ScoZinc Mining (TSXV: SZM) has released a prefeasibility study for its Scotia zinc-lead mine at Gays River, N.S. Using an 8% discount rate, the PFS gives the project an after-tax net present value of $128 million and an internal rate of return of 65%.
The pre-production capital requirement is $30.6 million for a mine with a life of 14.3 years. Payback of the investment would occur in 1.3 years. ScoZinc estimates the cumulative pre-tax free cash flow in the first three years of operation will be between $30 million and $50 million.
This study includes, for the first time, a 43-101 reserve estimate for gypsum. Total measured and indicated material is 5.2 million tonnes grading 91.8% gypsum, and the inferred portion is 790,000 tonnes at 91.2%. ScoZinc signed a gypsum offtake agreement in early November. Previous studies for the Scotia mine designated gypsum as waste rock.
Measured and indicated base metal resources are 25.5 million tonnes grading 1.89% zinc and 0.99% lead (2.84% zinc-equivalent), with inferred resources at 5 million tonnes grading 1.5% zinc and 0.66% lead (2.13% zinc-equivalent). Proven and probable reserves stand at 13.7 million tonnes grading 2.03% zinc and 1.1% lead (3.09% zinc-equivalent).
The mill at the Scotia mine would have a throughput of 2,700 t/d to produce a 57% zinc concentrate and 71% lead concentrate. Five-year annual production would be 35 million lb. zinc and 15 million lb. lead in concentrates. All-in sustaining costs are estimated to be US60¢/lb. zinc-equivalent.
The mine, 62 km northeast of Halifax, has been on care and maintenance since the third quarter of 2013. ScoZinc owns 100% of the open pit mine and mill. The project is fully permitted, and the next step is financing. Commercial production could begin nine to 12 months after financing is arranged.
More information is posted on www.ScoZinc.com.