First Majestic Silver Corp.: Commissioning of Flotation Circuit at the San Martin Silver Mine
April 22, 2008First Majestic Silver Corp. is pleased to announce that it has completed the commissioning of a new flotation circuit at its San Martin Silver Mine in Jalisco Mexico. Historically, the San Martin mill, which has a capacity of 800 tonnes per day (tpd), has been processing oxide ores from the mine through a cyanidation plant to produce Dore bars. The addition of this 500 tpd flotation circuit will now allow the Company to take advantage of the extensive sulphide mineralization as defined in the Company’s NI 43-101 report. The new combined plant at San Martin will now be capable of producing both Dore bars from oxides and lead and zinc concentrates from sulphides thereby optimizing the Company’s silver production. The two circuits will be run on an alternating basis.
Construction of the new flotation circuit commenced in December 2007 and was completed in February 2008. Construction was completed in record time of only 8 weeks with a total investment of US$1.1 million.
The testing and final commissioning of the lead and zinc circuits took place in March and April and involved the systematic testing of all components, metallurgical and mechanical. This process was necessary to optimize the different parameters of the grade of concentrates and maximize recoveries of silver, lead and zinc. The first shipment of 160 tonnes of lead concentrate left the San Martin Silver Mine on March 28th and since then an additional 150 tonnes have been produced and is sitting in storage waiting to be shipped.
The ongoing aggressive development and exploration program is continuing for the purpose of increasing both the oxide and sulphide Resources within the mine. As a large component of the Company’s present NI 43-101 Resources / Reserves is sulphide ore and readily available for mining, a decision was made to build this circuit to optimize this operation. The next step in the Company’s expansion plan at the San Martin Silver Mine is to add additional crushing and grinding capacity. Engineering design work is under way as well as a full economic evaluation in order to improve the economics of the operation. It is anticipated that within approximately 30 days, the Company will announce the outcome of this evaluation and the Company’s go ahead plan.
In addition to the mill expansion, a total of 7000 metres of underground development is planned and 29,600 metres of diamond drilling is scheduled for 2008. There are presently six drill rigs on site at San Martin. Five are operating, and one just arrived last week and will soon be in operation. Two additional rigs are scheduled to arrive within the next two weeks, bringing the total to eight drill rigs, four underground and four surface rigs. The result of this work will assist in; increasing silver production going forward, and; is expected to result in improved NI 43-101 compliant silver Resources. The Company anticipates the next NI 43-101 Report on the San Martin Silver Mine will be completed by July 2008. As a result of the addition of the flotation circuit, the sulphide Resources as defined in the Company’s current 43-101 Report will also be upgraded.
First Majestic is a producing silver company focused in Mexico and is aggressively pursuing its business plan to become a senior silver producer through the development of its existing assets and the pursuit through acquisition of additional assets that contribute to achieving its corporate growth objectives.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION contact firstname.lastname@example.org, visit our website at www.firstmajestic.com or call our toll free number 1.866.529.2807.
FIRST MAJESTIC SILVER CORP.
Keith Neumeyer, President & CEO
This press release includes certain “Forward-Looking Statements” within the meaning of section 21E of the United States Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, included herein, including without limitation, statements regarding potential mineralization and reserves, exploration results and future plans and objectives of First Majestic Silver Corp. are forward-looking statements that involve various risks and uncertainties. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements.