Minera IRL granted development permit for Don Nicolas Gold Project

Minera IRL, a Latin America gold mining company, has welcomed the announcement of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and the granting of the development permit for the Don Nicolas Gold Project in Santa Cruz, Argentina.

Minera IRL, a Latin America gold mining company, has welcomed the announcement of the Environmental Impact Assessment (EIA) and the granting of the development permit for the Don Nicolas Gold Project in Santa Cruz, Argentina.

The decision marks a significant step toward the company's aim of bringing the mine on-steam.

Courtney Chamberlain, Executive Chairman of Minera IRL, said: "Don Nicolas is a very attractive, conventional open pit, carbon-in-leach gold project with a high IRR with much additional upside potential. We continue to advance financing options to allow project development during 2013."

The EIA was based on a feasibility study which demonstrated a robust project based on the open pit mining of high grade epithermal gold deposits in the La Paloma and Martinetas vein fields.

Average annual steady-state gold and silver production will be 52,400 ounces and 56,000 ounces respectively.

The capital cost is projected at $56m and the cash operating cost is estimated at $528 per ounce, after silver credits. The post tax internal rate of return using a base case gold price of $1,250 per ounce is 22.8% rising to 38.1% if a gold price of $1,500 per ounce is assumed. The payback period is projected to be two years or less.

The firm has considered a range of funding options for the project, and said the objective is to have financing in place to allow development to commence in 2013 with commissioning expected in late 2013 or early 2014.

NR

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