Wednesday, 21 March 2012

International Tower Hill Mines progresses towards Livengood PFS

International Tower Hill Mines (TSE:ITH)(AMEX:THM) outlined its progress Wednesday as it advances towards a pre-feasibility study (PFS) for its flagship Livengood gold project in Alaska.

Livengood is located about 115 kilometres northwest of Fairbanks, Alaska, within the Tintina gold belt.

The company controls 100 percent of the 125 square kilometre land package, which is made up of 115 Alaska State mining claims, land leased from the Alaska Mental Health Land Trust and four leases with private holders of state and federal patented and unpatented mining and placer claims.

The property has been prospected and explored by several companies and private individuals since the 1970s. International Tower Hill Mines said a PFS for Livengood is currently underway and is scheduled to be released in the third quarter of 2012.

The PFS will incorporate the mineral resource estimate of 933 million tonnes at an average grade of 0.55 grams per tonne (g/t) gold (at a cutoff grade of 0.22 g/t gold) for 16.5 million ounces of contained gold in the measured and indicated categories, as well as the results of geotechnical studies, metallurgical testing, updated capital and operating cost estimates and other relevant studies.

During 2011, the company said that PFS work proceeded as planned with substantial progress, including the majority of engineering studies completed in a timely fashion.

The company's 2011 summer drill program at the Livengood project was also completed and based on the latest results, new internal resource estimates calculated for three areas of the deposit have been verified within one percent to contain the same tonnage, grade and contained ounces of gold as those calculated from a nominal 50-metre spaced grid drilling used to calculate the May 2011 resource.

In addition, ongoing environmental baseline data gathering for Livengood permitting activities continued in 2011 with samples developed for large-scale field testing of material geochemical characteristics.

In December, the company completed two acquisitions in connection with the Livengood project - bolstering its footprint.

The first acquisition consisted of the exercise of an existing lease buyout option, with respect to certain mining claims leased by the company, giving it a 100-percent ownership interest.

International Tower Hill's second acquisition was of certain placer mining claims and related rights in the vicinity of the Livengood project. This land was previously vacant or was used for placer gold mining.

The acquisitions complete a planned lease buyout and also enable the company to pursue additional site facility locations and to investigate other land use opportunities, including the potential for placer gold extraction, it said.

In January 2012, two major contracts were awarded covering process engineering services and geotechnical infrastructure engineering services for the feasability study. Work began in February of this year.

The company also filed Wednesday financial results for a shortened seven-month fiscal 2011 year as it is changing the date of the end of its reporting period to December 31. This aligns the company’s financial reporting with its operational and budgeting cycle, as well as to the financial reporting of other industry participants.

As at December 31, the company had $55 million in cash on its balance sheet.

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