Saturday, May 7, 2016

MX Remains No. 1 in Silver Production

Fresnillo's Saucito mine in Zacatecas. MINERÍA EN LÍNEA

Mexico led the world in silver production in 2015 for the sixth year in a row.

Mexican mines produced 189.5 million ounces, up 2% over 2014, far ahead of the second-biggest producer, Peru, with 135.9 million ounces, according to the World Silver Institute.

Overall, however, world silver production was down 2% to 886.7 million ounces due to declines in Canada, Australia and China.

Mexico’s production increase came as a result of higher output at the Saucito and Saucito II mines operated by Fresnillo and the El Cubo mine belonging to the Canadian mining firm, Endeavour Silver.

The institute pointed out that Mexico’s silver production has risen steadily since 2010, when production totaled 141.8 million ounces.

GFMS analyst Erica Rannestad said one reason for higher output in Mexico was a reduction in costs brought on by the peso’s decline in value against the U.S. dollar, providing an impetus for greater production.

She said expansion of the San José mine, owned by another Canadian company, Fortuna Silver Mines, could propel Mexican production to yet another increase in 2016.

Worldwide demand for silver rose from 1.13 billion ounces in 2014 to 1.17 billion last year but the price dropped from US $19.08 per ounce to $15.68.

Sunday, May 1, 2016

Huge Bet on Gold

El Limón-Guajes mine, inaugurated this week. MILENIO/JESÚS QUINTANAR 

A Canadian-owned mine in the Guerrero Gold Belt is the biggest single investment ever seen in the state, said the governor this week at the official inauguration of the El Limón-Guajes mine.

Construction of the US $800-million gold mine, located on 630 hectares of land 43 kilometers south of Cocula, began in 2013.

With annual production capacity of 358,000 ounces of gold, it will be one of the largest and lowest-cost gold mines in the world, according to Toronto-based Torex Gold Resources Inc.

Torex CEO Fred Stanford said the mine has generated 5,000 jobs in the area, both in direct employment by the company and through contractors. He also said an important feature of the project is the environmental monitoring and a collaboration agreement with the Autonomous University of Guerrero to ensure adherence to environmental protection standards.

This week’s event also saw Agrarian Development Secretary Rosario Robles present the keys to the owners of 169 homes built by the mining firm as part of its obligations to help in the development of local communities.

Torex invested $42 million in the construction of the 500-square-meter houses.

Governor Héctor Astudillo spoke at this week’s event, saying there had never been an investment — “neither a hotel nor a highway” — that matched that of the new mine.