TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - Nov. 12, 2012) - Colossus Minerals Inc. (the "Company" or "Colossus") (TSX:CSI)(OTCQX:COLUF) is pleased to provide a status of development at its 75% owned Serra Pelada Gold-Platinum-Palladium Project. The Serra Pelada Project is a joint venture between Colossus and Cooperativa de Mineração dos Garimpeiros de Serra Pelada ("COOMIGASP") located in the State of Pará, Brazil.
The Company is hosting a site tour for investors and analysts today where new members of the site's management team will be introduced. The Company is pleased to report that critical milestones remain on schedule and an experienced team of professionals, both in the underground operations and overseeing surface construction, remains in place despite the management changes announced last week.
- Secondary development to access the bulk sample is well underway with just over 100 metres left to reach a new and deeper part of the Central Mineralized Zone providing a larger horizontal and vertical panel from which to extract a more representative sample.
- The bulk sample will consist of approximately 1,500 tonnes of material, a portion of which is to be collected and sent for testing to Metsolve in Canada.
- Ground conditions and water inflow remain very manageable.
- Plant construction progressing and remains on track for completion in the first half of 2013.
Claudio Mancuso, President and Chief Executive Officer commented, "While the development phase of any mine is challenging and we've dealt with our share of personnel changes, we are pleased with the progress we are making and continue to anticipate production early in the second half of 2013."
Construction and Development at the Serra Pelada Project
The bulk sample location was modified as part of the Company's periodic re-evaluation of mine design and, as previously announced additional development was added to the plan to provide for an improved quality sample. Access has been collared and the development heading is well underway; the extraction of the bulk sample remains on schedule for the fourth quarter of 2012. The bulk sample will consist of approximately 30 metres of development through the mineralized deposit to extract approximately 1,500 tonnes of material. Ten to 15 representative samples of 300 kilograms each will be collected and sent for testing to Metsolve in Canada.
Secondary development continued with the excavation of a second underground drill bay from which delineation drilling commenced. In total over 1,500 metres of underground development has been completed. Underground mine dewatering has been upgraded and additional high volume pumps installed to facilitate the pumping of water directly from one of the deeper sumps to surface. The first underground electrical substation has been commissioned, resulting in improved power delivery and reliability of the underground project infrastructure.
During the third quarter of 2012, an existing artisanal shaft was purchased and is in the process of being converted to a ventilation shaft. The underground connection to this shaft access is ready for break through after the shaft is dewatered which is anticipated to be completed by the end of November 2012. Surface fencing of the shaft is complete and construction of a concrete collar around the artisanal shaft has begun.
During the third quarter of 2012, a comprehensive re-assessment of equipment requirements was undertaken to optimize productivity and minimize equipment rentals. As a consequence, the purchase of several new pieces of equipment was planned. The Company is finalizing an agreement with Caterpillar to purchase four machines to aid in civil work and stockpile management. The Company also decided to change from standard surface dump trucks to four purpose-built Atlas Copco MT-431B trucks. This change is anticipated to reduce maintenance, allow for tighter radius turns and increased gradient in the development plan, and to increase per-load hauling capability. The four trucks along with a Boltec MC Rockbolter and a Simba 1254 Fan Drill are anticipated to be purchased from Atlas Copco. Two of the trucks are expected to arrive at site during the fourth quarter of 2012 and the other two are expected to arrive with the bolter and drill in the second quarter of 2013.
Construction continued on additional camp accommodations and infrastructure. The infirmary has been completed and is operational; the main office is complete and operational and the new 41-unit camp has also been completed. Construction of the power generation building continued and is expected to be completed early in the first quarter of 2013. The previously announced financial problems with Pará State's electrical transmission company ("CELPA") have now been resolved as CELPA was purchased by Equatorial Energia, Brazil's second largest power distributor. Construction of the power line is well underway with connection to site expected to occur in the first quarter of 2013.
DRA International is responsible for engineering and Merit Consultants International Inc. is responsible for overseeing construction of the processing plant. Construction of the processing plant is expected to be completed in the first half of 2013. While a significant amount of the site earthworks had been previously completed, additional terracing and slope stabilization work is required and this has delayed the start of civil construction, which is expected to begin imminently. This minor delay caused by additional terracing requirement is not expected to cause any schedule delays as the Company has augmented the contractor's slope stabilization work with the use of its own equipment and personnel. Slope stabilization is expected to be completed in the next ten days and civil construction will begin immediately thereafter. All of the major plant equipment has been procured and the Gekko reactors and Falcon concentrators are expected to arrive on site during the fourth quarter of 2012. A steel purchase and erection contract has also been awarded with the first structural steel delivery anticipated in December. A contract to purchase all the necessary conveyor systems has also been awarded with conveyors expected to arrive in the first quarter of 2013.
Visits from Regulatory Agencies
Throughout September and October, site visits to Serra Pelada were conducted by SEMA (Secretariat of Environment of the State of Para) and DNPM (National Department of Mineral Production). The work of the environmental and community relations departments was praised with a number of significant strengths noted including a stated intention by SEMA to use the environmental program conducted at Serra Pelada as a benchmark for other companies. Equally important was the fact that only minor weaknesses were identified and no written infractions were issued. The weaknesses were addressed within 15 days and have already been inspected during a follow-up visit.
Colossus is a development-stage mining company focused on bringing its Serra Pelada project into production. Serra Pelada, located in the mineral prolific Carajas region in the State of Pará, Brazil, is host to one of the highest grade gold and platinum group metals deposits in the world. Between 1980 and 1986 Serra Pelada was host to the largest precious metals rush in Latin American history. Coverage of this famous mining rush by 60 Minutes can be viewed by following the link below. Colossus Minerals shares, warrants and notes trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) under the symbols CSI, CSI.WT.A and CSI.NT respectively and in the United States its Common Shares trade on the OTCQX under the symbol COLUF. The Company is headquartered in Toronto, Canada.
CAUTIONARY STATEMENT REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION
Forward-looking statements in this press release include statements regarding the timing and nature of future exploration and development programs that are dependent on projections that may change as drilling continues, or if unexpected ground conditions are encountered. The Company does not currently have any mineral properties that are in production or that contain a reserve as defined by National Instrument 43-101. In addition, areas of exploration potential are identified which will require additional drilling to determine whether or not they contain similar mineralization to areas that have been explored in more detail. Significant additional drilling is required at Serra Pelada to fully understand system size.
Except for statements of historical fact relating to Colossus, certain statements in this press release relating but not limited to the Company's exploration and development plans, activities and intentions, constitute "forward-looking information" within the meaning of the Securities Act (Ontario) or "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the United States Private Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forward-looking statements represent management's best judgment based on current facts and assumptions that management considers reasonable. Forward-looking statements are frequently characterized by words such as "target", "plan", "expect", "project", "intend", believe", "anticipate" and other similar words, or statements that certain events or conditions "appear to", "may" or "will" occur. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management at the date the statements are made, and are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. The factors include but are not limited to risks related to the joint venture operation, actual results of exploration activities, the inherent risks involved in the exploration and development of mineral properties, changes in project parameters as plans continue to be refined, delays in obtaining government approvals, the uncertainties of project cost overruns or unanticipated costs and expenses, uncertainties relating to the availability and costs of financing needed in the future, the uncertainties inherent to conducting business in Brazil and the rest of Latin America, the availability of equipment and supplies, unexpected adverse climate conditions, the reliance on only a few key members of management, as well as those factors discussed in the section entitled "Risk Factors" in the Company's most recent Annual Information Form filed with Canadian provincial securities regulatory authorities and other regulatory filings which are posted on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. Unless required by law, Colossus undertakes no obligation to update forward-looking statements if circumstances or management's estimates or opinions should change. The reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements.