Agnico-Eagle Mines has made a "significant" gold discovery on the Lapa property, seven miles from the LaRonde mine in Cadillac, Que. Follow-up drilling completed last November returned excellent assays such as 0.29 opt Au (uncut) over 13.1 feet, 0.28 opt over 10.5 feet, 0.17 opt over 16.4 feet and 0.60 opt over 16.4 feet. Although the deposit has not yet been fully tested, Agnico thinks it could become a high-grade satellite deposit feeding the LaRonde mill.
Also nearby is the Goldex deposit in Val d'Or, Que. It is being re-evaluated as an operating unit managed from LaRonde. If synergies between Goldex and LaRonde could reduce capital and operating costs, the Goldex deposit may be mined. In 1996 when a feasibility study was prepared, Goldex was planned as a stand-alone project. The re-evaluation is based on inferred mineral resources and a 10,000-ton-per-day mining rate.
Despite the good news about Goldex and Lapa, Agnico reports that the LaRonde mine missed its Q4 production and cost estimates. LaRonde is being explored at depth for the possibility of increasing reserves.
Total gold production for Agnico-Eagle during 2002 was 260,183 oz. This year's production target is 375,000 oz. More information about the company is available at www.agnico-eagle.com