Vancouver, BC - Taseko Mines Limited (TSX: TKO; NYSE Amex: TGB) (“Taseko” or the “Company”) reports unaudited fourth quarter and year end production results for its Gibraltar Mine.
For the fourth quarter of 2009, the Gibraltar Mine produced 17.3 million pounds of copper and 113 thousand pounds of molybdenum. For 2009, annual production was 70.3 million pounds of copper and 629 thousand pounds of molybdenum.
The fourth quarter production breakdown is as follows:
|Mill Throughput (millions, tons)
|Production (millions, lbs)
Russell Hallbauer, President and CEO of Taseko, commented, “With the Gibraltar operation back on track after the geotechnical problem in the Granite Pit was resolved, site personnel have focussed on metal recoveries associated with optimizing the performance of the recently installed tower mill, as opposed to pushing mill throughput. As a consequence, recoveries increased from 80% to 90% during the quarter and are now approaching design targets. In the coming months, material handling bottlenecks will be addressed and with the completion of the few remaining capital projects, daily throughput tonnage will increase to 55,000 tons per day.”The mine returned to steady state operating condition by November, following the geotechnical event in July.
Mr. Hallbauer continued, “We continue to make steady progress with construction activities at the mine. The tailings pumping system and in pit crushing and conveying system are near completion. Detailed design of the new coarse ore reclaim facility is in its final stages and construction is expected to begin in March. With these initiatives underway, we are on schedule to increase annual copper capacity to 115 million pounds by the end of 2010.”
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 1-800-667-2114
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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