Grinding optimizations to Mineral Park's SAG mills made earlier in 2013 have helped increase throughput rates during the second quarter 2013 to an average of 45,177 tons per day ("tpd"), which was 6% higher when compared to the first quarter 2013. The increased throughput rates were achieved despite processing ore with a grind ore index of 11.8 during the second quarter 2013, which was 19% harder than in the first quarter 2013. When processing ore at the plan average grind ore index of 11.2, Mineral Park has sustained design throughput rates of 50,000 tpd. After de-watering the Ithaca pit early in the second quarter 2013, the first bench of the pit, which contained acidified ore and was originally intended to be wasted, was processed through the mill. Metallurgical testing indicated that the economics favoured milling of this higher grade material, despite the potential for lower recoveries. Given Mineral Park's complex ore body, management continues to determine the optimal blend of high grade ore from the Turquoise pit, the altered but higher grade softer ore from Ithaca pit and the softer but lower grade ore from the Central pit to achieve sustained throughput rates of 50,000 tpd.
Mercator expects to release its second quarter 2013 financial results on August 12, 2013, after market hours, and hold a conference call and a live webcast to discuss these results on August 13, 2013 at 8:30 a.m. Pacific time. To participate in the call, dial 800-565-0813 (North America) and 800-6578-9898 (International). To listen to the live webcast, visit www.gowebcasting.com/4362.
An archived recording of the conference call will be available for playback after the event until August 27, 2013 by dialling 1-800-408-3053 (North America) and 800-3366-3052 (International) with conference passcode 8395555#.
(i)Copper equivalent production
All references to copper equivalent production is calculated using a molybdenum/copper ratio of 4.65, based on the Company's estimated 2013 beginning of year metals prices (includes adjustments for copper forward sales program).
Quality Assurance/Quality Control
Gary Simmerman, BSc Mining Eng, FAusIMM, a consultant to the Company and a Qualified Person as defined by National Instrument 43-101, supervised the preparation of and verified the Mineral Park technical information contained in this release.
About Mercator Minerals Ltd.
Mercator Minerals Ltd., a TSX listed Canadian mining company with the potential to have one of the fastest growing base metal profiles in its peer group, is a copper, molybdenum and silver producer with a diversified portfolio of high quality assets in the USA and Mexico. Mercator provides investors exposure to current copper, molybdenum and silver production from the large tonnage long life Mineral Park Mine in Arizona, as well as mid-term exposure to potential copper production from its El Pilar deposit in the State of Sonora in northern Mexico and longer term exposure of molybdenum and copper through the potential development of the El Creston deposit also in the State of Sonora in northern Mexico.
For further information please visit www.mercatorminerals.com.
On Behalf of the Board of Directors
MERCATOR MINERALS LTD.
D. Bruce McLeod, P.Eng., President and CEO
National Instrument 43-101 Compliance
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