In 2017, CAMIMEX reported a total silver production of 187 million ounces, implying a rise of 7.5 percent in comparison to 2016 in Mexico. The Mexican giant Fresnillo was once again leader of the pack as the world’s largest silver producer. Zacatecas was announced as the biggest silver-producing state in the country. Mexico is expected to continue delivering positive results for the coming years thanks to its fierce portfolio of projects that will start production in the coming years.

Find out more about the Top 8 silver projects in development below.

 

1. El Compás

Company: Endeavour Silver

State: Zacatecas

Production Moz: N/A

Investment (US$ Millions): 11.3

Start date: 2018

It is the company’s fourth and highest-grade silver equivalent mine. The mine is located in Zacatecas and was acquired by Endeavour Silver in 2016. According to the company website the mine and plant are both scalable and exploration activity is concentrated on finding small orebodies to fill the plant to capacity. “At El Compás, we expect to finish construction of the mine and refurbishment of the plant on time and budget in 2Q18 and we will strive for full production by the end of July and an official plant opening in 3Q18,” said Godfrey Walton, COO of Endeavour Silver.

 

2. Fresnillo/Saucito Pyrite Plant

Company: Fresnillo

State: Zacatecas

Production Moz: 3.5

Investment (US$ Millions): 155

Start date: 2018

The plant is expected to increase the recovery rate of silver and gold in the Fresnillo and Saucito mines through a leaching process. Its average production rate is estimated to be 3.5 million ounces of silver and 13,000 ounces of gold per year. The company wants to maximize production in the Fresnillo district through this project.

Fresnillo Pyrites Plant in Saucito

3. Tahuehueto

Company: Telson Resources

State: Durango

Production Moz: 0.2

Investment (US$ Millions): 32.2

Start Date: 2018

The Tahuehueto project consists of 28 mining concessions that are grouped into five blocks and total approximately 7,492ha. It lies within the Sierra Madre mineral belt and encompasses a series of historic and producing mines. “We have already completed exploration and feasibility studies, acquired the necessary permits and purchased equipment,” said José Antonio Berlanga, CEO and Director of Telson Mining Corporation. “We were also able to close an offtake agreement with Trafigura for US$15 million that we are using to complete the costs of construction, which started in January 2018.

José Antonio Berlanga, CEO and Director of Telson Mining Corporation

 

4. Rey de Plata

Company: Industrías Peñoles

State: Guerrero

Production Moz: 4.7

Investment (US$ Millions): 303

Start Date: 2019

The project is located in Guerrero and its construction is continuing to advance. The excavation for the primary crushing area has been finalized. Its auxiliary building for storage, the clinic and training areas have all advanced as well. The future mine unit is expected to have a milling and processing capacity of 1.3 million t/y of lead, zinc and copper. According to Fernando Alanís, Director General of Industrías Peñoles, “The Rey de Plata polymetallic mine in Guerrero is currently under construction and should achieve commercial production by the end of 2018. It should be a very profitable asset that produces gold, silver, zinc, lead and copper.

Fernando Alanís, Director General of Industrías Peñoles

 

5. Terronera

Company: Endeavour Silver

State: Jalisco

Production Moz: 1.6

Investment (US$ Millions): 69

Start Date: 2019

The Project has the potential to become Endeavor’s fifth and largest mine. It is located in San Sebastian, a historic mining district in Mexico. The exploration project was acquired in 2010 and the company made its first discovery in 2012. The company is waiting for final permits and a decision on its production before starting production.  “Our largest development project is Terronera near Puerto Vallarta and we expect to start construction by the end of the 2Q18 and production by the end of the 4Q19, so that 2020 will be the first full year of production,” Walton explained.

6. La Ciénega (Expansion)

Company: Fresnillo

State: Durango

Production Moz: 1.3

Investment (US$ Millions): 55

Start date: 2019

The mine is located in Durango and is 100 percent owned by Fresnillo. It has been in operation since 1992 and has a total expected mine life of 10 years. It produces, gold, silver, lead and zinc. In 2016 the company reported a production of 7,450 tons, a 24.8 percent increase from the previous year.

7. Juanicipio

Company: Fresnillo/MAG Silver

State: Zacatecas

Production Moz: 10

Investment (US$ Millions): 305

Start Date: 2020

The project is being developed through a 56/44 joint venture between Fresnillo and MAG Silver. It is located in Zacatecas, 8km south west of Fresnillo. Discovered by a team led by renowned geologist Peter Megaw in 2003, it is expected to reach average annual production 10 million ounces of silver and 30,000 ounces of gold. Its feasibility study is currently under evaluation.

Juanicipio

8. Media Luna

Company: Torex Gold

State: Guerrero

Production Moz: 1.7

Investment (US$ Millions): 482

Start Date: 2022

The deposit is located in the Balsas river in the state of Guerrero. It was discovered in March 2012 and has an inferred resource of 7.4 million gold equivalent ounces at a grade of 4.48g/t. Its recovery process is expected to happen through an underground mining method where the mineralized material is transported through a combination of underground, aerial and underground rope conveyor to the ELG processing plant.

 

 
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