Vancouver, British Columbia -- Silver Bull Resources, Inc. (TSX: SVB, NYSE MKT: SVBL) ("Silver Bull") is pleased to announce the drill results for the first batch of drill holes from the underground drill program twinning a series of "long holes" in the h
Vancouver, British Columbia -- Silver Bull Resources, Inc. (TSX: SVB, NYSE MKT: SVBL) ("Silver Bull") is pleased to provide 2012 year-end review and road map for the 2013 calendar year ahead. The Silver Bull management team is focused on advancing the company's flagship Sierra Mojada silver-zinc project, located in the historic Sierra Mojada mining district in Coahuila State, northern Mexico.
2012 saw significant volatility and uncertainty of the global markets which overshadowed the strong progress the Silver Bull team made at Sierra Mojada.
2012 Technical Achievements
- Completed 19,400 meters of surface drilling -- aimed at defining and extending the Centenario and Shallow Silver Zone. Mineralization remains open to the north, south, east and westerly directions of the deposit.
- Discovered a massive sulphide zone grading 16.98% zinc, 5.45% lead and 57.29g/t silver over 8.45 meters in a previously undrilled area 500 meters to the north of the Shallow Silver Zone. Management believes this sulphide discovery presents an exciting exploration target of potential deep rooted "feeder structures" that likely emplaced much of the secondary oxide mineralization seen at the Shallow Silver Zone.
- Released a third NI43-101 resource update on the project in July 2012, increasing the size of the silver resource to 72.1Moz silver in the "measure and indicated" category, and 10.4Moz in the "inferred" category. This represented a 39% increase in the resource size over a period of 6 months of drilling.
- Increased the understanding of the genesis of the mineralization seen at Sierra Mojada allowing us to better model the deposit and identify areas with high prospectivity for exploration.
- Completed a 6,500 meter underground twinning drill program, using company owned drill rigs, aimed at confirming a historical drilling data set of over 2,700 long holes (a type of rock chip drill used by previous management teams) amounting to 39,000 meters of drilling that defined a high grade silver and high grade zinc zone. The 2,700 long hole data set had been severely restricted or discarded from the July 2012 NI43-101 resource report. Assay results to date have confirmed a variability of less than 4% overall between the new core drill holes and historic long hole data. Management is confident the twinning program will have a significant impact on the upcoming NI43-101 resource calculation for both the silver and zinc ore bodies and due for completion in Q1 2013.
- Conducted an ongoing full-scale metallurgical program focused on processing the silver and zinc rich ore at Sierra Mojada. Preliminary metallurgical results included Bottle Roll tests simulating an agitated leach circuit recovered up to 89% silver with average recovery of 83% using samples from the Centenario Zone (represents approx. 1/3 of the silver mineralization seen at Sierra Mojada). Pyrometallurgical test work on the zinc oxide mineralization achieved up to 98.9% removal of zinc from a waelz kiln via fuming at a 1,300 degree roasting temperature -- producing an almost pure zinc oxide concentrate (approx. 80% zinc concentrate).
2012 Corporate Achievements:
- Management successfully collected $3.4M USD of historical value added tax balances from the Mexican government dating back to 2007, which helped fund exploration activities through the challenging capital markets environment of 2012.
- Completed negotiations with various mineral claim owners, tying together the remaining mineral titles in the area to allow for future development of the mineralization at Sierra Mojada.
- Strengthened ties with the local communities by providing access to water for farmers' livestock throughout drought conditions, holding regular community events, and contributing to a local mining museum. We also remain the largest employer of local people in the area.
The Road Forward in 2013
Silver Bull is quickly moving towards a number of key project milestones in 2013.
- Q1 2013: NI43-101 Resource Update
- Q3 2013: Maiden Preliminary Economic Assessment
In Q1 2013 Silver Bull will release its 4th NI43-101 resource update on the project, which will include drill results from the 2012 underground twinning program. The objective of the program was to twin approximately 15% of the historic 2,700 long hole data set that equated to 39,000 meters in order to increase the confidence of this data. Management deemed this to be a very important program as the data defines a high grade silver and a high grade zinc zone, each with a strike of over 1.5km, expected to add considerable ounces and an increase in grade to the resource.
The final hole from the twinning program was completed in mid December 2012 and the company is awaiting assay results from the laboratories at ALS Chemex in North Vancouver, BC, Canada. To date, the company has released 9 of 10 sets of holes from the high grade silver zone and 1 of approximately 5 sets of holes from the high grade zinc zone.
Based on the updated resource report figures, management will proceed to complete the maiden Preliminary Economic Assessment on the Sierra Mojada project in Q3 2013. The maiden PEA will incorporate ongoing work on metallurgical optimization, hydrology, and geotechnical studies; in addition to detailed mine plan studies. After completion of the preliminary economic assessment, the remainder of 2013 will be dedicated to mine feasibility study programs in contemplation of an initial feasibility study on the project in 2014.
Sierra Mojada remains a project with significant upside potential. The Shallow Silver Zone and Zinc Zone are considered to be a small component of a much a larger Carbonate Replacement Deposit (CRD) type system, typical of northern Mexico. Our geologic team has highlighted a number of high quality exploration targets that will be pursued in 2013 in the context of the financial markets.
Palamos Negros: A historic mining zone 9 kilometers to the west of the Shallow Silver Zone and also hosted on the Sierra Mojada fault. Positive geochemical results paired with extensive historic mine workings (similar to those seen at the Shallow Silver Zone) make this an exciting prospect that has never been drilled.
Massive Sulphide Zone: Further exploration is warranted to better define the massive sulphide discovery made in 2012. Follow up work will include borehole geophysics to generate parameters for follow up drilling.
Shallow Silver Zone Infill & Extensional Drilling: The main zone of mineralization remains open in all directions and warrants additional step out drilling to define the boundaries of mineralization. High grade silver mineralization (100+g/t Ag) hosted in east-west trending structures within the Shallow Silver Zone has been demonstrated to extend via extensive channel sampling from underground. Reconditioning of underground workings will enable drilling of these extensions with the company owned Termite drill rigs that have been used in the 2012 twinning program.
Outlook for 2013
We at Silver Bull remain extremely bullish on the fundamentals for both silver and zinc. The world's financial troubles are not likely to go away anytime soon and silver (along with gold) will continue to be a haven for wealth preservation. Furthermore, with the imminent closing of a number of major zinc mines expected in the next 3 years, coupled with both a lack of new zinc mines coming on line to replace this lost production and an expected increase in zinc demand we see a tightening in the zinc supply over the short to medium term.
At Sierra Mojada we are fortunate to have exposure to both the precious and base metal space. In addition to the growing silver resource, Silver Bull controls a very significant zinc resource sitting less that 500 meters from a functioning railway -- there are not many of these in the world.
It is also not insignificant that many countries around the world are becoming less and less viable for mining and exploration activities due to increasing political risk. Mexico however is not one of these countries and remains one of the top mining jurisdiction in the world.
I would like to take this opportunity to thank you for your ongoing support of Silver Bull Resources and we look forward to the continued development of the Sierra Mojada during 2013. We invite you to stay informed about Silver Bull by contacting us by email at email@example.com or by calling 1-604-687-5800.
The technical information of this news release has been reviewed and approved by Tim Barry, MAusIMM, a qualified person for the purposes of National Instrument 43-101.
On behalf of the Board of Directors
Tim Barry, MAusIMM
Chief Executive Officer, President and Director
+1 604 336 8096
Cautionary Note to U.S. Investors concerning estimates of Measured, Indicated and Inferred Resources: This press release uses the terms "measured resources", "indicated resources", and "inferred resources" which are defined in, and required to be disclosed by, NI 43-101. We advise U.S. investors that these terms are not recognized by the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (the "SEC"). The estimation of measured and indicated resources involves greater uncertainty as to their existence and economic feasibility than the estimation of proven and probable reserves. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that measured and indicated mineral resources will be converted into reserves. The estimation of inferred resources involves far greater uncertainty as to their existence and economic viability than the estimation of other categories of resources. U.S. investors are cautioned not to assume that estimates of inferred mineral resources exist, are economically minable, or will be upgraded into measured or indicated mineral resources. Under Canadian securities laws, estimates of inferred mineral resources may not form the basis of feasibility or other economic studies.
Disclosure of "contained ounces" in a resource is permitted disclosure under Canadian regulations, however the SEC normally only permits issuers to report mineralization that does not constitute "reserves" by SEC standards as in place tonnage and grade without reference to unit measures. Accordingly, the information contained in this press release may not be comparable to similar information made public by U.S. companies that are not subject NI 43-101.
Cautionary note regarding forward looking statements: This news release contains forward-looking statements regarding future events and Silver Bull's future results that are subject to the safe harbors created under the U.S. Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995, the Securities Act of 1933, as amended (the "Securities Act"), and the Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended (the "Exchange Act"), and applicable Canadian securities laws. Forward-looking statements include, among others, statements regarding measured, indicated and inferred resource estimates, the timing of the next resource update, the ability to demonstrate a high correlation and increase the confidence of the long hole data set, the ability to incorporate the long hole data set in the next resource update and the ability to delineate a zinc resource in the zinc exploration target, the exploration of potential deep rooted "feeder structures" as a result of the sulphide discovery, timing of the preliminary economic assessment, the ability to increase ounces and grade of the resource, timing and potential completion of the feasibility study, potential of the Shallow Silver Zone to be a small component of a much larger CRD system, the exploration potential of Palamos Negros, the expectation of an increase in demand and tightening zinc supply in short to medium term, Mexico's continued favorable political risk environment and ability to remain a top mining jurisdiction. These statements are based on current expectations, estimates, forecasts, and projections about Silver Bull's exploration projects, the industry in which Silver Bull operates and the beliefs and assumptions of Silver Bull's management. Words such as "expects," "anticipates," "targets," "goals," "projects," "intends," "plans," "believes," "seeks," "estimates," "continues," "may," variations of such words, and similar expressions and references to future periods, are intended to identify such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are subject to a number of assumptions, risks and uncertainties, many of which are beyond our control, including such factors as the results of exploration activities and whether the results continue to support continued exploration activities, unexpected variations in ore grade, types and metallurgy, volatility and level of commodity prices, the availability of sufficient future financing, and other matters discussed under the caption "Risk Factors" in our Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal year ended October 31, 2012 and our other periodic and current reports filed with the SEC and available on www.sec.gov and with the Canadian securities commissions available on www.sedar.com. Readers are cautioned that forward-looking statements are not guarantees of future performance and that actual results or developments may differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements. Any forward-looking statement made by us in this release is based only on information currently available to us and speaks only as of the date on which it is made. We undertake no obligation to publicly update any forward-looking statement, whether written or oral, that may be made from time to time, whether as a result of new information, future developments or otherwise.