VANCOUVER, July 6 /CNW/ - Copper Mountain Mining Corporation (TSX: CUM) (the "Company" or "Copper Mountain") announces that the the Upper Similkameen Indian Band ("USIB") and the Company have concluded a mutually beneficial Impact Benefits Agreement ("IBA") for the development of the Copper Mountain Project located 20 km south of the town of Princeton in southern British Columbia.
The Company has signed an Impact Benefits Agreement with the USIB respecting the development, operation and reclamation of the Copper Mountain Project. Under the agreement the Company recognizes and respects the aboriginal title and rights as asserted by the USIB, and the USIB acknowledges that the Company holds a Mines Act Permit and holds mineral tenures within USIB territorial area of responsibility as granted under the British Columbia Mineral Tenure Act. The USIB intends to secure beneficial working relationships with corporations who operate within its territorial area of responsibility. The Impact Benefits Agreement is a mechanism through which the USIB has provided its acknowledgement and acceptance for the Copper Mountain Project.
The Impact Benefits Agreement sets out a clear understanding between the parties, of the opportunities and benefits that will result from this undertaking, while taking into consideration the challenges relating to economic sustainability and responsible environmental stewardship. Furthermore, it validates the fact that cooperation and mutually beneficial relationships between the local First Nations Band and the mining industry are both feasible and favourable. This Agreement will provide meaningful employment and training opportunities to the USIB members and will pave the way for a successful future.
Mr. O'Rourke, CEO of Copper Mountain stated at the signing ceremony "after three years of extensive discussions we are pleased that the USIB membership have ratified the agreement that confirms support for the project, while recognizing the memberships interests. We are particularly pleased the USIB has shown confidence in the Company's management and the Copper Mountain Project and we would like to thank all parties involved in completing this essential step. This document marks an important milestone for the Copper Mountain Project. Under the agreement the Company acknowledges that it is dedicated to exploring and developing mineral resources in a competitive, safe, and environmentally and socially responsible manner that utilizes the traditional knowledge and expertise of the USIB as mutually agreed upon. The USIB and Copper Mountain are committed to maintaining an open, respectful and timely communications to understand each other's values and will invoke a positive approach looking for mutually acceptable outcomes that will provide the USIB community, and the region as a whole, with many benefits."
Chief Charlotte Mitchell of the Upper Simillkameen Indian Band stated her communities' intent for the relationship with Copper Mountain as "one which gives voice to our duty to protect Aboriginal title and rights within our territorial lands, and ensures effective stewardship of our environment, which is our most precious resource". Chief Mitchell also pointed out that "while our people do not acknowledge the authority of the provincial government within our territorial area of responsibility, the acknowledgement by Copper Mountain of our asserted Aboriginal Title to the land and of our cultural, environmental, social and economic interests, together with a commitment by the British Columbia government, in the spirit of the New Relationship, to negotiate a Economic Community Development Agreement with the USIB through the sharing of mineral tax revenues in respect of this project specifically, has created the opening which allowed this day to unfold as it has. It also helps that the agreement with Copper Mountain has the flexibility built in to allow us to explore creative approaches to resolving issues as the project unfolds."
Mr. O'Rourke went on to comment on activities at the site and stated: "Construction is proceeding on schedule. To date, a total of 18,860 m(3) of concrete has been poured, with a majority of the concrete coming from the Company's batch plant located at the mine site. Some of the mobile mining fleet has already been delivered to site. To date two large Komatsu 375 Dozers, three 240 ton haul trucks, and one WA1200 loader have been assembled and tested for work with construction activities.
There are a total of 200 construction and operating personnel on site.
The overall schedule for the project remains unchanged with preproduction mining scheduled to start in September 2010, while construction of the processing facilities is on schedule for full production by June 2011 at the rate of 35,000 TPD.
About Copper Mountain Mining Corporation:
Copper Mountain is a Canadian resource company managed by an experienced team of professionals with a solid track record of exploration and development success. The Company's shares trade on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "CUM". Copper Mountain owns 75% and Mitsubishi Materials Corporation owns 25% of the Copper Mountain Project. The 18,000 acre mine site is located 15 km south of the town of Princeton in southern British Columbia. The Copper Mountain Project has a current resource of approximately 5 billion pounds of copper and it is Copper Mountain's goal to develop the Copper Mountain Project as a mid tier copper and precious metal mine to produce at a rate of approximately 100 million pounds of copper per year starting in mid 2011. Additional information is available on the Company's web page at www.CuMtn.com.
About the Upper Similkameen Indian Band:
The Upper Similkameen Indian Band is situated in the upper reaches of the Similkameen River valley with Band offices in Hedley and Princeton, BC. The Band has approximately 70 registered members. The Band's territorial area of responsibility occupies a large area in the southern interior of British Columbia, with the Copper Mountain mine site located very near its centre. The USIB is a progressive community that is focused on developing a sustainable economy, based on strong partnerships with other governments and private industry. The Band has a long history in the mining sector beginning thousands of years ago in the trade of ochre and other locally quarried minerals, and more recently in the modern mining industry and in mining-related tourism and interpretive programs, offered through the Snaz'ist Centre and the Hedley Mascot Mine. The USIB also has a significant involvement in the forestry sector and operates several forest tenures, a woodlot, a logging program and silviculture operations.
On behalf of the Board of
COPPER MOUNTAIN MINING CORPORATION
Rodney A Shier, CA
Chief Financial Officer
On behalf of the
UPPER SIMILKAMEEN INDIAN BAND
Note: This release contains forward-looking statements that involve risks and uncertainties. These statements may differ materially from actual future events or results. Readers are referred to the documents, filed by the Company on SEDAR at www.sedar.com, specifically the most recent reports which identify important risk factors that could cause actual results to differ from those contained in the forward-looking statements. The Company undertakes no obligation to review or confirm analysts' expectations or estimates or to release publicly any revisions to any forward-looking statement.
SOURCE Copper Mountain Mining Corporation
For further information: For further information: Galina Meleger, Corporate Communications, 604-682-2992 ext.224, Email: Galina.meleger@CuMtn.com or Don Graham, Investor Relations, 604-682-2992 ext.224, Email: Don@cumtn.com, Website: www.CuMtn.com; Karen Terbasket, Band Administration, 250-292-8733, Email: email@example.com