Vancouver – Malbex Resources (MBG-V) has hit short but high-grade gold, silver and copper intercepts on the north end of the company’s Del Carmen project in Argentina.
The results are part of a 5,000-metre, US$6-million drill program the company is carrying out before winter hits the high-altitude project in May. Del Carmen is located on the Argentina-Chile border in the Andes mountain range, on the southern end of what is known as the El Indio gold belt.
The company is drilling for the first time at the Brecha Limite Norte and Ladera Sur de las Tortolas targets at Del Carmen, as part of only their second drill program. The company acquired its three properties in a 2008 auction by the Argentinean government with high hopes for the area.
“The area is obviously very prospective,” said Tim Warman, president and chief executive in a telephone interview. “You’ve got 30 million oz. in reserves and past production at [Barrick Gold‘s (ABX-T, ABX-N)] Veladero and Pascua-Lama, so anything in that area is going to be pretty appealing. That’s not to mention the El Indio mine on the Chilean side.”
In hole 15, on the northern end of the Brecha Limite Norte target, the company hit 3 metres grading 369 grams silver per tonne, 2.6 grams gold per tonne and 2.46% copper starting at 29 metres, with 1 metre averaging 807 grams silver, 5.52 grams gold, and 6.66% copper. In hole 16, cut from the same collar, the company intersected 5 metres grading 218 grams silver, 0.53 gram gold, and 2.06% copper starting at 56 metres downhole, including 1 metre averaging 1,050 grams silver, 1.49 grams gold, and 10.1% copper.
Northeast of the Brecha Limite Norte lies the Ladera Sur de las Tortolas target, where in hole 12 Malbex cut a metre grading 175 grams silver, 2.78 grams gold and 0.68% copper starting at 91 metres. Directly south of hole 12, hole 11 returned 2 metres grading 201 grams silver, 1.77 grams gold, and 2.13% copper starting 23 metres downhole.
Earlier this year the company released results from the Brecha Limite target, 500 metres south of Brecha Limite Norte. There, in hole 8, drilling returned 35 metres carrying 2.22 grams gold, 42.94 grams silver, and 2.94% copper starting at 18 metres, including 16 metres averaging 4.03 grams gold, 81.77 grams silver and 5.39% copper.
The company describes Del Carmen, its flagship property, as having a high-sulphidation epithermal gold-silver system.
Malbex was a private company until late last year when it entered into a reverse take-over with Arapaho Capital to establish a listing on the venture exchange.
The company’s three properties are Del Carmen, Despoblados, and Amarillos, all located in the San Juan province of northwestern Argentina.
Warman said the state is mining friendly and the site has great access.
“There is some fabulous infrastructure there too,” said Warman. “It used to be quite difficult to get up there, its up in the high Andes, but now that Veladero is operating and Pascua-Lama is in construction there’s a beautiful road that leads right up into the valley. So we can literally get from our office in downtown San Juan on up to the project in about four, four and a half hours.”
Warman said in the future the company plans to acquire some properties at lower elevations and with milder climates.
“We’ve got a really good crew of Argentinean geos and we want to keep those guys working, so we’re looking for stuff they can do in the off-season for our high-altitude project,” he said.
For the off-season this year, the company plans to analyze the general mapping, drilling, sampling and geophysical programs done so far.
“The plan basically is to look at that stuff over the summer months and come up with more drilling targets for next year,” said Warman. “We think we’ve made a couple of interesting discoveries that we’re going to have to start stepping out on next year. We found a new area of mineralization about five km south of the main Del Carmen anomaly.”
Malbex’s share price was unmoved on the day to close at 46¢. The company has a 52-week share price range between $1.10 and 22¢ and 56.5 million shares outstanding.