Merit Mining Corp. Receives Positive Preliminary Economic Assessment on Its Gold-Copper Greenwood Gold Project

    VANCOUVER, April 9 /CNW/ - Merit Mining Corp. (TSX-V: MEM) is pleased to
report that a Preliminary Economic Assessment ("PEA") has been completed on
the Company's gold-copper Greenwood Gold Project, co-authored by P & E Mining
Consultants Inc. ("P&E") of Brampton, Ontario, Roxburgh & Associates Ltd.
("R&A") of Bolton, Ontario, Paul S. Cowley, VP Exploration & Director of the
Company, and Merit Consultants International Inc. of Vancouver. The report
will be filed on Sedar ( and the Company's website
    The PEA is based on an initial four year mining plan with production at
the rate of 200 tonnes per day for the first twelve months of operation and,
following permitting, expansion of production to 400 tonnes per day in the
second year.

    Project Cash Flow
    On pre-production capital expenditures totalling C$13.0 million, assuming
82% equity financing and 18% debt financing through the lease purchase of
underground and surface equipment and plant assets, the project has a payback
period of 1.3 years.
    Based on 12-month trailing average metal prices for gold and copper as of
November 30, 2006 ($US 595 per ounce gold price and $US 2.98 per pound copper
price), the project generates a net pre-tax cash flow of C$29.6 million. This
results in a pre-tax IRR of 66 percent and a pre-tax NPV of C$20.6 million at
a discount rate of 10%.
    Smelting, refining and royalty costs are C$21.80 per tonne and site
operating costs are C$115.30 per tonne, for total cash operating costs of    
C$134.60 per tonne. Site operating costs are US$266 per gold equivalent ounce
and total cash operating costs are US$311 per gold equivalent ounce.
    The study has an accuracy of minus 15% plus 30% with respect to estimates
of mining, milling, tailings management and associated costs.

    The potentially mineable resource was estimated based on P&E's updated
September 2006 resource estimates for the Lexington-Grenoble and Golden Crown
deposits (NR 06-15). Each stoping area was individually designed using an
economic block model of the in-situ mineral resource combined with the mining,
geological, and ground support constraint criteria. The objective of this
methodology is to maximize the operating cash flow ("OPCF") contribution from
each stope. OPCF is defined as net smelter return ("NSR") minus site operating
costs ("OPEX"). Each stope included all blocks above a C$10/tonne contribution
margin. Low or zero value blocks that must be mined are included as dilution.
The NSR calculation was derived from metal prices of US$ 494/oz for Au and
US $2.04/lb for Cu, a C$/US$ exchange rate of $0.842; 95% Cu recovery to
concentrate; 45% Au recovery to doré, 45% Au recovery to Cu concentrate;
concentration ratio 30:1; Cu Smelter Payable of 93.5%; Au Smelter Payable of
95.5%; Au doré payable of 99%; Cu refining charge of US$0.15/lb; Au refining
charge of US$5.50/oz; concentrate shipping and smelter charges of
US $215/tonne; Mining Cost of $65.00 per tonne mined; Process Cost of $29.00
per tonne processed; and General & Administration Cost of $7.50 per tonne
    The Greenwood Gold Project has a measured and indicated potentially
mineable portion of the resource of 352,000 tonnes, in addition to which there
are 86,000 tonnes in the inferred classification as tabled below.

                                                                Au       Cu
                                                      Tonnes   (g/t)     (%)
    Lexington-Grenoble Mineable Portion of Resource by Classification
    Measured                                           4,000   13.18    1.92
    Indicated                                        234,000   10.49    1.46
    Measured & Indicated                             239,000   10.54    1.47

    Inferred                                          74,000    4.25    0.66

    Golden Crown Mineable Portion of Resource by Classification
    Measured                                               0    0.00    0.00
    Indicated                                        113,000    9.58    0.44
    Measured & Indicated                             113,000    9.58    0.44

    Inferred                                          11,000    4.45    0.27

    Greenwood Gold Project Total Mineable Portion of Resource by
    Classification - Lexington-Grenoble and Golden Crown Mines
    Measured                                           4,000   13.18    1.92
    Indicated                                        347,000   10.19    1.13
    Measured & Indicated                             352,000   10.23    1.14

    Inferred                                          86,000    4.28    0.60

    (1) Mineral resources, which are not mineral reserves, do not have
        demonstrated economic viability. The estimate of mineral resources
        may be materially affected by environmental, permitting, legal,
        title, taxation, socio-political, marketing, or other relevant
    (2) The quantity and grade of reported inferred resources in this
        estimation are conceptual in nature.
    (3) The reader is cautioned that the preliminary assessment is
        preliminary in nature, that it includes inferred resources 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.

    The mineral resources in this news release were estimated using the
Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM), CIM Standards on
Mineral Resources and Reserves, Definitions and Guidelines prepared by the CIM
Standing Committee on Reserve Definitions and adopted by CIM Council
December 11, 2005.

    Mining and Processing
    Mining methods are primarily conventional underground narrow vein jack
leg and slash open stoping and jumbo mining methods in the larger initial high
grade stopes at the Lexington-Grenoble mine and narrow vein shrinkage stoping
at the Golden Crown mine. A central process plant and tailings facility will
be constructed 1.5 kilometres from the Golden Crown mine and 9.5 kilometres
from the Lexington-Grenoble mine. The process flowsheet uses conventional
crushing, grinding, gravity and flotation to produce both doré and a gold-rich
copper concentrate.

    Conceptual Mineralization
    Merit Mining has identified and modeled contiguous conceptual mineralized
targets adjacent to the Lexington Grenoble and Golden Crown Mines. The models
have been volumetrically quantified, applied nearest neighbour grades and
subsequently volumetrically reduced according to reasonable estimates of risk
which finally resulted in a conceptual tonnage figure with grade. This
scenario could potentially add 220,000 to 270,000 tonnes grading 8.0 to
9.0 grams Au per tonne and 1.0 to 1.2 percent copper.
    Mine life could be extended to six or more years if resources are added
from exploration success on the conceptualized targets at the
Lexington-Grenoble and Golden Crown mines and the Company's nearby Lone Star
    The reader is cautioned that the consideration or use of mineral
potential derived from conceptual mineralized targets, as outlined above, is
hypothetical in nature and involves the quantification of mineralization that
is as yet unrealized and estimates of such mineralization should not be relied
upon. There can be no assurance that any of the mineral potential, in whole or
in part, will ever become economically viable. This mineral potential will
require further evaluation that the Company's management and consultants
intend to carry out in due course.
    The PEA includes a C$2.2 million exploration program at the
Lexington-Grenoble Mine and Golden Crown Mine to prove up this conceptual
mineralization. This exploration, planned over a two year period, is initially
from surface and subsequently extended underground from the existing ramp from
which access will be gained to the adjacent indicated and inferred resource

    Conclusions and Recommendations
    P&E and R&A consider that the Greenwood Gold Project operating plan,
based on the Lexington-Grenoble and Golden Crown mine potentially recovered
resources, has a high probability of economic viability. The project can be
quickly brought into production in eight to ten months from project release.
The project is highly sensitive to metal prices and moderately sensitive to
changes in operating and capital costs.
    P&E and R&A have made several recommendations in the PEA. The Company
should finance and develop the Greenwood Gold Project according to the mine
production plan and schedule in the PEA. Exploration programs should focus on
expanding the highest potential resources at the Lexington-Grenoble mine and
Lone Star deposit. An NI 43-101 compliant resource estimate should be
completed on the Lone Star deposit and a mine development, permitting and
operating plan should be initiated.
    The Company is pleased with the report and intends to carry out the
recommendations. The Company has recently announced a financing arrangement
with Wega Mining ASA, whereby Wega has agreed to make an investment of up to 
C$21 million in Merit. This major investment will enable the Company to
develop the Greenwood Gold Project to production.
    Mr. Eugene Puritch, P.Eng, of P&E Mining Consultants Inc., Mr. James
Roxburgh, P.Eng., of Roxburgh and Associates Ltd, and Mr. Jay Collins, P.Eng.
of Merit Consultants International Inc. are independent "Qualified Persons"
responsible for the PEA. Mr. Paul Cowley, P.Geo., VP Exploration and a
director of the Company, who also co-authored the PEA, is a non-independent
Qualified Person. Messrs. Puritch, Roxburgh, Collins, and Cowley have read and
approved the contents of this news release.

    Merit Mining Corp.
    Signed "Fred Sveinson"
    Fred Sveinson, President & CEO

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

    The statements made in this News Release may contain certain
forward-looking statements. Actual events or results may differ from the
Company's expectations. Certain risk factors may also affect the actual
results achieved by the Company.

For further information:

For further information: Fred Sveinson at (604) 694-2344; For Investor
Relations Information contact: MarketSmart Communications, (604) 261-4466 or

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