Los Filos Expansion

Potential to double annual production

The Los Filos expansion project contemplates enlarging the Los Filos open pit, adding a new open pit (Guadalupe), developing a second underground mine (Bermejal), and constructing a new carbon-in-leach plant to complement the existing heap leach facilities.

In March 2019, Leagold completed a feasibility study outlining the potential for development of the Bermejal underground mine, enlargement of the Los Filos open pit mine, re-phasing of the Bermejal open pit into two distinct sections (Bermejal and Guadalupe), and construction of a 4,000 tonnes per day carbon-in-leach (CIL) processing facility to complement the existing heap leach facilities. Leagold commenced the expansion project in Q3-2019, completing an access road to allow the start of stripping from the Guadalupe open pit and commencing work for additional ventilation for Bermejal underground development.

Equinox Gold started mining the Guadalupe open pit and Bermejal underground deposits in 2021 as part of the Company’s plans to expand Los Filos production. Equinox Gold is also evaluating the benefits of constructing a larger CIL plant, which would have an impact on the current feasibility estimate for construction capital which includes the CIL plant, power, a tailings filtration system and the associated deposition area.

Engineering and optimization studies related to the CIL plant are underway. Furthermore, mine planning and scheduling is being updated to reflect the larger plant size, optimized plant layout and higher gold prices. This update is expected to allow for conversion of additional ounces from resource to reserve, which would extend the mine life. This information is expected to be available with the updated study.

Leagold commissioned an independent Feasibility Study in March 2019 for the expansion of the Los Filos mine complex in Mexico. The Feasibility Study incorporates the potential for development of the Bermejal underground mine, enlarging the Los Filos open pit mine, re-phasing of the Bermejal open pit into two distinct sections (Bermejal and Guadalupe), and the construction of a carbon-in-leach (CIL) processing facility to complement the existing heap leach facilities.

Equinox Gold commenced mining of the Guadalupe open pit and Bermejal underground in 2021. Work on the CIL processing facility has not yet begun. Equinox Gold is evaluating the benefits of constructing a larger CIL plant, which would have an impact on the current feasibility estimate for construction capital which includes the CIL plant, power, a tailings filtration system and the associated deposition area. Mine planning and scheduling is also being updated to reflect the larger plant size, optimized plant layout and higher gold prices.

Highlights from the March 2019 feasibility study:

  • Proven and Probable mineral reserves of 104.2 Mt at 1.31 g/t containing 4.5 Moz
  • Gold production of 3.2 million ounces (Moz) over a 10-year mine life (2019 to 2028) 
  • Production increase to ~350,000 oz per year
  • At $1,250/oz gold price:
    • NPV5% of $679 million
    • IRR of 86%

 

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