TSX: WTN & WTN.DB and AIM: WTN
VANCOUVER, April 19 /CNW/ - Western Canadian Coal Corp. (TSX: WTN &
WTN.DB and AIM: WTN) (the "Company") is pleased to provide the following
- For the fiscal year ending March 31, 2008, the Company is
projecting coal shipments of approximately 3.5 million tonnes (Mt).
This comprises 2.2 Mt of hard coking coal and 0.2 Mt of mid-volatile
PCI coal from the Wolverine Mine, and 1.1 Mt of ultra-low volatile
PCI coal ("ULV-PCI") from the Brule Mine, up from the earlier
estimate of 0.8 Mt.
- For the quarter ended March 31, 2007, the Company shipped
372,000 tonnes (YTD - 741,000 tonnes) of hard coking coal and
112,000 tonnes (YTD - 678,000 tonnes) of ULV-PCI coal, for total
sales revenues of C$49.1 million (YTD - C$138.5 million).
Approximately 117,000 tonnes of hard coking coal and 20,000 tonnes of
PCI coal were deferred from the quarter to early April 2007.
- Coal production has been fully committed for coal year 2007 (fiscal
2008) with hard coking coal prices in the mid to high US$80s and PCI
prices in the high US$60s to mid US$70s.
- Start-up at Wolverine has been slower than expected due to shortages
of people, severe weather and disrupted shipments to port arising
from rail labour issues. The Company believes that these issues have
been substantially overcome and beginning April 1, clean-coal
production at Wolverine has been at a rate of 200,000 tonnes per
month. On achieving this level of production, the Company anticipates
per unit cash FOB costs will move towards the sub-C$70/tonne target.
- For the quarter ended March 31, 2007, mining operations at the
Wolverine Mine included total waste stripping of approximately
3.5 million bank cubic meters (BCMs) and 624,000 tonnes of run-of-
mine (ROM) coal, resulting in a 5.6 to 1 strip ratio of waste BCMs to
ROM tonnes of coal. This compares to an average strip ratio of 8.6 to
1 in the previous six-month period. Approximately 87% of the
quarter's ROM coal, or 544,000 tonnes were processed through the
Wolverine plant, producing 373,000 tonnes of clean hard coking coal,
for a processing yield of 68.6%, four percentage points higher than
planned. The Company identified an area of lesser quality coal in the
Perry Creek pit originally thought to be hard coking coal. The area
contains approximately 250,000 tonnes of this coal, which is
anticipated to be completely mined by September 2007 and sold into
the mid-volatile PCI market.
- Operations at the Brule Mine, which started up during the latest
quarter, have gone well. Mining operations at Brule included total
waste stripping of approximately 1.17 million BCMs (including pre-
production waste) with 171,000 tonnes of ULV-PCI coal mined and
101,000 tonnes railed to port.
This release may contain forward-looking statements that may involve
risks and uncertainties. Such statements relate to the Company's expectations,
intentions, plans and beliefs. As a result, actual future events or results
could differ materially from those suggested by the forward-looking
statements. Readers are referred to the documents filed by the Company on
SEDAR. Such risk factors include, but are not limited to changes in commodity
prices; strengths of various economies; the effects of competition and pricing
pressures; the oversupply of, or lack of demand for, the Company's products;
currency and interest rate fluctuations; the Company's ability to secure long
term coal sale contracts for its products and the Company's ability to produce
and supply coal that meets contract specifications and customers'
expectations; various events which could disrupt the Company's construction
schedule or operations; the Company's ability to obtain additional funding on
favourable terms, if needed; and the Company's ability to anticipate and
manage the foregoing factors and risks. Additionally, statements related to
the quantity or magnitude of coal deposits are deemed to be forward-looking
statements. The reliability of such information is affected by, among other
things, uncertainties involving geology of coal deposits; uncertainties of
estimates of their size or composition; uncertainties of projections related
to costs of production; the possibilities in delays in mining activities;
changes in plans with respect to exploration, development projects or capital
expenditures; and various other risks including those related to health,
safety and environmental matters.
WESTERN CANADIAN COAL CORP.
"Gary K. Livingstone"
President and Chief Executive Officer
For further information:
For further information: Gary K. Livingstone, President & CEO, or Fausto
Taddei, CFO, Western Canadian Coal Corp., 900 - 580 Hornby Street, Vancouver,
B.C., V6C 3B6, CANADA, Phone (604) 608-2692, Fax (604) 629-0075, Email