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PERU PROJECTS OVERVIEW 

The company has two exploration projects in Peru. These are:

Jose Alonso, Agua Blanco, Oscar Alberto and Virgen De Chapi are collectively referred to and make up the Moquegua Regional Project

EXPLORATION AND MINING IN PERU

Peru plays an important part of the global minerals exploration and mining industry and is ranked seventh in the world of mining production, slightly behind the US, and slightly ahead of South Africa @ $27,063 million. Many of the major global mining houses are present and active in Peru, including inter alia; Aluminium Corporation of China Limited (Chinalco), Anglo American Inc., Barrick Gold Corporation, BHP-Billiton Limited, Freeport-McMoran Copper & Gold Inc., Gold Fields Limited, Newmont Mining Corporation, Rio Tinto Group and Southern Copper Group. These companies either currently operate mines, or are proceeding through feasibility stages of project development, or both.

In Peru the mining sector represents 14.7% of the country's GDP (2013), 72% of total exports (US$21B in 2010) and 50% of income tax revenue. Anticipated mining expenditure in Peru over the next decade is approximately worth US$50B. In terms of world production, Peru ranks first in global silver production, third in global zinc production, fourth in global copper production and sixth in terms of global gold production. In 2010 Peru produced 5.25 million ounces of gold. The country also produces significant quantities of molybdenum, lead, tin and tungsten.

Bloomberg Markets places Peru 4th in the ranks of Emerging Markets. Between 2001 and 2011 Peru’s economy grew @ 5.8%, nearly 2% above the regional average. Its inflation @ 2.5% for the same period, nearly 3% below the regional average.

Yet despite being a premier mining destination, despite copper production increasing 100% since 1998, gold production up 88% and silver production up 89%, despite Peru attracting massive resources investment, Peru is considered under-explored. This status is among the principal reasons the Company sought and successfully acquired exploration projects in Peru.

PORPHYRY DEPOSITS

The term "porphyry deposit", describes large, disseminated, low-grade mineral occurrences typically hosted in rocks of intermediate to acid mineral composition with porphyritic texture. Typically porphyry mines host several different but related forms of mineralisation, breccia-hosted, vein-hosted, skarn-hosted, porphyry-hosted mineralisation that “collectively” comprise the ore-body.

A porphyritic rock, or “porphyry”, described igneous rocks with conspicuous phenocrysts (crystals) in a fine-grained groundmass.


Examples of porphyry rock, generally fine-grained with larger visible crystals

Porphyry deposits may contain elevated levels of copper, gold, silver, molybdenum, tin and rare earth elements. Important by-product elements include rhenium, tungsten, indium, platinum, palladium and selenium.

Porphyry deposits are the world's most important source of copper, molybdenum and rare earth elements, accounting for 60% of the world's supply of copper.

Porphyry deposits are broadly recognised on the basis of the relative abundances of economically important metals. Principal among the types of porphyries are:

  • Porphyry Cu, Cu-Mo and Cu-Mo-Au deposits;
  • Porphyry Cu-Au deposits; and
  • Porphyry Au deposits.


 

Except for the differences in the relative concentrations of Cu, Au and Mo (among other metal concentrations), porphyry deposits share similar geological, geochemical and geophysical characteristics. Most occur in Mesozoic and Tertiary orogenic belts and most frequently on the Pacific plate margin. They show concentric or quasi-concentric zones of mineralisation and rock alteration; and they tend to be of a certain size and depth (between three and eight kilometres horizontal and vertical extent).

 

World Map
World distribution of porphyry deposits

Porphyry deposits typically consist of low grade ore types and are most commonly mined as large scale, open cut operations. The ore body typically contains grades of less than 1% copper and less than 1g/t gold. Although porphyries form low grade, open-cuttable ores, the ore zones are rarely uniform and/or occur in a single host rock. Rather, porphyry ores are made up of many different types of host material, including inter alia, breccia pipes, breccia veins, mineralised country-rock (skarns and mantos), porphyry and intrusive stocks. Grades are variable and ore zones may be separated by low or no-grade material.

Some of the largest mines in the world are porphyry deposits, including:

  • the Escondida Cu porphyry mine in Chile, which is currently the largest copper mine in the world in terms of annual copper production;
  • the Grasberg Au porphyry mine in Indonesia, which is currently the largest gold mine in the world in terms of annual gold production; and
  • the Oyuu Tolgoi Cu-Au porphyry deposit in Mongolia, which is currently the largest undeveloped Cu-Au deposit in the world, containing approximately 81 billion pounds of copper and 46 million ounces of gold in measured, indicated and inferred resources.

Porphyry deposits tend to have a characteristic exploration signature, comprising broadly recognizable geological, geochemical and geophysical expressions.

Porphyry deposits occurring in the Andes Mountains (Chile, Argentina, Peru, Ecuador) often have a distinctive surface expression, making their recognition less difficult than if they were occurring in an ancient or highly vegetated terrain. This is a consequence of the high erosion rates normally attributed to the Andes and the sparse vegetation cover due to altitude. It is not unusual for porphyry rock types, porphyry-style alteration minerals and mineralisation to be fresh at surface. Such circumstance often leads to the coincidence of distinct and discrete geochemical and geophysical anomalism.

At the Company's Chanape Gold-Silver-Copper Porphyry Project, just such a circumstance prevails - a very clear and characteristic porphyry-like signature - that comprises porphyry rock types, porphyry-style alteration minerals and mineralisation, geochemistry and geophysics.

Schematic
Schematic sections of a porphyry deposit TOP: Schematic showing the different geological and ore components of a porphyry system; BOTTOM: Schematic showing the alteration zones of a porphyry system.
 

PERU'S PORPHYRY BELT AND PORPHYRY DEPOSITS OF PERU

Peru's porphyry belt extends along the entire length of Peru, paralleling the Pacific coast and roughly coinciding with the Andes Mountains. Peru's porphyry belt hosts dozens of operating mines and countless mineral deposits. The porphyry belt hosts many world-class mines with mineral resources well in excess of fifty billion tonnes. Peru's porphyry belt can be divided into northern, central and southern parts and comprises six informal metallogenic provinces.

Peru
Peru's Porphyry Belt

The northern part comprises:

  • the Northern Peru Copper-Gold porphyry Belt; and
  • the Yanacocha Epithermal Gold Belt.

Examples for mines/deposits located in these belts include: La Granja (1,200Mt at 0.65% Cu), Galeno (803Mt at 0.63% Cu equivalent), Michiquillay (544Mt at 0.69% Cu) and Yanacocha (650Mt at 1g/t Au).

The central part comprises:

  • the Pierina Epithermal Gold Belt.

Examples for mines/deposits located in this belt include: Pierina (100Mt at 2.1g/t Au), Toromocho (1,976Mt at 0.69% Cu eq), Antamina (745Mt 1.06% Cu, 0.67% Zn, 11.7g/t Ag).

The southern part comprises:

  • the Southern Peru Epithermal Gold-Silver belt;
  • the Eocene-Oligocene Apurimac Copper Porphyry-Skarn Belt; and
  • the Palaeocene Southern Peru Copper Porphyry Belt.

 

Examples for mines/deposits located in these belts include: Antapaccay (520Mt at 0.72% Cu), Tintaya (356Mt at 0.75% Cu), Cerro Verde (3,408Mt at 0.4% Cu), Cuajone (2,651Mt at 0.47% Cu), Quellaveco (761Mt at 0.57% Cu, 0.023% Mo, 2.3g/t Ag), Toquepala (770Mt at 0.74% Cu).