Bear Creek updates Prefeasibility Study progress at Corani silver deposit

    VANCOUVER, Sept. 2 /CNW/ - Bear Creek Mining (TSX Venture: BCM) ("Bear
Creek" or the "Company") is pleased to provide an update on the Prefeasibility
Study on the Corani silver-lead-zinc deposit located in southern Peru.
Preliminary design criteria have been defined, field engineering test work has
been initiated and the Study is on track for completion in early 2009.
    Andrew Swarthout, Chief Executive Officer, states "We are very pleased
with the positive advances from our prefeasibility team and we remain very
confident that Corani will become one of the world's top silver producers. The
Corani Scoping Study completed in January 2008 demonstrated a very robust
silver project at throughput rates of 30,000 tonnes per day at an average
annual silver production of 17 million ounces per year over a 12.5 year life
(see news release 18 January, 2008). The realities of the commodities and
capital markets have since changed considerably. Yet, Corani presents several
highly attractive development alternatives which directly address these
changes in market conditions while maintaining a very robust project that
represents value far beyond the Company's current market capitalization. The
Corani deposits hold the critical advantage of being able to optimize design
throughput at 15,000 tonnes per day while focusing on the higher-grade starter
pits having very low stripping ratios and which contain ores demonstrated to
yield the highest recoveries. Importantly, capital expenditures can also be
reduced by as much as 30% thereby significantly reducing the upfront
investment required and mitigating a broad concern in our industry, mainly
exposure to capital overruns on very large mining projects. The Prefeasibility
Study criteria have been optimized to take full advantage of these
alternatives in preparation for commencement of a full feasibility study in
    The grade-tonnage curves, mine sequencing, and metallurgical mapping have
been analyzed within the context of the latest resource and financial models.
Through a series of exercises in conjunction with our prefeasibility
engineering group, Samuel Engineering, Independent Mining Consultants and RDI,
a preliminary mining sequence and processing plan have been formulated which
optimizes IRR and capital requirements at various throughput ranges. The
resulting design criteria for the Prefeasibility Study are expected to:

    -   Adopt a 15,000 tonne per day flotation process plant focusing on
        processing the higher grade and high recovery sulfide ores early in
        the mine life
    -   Target the average head grade at 70g/t Ag, 1.1% Pb and 0.6% Zn ,
        equivalent to 127 g/t Ag, for life of the project
    -   Schedule higher-grade pits yielding silver production of
        10-14 million ounces per year during the first 7 years
    -   Focus on the 90 to 100 million tonnes of the resource that contains
        210 million higher grade ounces within mining pits having a low strip
        ratio (1.4:1)
    -   Establish cash costs per ounce silver (net of base metals) of less
        than $3/ounce in the first 7 years of operation based on current
        metal prices
    -   Provide the opportunity to increase future silver production with
        limited additional capital by either mine expansion and/or longer
        mine life for processing the remaining 150 million ounces in
        resource, thus capturing benefits of potential metals price increases

    The financial results will depend on detailed mine planning, metals
prices and updated capital expenditure requirements and operating cost
estimates produced during the course of the Prefeasibility Study. The selected
approach, namely focusing on Corani's flexibility in development plan
alternatives and initial higher silver production, are expected to confirm a
very positive financial performance.

    Metallurgy - previous metallurgical tests and metallurgical mapping
demonstrates that the Type I and II sulfide ores, which represent the majority
of ore types, respond very well to conventional flotation with recoveries
expected to be 80% silver, 60% lead and 75% zinc. These ore types represent
65% to 70% of the material to be processed during the first 7 years of mining.
Therefore, continued optimization of metallurgical recoveries of these
materials will form an integral part of the Prefeasibility Study in order to
further enhance performance of the project economics. Much of the existing
test work meets prefeasibility-levels, and the Company and its outside
consultants remain confident that continued testing will provide a strong
platform for completion of a bankable feasibility study.

    The TSX Venture Exchange does not accept responsibility for the adequacy
    or accuracy of this release.

    Regulatory footnotes:

    All of Bear Creek's exploration programs and pertinent disclosure of a
technical or scientific nature are prepared by or prepared under the direct
supervision of Marc Leduc, P. Eng., Sr. Vice President of Engineering and
Development and the President and CEO, Andrew Swarthout, P.Geo., who serve as
the Qualified Persons under the definitions of NI 43-101. Silver Equivalency
calculated on 28/8/08 metal prices ($13.60/oz Ag, 0.93/lb Pb and 0.80/lb Zn.
Recoveries of 80% for silver and 60% for both lead and zinc are also assumed
in the calculation. 1 oz Ag = 19.50 lb Pb and 1 oz Ag = 22.67 lb Zn. All
diamond drilling has been performed using HQ diameter core with recoveries
averaging greater than 95%. Core is logged and split on site under the
supervision of Bear Creek geologists. Sampling is done on two-meter intervals
and samples are transported by Company staff to Juliaca, Peru for direct
shipping to ALS Chemex, Laboratories in Lima, Peru. ALS Chemex is an ISO
9001:2000-registered laboratory and is preparing for ISO 17025 certification.
Silver, lead, and zinc assays utilize a multi-acid digestion with atomic
absorption ("ore-grade assay method"). The QC/QA program includes the
insertion every 20th sample of known standards prepared by SGS Laboratories,
Lima. A section in Bear Creek's website is dedicated to sampling, assay and
quality control procedures.
    Certain disclosure in this release, including management's assessment of
Bear Creek's plans and projects, constitutes forward-looking statements that
are subject to numerous risks, uncertainties and other factors relating to
Bear Creek's operation as a mineral exploration company that may cause future
results to differ materially from those expressed or implied in such
forward-looking statements. Any reference to the expected and potential
quantity & grade of mineralization at Corani is conceptual in nature, there
has been insufficient exploration to define a mineral resource on the property
and it is uncertain if further exploration will result in discovery of a
mineral resource on the property. Readers are cautioned not to place undue
reliance on forward-looking statements. Bear Creek expressly disclaims any
intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements
whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise.

For further information:

For further information: Andrew Swarthout - President and CEO, or
Patrick De Witt - Investor Relations, Phone: (604) 685-6269, Direct: (604)
628-1111, E-mail:; please visit the Company's website

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