Skeena Resources reports robust economics for Eskay Creek project

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Skeena Resources reports robust economics for Eskay Creek project
Credit: © Reuters.

VANCOUVER - Skeena Resources has announced promising outcomes from the Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS) for its Eskay Creek gold-silver project located in British Columbia's Tahltan Territory. The study, which was conducted by Global Resource Engineering and Sedgman Canada, builds on the previous Feasibility Study with significant enhancements. According to Skeena's President and CEO Randy Reichert, the DFS marks an essential milestone in de-risking the project, resulting in a 20% increase in mineral reserves.

The Eskay Creek project, known for its Volcanogenic Massive Sulphide (VMS) deposit, now boasts an extended mine life of 12 years. The updated mineral reserve estimate is a direct result of the DFS findings, which forecast preproduction capital expenditures of C$713 million—a 20% rise from the earlier study due to de-risking efforts, unforeseen changes, and cost inflation.

Key highlights from the DFS include:

  • An after-tax net present value (NPV) of C$2 billion ($1.46 billion) and an internal rate of return (IRR) of 42.9%, using a gold price assumption of $1,800 per ounce and a silver price of $23 per ounce.
  • The life of mine (LOM) all-in sustaining cost (AISC) is estimated at US$684 per ounce of gold equivalent sold.
  • An average annual production over the first decade is projected at 370,000 ounces of gold with an average annual after-tax free cash flow of C$365 million.
  • The total mineral reserves have increased to 39.8 million tonnes containing 3.3 million ounces of gold and 88 million ounces of silver (4.6 Moz AuEq).

Reichert expressed optimism about the project's potential to significantly boost shareholder value, especially with the substantial metallurgical breakthroughs that contributed to the increased reserve estimates. Furthermore, with a payback period of just 1.2 years at current market prices for gold and silver, Eskay Creek is positioned as a top-tier operation within the industry.

Skeena is also planning to rejuvenate the Snip projects in the same region, indicating a strategic focus on developing its portfolio in British Columbia's prolific Golden Triangle.

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