The Company has also installed a fully-equipped laboratory and sample preparation facility which will allow improved response time when monitoring mined material, concentrates and drilling results. Pictures of the mine and mill operations are available on our website.
Outlook for Full Start-up and Beyond:
Start-up at a steady 1,000 ton-per-day level is expected to be achieved imminently as the water well is brought on line. The first revenue from startup production is expected to be received by early February. Based on expected costs and recoveries from the initial operations, the 1,000 ton daily rate should be sufficient to cover the Company's ongoing administrative costs and a significant portion of its exploration programs. The Company plans to double the production rate during the course of 2010. The feasibility study being undertaken by Minera Rio Tinto is expected to justify a much larger operation.
Regarding the company's progress to date, President George Young notes:"The vision brought to mind from what has been accomplished is far-reaching. We are in the midst of a gold exploration boom within one of the world's largest epithermal provinces. Six years ago, prior to government changes in policy, the area had virtually no gold production, but now the amount produced already exceeds 1 million ounces annually. The potential for further growth is immense as large areas of similar geology remain substantially un-explored. Our management has a long history in the area and with it the knowledge and ability to acquire major exploration assets. Combined with our demonstrated talent and experience in mine construction and start-up, what we have is quite remarkable for a small company. In effect, at our Cieneguita Project, we have commenced operations for the level of investment that many companies would still be expending in the exploration phase, still performing feasibility, and still undergoing engineering. These matters have been taken care of largely from the bulk sampling that was previously done, by campaigning that material through the Choix mill, and knowing how to approach this type of ore body from previous experience with similar ore bodies.