On March 10, 2019, Imperial announced an agreement to sell a 70% interest in Red Chris to Newcrest Mining Limited. The agreement was finalized August 15, 2019.
Imperial and Newcrest have formed a joint venture for the operation of Red Chris, with Newcrest acting as operator. Imperial retains a 30% joint venture interest in the Red Chris mine. The joint venture partnership will leverage Newcrest’s unique technical expertise in block caving operations. A plan to mine the deep resource beneath the current open pits will be developed to exploit the high grades in the deep East zone.
Two drilling programs are being conducted at Red Chris. The East Zone Resource Definition Program is designed to obtain geological, geotechnical and metallurgical data to support future studies for underground block cave mining. The Brownfields Exploration Program is focused on searching for additional zones of higher grade mineralization within the Red Chris porphyry corridor. Drilling continues to refine the overall geometry of the system and controls to high-grade gold-copper mineralization within a sub-vertical zone approximately 600 metres long, 300 metres wide, and 600 metres vertically. Mineralization is supported by extensive historical drilling data. On completion of the East Zone Resource Definition program, Newcrest intends to construct a new Resource Model incorporating both historical and Newcrest drilling data. For current information, view our most recent news releases.
The 2019 metals production at the Red Chris mine was 71.9 million pounds copper, 36,471 ounces gold, and 133,879 ounces silver. Imperial’s portion of Red Chris production, representing 100% for the period January 1 through August 14, 2019 and 30% of production for the period August 15 through December 31, 2019, was 50.3 million pounds copper, 25,177 ounces gold, and 90,577 ounces silver. Metal production guidance (100%), provided by Newcrest for the period August 15, 2019 to June 30, 2020 (to conform to Newcrest annual year end June 30, 2020) is in the range of 63-79 million pounds copper and 36,000-50,000 ounces gold.
Red Chris Development Company Ltd., a subsidiary of Imperial, holds 30% interest in the Red Chris copper/gold mine in northwest British Columbia, 80 km south of Dease Lake. The Red Chris property encompasses 23,142 hectares, and is comprised of the main and south claim groups, consisting of 77 mineral tenures, five of which are mining leases.
For additional information, refer to the Company’s New Releases, Quarter Reports & Annual Information Form.