Condor Gold (TSX: COG; LON: CNR) has received an environmental permit to build and operate a 2,800 tonnes per day processing plant at its 100% owned La India gold project in Nicaragua.
The news comes after what company CEO Mark Child called a “nearly two-year delay” in the permitting process.
He attributed the initial delay to Nicaragua’s November 2016 presidential election. Condor also decided to rework its mine plan to avoid resettling 1,000 people in the mining village of La Cruz de La India.
“The receipt of the Environmental Permit is a tribute to the hard work and dedication of Condor Gold’s team on the ground,” Child said in a press release. “They are 100% Nicaraguan nationals; I am proud of their achievements. It also marks the culmination of 11 years of detailed scientific geological work and technical mining studies at La India Project, including three years of the permitting process.”
The company now aims to progress the project to the feasibility study level.
The open pit reserve at La India is 6.9 million probable tonnes at 3 grams gold and 5.3 grams silver for 675,000 oz. gold and 1.18 million oz. silver.
According to a 2014 pre-feasibility study, the project would produce 74,000 oz. gold and 99,200 oz. silver per year.
At a US$1,250 gold price, the project has a US$91.7 million after-tax net present value at a 5% discount rate and a 22% after-tax internal rate of return. It would require a US$110 million initial capital expenditure.
Child also plans to increase La India’s production to around 120,000 oz. gold per year by drilling out its feeder pits. He wants to add 1 million oz. gold to the overall resource, raising it to 3.2 million oz. gold.
Shares of Condor Gold are currently trading at 72¢ with a 52-week range of 47¢ to $1.72. The company has a $46 million market capitalization.
“Permitting is massive positive news,” Child tells The Northern Miner. “The project is de-risked, uncertainty removed.”