NYSE Amex Equities Exchange Symbol - UEC
CORPUS CHRISTI, TX, Oct. 13, 2011 /PRNewswire/ - Uranium Energy Corp (NYSE AMEX: UEC, the "Company") is pleased to report financial and production results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ended July 31, 2011. Major fourth quarter highlights include the following:
- Production increased and costs remain low : During the fourth quarter, only the second full quarter of Palangana Mine production, the Company produced 83,000 pounds of U 3O 8 in inventory, including work-in-progress, as compared with 49,000 pounds in the previous quarter. Since commencement of production in November 2010 through to July 31, 2011, the Company has produced a total of 153,000 pounds of U 3O 8 at a cash operating expense of approximately $13 per pound;
- The Company signed its first multi-year sales contract ;
- Both Palangana and Salvo projects received substantial ongoing exploration and development ;
- The Company acquired the historically significant Anderson Mine project in Arizona: In May 2011, terms were finalized to merge with Concentric Energy Corp. to acquire the Anderson Mine uranium project, a 7,581-acre mineral claim block located in Yavapai County, Arizona, a former open-pit producer which has received 1,400 development drill holes. This transaction completed after the close of the fourth quarter;
- The Company acquired the Coronel Oviedo Uranium Project in Paraguay : This 247,000-acre (100,000-hectare) project area holds similar geology, and similar geological potential, as the South Texas uranium belt; and
- The balance sheet remains strong : As of July 31, 2011, the Company remains debt-free with $30.7 million of cash in the treasury and 153,000 lbs. of U 3O 8 in inventory.
Amir Adnani, President and Chief Executive Officer, stated, "During our fiscal fourth quarter, we continued to make significant progress with operations, delivering production growth at competitive margins, validating our regional Texas 'hub-and-spoke' strategy. With an eye to the next up-cycle, we have been acquiring projects with significant historical work at an attractive discount and with minimal dilution to the Company. Concurrently, we see a groundswell of positive indicators emerging for the nuclear industry, and are optimistic about the prospects for major growth in the industry."
Palangana Mine - Production UpdateSince production began in November 2010 through to the July 31, 2011 fiscal year-end, the Company has produced a total of 153,000 pounds of U 3O 8 in inventory, including work-in-progress, at a cash operating expense of approximately $13 per pound. Well-pattern performance continued to improve with production of 83,000 pounds of U 3O 8 during the fourth quarter of Fiscal 2011, which represents only the second full quarter of Palangana Mine production. The Company is stockpiling this uranium inventory for future sales in the firming spot market, and anticipates generating its first uranium sales this calendar year. The three-phase startup of Production Area-1 at the Palangana Mine is continuing with the average depth of the wells at approximately 450 feet. Production initially commenced at the Phase I wellfield (18 production and 27 injection wells) in November 2010, followed by the Phase II wellfield (32 production and 22 injection wells) in April 2011, with the final Phase III wellfield (21 production and 18 injection wells) having commenced production in early October. Subsequent to the July 31, 2011 year-end, field crews are addressing performance variations in certain wells. As a result, indications for fiscal first quarter 2012 production range between 60,000 to 70,000 pounds U 3O 8. A number of injection and production wells in the Phase 1 wellfield, the smallest of the three fields, which has already produced 27% of the indicated NI 43-101 resource of approximately 300,000 pounds, are being recompleted, and new wells are being drilled to determine if plugging has occurred. Phase II wells are also being evaluated and production is reduced there at least temporarily. As noted above, the Phase III wellfield commenced operations in early October. Palangana - Ongoing Exploration and Development During the fourth quarter, the Company's exploration group continued to direct and investigate resource expansion efforts at Palangana. The Company's development team continues to bring Production Area-2 closer to initial production with production drilling anticipated to start this calendar year. Production Area-3 is progressing, with the application for Production Area Authorization anticipated to be submitted by December 2011. Goliad Development Update Subsequent to the close of the fourth quarter, the Texas Commission on Environmental Quality (TCEQ) has continued to make progress with the one remaining license needed to initiate construction at the Goliad project, the Radioactive Materials License (RML), which was received in draft form on August 29, 2011. The final RML is anticipated this calendar year. Before the Company initiates in-situ recovery of uranium at Goliad's Production Area One, the regional Environmental Protection Agency must complete its review of and concur with the Aquifer Exemption which has already been granted to the Company by TCEQ. Salvo Exploration Phase II drilling of 47 holes in prospective new zones concluded during the summer of 2011 to further expand the current Inferred Resource Estimate of approximately 2.8 million pounds. Metallurgical and other tests are also being performed to reaffirm ISR amenability at Salvo. The project area was expanded during the fourth quarter to include additional prospective zones.