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Shore Gold may start work on mine next year after receiving pre-feasibility study

01 september 2009

Canada-based diamond miner Shore Gold Inc. said construction could start next year on a $1 billion open-pit diamond mine in east-central Saskatchewan following the release of a pre-feasibility study, Antwerpfacetsonline reported.
The company said data on the Star kimberlite shows probable mineral reserves of 171 million tonnes containing 20 million carats at an average price per carat of $265, totalling $5.3 billion over a 12-year mine life.
The Star kimberlite is part of Shore Gold's 100 percent-owned Star diamond project and falls within the Fort a la Corne Joint Venture, which is 60 percent-owned by Shore Gold and 40 percent-owned by Newmont Mining Corp. of Canada Ltd.
"Shore is very pleased with the positive results of the Star (pre-feasibility study)," said Kenneth MacNeill, Shore Gold's president and CEO. "These pre-feasibility numbers confirm the potential for a world-class diamond mine in east-central Saskatchewan and provide every reason to move this project into the feasibility stage."
A project timeline included in the study shows the completion of a feasibility study by the end of February 2010, a production decision by March 31, 2010, permitting activities to enable a 2010 construction start and commissioning a processing plant within four years after receiving approval for construction.
The study shows Shore Gold can expect a pre-production capital cost of nearly $1.5 billion and a total capital cost of nearly $1.65 billion in the life of the mine, with an initial capital payback period of 5.2 years.
The pre-feasibility study recommends Shore Gold advance the project to a feasibility stage.
The study says the development of a mine will bring substantial economic development to the cities of Prince Albert and Melfort as well as other communities in the area. The mine is expected to provide direct employment for about 500 people annually.