Lumwana Project Update Primary Crushing Commences 1st Electric Face Shovel Commissioned



    /NOT FOR DISTRIBUTION TO U.S. NEWS WIRE SERVICES OR FOR DISSEMINATION IN
    THE U.S./

    TORONTO, Oct. 7 /CNW/ - Equinox Minerals Limited (TSX and ASX symbol:
"EQN") ("Equinox" or the "Company") is pleased to provide the latest Lumwana
Copper Project (the "Project") update reporting that the Company has accepted
from its EPC contractor handover of the Primary Crushing and Conveying circuit
and successfully commissioned and put into production its very first large
scale Hitachi EX5500-6 electric shovel.
    Crushing operations have commenced with the Company's operations team and
crushed material is currently being stockpiled in preparation for
commissioning of the remainder of the Project process plant. To view crushed
ore stockpile picture: http://files.newswire.ca/707/Lumwana_-_crushed_ore.doc
    The crushing circuit, which includes the company's 4.5 km overland
conveyor, has crushed and transported over 150,000 tonnes of material easily
exceeding the crushing design throughput rate of 3,309 tonnes per hour. As
part of initial testing, consistent rates in excess of 4,000 tonnes per hour
have been achieved; these rates represent approximately 30 million tonnes per
annum.
    In addition the Company reports that it has put into production and
successfully commissioned its first large scale electric shovel (Hitachi
EX5500-6) with all design productivity parameters currently being met or
exceeded. The electric shovel, with an operating weight of 518 tonnes,
requires 1720kW to power two Hitachi TFOA-KK motors and is configured
utilizing a 27m(3) bucket designed to mine approximately 26 Mt of material
annually at a mining rate of 4,000 tonnes per hour. An additional three
electric shovels will be put into production in the next 6 weeks to work
alongside the 3 diesel excavators/shovels that have been operating since 2007.
Combined, these units are expected to complete the final commissioning and
ramp up of the mining operation for the Project production phase.
    To view electric shovel picture:
http://files.newswire.ca/707/Lumwana_-_Electric.doc
    Mr Craig Williams, Equinox's President and CEO commented, "We are very
pleased with the initial performance of both the crushing and conveying
circuit and the key mine electric production units. Both are designed to
utilize low cost, clean electrical energy and position Lumwana as a robust,
long term, low cost copper producer."

    
    On Behalf of the Board of Directors of Equinox:

    Craig R. Williams - President & Chief Executive Officer
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    Cautionary Language and Forward Looking Statements
    --------------------------------------------------

    This press release contains "forward-looking statements" and "forward-
    looking information", which may include, but is not limited to,
    statements with respect to the future financial or operating performances
    of Equinox, its subsidiaries and their respective projects, the future
    price of copper and uranium, the estimation of mineral reserves and
    resources, the realization of mineral reserve estimates, the timing and
    amount of estimated future production, estimated costs of future
    production, capital, operating and exploration expenditures, costs and
    timing of the development of the Lumwana Project, the costs of Equinox's
    hedging policy, costs and timing of future exploration, requirements for
    additional capital, government regulation of exploration, development and
    mining operations, environmental risks, reclamation and rehabilitation
    expenses, title disputes or claims, and limitations of insurance
    coverage. Often, but not always, forward-looking information can be
    identified by the use of words such as "plans", "expects", "is expected",
    "is expecting", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts",
    "intends", "anticipates", or "believes", or variations (including
    negative variations) of such words and phrases, or state that certain
    actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might", or "will" be
    taken, occur or be achieved. The purpose of forward-looking information
    is to provide the reader with information about management's expectations
    and plans for the Company. Readers are cautioned that forward-looking
    information involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other
    factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements
    of Equinox and/or its subsidiaries to be materially different from any
    future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the
    forward-looking information. Such factors include, among others, those
    factors discussed in the section entitled "Risk Factors" in the Company's
    annual information form, which is available at www.SEDAR.com. Although
    Equinox has attempted to identify statements containing important factors
    that could cause actual actions, event or results to differ materially
    from those described in forward-looking information, there may be other
    factors that cause actions, events or results to differ from those
    anticipated, estimated or intended. Forward-looking information contained
    herein are made as of the date of this document based on the opinions and
    estimates of management on the date statements containing such forward
    looking information are made, and Equinox disclaims any obligation to
    update any forward-looking information, whether as a result of new
    information, estimates or opinions, future events or results or
    otherwise. There can be no assurance that forward-looking information
    will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could
    differ materially from those anticipated in such information.
    Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward looking
    information.

    Technical information in this release is summarized or extracted from the
    "Amended Technical Report on the Lumwana Copper Project, North Western
    Province, Republic of Zambia" dated June 2008 (the "Technical
    Report"), prepared by Michael Davis, Process Manager, Ausenco Ltd.
    ("Ausenco"), Ross Bertinshaw, Principal of Golder Associates Pty Ltd.
    ("Golder"), Andrew Daley, Director, of Investor Resources Finance Pty
    Ltd ("IRF"), Daniel Guibal, Corporate Consultant (Geostatistics and
    Resources), of SRK Consulting (Australasia) Pty Ltd ("SRK") and Robert
    Hanbury, Associate Director, of Knight Piésold Pty Ltd. ("Knight
    Piésold"), each of whom is a "Qualified Person" in accordance with
    National Instrument 43-101 -Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.

    Readers are cautioned not to rely solely on the summary of such
    information contained in this release, but should read the Amended
    Technical Report which is posted on Equinox's website
    (www.equinoxminerals.com) and filed on SEDAR (www.sedar.com) and any
    future amendments to such report. Readers are also directed to the
    cautionary notices and disclaimers contained herein. All currency in this
    release is U.S. dollars unless otherwise stated.
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For further information:

For further information: Craig R. Williams (President and Chief
Executive Officer), Michael Klessens (V.P. Finance and CFO), Phone: +61 (0) 8
9322 3318 Email: equinox@equinoxminerals.com; or Kevin van Niekerk (V.P.
Investor Relations/Corporate Development), Phone: (416) 865-3393, Email:
kevin.van.niekerk@equinoxminerals.com; For information on Equinox and
technical details on the Lumwana Project please refer to the company website
at www.equinoxminerals.com

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