The origins of the Vizcachitas deposit go back to the staking of the San Jose claim in 1975. During the late 1970s, Compañía de Petroleos de Chile, S.A. (“COPEC”) first reviewed the property. In 1981, they completed a geologic mapping, petrographic work and geochemistry program, which confirmed that Vizcachitas was a porphyry copper-molybdenum prospect.
Placer Dome Sudamerica Ltd. (“Placer”) reviewed the project in 1992 and signed an option agreement. Placer completed mapping and sampling programs followed by six diamond drill holes totaling 1,953 m.
In 1995, General Minerals Corporation (General Minerals) acquired 51% of the mining claims of San José, and 100% of the mining claims of Santa Teresa, Santa Maria, San Cayetano, Tigre 1 through 3 and claimed the León 1 through 16 concessions. These concessions surrounded the San José, claim and brought the total area of this land package to 3,788 Ha. In 1997, General Minerals entered into a joint venture agreement with Westmin Resource Ltd. (“Westmin”), which was subsequently terminated by Boliden in 1998 (Boliden acquired Westmin during the period of the joint venture). Beginning in 1995, General Minerals conducted detailed mapping, sampling, geophysics and drilling programs. A total of 61 diamond drill holes were completed through 1998 for a total length of 16,347 m. Based on this information, General Minerals calculated an historic (non NI 43-101 compliant) measured and indicated resource of 645 million tonnes at an average copper grade of 0.45% and an average molybdenum grade of 0.014% at a 0.3% Cu cut-off.
In 1998, General Minerals commissioned Kilborn International to complete an initial feasibility study on the Vizcachitas Property. Kilborn commissioned an audit of the historic General Minerals resource and concluded that at a copper price of $1.00 per pound, the Net Present Value at 8% was $201 million and the Internal Rate of Return was 20%. This study was not NI 43-101 compliant.
Shortly after the initial feasibility study was completed, General Minerals put the project on a care and-maintenance basis, dropping all but the central core of concessions.
Lumina Copper Corp. purchased General Minerals’s subsidiary Vizcachitas Limited in late 2003, which included the shares of Vizcachitas Holdings (Chile), 51% of SLM San Jose and 100% of the claims constituting the Vizcachitas Property. In May 2005, under a Plan of Arrangement, Vizcachitas Limited was transferred to Global Copper Corporation, one of four successor companies of Lumina Copper Corp.
In February 2007, Los Andes Copper Ltd. acquired Global Copper Corporation’s interest in the Vizcachitas property. During 2007 and up to June 2008 the company completed 63 diamond drill holes for a total length of 17,487 m in areas of the Vizcachitas property outside of the San José central core. AMEC International (Chile) SA was commissioned to prepare a Resource Estimate Report compliant under NI 43-101. This report was completed in August 2008 showing an indicated resource of 515 Mt with an average grade of 0.39 % Cu and 0.011 % Mo in the Sulphide zone using a cut-off grade of 0.3 % CuEq, and using the same cut-off grade showing 572 Mt with an average grade of 0.34 % Cu and 0.012 % Mo. During the remainder of 2008, the company carried out a further 16 diamond drill holes and a total length of 5,128 m on the areas surrounding the San Jose central core.
In December 2010, Los Andes Copper Ltd. consolidated the mining property of the Vizcachitas project by acquiring the remaining 49 % of SLM San Jose (owner of the central core claims). During the 2011-2012 period, the company systematically compiled and documented all the historical data for the Vizcachitas Project. The assay certificates for all the samples were located and the pulp samples for the General Minerals and Los Andes Copper assaying were documented and stored at the project site.
In December 2013, Coffey Mining and Alquimia Conceptos S.A. completed the updated NI 43-101 compliant resource estimate and a Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) on the Vizcachitas project.
In January 2014, the company acquired the non-consumptive water rights for the Rocin River, which currently runs through the Project’s mining claims, together with studies for the development of a 29 MW run-of-river hydroelectric project. This project is currently at a development phase and construction is expected to take place well in advance of the development of the Vizcachitas Project. This plant will be connected to the national power grid in central Chile (Sistema Interconectado Central), being enabled to supply power to third party connected to this grid.
In February 2014 Coffey Mining and Alquimia Conceptos S.A. updated the NI 43-101 PEA and mineral resources estimate on the Vizcachitas project.
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