Mining Explorers 2017: Goldcorp Inc.
Goldcorp Inc. has significantly strengthened its foothold on properties across northern Canada in recent months. Beyond the famed C$520-million acquisition of the Coffee Gold project in Yukon Territory, the Vancouver B.C.-based gold producer is investing heavily in junior exploration companies with gold exploration projects in British Columbia, Nunavut and Yukon. In January Goldcorp forked over roughly C$35 million to buy a 12.5 equity interest in Auryn Resources Inc., which is exploring the Committee Bay gold project in Nunavut and Homestake Ridge, a high-grade gold project in northwestern B.C. In August, the major made a similar strategic investment in Colorado Resources Ltd., gaining a 14 percent interest in that junior. Colorado’s portfolio includes four gold and copper properties in northern British Columbia, including the highly prospective KSP project. Goldcorp also maintains a roughly 19.9 percent interest in Independence Gold Corp., a junior exploring the Boulevard property immediately west of Coffee Gold.
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A feasibility study completed just before Goldcorp’s 2016 acquisition of Coffee details an open-pit, heap-leach gold operation capable of producing 184,000 ounces of gold annually over a 10-year mine life at all-in sustaining costs of US$550 per oz. This plan is based on 63.7 million metric tons of indicated resources averaging 1.45 g/t (2.97 million oz) gold and 52.4 million metric tons of inferred resources averaging 1.31 g/t (2.1 million oz) gold. Since buying Coffee, Goldcorp has invested in expansion of the resource and exploration of other targets across the 60,000-hectare (149,000 acres) property, including US$15 million of work last year and an initial phase of 2017 drilling focused on the Supremo T8-9 and Arabica targets. Supremo T8-9 is located about 200 meters east of the Supremo open-pit mine included in the feasibility study. Highlights from 17 holes drilled during the first quarter include: 10.66 meters of 1.88 g/t gold from a depth of 51.82 meters; and 15.24 meters of 1.38 g/t gold from 59.44 meters. The company also reported good results from Arabica, which is located about 1,500 meters east of the planned Supremo pit. While exploring the property, Goldcorp is also making headway on permitting needed to build a mine. Having officially launched the permitting process with the submission of an environmental socioeconomic assessment application for Coffee, Goldcorp is targeting commercial production at the Yukon gold property by 2021.
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