Successful Drill Program At Taseko Mines' Aley Property Indicates A Major Niobium Deposit With Potential To Develop A Significant Operation

January 10, 2011

Vancouver, BC - Taseko Mines Limited (TSX: TKO; NYSE Amex: TGB) (“Taseko” or the “Company”) announces that its 2010 core drilling program completed at its wholly-owned Aley Niobium Project located near Mackenzie, British Columbia has been highly successful. Assay results indicate strong potential for development of a major niobium deposit and mine operation.

Taseko’s 2010 exploration program comprised geological mapping and diamond drilling of 23 drill holes (2010-12 through 2010-34), for a total of 4,460 metres. Assay results for 21 of these drill holes have been received. These holes intersected excellent grade niobium mineralization across an area measuring over 900 metres east-west and 350 metres north-south. Mineralized drill intercepts range up to over 200 metres in length; the true widths will be determined by further delineation drilling. Niobium mineralization intersected is highly continuous and close to surface. The extensive body of niobium mineralization indicated by the 2010 drilling is wide open to expansion in at least three directions and to depth.

Key high grade drill intersections are as follows:

Drill Hole
Number
From
(metres)
To
(metres)
Intercept2
(metres)
Intercept2
(feet)
Nb2O5
(%)
Ferro
Niobium1
(kg/tonne)
2010-012 9.1 134.4 125.3 411 0.53 3.41
2010-014 14.6 91.5 76.9 252 0.67 4.28
2010-021 6.3 140.4 134.1 440 0.70 4.48
2010-022 6.7 150.8 144.1 473 0.57 3.64
2010-023 4.6 146.3 141.7 465 0.82 5.23
2010-030 45.1 198.3 153.2 503 0.52 3.31
2010-033 6.1 213.4 207.3 680 0.66 4.20

Note 1: Ferro niobium (FeNb) content is calculated assuming 60% recovery and 5% conversion loss (Nb2O5 x 6.38).
Note 2: True thicknesses of reported intervals have yet to be established.

Russell Hallbauer, President and CEO of Taseko, stated: “We are very excited by the results of the 2010 drill program. Intersections of over 200 metres of niobium mineralization, many with high grades and beginning near surface, indicate that our Aley deposit has the potential to become a significant low cost, open pit niobium mine.

“The niobium market is very robust as use of this commodity continues to grow. The steel industry uses niobium to produce high strength, low alloy steels in a wide and growing range of applications. Ferroniobium prices remain stable, averaging approximately $50 per kilogram, and only three significant mines supply the global market. Therefore there is strong potential for our Aley deposit, which has all the appearances of a high quality discovery, to help fill the growing demand from steel producers for this important metal.

“For reference, the Niobec mine located in Quebec which has been in production since 1976 is an underground niobium operation with average grades of 0.45-0.55% Nb2O5. Niobec is one of IAMGOLD’s most valuable assets and has been expanding production over the past five years with present production of some 5,000 metrics tonnes of ferro niobium annually.

“In 2011, we intend to accelerate work on our Aley Project. Based on the information collected so far, our engineering team will immediately commence conceptual planning to ensure we can complete the comprehensive program planned for this year. Our field programs will include extensive core drilling to delineate the deposit and collect preliminary geo-technical data for site design and metallurgical testwork.”

Mr. Hallbauer added: “With limited near-term niobium production on the horizon and demand steadily growing, an open pit mining operation at Aley has strong potential to become a key asset for Taseko.”

About the Aley property

The Aley property is host to a carbonatite intrusion which was discovered by Cominco between 1983 and 1986. Cominco undertook a twenty-hole diamond drilling program in 1986 which led to the discovery of several areas of niobium mineralization of undelineated dimensions or continuity. Taseko purchased the property in 2006, and completed a small drilling and mapping program in another portion of the large property. The global financial crisis curtailed exploration work planned for 2008 and 2009, but systematic drilling and mapping undertaken in 2010 has now begun to illustrate the extensive, continuous distribution and quality of Aley niobium mineralization.

About Niobium

Niobium in the form of ferro niobium is used as an alloying element in steels and in the production of superalloys such as those used in the, automotive, aviation, pipeline and the power generation sectors. While demand for ferro niobium is currently increasing, ferro niobium production is limited to only three mining and processing facilities in Brazil and Quebec.

Composite assay results from all core holes received to date are listed below. A Drill Location Plan along with characteristic Cross Sections are available at the Company’s website www.tasekomines.com.

Drill Hole
Number
Azimuth
(degrees)
Dip
(degrees)
From
(metres)
To
(metres)
Intercept2
(metres)
Nb2O5
%
Ferro
Niobium1

kg/tonne
2010-012
20 -55 9.1 134.4 125.3 0.53 3.41
2010-012 Incl.

70.7 96.4 25.7 0.69 4.40
2010-013
20 -55 7.1 27.5 20.4 0.51 3.26
2010-013


42.7 126.5 83.8 0.42 2.68
2010-014
20 -55 14.6 91.5 76.9 0.67 4.28
2010-014 Incl.

41.2 74.6 33.4 0.87 5.52
2010-015
20 -55 18.9 104.8 85.9 0.53 3.41
2010-015 Incl.

18.9 35.2 16.3 0.87 5.56
2010-015 Incl.

68.6 86.2 17.6 0.64 4.07
2010-016
20 -55 6.1 80.4 74.3 0.60 3.82
2010-016 Incl.

17.9 52.6 34.7 0.83 5.31
2010-016


106.1 119.4 13.3 0.64 4.07
2010-017
20 -55 6.1 30.5 24.4 0.74 4.74
2010-017 Incl.

6.1 21.4 15.3 1.00 6.36
2010-017


61.1 87.4 26.3 0.58 3.71
2010-020
20 -55 3.7 70.2 66.5 0.55 3.49
2010-020 Incl.

31.1 55.5 24.4 0.82 5.24
2010-020


79.4 116.6 37.2 0.45 2.85
2010-020


144.5 164.4 19.9 0.43 2.77
2010-020


180.1 193.8 13.7 0.51 3.24
2010-021
20 -55 6.3 140.4 134.1 0.70 4.48
2010-021 Incl.

6.3 27.4 21.1 0.98 6.27
2010-021 Incl.

51.5 62.3 10.8 1.00 6.40
2010-021 Incl.

119.7 137.7 18.0 0.85 5.45
2010-022
20 -55 6.7 150.8 144.1 0.57 3.64
2010-022 Incl.

21.3 49.7 28.4 0.82 5.24
2010-022 Incl.

90.2 103.5 13.3 0.82 5.24
2010-023
20 -55 4.6 146.3 141.7 0.82 5.23
2010-023 Incl.

12.2 106.3 94.1 1.01 6.42
2010-023


169.4 196.5 27.1 0.43 2.77
2010-023
30 -55 202.5 213.4 10.9 1.61 10.27
2010-024


7.3 111.6 104.3 0.44 2.78
2010-027
30 -45 3.5 46.1 42.6 0.36 2.28
2010-027


105.3 135.6 30.3 0.91 5.78
2010-027 Incl.

110.2 125.1 14.9 1.31 8.37
2010-029
30 -45 4.5 115.2 110.7 0.45 2.85
2010-030
30 -45 45.1 198.3 153.2 0.52 3.31
2010-030 Incl.

101.0 138.5 37.4 0.79 5.01
2010-031
30 -45 20.0 42.3 22.3 0.84 5.39
2010-031 Incl.

23.7 39.1 15.4 1.06 6.73
2010-031


66.7 199.1 132.4 0.48 3.05
2010-031 Incl.

123.6 136.0 12.4 0.81 5.19
2010-032
60 -50 3.1 33.5 30.4 0.67 4.29
2010-032 Incl.

18.0 33.5 15.5 0.89 5.70
2010-032


67.6 146.1 78.5 0.38 2.42
2010-033
30 -45 6.1 213.4 207.3 0.66 4.20
2010-033 Incl.

6.1 35.7 29.6 0.90 5.74
2010-033 Incl.

61.1 123.4 62.3 0.87 5.55
2010-033 Incl.

139.5 155.8 16.3 0.99 6.32
2010-034
60 -50 2.5 162.6 160.1 0.35 2.21

Note 1: Ferro niobium (FeNb) content is calculated assuming 60% recovery and 5% conversion loss (Nb2O5x 6.38).
Note 2: True thicknesses of reported intervals have yet to be established.
Note 3: No significant intersections in Holes 2010-018, 2010-019, 2010-025. Assays pending Holes 2010-026 and 2010-028.

Sample preparation and analysis for the Aley project is done at Inspectorate laboratories in Richmond, BC. All samples are assayed for (Nb205) by HF-HCl-H3PO4 digestion with an Inductively Coupled Plasma-Mass Spectrometry (ICP-MS) finish. As part of a comprehensive Quality Control/Quality Assurance, one standard is inserted into the sample stream in each group of 20 samples, as well as one or more field blanks in each analytical batch. One sample in each group of 20 is a duplicate, analyzed by Inspectorate, and also by Acme Analytical Laboratories in Vancouver.

Scott Jones, P.Eng., Vice President, Engineering for Taseko and a Qualified Person, has reviewed this release.

For further information on Taseko, please see the Company’s website www.tasekomines.com or contact:

Brian Bergot, Investor Relations - 778-373-4545, toll free 1-877-441-4533

Russell Hallbauer
President and CEO

No regulatory authority has approved or disapproved of the information contained in this news release.

CAUTION REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING INFORMATION

This document contains “forward-looking statements” that were based on Taseko’s expectations, estimates and projections as of the dates as of which those statements were made. Generally, these forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of forward-looking terminology such as “outlook”, “anticipate”, “project”, “target”, “believe”, “estimate”, “expect”, “intend”, “should” and similar expressions.

Forward-looking statements are subject to known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that may cause the Company’s actual results, level of activity, performance or achievements to be materially different from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. These included but are not limited to:

  • uncertainties and costs related to the Company’s exploration and development activities, such as those associated with continuity of mineralization or determining whether mineral resources or reserves exist on a property;
  • uncertainties related to the accuracy of our estimates of mineral reserves, mineral resources, production rates and timing of production, future production and future cash and total costs of production and milling;
  • uncertainties related to feasibility studies that provide estimates of expected or anticipated costs, expenditures and economic returns from a mining project;
  • uncertainties related to our ability to complete the mill upgrade on time estimated and at the scheduled cost;
  • uncertainties related to the ability to obtain necessary licenses permits for development projects and project delays due to third party opposition;
  • uncertainties related to unexpected or ongoing judicial or regulatory proceedings;
  • changes in, and the effects of, the laws, regulations and government policies affecting our exploration and development activities and mining operations, particularly laws, regulations and policies;
  • changes in general economic conditions, the financial markets and in the demand and market price for copper, gold and other minerals and commodities, such as diesel fuel, steel, concrete, electricity and other forms of energy, mining equipment, and fluctuations in exchange rates, particularly with respect to the value of the U.S. dollar and Canadian dollar, and the continued availability of capital and financing;
  • the effects of forward selling instruments to protect against fluctuations in copper prices and exchange rate movements and the risks of counterparty defaults, and mark to market risk;
  • the risk of inadequate insurance or inability to obtain insurance to cover mining risks;
  • the risk of loss of key employees; the risk of changes in accounting policies and methods we use to report our financial condition, including uncertainties associated with critical accounting assumptions and estimates;
  • environmental issues and liabilities associated with mining including processing and stock piling ore; and
  • labour strikes, work stoppages, or other interruptions to, or difficulties in, the employment of labour in markets in which we operate mines, or environmental hazards, industrial accidents or other events or occurrences, including third party interference that interrupt the production of minerals in our mines.

For further information on Taseko, investors should review the Company’s annual Form 40-F filing with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission www.sec.gov and home jurisdiction filings that are available at www.sedar.com.

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