Capstone Reports Production Results for Q4 and Full Year 2010

2010 Production of 76.0 million pounds of Copper in Concentrates

VANCOUVER, Jan. 26 /CNW/ - Capstone Mining Corp. (CS: TSX) today announced its operating results for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2010 from its two operations, the Cozamin and Minto mines.  Combined production totalled 18.9 million and 76.0 million pounds of copper in concentrates in the three and twelve months, respectively, with additional significant by-products of lead, zinc, silver and gold.  At December 31, 2010 Capstone had a cash balance of US$192.4 million (including restricted cash of US$6.4 million and a short-term deposit balance of US$20 million), a significant increase primarily attributable to the cash generated from sales at higher metal prices as well as the sale of some investments.  As press released on December 17, 2010 Capstone reiterates its 2011 guidance of 80-85 million pounds of copper in concentrates.

Q4 and 2010 Annual Production

  Q4 2010 Total 2010
Copper in concentrates
(millions of pounds)
- Cozamin 8.2 35.5
- Minto 10.7    40.5(*)
Total 18.9 76.0

(*) Minto realized negative adjustments to previously reported copper production based on the final settlement of copper sales from previous quarters in the amount of one million pounds. The adjustments are only reflected in the year to date column.

Operational Highlights for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2010

The following is a summary of operational highlights for Capstone during the three and twelve months, respectively, ended December 31, 2010:

  • Production of 18.9 million and 76.0 million pounds of copper contained in concentrates, respectively. 

  • By-product production of 3.7 million and 17.3 million pounds of zinc, 1.5 million and 9.1 million pounds of lead and 371,177 and 1,610,008 ounces of silver in concentrates, for the three and twelve months, respectively.  Final gold production is not available since assaying is done off site, but is estimated at 2,234 and 22,284 ounces for the respective periods.

  • Detailed operating statistics for both operating mines are provided in the tables below.

Cozamin Highlights and Outlook

Cozamin Mine results for the three and twelve months ended December 31, 2010, respectively, were:

  Q4 2010 Total 2010
Production (2)
(contained in concentrates)
- Copper (000s pounds) 8,209 35,552
- Lead (000s pounds) 1,496 9,142
- Zinc (000s pounds) 3,694 17,348
- Silver (ounces) 334,751 1,403,170
- Tonnes of ore mined 214,689 978,954
- Tonnes processed 215,503 981,682
- Tonnes processed per day 2,342 2,690
- Copper grade (%) 1.88 1.80
- Lead grade (%) 0.42 0.63
- Zinc grade (%) 1.15 1.27
- Silver grade (g/t) 67.1 62
- Copper (%) 92.0 91.2
- Lead (%) 74.1 67.6
- Zinc (%) 67.8 63.0
- Silver (%) 72.0 71.7
Concentrate (2)    
- Copper  (dmt) 14,187 64,356
- Copper (%) 26.2 25.1
- Silver (g/t) 582 536
- Lead  (dmt) 1,015 6,282
- Lead (%) 66.9 66.0
- Silver (g/t) 2,119 1,391
- Zinc  (dmt) 3,534 16,448
- Zinc (%) 47.4 47.8

(2) Adjustments based on final settlements will be made in future periods

  • Mine and mill production for Cozamin for the last 5 weeks of the year came in at less than 50% of plan as a consequence of the stability assessments being carried out in the high grade Avoca area.  Production was further hampered by a shutdown in the main ore haulage ramp while repairs were made in a cross faulting zone.

  • As a result of the geomechanical evaluation of the Avoca Zone, remediation and additional development activities are required, though production levels continue to increase as new support standards are implemented, they will not return to plan levels until late-February.

Minto Highlights and Outlook

Minto Mine results for three and twelve months ended December 31, 2010, respectively, were:

  Q4 2010 Total 2010(4)
Production (3)
(contained in concentrates)
- Copper (000s lbs) 10,672 40,454
- Gold (oz) (2) 2,234 22,284
- Silver (oz) 36,426 206,838
- Waste (tonnes) 1,764,509 7,873,049
- Ore (tonnes) 484,907 1,494,752
- Total material mined (tonnes) 2,249,416 9,367,801
- Tonnes processed 258,121 915,051
- Tonnes processed per day 2,806 2,507
- Copper grade (%) 2.03 2.22
- Gold grade (g/t) (2), (3) 0.46 0.93
- Silver grade (g/t) 6.6 8.7
- Copper (%) 92.5 90.3
- Gold (%) (2), (3), 58.1 81.1
- Silver (%) 66.1 80.6
- Dry tonnes produced 12,082 47,065
- Copper grade (%) 40.1 39.0
- Gold grade (g/t) (2), (3) 5.8 14.7
- Silver grade (g/t) 94 137

(2) Gold is not assayed on site, resulting in a significant lag in receiving this data.   Data for Q4 is an estimate based on prior production experience.

(3) Adjustments based on final settlements will be made in future periods.

(4) Adjustments are only reflected in year to date column relating to negative adjustments of previously reported
copper production.

  • Mill throughput increased during November and December with installation of higher performance tailings filter cloths. 

  • With the completion of the dewatering of the Minto Main pit in October higher grade ore was mined from the Stage 4 push-back resulting in higher grades being processed. 

  • Mining in Stage 4 of the Minto Main pit was essentially complete at year-end.  Mining of the final stage of the Minto Main pit is on schedule to complete in early Q2 of 2011.

  • All critical permitting activities for initiation of mining in Area 2 and initial development of the Area 2 underground resources is on track for completion in Q1 of 2011

2010 Financial Results Timing

Capstone will report its 2010 financial results on Monday, March 14, 2011 after market close and will host a conference call and webcast to discuss these results as noted below.

Conference call and webcast details are as follows:

Dial in:     
      Tuesday March 15, 2011
8:30 AM PST (11:30 AM EST)
North America - 1.888.231.8191, International - 1.647.427.7450
North America - 1.800.642.1687, International - 1.416.849.0833
Replay Pass code:  14853632

Forward-Looking Information

This document may contain "forward-looking information" within the meaning of Canadian securities legislation and "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 (collectively, "forward-looking statements"). These forward-looking statements are made as of the date of this document and Capstone Mining Corp. (the "Company") does not intend, and does not assume any obligation, to update these forward-looking statements, except as required under applicable securities legislation.

Forward-looking statements relate to future events or future performance and reflect Company management's expectations or beliefs regarding future events and include, but are not limited to, statements with respect to the estimation of mineral reserves and resources, the realization of mineral reserve estimates, the timing and amount of estimated future production, costs of production, capital expenditures, success of mining operations, environmental risks, unanticipated reclamation expenses, title disputes or claims and limitations on insurance coverage. In certain cases, forward-looking statements can be identified by the use of words such as "plans", "expects" or "does not expect", "is expected", "budget", "scheduled", "estimates", "forecasts", "intends", "anticipates" or "does not anticipate", or "believes", or variations of such words and phrases or statements that certain actions, events or results "may", "could", "would", "might" or "will be taken", "occur" or "be achieved" or the negative of these terms or comparable terminology. By their very nature forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of the Company to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements. Such factors include, among others, risks related to actual results of current exploration activities; changes in project parameters as plans continue to be refined; future prices of resources; possible variations in ore reserves, grade or recovery rates; accidents, labour disputes and other risks of the mining industry; delays in obtaining governmental approvals or financing or in the completion of development or construction activities; as well as those factors detailed from time to time in the Company's interim and annual financial statements and management's discussion and analysis of those statements, all of which are filed and available for review on SEDAR at Although the Company has attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual actions, events or results to differ materially from those described in forward-looking statements, there may be other factors that cause actions, events or results not to be as anticipated, estimated or intended. There can be no assurance that forward-looking statements will prove to be accurate, as actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements.

Accordingly, readers should not place undue reliance on forward looking statements.

43-101 Compliance

Unless otherwise indicated, Capstone has prepared the technical information in this news release ("Technical Information") based on information contained in the technical reports and news releases (collectively the "Disclosure Documents") available under Capstone Mining Corp.'s company profile on SEDAR at Each Disclosure Document was prepared by or under the supervision of a qualified person (a "Qualified Person") as defined in National Instrument 43-101 Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects of the Canadian Securities Administrators ("NI 43-101").  Readers are encouraged to review the full text of the Disclosure Documents which qualifies the Technical Information.  Readers are advised that mineral resources that are not mineral reserves do not have demonstrated economic viability.  The Disclosure Documents are each intended to be read as a whole, and sections should not be read or relied upon out of context.  The Technical Information is subject to the assumptions and qualifications contained in the Disclosure Documents. 

The following employees of Capstone, each a Qualified Person, reviewed Technical Information contained in this news release: Robert Barnes, Professional Engineer, reviewed all Technical Information in this news release. In addition, Gregg Bush, Chief Operating Officer for Capstone, reviewed Technical Information related to the Minto Mine and the Cozamin Mine.

SOURCE Capstone Mining Corp.

For further information:

about Capstone, please contact:
Darren Pylot, President & CEO or Gregg Bush, COO
Or Jason Howe, Investor Relations, at (604) 684-8894 or toll free at (866) 684-8894


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