Candente Copper Corp.

Candente Copper Corp.

November 24, 2011 04:00 ET

Candente Copper Corp.: Canariaco Norte Copper Project Update

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Nov. 24, 2011) - Candente Copper Corp. (TSX:DNT)( BVLAC:DNT) ("Candente") is pleased to provide an update on the impact of the new Peru Mining Tax Law on the Cañariaco Norte economics, the Cañariaco Norte Copper Feasibility Study being prepared by AMEC Americas Limited ("AMEC") and on general corporate activities.

New Peru Mineral Tax

An assessment of the new tax rates in Peru confirms the robust economics of the Cañariaco Norte project. AMEC has completed an assessment of the impact to the Cañariaco Norte project economics resulting from the new Mineral Taxation Law recently enacted in Peru. The new tax rates were applied to the financial model developed by AMEC as part of the Pre-Feasibility Study Progress Report completed in March 2011. In order to complete a direct assessment of the new tax rates, all other aspects of the financial assessment including metal prices were held constant as per the March 2011 Financial Model. Under the new tax rates, the after tax NPV, IRR and payback period for the Cañariaco Norte project are $912 million, 17.2% and 4.4 years respectively, at a long term copper price of US$2.25 per pound and a discount rate of 8%. The after tax NPV, IRR and payback period reported in March 2011 in the Pre-feasibility Study Progress report were US$1.063 billion, 18.8% and 4.2 years respectively.

Feasibility Study

Feasibility design work is well underway by AMEC and Knight Piesold. As part of the Feasibility Study program, AMEC completed an analysis of the potential benefit of increased daily throughput. Four different production rates were evaluated which considered the impacts on mining, processing, ancillary facilities, water balance, project footprint and project financials including capital and operating costs. Based on the analyses a larger SAG mill and larger ball mills will be incorporated into the Cañariaco Norte process plant. Specifically, a 40 foot diameter SAG mill will be used. The larger 4o foot SAG mills are rapidly becoming the preferred size for large mining operations. Preliminary modelling indicates that the larger SAG mill will achieve a processing rate in the range of 100,000, to 110,000 tonnes per day, which is an increase from the 95,000 tonne per day rate projected in the Prefeasibility Study Progress Report. This increase in processing rate will result in higher levels of annual copper, gold, and silver production, however the resulting increase in metal production totals are still under assessment, pending completion of the Feasibility level mine design.

As part of the production rate increase, Knight Piesold conducted a review of tailings containment options to ensure the proposed tailings site provided sufficient capacity for the proposed increase. This analysis identified several options and resulted in the selection of a new tailings containment area significantly closer to the proposed process plant than the tailings facility presented in the Prefeasibility Study Progress report.

In addition, AMEC has completed a review of the potential mine access routes. The review indicates that development of a southern route that follows the current access road route would provide several key benefits including shorter haul distance to the Port at Eten and lower life of mine cost. In addition, the power line may be constructed along this road route thereby simplifying the logistics of power line construction.

Cañariaco Drilling Programs

Candente has significant drilling programs planned for the Cañariaco project. Exploration drilling is planned for the Cañariaco Sur area where drilling, by Candente in 2008 and prior to Candente's ownership, by BHP Billiton, identified the presence of a significant copper-gold porphyry system. The exploration drilling is planned to test for lateral and depth extensions of the Sur system.

Exploration drilling is also planned at Quebrada Verde to test for copper-gold mineralization. Geological, geochemical and geophysical surveys carried out by Candente have delineated strongly anomalous copper, gold and molybdenum levels in rock samples and soil samples that coincide with magnetic and chargeability highs identified by magnetic and induced polarization (geophysical) surveys.

Cañariaco Sur and Quebrada Verde have excellent potential for the discovery of additional copper and gold mineralization in very close proximity to the Cañariaco Norte project.

Planned drilling on Cañariaco Norte includes geotechnical, metallurgical and geological drilling for Feasibility Study design of the open pit and ancillary facilities, as well as a small amount of infill drilling for the resource.

In addition to the planned drilling, Candente plans to conduct a geophysical survey over the entire Cañariaco property. The objective of this program is to search for new geophysical anomalies that could be indicative of underlying porphyry systems. Geophysical surveys completed to date have focussed solely on the Cañariaco Norte, Cañariaco Sur and Quebrada Verde areas. The Cañariaco property covers over 16,000 hectares and the majority of it is under explored. The property wide geophysical survey will be a key tool to assist evaluation of exploration potential beyond the Cañariaco Norte, Sur and Quebrada Verde areas.


As part of new requirements for advanced drilling permits in Peru, AMEC (Perú) S.A. ("AMEC E&E") completed a semi-detailed Environmental Impact Assessment ("EIASD") in July 2011. A community workshop (also as required) was conducted on the EIASD findings in October 2011. AMEC E&E has now completed all of the studies and responses required for the drilling application and it has been submitted to the Peruvian Ministry of Environmental Affairs. Pending approval times, management anticipates that drilling should commence in the first quarter of 2012. In addition to the drilling application, a long term agreement for surface rights access is also being discussed with the local community.

Sustainable Development and Community Programs

Candente has formed an alliance with local communities, regional government and two well recognized Non-Governmental Organizations to ensure local interests and needs guide the Company's sustainable development, cultural and community initiatives.

CICAP, a Peruvian based Livelihood Development organization, will join our team and international specialists in initiatives for: coffee growers and other agricultural producers, to improve quality and reach new markets (including organic and fair trade); micro-finance ventures; water security; and technical training for tradesmen.

Save the Children initiatives will focus on improving health, nutrition, education, hygiene and individual's rights. These will include: local clinics and support systems in the promotion of traditional food and culture while enhancing childrens' development, maternal health and reducing domestic violence.

Candente is also very pleased to be assisting the Clinton Giustra Sustainability Global Initiative and Lyons Club of Lambayeque which are now carrying out campaigns for eye care which includes cataract surgeries and the distribution of free eye glasses. Sight improvement for both the young and aged has an enormous impact on their quality of life and livelihoods.

Feasibility Schedule

Due to the additional project optimization work conducted to date as part of the Feasibility Study and the longer period required to complete the drilling application process, the completion date for the Feasibility Study has been extended. The schedule remains highly dependent on Ministry approval of the Cañariaco Norte drilling program application which has no firm timeline but is expected within 3 months. Timeline for completion of the Feasibility Study will be updated once drilling commences.

Corporate Update

Cañariaco Norte is one of the largest undeveloped copper deposits currently under 100% control of a junior mining company and a number of major and mid-size International companies have communicated interest to Candente regarding an investment in the Cañariaco Norte project. Candente has entered into a Confidentiallity Agreement with several of the third parties, and these companies are conducting technical reviews of project data and have or are scheduled to visit the Cañariaco project site.

"We continue to be extremely pleased with the progress of the Cañariaco Norte Feasibility program, and although our feasibility schedule has been extended due to the additional engineering assessment and drilling application process, we believe the improvements made to the scope of the project development will provide significant benefit to the Cañariaco Norte project," commented Sean Waller, P.Eng., President of Candente Copper.

About Candente Copper

Candente Copper's flagship project is the 100% owned, 7.5 billion pound, Feasibility stage Cañariaco Norte Copper Project located in northern Peru's prolific mining district. The Cañariaco Norte deposit contains a Measured and Indicated resource of 752.4 million tonnes grading 0.49% copper equivalent*, and an Inferred Resource of 157.7 million tonnes at 0.44% copper equivalent*.

Sean Waller, P.Eng., President, and Joanne C. Freeze, P.Geo., CEO, are the Qualified Persons as defined by National Instrument 43-101 for the projects discussed above. They have reviewed and approved the contents of this release. *The 'Measured and Indicated Resource' listed above consists of Measured Resources of 338.1Mt at 0.48% Cu, 0.08 g/t Au, and 2.0/t Ag (0.52% Cu Eq.), plus Indicated Resources of 414.3Mt at 0.43% Cu, 0.06 g/t Au, and 1.8 g/t Ag (o.46% Cu Eq.). All resources quoted in this release are based on a 0.30% copper cut-off grade and 229 drill holes completed to March 2008. *Copper equivalent grade including gold and silver, metal recoveries (gold 55%; silver 50%) and smelter returns (copper 96.5%; gold 93%; silver 90%) applied. Copper grade equivalent calculation: Cu Eq% = (Cu % + ((Au grade x Au price x Au recovery x Au smelter return%)+(Ag grade x Ag price x Ag recovery x Ag smelter return%))/(22.0462 x Cu price x 31.0135 g/t x Cu recovery x Cu smelter return%). The metal prices used are: copper US$2.50/lb, gold US$1,035/oz and silver US$17.25/oz.

This news release may contain forward-looking statements including but not limited to comments regarding the timing and content of upcoming work programs, geological interpretations, receipt of property titles, potential mineral recovery processes, etc. Forward-looking statements address future events and conditions and therefore involve inherent risks and uncertainties. Actual results may differ materially from those currently anticipated in such statements. Candente relies upon litigation protection for forward-looking statements.


We advise U.S. investors that this news release uses terms that are not recognized by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission ("SEC"), including "mineral resources", "measured resources", "indicated resources" and "inferred resources". The estimation of measured and indicated resources involves greater uncertainty as to their existence and economic feasibility than the estimation of proven and probable reserves. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that mineral resources in these categories will be converted to reserves. The estimation of inferred resources involves far greater uncertainty as to their existence and economic viability than the estimation of other categories of resources. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that estimates of inferred mineral resources exist, are economically mineable, or will be upgraded into measured or indicated mineral resources. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that mineral resources in any of these categories will be converted into reserves.

On behalf of the Board of Candente Copper Corp.

Sean Waller, P.Eng., President & Director


Contact Information

  • Candente Copper Corp.
    John Foulkes, VP Corporate Development
    mobile: +1 (604) 614-2999 or local: + 1 (604) 689-1957 ext 2
    toll free: 1 (877) 689-1964 ext 2

    Candente Copper Corp.
    Walter Spagnuolo
    Manager, Investor Relations
    mobile: +1 (604) 306-8477
    local: + 1 (604) 689-1957 ext 3