one large-scale operation with a potential strike length of at least 1.5 kilometres."

Milestones in the Company's efforts to develop the Afton-Ajax Project include:

- Over 75,000 feet drilled to date in the joint venture area between the previously drilled Ajax West and Ajax East pits. Abacus expects to complete the drilling program by the end of March 2008.

- A new NI43-101 compliant resource estimate by June 2008 that encompasses the Ajax West and Ajax East pits as well as the area between them. Management expects the new resource calculation to result in a substantial increase from the existing resource which consists only on the Ajax West.

- A preliminary economic assessment on the Project by the fall 2008.

- An extensive infill drilling program that will continue in preparation for a feasibility study to be completed in 2009. The feasibility study will examine a 40,000 to 60,000 tonne per day surface mining operation at the Project, commencing in 2010.

Asset Purchase Agreement

Abacus is also pleased to announce the signing of an extension of the Asset Purchase Agreement with Teck Cominco. The Agreement, when consummated, will significantly reduce Abacus' expected lead time and capital costs related to production startup at the Project. In 2005 an independent appraiser valued these assets at more than $38 million.

The Agreement was extended to May 30, 2008 to allow additional time for the transfer of certain assets and rights of way. Teck Cominco has also granted an extension to any purchase price adjustment provision (in cash and/or shares), as per the Agreement, until November 25, 2008.

Teck Cominco, the last active operator for the Afton-Ajax District, sold Abacus the Afton Mill infrastructure, tailings pond and related permits, access rights of way, rights to water and certain surface rights.

About Abacus and the Afton-Ajax Project

Abacus is an exploration stage and development company that holds a 100% interest in five significant mineral properties in the prolific Afton-Ajax Camp near Kamloops, British Columbia. Abacus also has the added advantage of owning significant infrastructure in the Afton Camp including tailings dams, mill infrastructure, water rights, and all relevant permits.

The Afton-Ajax Camp consists of at least seven known copper gold deposits, five of which are 100 percent owned by Abacus: Ajax West, Ajax East, Rainbow Zone, DM Zone, and the Crescent Area. To date, Abacus has delivered NI43-101 compliant resource estimates on Ajax West, Rainbow Zone, and the DM Zone and will complete enough drilling this year for resource estimates on the remaining areas.

A preliminary economic analysis is expected by mid-2008 and a feasibility study anticipated in 2009. Potential production is planned to start up as early as 2010.

On Behalf of the Board,

ABACUS MINING AND EXPLORATION CORPORATION

Doug Fulcher, President and Chief Executive Officer

Forward-Looking Information

This release includes certain statements that may be deemed "forward-looking statements". All statements in this release, other than statements of historical facts, that address events or developments that Abacus Mining and Exploration Corp. (the "Company") expects to occur, are forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are statements that are not historical facts and are generally, but not always, identified by the words "expects", "plans", "anticipates", "believes", "intends", "estimates", "projects", "potential" and similar expressions, or that events or conditions "will", "would", "may", "could" or "should" occur. Forward looking statements in this release include statements regarding the Company's rights and benefits under the agreements with New Gold and Teck Cominco; the Company's future exploration and development plans; and the timing and nature of any future resource estimates, economic analyses or feasibility studies. Although the Company believes the expectations expressed in such forward-looking statements are based on reasonable assumptions, such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results may differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements. Factors that could cause the actual results to differ materially from those in forward-looking statements include market prices, exploitation and exploration successes, continued availability of capital and financing, and general economic, market or business conditions. Investors are cautioned that any such statements are not guarantees of future performance and actual results or developments may differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are based on the beliefs, estimates and opinions of the Company's management on the date the statements are made. The Company undertakes no obligation to update these forward-looking statements in the event that management's beliefs, estimates or opinions, or other factors, should change. These statements are based on a number of assumptions, including, among others, assumptions regarding general business and economic conditions, the ability of the Company and other relevant parties to satisfy stock exchange and other regulatory requirements in timely manner, the availability of financing for the Company's proposed transactions and exploration and development programs on reasonable terms and the ability of third-party service providers to deliver services in a timely manner.

The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept the responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.

Contact Information

  • Abacus Mining and Exploration Corp.
    Doug Fulcher
    President and Chief Executive Officer
    (604) 682-0301
    or
    Abacus Mining and Exploration Corp.
    Paddy Nicol
    (604) 682-0301
    (604) 682-0307 (FAX)
    Email: info@amemining.com
    Website: www.amemining.com