Merc International Minerals Inc.
TSX VENTURE : MRK

Merc International Minerals Inc.

March 05, 2008 09:00 ET

Merc Tables Historic Resources-Acquires Lingman Lake Gold Project

TORONTO, ONTARIO--(Marketwire - March 5, 2008) - Merc International Minerals Inc. ("Merc")(TSX VENTURE:MRK) is pleased to announce its planned 2008 gold exploration program for the Borthwick Lake Gold Project and the execution of an option agreement to acquire 100% of the Lingman Lake Gold Project in northern Ontario.

Merc's initial focus for 2008 is the Borthwick Lake Gold Project, which hosts the past producing Berens River mine located 200 km north of Red Lake Ontario. From 1939 until 1948 a subsidiary of Newmont Mining milled 508,574 tonnes of material from the No. 1 Vein grading 8.71 grams gold per tonne, 321.61 grams silver per tonne, 0.54% lead and 0.16% zinc that produced nearly 5.8 million ounces of silver, 6.1 million pounds of lead, nearly 1.8 million pounds of zinc and 157,196 ounces of gold.

The primary exploration target for Merc is the No. 3 Vein zone, which lies 600 metres north of the Berens River mine and has been subjected to several historic mineral resource/reserve estimates in the 1980s. Using metal prices of US$400 per ounce for gold, US$5.50 per ounce for silver and a 4.67 gram gold equivalent cut off, a 1987 estimate to the 750 metre level by Wright Engineering put the indicated resources at 647,049 tonnes grading 7.74 grams gold per tonne and 150.23 grams silver per tonne, plus an inferred resource of 244,000 tonnes grading 8.93 grams gold per tonne and 147.74 grams silver per tonne.

In 1988, consulting firm Derry, Michener, Booth and Wahl calculated in-situ geological reserves mainly above the 300-metre level. Using a general cut off grade of 4.67 grams gold equivalent, a probable reserve estimate of 152,046 tonnes grading 6.5 grams gold per tonne and 136.86 grams silver per tonne, plus a possible reserve estimate of 110,661 tonnes grading 6.47 grams gold per tonne and 145.25 grams silver per tonne was tabled. In 1989, Watts, Griffis and McOuat gave a mineral inventory estimate of 174,158 tonnes grading 7.72 grams gold and 175.22 grams silver per tonne.

These resources are historical and not compliant with National Instrument 43-101 reporting standards; however they are considered material to the prospectivity of the Borthwick Lake Gold Project. A "qualified person" for the purposes of NI 43-101 has not done sufficient work to qualify the historical estimate as current mineral resources or mineral reserves. Merc is not treating the historical estimates as current mineral resources or mineral reserves and the historical estimates contained herein should not be relied upon.

While the drill holes below the 300 metre level are generally limited to 50 metre spacings, which was considered too wide to be classified as reserves in the later resource estimates, the drill results between the 300 to 750 metre level are very encouraging with hole G225-15 returning 16.2 grams gold per tonne and 162.36 grams silver per tonne 4.04 metres true width and hole G-225-05 returning 11.51 grams gold per tonne and 209.02 grams silver per tonne over 3.99 metres true width.

Merc intends to digitize the historic drill data and develop a three dimensional geological model to determine the potential impact of utilizing more recent metal prices, which are approximately US$940 per ounce for gold and US$19 per ounce for silver. Merc is also laying out plans to re-log and re-sample certain intervals from select drill holes if available, starting in late May.

Along with the deep exploration potential of the No. 3 Vein zone, the mineralization of the zone appears to be open along strike. A 1988 drill hole collared approximately 255 metres east of the historic resource estimates, returned 27.09 grams gold per tonne and 27.37 grams silver per tonne over 2.5 metres from 119.5 metres downhole, 34.21 grams gold per tonne and 68.12 grams silver per tonne over 1 metre from 138 metres downhole and 7.15 grams gold per tonne and 21.77 grams silver per tonne over 1.5 metres from 147 metres downhole. This eastern extension is planned to be evaluated by a drill rig starting in the second quarter of 2008.

Moving 235 metres north of the Berens River mine, six 1987-drill holes returned encouraging results from the No. 2 Vein zone. Highlights here included 3.87 grams gold and 113.01 grams silver per tonne over 1.1 metres from 109.9 metres downhole in hole Z87-42 and 4.22 grams gold and 524.9 grams silver per tonne over 1.8 metres from 54.1 metres downhole in Z87-45. This area will also be evaluated during the up coming field season, as will several regional targets including the following up of a 1997 drill hole that returned 207.46 grams gold per tonne over 0.6 metres.

Lingman Lake

The Lingman Lake Gold Project consists of seven contiguous mining claims totalling approximately 384 hectares in the Red Lake Mining Division, approximately 325 kms north of Red Lake. The Lingman Lake Gold Project covers a significant portion of the former Echo Bay Mines' Lingman Lake gold deposit, which was partially developed by a vertical shaft. D.A. McPhee (1989) reported 1,172,753 tons of defined resources grading 0.20 ounce gold per ton using a 0.08 ounce gold per ton cut-off grade over a minimum width of 5 feet for a total of 234,550 ounces of gold. The estimate is historical and not compliant with National Instrument 43-101 reporting standards; however they are considered material to the prospectivity of the Lingman Lake Gold Project.

Merc's Lingman Lake Gold Project option covers approximately 40% of the historic estimate and more importantly covers the potential strike extensions of the mineralization. Favourable holes drilled by Echo Bay Mines on Merc's ground include hole L96-03, which intersected 5.6 metres grading 6.5 grams gold per tonne.

Under the option agreement dated February 29, 2008, which is subject to regulatory acceptance, Merc can acquire a 100% interest in the Lingman Lake Gold Project from Anaconda Mining Inc. ("Anaconda") by:

(i) paying Anaconda $25,000 cash;

(ii) incurring exploration expenditures on the Lingman Lake Gold Project aggregating $300,000; and

(iii) issuing Anaconda 400,000 common shares from treasury;

over the 45-month term of the agreement. Upon earning a 100% interest in the Lingman Lake Gold Project, Merc shall grant Anaconda an industry standard net smelter royalty. The net smelter royalty shall be 1% if the afternoon London Gold Fix is less than US$600 and 2% if the average afternoon London Gold Fix is US$600 or more.

The foregoing disclosure is based on exploration data and geological reports supplied by Anaconda that have been reviewed and compiled by Richard A. Graham, P. Geol., who is a "qualified person" for the purpose of NI 43-101. However, a "qualified person" for the purposes of NI 43-101 has not done sufficient work to qualify the historical estimate as current mineral resources or mineral reserves. Merc is not treating the historical estimates as current mineral resources or mineral reserves and the historical estimates contained herein should not be relied upon.

Mr. Graham is an independent qualified person as defined by NI 43-101 and has reviewed the contents of this press release.

Merc is a junior exploration company that offers shareholders leverage to gold-silver by acquiring projects with historic resource estimates that have the geological potential to be enhanced through both modern day exploration and dramatically higher gold-silver prices.

This news release may contain forward-looking statements based on assumptions and judgments of management regarding future events or results. Such statements are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties which could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those reflected in the forward-looking statements. The Company disclaims any intention or obligation to revise or update such statements.

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

Contact Information

  • Merc International Minerals Inc.
    Thomas Pladsen
    President and CEO
    (647) 287-3778
    (416) 628-5911 (FAX)
    Email: tompladsen@hotmail.com