Vista Gold Corp. Announces Signing of Agreement to Purchase Equipment for Assessment of its Long Valley Gold Project, California



    DENVER, Jan. 7 /CNW/ -- Vista Gold Corp. (Amex:   VGZ) (TSX: VGZ)  is
pleased to announce that further to the Company's January 2, 2008 press
release, the Company has entered into a formal agreement with A.M. King
Industries, Inc. ("A.M. King") and Del Norte Company Ltd., a wholly owned
subsidiary of A.M. King, to purchase gold processing equipment to be used at
Vista's Paredones Amarillos Project in Baja California Sur, Mexico.  As
previously announced, the aggregate purchase price is approximately US$16
million, of which approximately US$8 million was paid on signing of the
purchase agreement.  Vista is currently considering various bridge loan or
convertible debt alternatives with proceeds to be used for the purchase of the
equipment and for other expenditures relating to the development of the
Paredones Amarillos Project, thus allowing the Company to use current cash for
other business purposes. As reported in Vista's press release dated June 21,
2007, the total capital requirements for the project were estimated in a June
2007 pre-feasibility study to be US$110 million. This cost may change as Vista
completes the definitive studies that are in progress as a result of various
scope changes, including an increase in estimated gold production to the range
of 130,000 to 150,000 ounces per year, the incorporation of used equipment and
the impact of inflation.
    Vista is also pleased to announce the results from a preliminary
assessment for Vista's Long Valley Project, Mono County, California, by Mine
Development Associates, ("MDA") of Reno, Nevada, in accordance with Canadian
National Instrument 43-101 standards under the direction of Mr. Neil Prenn, an
independent Qualified Person. This preliminary assessment entitled "Technical
Report, Preliminary Economic Assessment, Long Valley Project, Mono County,
California" is expected to be filed on SEDAR by Vista on or about January 9,
2008.
    In 2003, MDA issued mineral resources estimates for the Long Valley
Project in a report entitled "Technical Report, Long Valley Project, Mono
County, California, USA" dated February 20, 2003, prepared in compliance with
National Instrument 43-101 standards, the results of which were previously
reported by Vista in a press release dated January 23, 2003. Based on the
February 2003 report, the estimated gold resources for the Long Valley
Project, reported at a cutoff grade of 0.01 ounces of gold per ton were (note:
totals may not add due to rounding):



    
                                Short Tons       Grade          Contained Gold
                                  (000s)      (Au oz/ton)          Ounces
    Measured resources 1)         26,597         0.017             452,500
    Indicated resources 1)        41,679         0.018             758,700
    Total measured and
     indicated resources 1)       68,276         0.018           1,211,100
    


    
    1) Cautionary Note to U.S. Investors concerning estimates of Measured and
       Indicated Resources: This table uses the terms "measured resources" and
       "indicated resources". We advise U.S. investors that while these terms
       are recognized and required by Canadian regulations, the U.S.
       Securities and Exchange Commission does not recognize them. U.S.
       investors are cautioned not to assume that any part or all of mineral
       deposits in these categories will ever be converted into reserves.
    



    
                                Short Tons       Grade          Contained Gold
                                  (000s)      (Au oz/ton)          Ounces
    Inferred resources 2)         32,914         0.017             571,500
    

    
    2) Cautionary Note to U.S. Investors concerning estimates of Inferred
       Resources: This table uses the term "inferred resources". We advise
       U.S. investors that while this term is recognized and required by
       Canadian regulations, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission does
       not recognize it. "Inferred resources" have a great amount of
       uncertainty as to their existence, and great uncertainty as to their
       economic and legal feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any
       part of an inferred mineral resource will ever be upgraded to a higher
       category. Under Canadian rules, estimates of inferred mineral resources
       may not form the basis of a feasibility study or prefeasibility
       studies, except in rare cases. U.S. investors are cautioned not to
       assume that any part or all of an inferred resource exists or is
       economically or legally minable.
    
    In undertaking the preliminary assessment described in the 2008 report,
MDA considered the economic and technical parameters associated with
development of the mineral resources within the restraints imposed by the
state of California's mining regulations that include a provision that all
mined materials not removed from the property be replaced within the perimeter
of the excavation. The preliminary assessment evaluated the potential
economics of the project assuming that the mineral resources were mined using
open-pit mining methods and processed using heap-leach technology.  The
preliminary assessment contemplates mining activities conducted by the owner
using purchased equipment. The study included a process flowsheet based on
metallurgical testing conducted over the past ten years under the supervision
of previous owners and consisting of cyanide shake leach assays on pulps,
bottle roll tests on drill cuttings from numerous reverse circulation holes
and long-term column tests on bulk samples from surface samples and core
samples. The metallurgical test work and flowsheet were reviewed and approved
for this study by Resource Development Inc. of Wheat Ridge, Colorado. The
flowsheet proposes a lined heap-leach pad to be loaded at a rate of 4,000,000
tons per year of material in 30-foot-high lifts. The material would be crushed
to a nominal 3-inch size and agglomerated with lime and cement prior to
placing on the heap leach pad. Following application of cyanide leach
solutions, the gold would be recovered in carbon columns from which it would
be stripped and a gold dore would be produced by electrowinning. After the pit
material has been mined, the remaining waste materials would be backfilled
into the pit along with the detoxified heap material.
    Using a gold cutoff grade of 0.007 ounces per ton, the estimated gold
resources within a designed pit as described in the 2008 report are shown in
the following table.



    
                         PRELIMINARY ASSESSMENT STUDY
                     Gold Resources Within a Designed Pit
                     (above a 0.007 opt Au cutoff grade)
    

    
    Class                   Mineral  Gold    Contained  Total  Total Stripping
                             Tons    Grade      Gold    Waste   Tons   Ratio
                             (000s)(Au oz/ton)  (oz)     Tons  (000s)  (W:O)
                                                        (000s)
    

    
    Measured resources (1)   15,112   0.018  265,600                      NA
    Indicated resources (1)  15,880   0.023  358,100                      NA
    Total Measured and
     Indicated Resources (1) 30,992   0.020  623,700                      NA
    

    
    Inferred resources (2)    2,467   0.033   61,100                      NA
                                                        29,208 62,668    0.87
    

    
    (1) Cautionary Note to U.S. Investors concerning estimates of Measured and
        Indicated Resources: This table uses the terms "measured resources"
        and "indicated resources". We advise U.S. investors that while these
        terms are recognized and required by Canadian regulations, the U.S.
        Securities and Exchange Commission does not recognize them. U.S.
        investors are cautioned not to assume that any part or all of mineral
        deposits in these categories will ever be converted into reserves.
    

    
    (2) Cautionary Note to U.S. Investors concerning estimates of Inferred
        Resources: This table uses the term "inferred resources". We advise
        U.S. investors that while this term is recognized and required by
        Canadian regulations, the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission does
        not recognize it. "Inferred resources" have a great amount of
        uncertainty as to their existence, and great uncertainty as to their
        economic and legal feasibility. It cannot be assumed that all or any
        part of an inferred mineral resource will ever be upgraded to a higher
        category. Under Canadian rules, estimates of inferred mineral
        resources may not form the basis of a feasibility study or
        prefeasibility studies, except in rare cases. U.S. investors are
        cautioned not to assume that any part or all of an inferred resource
        exists or is economically or legally mineable.
    
    In the preliminary assessment, MDA estimated startup capital at US$58.8
million and total project capital at US$61.8 million. Operating costs
including mine closure and heap detoxification are estimated per ton of
material mined and processed on a heap leach as follows: mining, US$3.54 per
ton; processing, US$1.96 per ton; cyanide destruction, US$0.25 per ton; and
general and administrative costs and royalties, US$0.89 per ton. Total
operating costs are estimated at US$6.64 per ton of heap-leach material mined
and processed which equates to US$415 per ounce of gold recovered. An
estimated 535,300 ounces of gold would be produced over an eight-year mine
life.
    MDA used a base-case gold price of US$550 per ounce, with sensitivity
analyses completed at higher and lower gold prices. The positive pre-tax
result estimates are shown in the following table, and indicate that the
project could be potentially economically viable at gold prices of US$550 per
ounce and above. Additional work is required to determine the economic
viability of the project.


    
    Gold Price           Net Present Value at 5%       Internal Rate of Return
    (US$/oz)                 Discount Rate
                            (US$ millions)
    $550                         $6.6                         12.3%
    $600                        $25.7                         25.5%
    $650                        $44.7                         35.9%
    $700                        $63.8                         45.4%
    $750                        $82.9                         54.4%
    $800                       $101.9                         63.2%
    
    The "preliminary assessment" is preliminary in nature and includes
inferred mineral resources (7% inferred and 93% measured and indicated) that
are considered too speculative geologically to have the economic
considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as
mineral reserves, and there is no certainty that the preliminary assessment
will be realized.  Mineral resources that are not mineral reserves do not have
demonstrated economic viability.
    Fred Earnest, Vista's President and COO, commented, "At the moment, Vista
is primarily concentrating on the development of its Paredones Amarillos
Project in Mexico and the evaluation of the potentially larger Mt. Todd
Project in Australia, and has no immediate plans to develop the Long Valley
Project. The results of this preliminary assessment are encouraging,
indicating that at current gold prices, extraction of the mineral resources in
a manner consistent with the mining laws of the state of California could
generate substantial value. We are encouraged by the results, especially
considering that in 2003 we acquired the Long Valley Project for US$750,000
and a 1% net smelter royalty."
    
    About Vista Gold Corp.
    
    Since 2001, Vista has acquired a number of gold projects with the
expectation that higher gold prices would significantly increase their value.
Vista has recently completed a preliminary feasibility study on the Paredones
Amarillos Project in Mexico that indicated positive results at gold prices
lower than those now prevailing. Vista plans to confirm these results with a
definitive feasibility study in 2008. Vista is undertaking programs to advance
the Paredones Amarillos Project, including the purchase of long delivery
equipment items, so that construction can begin during the second half of
2008. The results of a preliminary assessment completed in 2007 on the Mt.
Todd Project in Australia were encouraging and additional technical studies
are underway with a definitive feasibility study planned for completion by
mid-2009. Vista's other holdings include the Guadalupe de los Reyes Project in
Mexico, Yellow Pine Project in Idaho, Awak Mas Project in Indonesia, Long
Valley Project in California, and Amayapampa Project in Bolivia.
    This press release contains forward-looking statements within the meaning
of the U.S. Securities Act of 1933 and U.S. Securities Exchange Act of 1934
and forward-looking information within the meaning of Canadian securities
laws. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, included in
this press release that address activities, events or developments that Vista
expects or anticipates will or may occur in the future, including such things
as the purchase of gold processing equipment for the Paredones Amarillos
project, potential financing alternatives and availability and timing of
funding for the equipment purchase and for other expenditures relating to the
development at the Paredones Amarillos project and estimated capital
requirements for the project, and for other Vista projects, results of the
preliminary assessment for the Long Valley deposit including previous and
newly reported resource estimates, economic and technical parameters
associated with possible development of resources at the Long Valley deposit
including mining and processing methods and compliance with California state
law in connection with such possible development, estimated capital costs for
the Long Valley project and estimated operating costs and components thereof,
estimated mine life and estimated production over the mine life, gold price
projections, estimates of net present value and internal rate of return for
the Long Valley project at various gold prices, preliminary feasibility study
results, and plans for a definitive feasibility study and for construction and
development activities at the Paredones Amarillos project, plans for
evaluation of the Mt. Todd project including preliminary assessment results
and plans, timing and results for a definitive feasibility study to be
undertaken at the Mt. Todd project, Vista's future business strategy,
competitive strengths, goals, operations, plans, potential project
development, future share price and valuation, future gold prices, Vista's
potential status as a producer, and other such matters are forward-looking
statements.  When used in this press release, the words "estimate", "plan",
"anticipate", "expect", "intend", "believe" and similar expressions are
intended to identify forward-looking statements.  These statements involve
known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the
actual results, performance or achievements of Vista to be materially
different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or
implied by such forward-looking statements.  Such factors include, among
others, uncertainty of preliminary assessment results and of feasibility study
results and estimates on which such results are based; risks relating to
delays in commencement and completion of construction at the Paredones
Amarillos project; risks of shortages of equipment or supplies; risks of
inability to achieve anticipated production volume or manage cost increases;
risks that Vista's acquisition, exploration and property advancement efforts
will not be successful; risks relating to fluctuations in the price of gold;
the inherently hazardous nature of mining-related activities; uncertainties
concerning reserve and resource estimates; potential effects on Vista's
operations of environmental regulations in the countries in which it operates;
risks due to legal proceedings; risks relating to political and economic
instability in certain countries in which it operates; uncertainty of being
able to raise capital on favorable terms or at all; and external risks
relating to the economy and credit markets in general; as well as those
factors discussed in Vista's latest Annual Report on Form 10-K and Quarterly
Report on Form 10-Q and other documents filed with the U.S. Securities and
Exchange Commission and Canadian securities commissions.  Although Vista has
attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results to
differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there
may be other factors that cause results not to be as anticipated, estimated or
intended.  There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be
accurate as actual results and future events could differ materially from
those anticipated in such statements.  Vista assumes no obligation to publicly
update any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information,
future events or otherwise.
    For further information, please contact Connie Martinez at (720)
981-1185, or visit the Vista Gold Corp. website at http://www.vistagold.com




For further information:

For further information: Connie Martinez of Vista Gold Corp., 
+1-720-981-1185 Web Site: http://www.vistagold.com


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