Cumberland Resources Ltd.

Cumberland Resources Ltd.

March 15, 2005 09:00 ET

Cumberland Announces 2005 Meadowbank Exploration Program


NEWS RELEASE TRANSMITTED BY CCNMatthews

FOR: CUMBERLAND RESOURCES LTD.

TSX, AMEX SYMBOL: CLG

MARCH 15, 2005 - 09:00 ET

Cumberland Announces 2005 Meadowbank Exploration
Program

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(CCNMatthews - March 15, 2005) - CUMBERLAND
RESOURCES LTD. (TSX:CLG)(AMEX:CLG) is pleased to announce a budget of
$3.5 million for the 2005 exploration program on the Company's 100%
owned Meadowbank gold project located in Nunavut, Canada. The two phased
program, including a planned 7,000 to 9,000 metre diamond drilling
program, is expected to commence in April and will focus on increasing
gold reserves and resources at Meadowbank.

Cumberland is advancing Meadowbank towards production after a
feasibility study(i) completed in February 2005 (see news release
NR05-02) indicated the project could support a production rate of
316,000 ounces per year at an estimated cash cost of US$224 per ounce
over an 8.3 year mine life.



Meadowbank Gold Project Production Profile(i)
----------------------------------------------------------
Open Pit Mineral Reserves 2,768,000 ounces
(Proven and Probable)
----------------------------------------------------------
Mine Throughput 2.73 Mtpa
----------------------------------------------------------
Mine Life 8.3 years
----------------------------------------------------------
Average Annual Production Rate
Years 1 to 4 376,000 ounces
Life of Mine 316,000 ounces
----------------------------------------------------------
Total Cash Cost per Oz.
Years 1 to 4 US$199
Life of Mine US$224
----------------------------------------------------------
Estimated Start of Operations+ mid-2008
----------------------------------------------------------
Assumptions include a long term gold price of US$400/oz
and an exchange rate of US$0.75 per Cdn$1.00.
+Assuming final permits and licenses obtained in early 2006.


"Meadowbank is host to the largest pure-gold open pit reserves
established in Canada, providing the Company with a solid economic basis
to emerge as an intermediate level gold producer," said Kerry Curtis,
President and CEO. "Historically, exploration at Meadowbank has
consistently returned additional resources, achieving a remarkable
discovery cost of approximately US$12 per reserve ounce gold. The 2005
exploration program will focus on the considerable opportunities that
exist to expand the 2.8 million ounce reserve and further improve the
economics of the project by extending the operational life of the mine."

The proven and probable reserve estimate for the three, shallow open
pits proposed at Meadowbank is as follows:



Meadowbank Gold Project Open Pit Mining Reserves
(Proven and Probable)(ii)
--------------------------------------------------------------
Open Pit Ore (t) Au Grade (g/t) Contained Ounces
--------------------------------------------------------------
Portage 11,180,000 4.27 1,534,000
Vault 8,469,000 3.18 866,000
Goose 2,247,000 5.09 368,000
--------------------------------------------------------------
Total 21,896,000 3.93 2,768,000
--------------------------------------------------------------


2005 Planned Exploration Program

The 2005 Meadowbank exploration program will consist of a two phased
drill program, subject to the availability of third-party drillers, and
grassroots exploration along the 25 kilometre Meadowbank gold trend. At
the Goose Island deposit, the Phase I drill program will focus on
expansion of high grade intersections yielded in the 2004 drill program.
South of the Goose Island deposit, drilling will test an 850 metre
strike length of stratigraphy where previous wide spaced drilling has
intersected gold mineralization similar to the Goose Island deposit. The
Phase I program will also focus on the PDF deposit, which remains open
for expansion at depth. The Phase II program will consist of up to 2,000
metres of drilling, grassroots exploration on favourable structures
north of the Vault deposit, and follow-up exploration on numerous
recently defined prospects situated both near the proposed open pits and
across the property.

2005 Exploration Targets (See Attached Maps)

Expansion of the Goose Island Deposit: Significant potential exists to
expand the Goose Island deposit (368,000 ounces of gold reserves) both
along strike and in the down dip direction. The 2005 drilling will
follow up on significant results from drilling in 2004 including:



Downdip extensions: Hole G04-521: 8.43 g/t gold over 5.83 metres
at 80 metres below surface
Hole G04-509: 12.72 g/t over 11.25m at 85m
below surface
South strike extensions: Hole G04-527: 87.88 g/t over 4.91m at 50m
below surface
North strike extensions: Hole G04-523: 18.28 g/t over 0.94m at 50m
below surface
And: 1.72 g/t over 10.11m


South of the Goose Island Deposit: The Goose Island South target area is
located approximately 300 metres south of the proposed Goose Island open
pit. The target covers approximately 850 metres of prospective iron
formation along strike from the Goose Island deposit. Previous wide
spaced drilling completed in 1995 and 1997 intersected mineralization
including:


Hole G97-172: 3.77 g/t gold over 3.30 metres
at 382 metres below surface
Hole G97-171: 2.37 g/t over 3.00m at 276m
below surface
Hole G95-073: 3.37 g/t over 5.00m at 72m
below surface
Incl: 6.78 g/t over 1.00m


Expansion of the PDF Deposit: The PDF deposit, located 10 kilometres
north of the Vault proposed open pit, was expanded by drilling in late
2004. The deposit now hosts inferred gold resources(iii) of 73,000
ounces of gold in 507,000 tonnes grading 4.50 g/t gold, which are not
included in the current mine plan. Wide spaced drilling in 2005 will
focus on the expansion potential of the deposit in the down dip
direction and follow up on significant results from the 2004 program,
including:



Hole PDF04-035: 5.60 g/t gold over 3.02
metres at 125 metres below surface
Hole PDF04-036: 6.79 g/t over 2.51m at 132m
below surface
Incl: 13.00 g/t over 1.26m


Cumberland is a well financed mineral exploration and development
company. The Company completed a feasibility study on the Meadowbank
gold project (100% interest) in Nunavut and is advancing the project to
production. The Company also holds a 22% carried to production interest
in the Meliadine West gold project in Nunavut. The shares of Cumberland
are traded on the Toronto Stock Exchange and the American Stock Exchange
under the symbol CLG.

CUMBERLAND RESOURCES LTD.

Kerry M. Curtis, B.Sc., Geo., President and CEO

Forward Looking Statements and Risks - This News Release contains
"forward-looking statements", including, but not limited to, statements
regarding our expectations as to the market price of gold, strategic
plans, future commercial production, production targets and timetables,
mine operating costs, capital expenditures, work programs, exploration
budgets and mineral reserve and resource estimates. Forward-looking
statements express, as at the date of this report, our plans, estimates,
forecasts, projections, expectations or beliefs as to future events or
results. We caution that forward-looking statements involve a number of
risks and uncertainties, and there can be no assurance that such
statements will prove to be accurate. Therefore, actual results and
future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such
statements. Factors that could cause results or events to differ
materially from current expectations expressed or implied by the
forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, factors
associated with fluctuations in the market price of precious metals,
mining industry risks and hazards, environmental risks and hazards,
uncertainty as to calculation of mineral reserves and resources,
requirement of additional financing, risks of delays in construction and
other risks more fully described in our AIF filed with the Securities
Commissions of the Provinces of British Columbia, Ontario, Quebec and
Nova Scotia in our 40F filed with the United States Securities and
Exchange Commission (the "SEC") and with the Toronto Stock Exchange.

(i) Meadowbank Feasibility Study (First Quarter 2005) - The feasibility
study incorporates improvements to the mine model as a result of a
re-design completed in 2004 by the Company and the study manager, AMEC
Americas Ltd. ("AMEC"). Construction scheduling and capital cost
estimation has been prepared by Merit International Consultants Inc
("Merit"). Metallurgical and process test work was completed by SGS
Lakefield Research Ltd. Process design was completed by International
Metallurgical and Environmental Inc. and AMEC. Supporting geotechnical
engineering, hydrogeological and geochemical studies were completed by
Golder Associates Ltd. ("Golder"). The Study has been prepared in
accordance with the Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects as
defined by National Instrument 43-101 ("NI 43-101"). Assumptions include
a long term gold price of US$400/oz. and an exchange rate of US$0.75 per
Cdn$1.00.

(ii) Meadowbank Gold Reserves (First Quarter 2005) - The open pit mining
reserves have been prepared in accordance with NI 43-101. Mr. Mark
Pearson, P.Eng Principal Mining Engineer with AMEC Americas Limited is
the independent Qualified Person responsible for preparation of stated
reserves.

(iii) PDF Deposit Resource Parameters (Fourth Quarter 2004) - PDF
resource estimates were prepared by Cumberland in accordance with
standards outlined in National Instrument 43-101 and CIM Standards on
Mineral Resources and Reserves (August 2000). James McCrea, P.Geo., is
the Qualified Person under NI 43-101. PDF deposit resources are not
included in the feasibility study of the Meadowbank project. PDF
resource estimates are based on 39 NQ diamond drill holes and a total of
1900 samples. Samples were assayed at IPL Laboratories of Vancouver,
British Columbia, utilizing fire assay with AA finish and fire assay
with gravimetric finish on all assays yielding greater than 1 g/t. QA/QC
programs employ random insertion of four internal standards, field
duplicates and blank samples. Acme Laboratories of Vancouver, British
Columbia, provides external reference assaying. Resource analysis is
based on three-dimensional solid models generated from geological and
assay data. Interpolation is based on compositing at 0.75 metre
down-hole lengths. Inverse distance to the 2nd power with a minimum of
two and a maximum of 12 composites is required to interpolate grade into
a block. Composites were capped at 20 g/t. A 2.0 g/t cut-off grade is
applied.

To view the maps accompanying this press release please click on the
following links:

http://www2.ccnmatthews.com/database/fax/2000/clg3.pdf

http://www2.ccnmatthews.com/database/fax/2000/clg2.pdf

http://www2.ccnmatthews.com/database/fax/2000/clg1.pdf

-30-

Contact Information

  • FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
    Cumberland Resources Ltd.
    Kerry Curtis
    President and CEO
    (604) 608-2557
    (604) 608-2559 (FAX)
    or
    Cumberland Resources Ltd.
    Joyce Musial
    Manager, Investor Relations
    (604) 608-2557
    (604) 608-2559 (FAX)
    info@cumberlandresources.com
    www.cumberlandresources.com