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Capstone Extends Pinto Valley Mine Life To 2026

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, March 26, 2014 /PRNewswire/ --



(all amounts in US dollars)

Capstone Mining Corp. ("Capstone") (TSX: CS) today announced the results of the Pre-Feasibility Study - Mine Life Extension ("PV2 PFS") for its wholly owned Pinto Valley Mine in Arizona, US, which extends the mine life by 8 years from 2018 to 2026.

Highlights
  • Average annual production for the first five years is 128.4 million pounds of copper contained in concentrate and 6.6 million pounds of copper cathode. Life of Mine ("LOM") annual production of 119.5 million pounds of copper contained in concentrate plus 6.3 million pounds of cathode copper, and 1.4 million pounds of molybdenum and 235,000 ounces of silver credited to concentrate annually.
  • After-tax net present value (NPV), discounted at 8%, of $738 million.
  • Expected LOM C1 cash costs [ 1 ] are estimated to be $2.00 per pound of payable copper (net of copper cathodes, molybdenum and silver by-product credits).
  • The LOM strip ratio is 0.65:1.
  • Total sustaining capital costs estimated to be $187.9 million over 12.3 years.
  • Pinto Valley Mine will operate to 2026 under the PV2 PFS parameters, including Proven and Probable Mineral Reserves of 232 million tonnes at 0.33% copper.
  • With an economic cut-off grade ("COG") of 0.18% copper, the Mineral Resource has increased by 61% to 1,563 million tonnes at 0.30% copper from 968 million tonnes at 0.35% copper with a 0.25% COG published in December 2013. The contained copper within the Mineral Resource increases by 40%.
  • Capstone believes there is potential to extend the operational life beyond the PV2 reserve life if Mineral Resources not included in the PV2 mine plan can be successfully converted into Mineral Reserves. Capstone intends to commence engineering and economic studies to consider all remaining current Mineral Resources not included in the PV2 mine plan and their potential for development beyond 2026.

"The Pinto Valley PFS has validated the purchase price and confirms our position as a leading intermediate copper producer," said Darren Pylot, President and CEO of Capstone. "Completion of the PV2 PFS extends the mine life to 2026 and provides us with the platform to stabilize operations, gain efficiencies and gives us the opportunity to take a longer-term view towards the future of the Pinto Valley Mine in Arizona."

"The PV2 PFS does not include all the projected impact of the process improvements that are underway at the mine, which we expect to generate cost savings in the years ahead," continued Mr. Pylot. "As well as pursuing operating efficiencies, we have started the work required to evaluate a possible mine life extension beyond 2026 and a potential increase in throughput."

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