MONTREAL, QUEBEC -- (Marketwire) -- 12/17/12 -- Stornoway Diamond Corporation (TSX: SWY) is pleased to announce that it has received from the Quebec Ministere du Developpement durable, de l'Environnement, de la Faune et des Parcs ("MDDEFP") the transfer of the Certificate of Authorization for the construction of the Renard Mine Road, the 97 km long mining grade road that Stornoway will construct to complete all season road access to the Renard Diamond Project. The transfer of this Certificate of Authorization has been made consistent with the schedule contained within the Framework Agreement entered into on November 15th 2012 between Stornoway, the MDDEFP, the Quebec Ministere des Transports ("MTQ"), the Ministere des Ressources Naturelles and the Ministere des Finances et de l'Economie.
Construction of the road that will provide all-season vehicle access to the Renard Project began in February 2012 as the "Route 167 Extension". Under the terms of the Framework Agreement, and a subsequent Financing Agreement entered into on November 30th, 2012, Quebec will complete the first 143km of road as a 70km/hr two-lane gravel highway as previously planned and Stornoway will undertake the construction of a 50km/hr single lane mining road over the remaining 97km. Quebec will provide Stornoway with credit facilities of up to C$85 million to complete this work. To facilitate the road's construction schedule, the MTQ will complete a winter road by March 2013 to allow temporary access to Renard and the mobilization of fuel, road construction equipment and camps. It is expected that permanent road access to Renard will be available by Q4 2013 to allow mine construction to commence.
The Renard Mine Road Certificate of Authorization represents the principal regulatory approval required for Stornoway to commence road construction. Given that the single lane road that will be built will have a smaller environmental footprint than was previously contemplated for the Route 167 Extension, Stornoway will seek minor changes to the terms of the authorization.
About the Renard Diamond Project
The Renard Diamond Project, located in the James Bay region of North-Central Quebec, is one of the most advanced new diamond mining projects under development in the world today. In November 2011, Stornoway released the results of a Feasibility Study for Renard that highlighted the potential of the project to become a significant producer of high value rough diamonds over a long mine life. NI 43-101 compliant Probable Mineral Reserves stand at 18.0 million carats, with a further 17.5 million carats classified as Inferred Mineral Resources, and 23.5 to 48.5 million carats classified as non-resource exploration upside. All kimberlites remain open at depth. Pre-production capital cost stands at an estimated C$802 million, with a life of mine operating cost of C$54.71/tonne giving a 68% operating margin over an initial 11 year mine life. The project's Certificate of Authorization was issued by Quebec in December 2012. Readers are referred to the technical report dated December 29, 2011 for further details and assumptions relating to the project.
About Stornoway Diamond Corporation
Stornoway is a leading Canadian diamond exploration and development company listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol SWY. Our flagship asset is the 100% owned Renard Diamond Project, on track to becoming Quebec's first diamond mine. Stornoway is a growth oriented company with a world class asset, in one of the world's best mining jurisdictions, in one of the world's great mining businesses.
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