International Nickel Ventures Provides an Update on its Santa Fe-Ipora Joint Venture in Brazil
TORONTO, ON – October 24, 2007 – International Nickel Ventures (“INV”) (TSX: INV, INV.WT) is pleased to provide an update of the work program announced on May 28, 2007 at the Santa Fe and Ipora properties located in Goiás State, Brazil which has been carried out by joint venture partner and operator Teck Cominco Limited (“Teck Cominco”) (Teck Cominco 73%: INV 27%).
On November 23, 2006, INV announced a NI 43-101 Inferred Mineral Resource estimate of 109 million tonnes grading 1.11% nickel and 0.06% cobalt, using a 0.8% nickel cutoff. This estimation was based on drill results up to October 3, 2006. A drill program to define and expand the mineral resources has now been completed. Assay results from an additional 277 diamond drill holes with a total length of 3,335 metres have now been received, compiled and verified. These final holes include ones drilled on a 100×100 m grid in mineralized areas and their recently discovered extensions, as well as in-fill holes that cover gaps in previous 50×50 m and 100×100 m grids.
At Santa Fe, the final 109 drill holes, totaling 967 m, continue to provide positive confirmation of good nickel grades in the Southwest, Central and North zones. Notable holes include:
- SFDD-2239, which intersected 4.50 m averaging 1.48% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 1.02 to 1.75% Ni
- SFDD-2244, which intersected 5.60 m averaging 1.93% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 0.84 to 2.50% Ni
- SFDD-3017, which intersected 3.70 m averaging 1.79% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 1.18 to 2.14% Ni
- SFDD-3060, which intersected 3.60 m averaging 2.00% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 0.84 to 2.70% Ni
- SFDD-3087, which intersected 3.80 m averaging 1.61% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 1.10 to 2.34% Ni
At Ipora, the final 168 drill holes, totaling 2,368 m, continue to provide positive confirmation both of nickel grades and of substantial thicknesses in the Northeast zone at Ipora North. Notable holes include:
- RBDD-1034, which intersected 11.20 m averaging 1.63% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 0.81 to 2.63% Ni
- RBDD-1108, which intersected 3.90 m averaging 2.21% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 1.80 to 2.44% Ni
- RBDD-1113, which intersected 16.40 m averaging 1.31% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 0.46 to 2.39% Ni
- RBDD-1117, which intersected 12.33 m averaging 1.56% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 0.87 to 2.23% Ni
- RBDD-1138, which intersected 7.70 m averaging 1.86% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 0.81 to 2.26% Ni
- RBDD-1140, which intersected 11.00 m averaging 2.14% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 0.94 to 2.74% Ni
- RBDD-1222, which intersected 9.38 m averaging 1.61% Ni, with nickel grades ranging from 0.69 to 2.41% Ni
With the completion of the 2007 program, the total drilling completed since project inception is tabulated below:
|Deposit||Diamond Drill||Reverse Circulation||Total|
INV has begun to construct an updated resource model, which will incorporate the results from this recent drill program. For further information on the Santa Fe and Ipora properties please refer to the May 2007 Technical Report, available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.
In addition to the drill program, a large trench approximately 250 m long and 6 to 7 m deep was excavated in the SW mineralized area of Santa Fe. The purpose of the trench was to investigate the continuity of laterite lithologies and grades and to assess the mineability of the mineralized zone. The area had previously been drilled at 50 m centres and one trench wall was sampled by vertical channels at 10 m spacing for comparison with drill results and to test continuity. In addition, multiple portable XRF readings were taken along the trench wall between the channels. The top of the mineralized zone is relatively regular and can be visually identified by geological observation. The base of the zone is more irregular but can be defined using geology and portable XRF readings. These results indicate that the visual identification and morphology of the mineralized horizon would likely minimize dilution and ore loss in mining.
Metallurgical investigations on the Santa Fe — Ipora project have continued with a focus on the upgrading of the nickel content of various samples. Two approaches have been taken to evaluating upgrading potential; a process of scrubbing and screen classification and a process of magnetic separation. A program of work on 47, 3-6 kilogram samples from Santa Fe and Ipora test pits were submitted to SGS Lakefield (Canada) for scrubbing/screening and magnetic separation testing. The sample suite included both limonite and saprolite materials.
The results of the upgrading work are encouraging, suggesting, based on the samples selected and tested, a 0.1% nickel grade increase with either scrubbing/classification, for some samples, or magnetic separation. It may be possible that a combined treatment using both scrubbing/classification and magnetic separation could be employed to obtain an overall greater increase in nickel grade. This work will be pursued in the next stages of metallurgical investigation.
A phase 3, 2007 work program with a budget of CDN$1.75 million (INV share $473,200) has been approved by Teck Cominco and INV to cover the period from the end of phase 2 in late July to mid-November, when the final option payment of US$9.25 million (INV’s share being US$2.50 million) to property vendors Montita Mineradora Ltda. is due. Principal elements of the program will include full validation of the current drilling database, an updated resource model, a mining study, further upgrading test work, bulk sampling with an auger drill, and initiation of an environmental baseline study. This work will facilitate the on-going technical and economic assessment of the deposits.
This press release and the data set forth herein was prepared under the supervision and review of, and verified by J. Alan Spence, President of Spence Resource Management Inc. and Mohan Srivastava, President of FSS Canada Consultants Inc., both independent consultants to INV and Qualified Persons as defined under NI 43-101 of the Canadian Securities Administrators. The drill hole and assay data (from SGS Geosol Laboratórios Ltda., Brazil) for this release have been provided by Teck Cominco, with industry standard QA/QC procedures in place.
About INV and Status of Projects
INV is a Canadian mineral resource company focused on the acquisition, exploration and development of base metal projects in Brazil. Currently, its primary asset is an option to acquire, along with partner and operator Teck Cominco, a 75% interest in two advanced-stage nickel laterite deposits, Santa Fé and Iporá, in the Goiás nickel camp of Brazil. Once earned, INV will hold 27% of the 75% interest for a total project interest of 20.25%.
In addition to the Teck Cominco Joint Venture, INV has an option agreement with BCV over the Damolândia property (see press release dated October 17) as well as 100% ownership in an extensive land package, which now totals 480,712 hectares in Goiás, Pará and Tocantins States considered prospective for both lateritic and sulphide nickel deposits. INV is currently accumulating and reviewing data on this land position to determine which areas are the most prospective for further exploration.
Please visit INV’s website at www.nickelventures.com to view technical details pertaining to the property.
This press release contains certain forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are subject to variety of risks and uncertainties beyond INV’s ability to control or predict, which could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those anticipated in such forward-looking statements. Such risk factors include, without limitation, the impact of general economic conditions, industry conditions, volatility of commodity prices, risks associated with the uncertainty of resource and reserve estimates, currency fluctuations, dependence upon regulatory approvals, the availability of future financing and exploration risk. In this news release there is no guarantee that any drill targets or economic mineral deposits will be found on INV’s properties. For a more detailed discussion of such risks and other factors, refer to INV’s filing with Canadian securities regulators available on www.sedar.com or INV’s website at www.nickelventures.com.