Sunday 21st October 2018

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Posts tagged ‘ontario’

Cross-country events mark Investor Education Month

October 2nd, 2018

by Greg Klein | October 2, 2018

Following the ounce-of-prevention principle, securities commissions across Canada plan a number of initiatives to encourage smarter, safer investment strategies. A month of events begins with World Investor Week, in which Canadian regulators join the International Organization of Securities Commissions from October 1 to 7. Here’s an outline of this country’s events from province to province.

British Columbia
The B.C. Securities Commission will release new research on millennials this month, along with new tools to help people understand their investment returns. The BCSC also plans design updates to InvestRight.org to improve its efficacy.

Cross-country events mark Investor Education Month

Alberta
A digital education campaign called Spot the Odd will raise awareness of the Alberta Securities Commission’s free resources as well as encourage financial literacy and fraud awareness. A number of activities across the province will include Don’t Get Tricked, to be held in Calgary on October 17.  The ASC provides other resources on CheckFirst.ca.  

Saskatchewan
The province’s Financial and Consumer Affairs Authority has a cryptocurrency awareness campaign slated for Facebook, Twitter, the FCAA website and YouTube. In addition, businesses planning to use cryptocurrencies are invited to discuss their project with the FCAA to learn whether it falls under securities legislation.

Manitoba
The Manitoba Securities Commission will formally launch MoneySmartManitoba.ca to promote financial literacy and planning. The MSC will also take to the Twittersphere with news, tips and strategies for investors.

Ontario
The Ontario Securities Commission plans social media chats on Twitter and Facebook with the hashtag #IEM2018. The OSC also hosts GetSmarterAboutMoney.ca, plans a telephone townhall for October 10, presents public events around the province with OSC in the Community and further encourages awareness through an investor newsletter.

Participating in World Investor Week helps promote investor education and protection both locally and globally.—Tyler Fleming,
Ontario Securities Commission

Quebec
L’Autorité des marchés financiers will release results of its fourth Financial Awareness Index, measuring the public’s knowledge and use of financial products and services. The AMF will also present the third edition of its Talking Money in Class! contest for high school teachers and take part in the Quebec Seniors’ Fair.

New Brunswick
The Financial and Consumer Services Commission will present online info with special emphasis on initial coin offerings. For more tips on fraud, investors may visit fcnb.ca and follow the commission on Facebook and Twitter. The Fortune online trivia game allows investors to compete with others across the province to learn more and win prizes.

In addition to all that, the Canadian Securities Administrators umbrella group offers its own online tools and resources. The CSA invites the public to take advantage of Investor Education Month and World Investor Week by following @CSA_News on Twitter and @CSA.ACVM on Facebook.

Read: Regulators emphasize innovation and deterrence as financial sanctions fail.

Overwhelming majority puts Quebec in new hands, New Brunswick still deadlocked

October 1st, 2018

by Greg Klein | October 1, 2018

Overwhelming majority puts Quebec government in new hands

CAQ incoming premier Francois Legault argued against unacculturated immigrants,
made popular funding promises and vowed to cut taxes. (Photo: Coalition Avenir Québec)

 

Updated Quebec results (with 2014 figures in parentheses)

  • Coalition Avenir Québec: 74 seats, 37.4% of the popular vote (21 seats, 23%)
  • Quebec Liberal Party: 32 seats, 24.8% (68 seats, 41.5%)
  • Québec Solidaire: 10 seats, 16.1% (3 seats, 7.6%)
  • Parti Québécois: 9 seats, 17% (28 seats, 25.4%)
  • Others: 0 seats, 4.6% (5 seats, 2.4%)

 

A seven-year-old party jumped from third place to government status as the Coalition Avenir Québec won the October 1 provincial election. Leading in a majority of seats half an hour after polls closed, the CAQ pushed the incumbent Liberals to second place, leaving the former official opposition Parti Québécois struggling to stay above fourth spot. Easily winning his riding of L’Assomption was incoming premier Francois Legault, a CAQ co-founder who previously created Air Transat and served as a PQ government minister. His CAQ has attracted disaffected Liberals as well as Péquistes.

PQ leader Jean-Francois Lisee lost his seat to a Québec Solidaire challenger.

Overwhelming majority puts Quebec government in new hands

Mining issues held little prominence as debate focused heavily on immigration but sidelined independence. Spending promises flowed freely with health care, education and child care giveaways coinciding with CAQ promises to cut taxes.

But just one week before the campaign’s official start date, the Liberal government announced $185 million of provincial money for the privately held BlackRock Metals’ iron ore-vanadium-titanium open pit development in the northern riding of Ungava. The money consisted of $100 million in loans and an $85-million investment, part of a total package of $1.3 billion attracted to the project. The Liberals also promised $63 million to build energy infrastructure in the Chicoutimi riding that would host BlackRock’s secondary processing facility.

Ungava’s Liberal incumbent placed third while the CAQ narrowly beat the PQ in a very tight three-way contest. In Chicoutimi, the CAQ won a strong victory over the PQ incumbent.

Last May Premier Philippe Couillard joined Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to announce $60 million in federal funding for an Alcoa NYSE:AA/Rio Tinto NYSE:RIO aluminum smelter to be built in the overlapping federal riding of Chicoutimi-Le Fjord. Three days later Trudeau called a by-election, only to see a Conservative defeat his Liberal incumbent.

The Quebec government invests heavily in projects ranging from junior exploration to operating mines through the Ressources Québec subsidiary of Investissement Québec. In August Legault said he would cut bureaucracy at Investissement Québec.

Quebec’s March budget posted a $1.3-billion surplus, but the province receives equalization payments that came to $11.8 billion this year and will rise to $13.3 billion in 2019. Currently the entire amount comes from the western provinces. Legault opposed the Energy East pipeline proposal from Alberta to New Brunswick.

Pundits might wonder to what extent the CAQ’s success depended on its proposal to expel unacculturated immigrants. But any criticism of la province spéciale will have to be muted, even if the plan calls for unwanted foreigners to be packed off to Anglo Canada.

The PQ’s demotion hardly spells the end of separatism now that the party shares the independence vote with QS and possibly the CAQ, which has equivocated on the subject.

As for last week’s New Brunswick election, results remain in limbo. With 22 seats, the Conservatives edged out the incumbent Liberals by a single riding. Speculation focuses on either party making a deal with the People’s Alliance or the Greens, which won three seats each.

The Green result triples its N.B. legislative standing, continuing the party’s progress in Canada. Last June the Ontario riding of Guelph elected that province’s first Green. Canada now has eight Greens elected provincially (three in N.B., three in B.C., and one each in Ontario and Prince Edward Island), along with one elected federally in B.C. In B.C.’s legislature, the party holds the balance of power under an agreement with the New Democratic Party minority government.

Ontario Securities Commission director of enforcement Jeff Kehoe comments on the OSC’s cash-for-tips program

August 1st, 2018

…Read more

Follow the money, distantly

July 13th, 2018

Regulators emphasize innovation and deterrence as financial sanctions fail

by Greg Klein

It was a momentous week for Canadian regulators, seemingly. In a ruling on “one of the largest corporate frauds in Canadian history,” the Ontario Securities Commission slammed Sino-Forest scamsters with over $81 million in sanctions. One day later the Canadian Securities Administrators announced a nationwide total last year of nearly $70 million in penalties and a roughly equal amount in payback orders. All that sounds impressive, but a troubling question remains: How much—or, more accurately, how little—will ever be collected?

Regulators emphasize innovation and deterrence as financial sanctions fail

TSX-listed Sino-Forest’s 2012 crash wiped out $6 billion of investors’ money. Six years of OSC reviews expanded on short seller Muddy Waters’ exposé to conclude that “the complexity, scale and duration of the fraud are simply stunning.”

This week the commission imposed disgorgements, penalties and costs on a quartet of Chinese executives totalling $81.4 million, with Gang of Four ringleader Allen Chan responsible for $67.3 million.

In a sense, the OSC showed leniency. “We do not generally apply our penalties to each misstatement or instance of fraudulent conduct occurring even over an extended period of time, as here,” the commission stated. “If that approach were taken, the sanctions sought by staff would be multiplied many times.”

But whether the amounts could be higher would seem a moot point without collection. In an e-mailed response to ResourceClips.com inquiries, OSC public affairs manager Kristen Rose stated: “In addition to the challenges inherent in collecting sanctions generally, there is added difficulty in matters where respondents are outside of North America, and there is uncertainty as to whether there are recoverable assets. That said, as with any such matter, the OSC will make every effort to identify recoverable assets.”

In addition to the challenges inherent in collecting sanctions generally, there is added difficulty in matters where respondents are outside of North America, and there is uncertainty as to whether there are recoverable assets. That said, as with any such matter, the OSC will make every effort to identify recoverable assets.—Kristen Rose,
OSC public affairs manager

She added that Chan faces a civil judgement of US$2.6 billion, as well as a class action suit. Wronged investors would get priority over OSC penalties.

This week’s annual enforcement report from the CSA—the umbrella group for securities commissions in 13 jurisdictions—shows $69.4 million in penalties imposed nationwide during the last calendar year, along with another $68.6 million in restitution, compensation and disgorgement orders.

The report doesn’t say how much was collected. CSA chairperson Louis Morisset doesn’t have the figures either, not even for previous years. But he emphasizes that collection efforts continue.

“Those sanctions don’t always align with a person or company’s ability to pay,” he tells ResourceClips.com. “I can certainly assure you that we’re deploying all efforts to collect those monetary sanctions.”

Among the barriers to collection are bankruptcy, competing claims, lack of recoverable assets or offshore residence.

Nevertheless the performance of securities commissions, especially in British Columbia and Ontario, has come under media scrutiny. Beginning late last year, a series of Postmedia stories by Gordon Hoekstra detailed several cases of B.C. Securities Commission sanctions remaining unenforced, despite offenders holding significant assets. Over the last decade the BCSC collected less than 2% of $510 million in fines and payback orders, while the OSC enforced about 18% of its penalties, Hoekstra found.

In December Globe and Mail reporters Grant Robertson and Tom Cardoso released their study of 30 years of regulatory records, finding scams with higher dollar values than the resulting penalties, which often went unenforced anyway.

Morisset declined to comment on the stories, referring only to a December CSA statement that took issue with some aspects of the G&M reports and emphasized the role of police in financial crime investigations.

Still, media coverage seemed to make an impact.

“Immediately after the Postmedia investigation, the BCSC filed at least 10 writs of seizure and sale in B.C. Supreme Court for financial fraudsters owing nearly $70 million in penalties, and renewed three enforcement orders,” Hoekstra reported last month. “Also following the investigation, B.C. Finance Minister Carole James ordered the BCSC to improve its collection record and called for new tools and modernization of the Securities Act to improve collection.”

Regulators emphasize innovation and deterrence as financial sanctions fail

CSA chairperson Louis Morisset:
“There is an array of means and we’re deploying
everything available in the circumstances
to ensure deterrence.” (Photo: CSA)

As the CSA report shows, regulators don’t just go after money. Last year courts handed out prison terms totalling 33 years for offences under provincial securities legislation, with sentences for the 17 individuals ranging from 30 days to five years. Criminal Code cases handled by regulators brought eight sentences totalling 14 years.

Six of the jailbirds were repeat offenders. But a low overall recidivism rate of about 4% shows the power of deterrence, Morisset says. And, regardless of whether it’s responding to media criticism about enforcement, the CSA emphasizes the importance of deterrence.

It’s “also achieved by other means like revoking, suspending or imposing restrictions on registration, imposing bans, freezing accounts,” explains Morisset. “There is an array of means and we’re deploying everything available in the circumstances to ensure deterrence.”

Last month the OSC stated its two-year-old whistleblower program brought 11 no-contest settlements, returning more than $368 million to investors.

Beyond that the CSA plays up its “innovative” approaches, to binary options for example. In addition to a public awareness campaign, the group approached Twitter, Facebook, Google, Apple, Visa and MasterCard. “We made them aware of the issues surrounding binary options and that they were used to a certain extent to facilitate fraud, and I think our approach was very innovative and effective in preventing fraudsters from reaching their targets,” says Morisset.

Also innovative was an outright ban on binary options. “It was the first time in Canada that we banned a product, giving a very strong message that these are toxic products.”

He says new approaches to fraud could expand the pool of potential victims, drawing in millennials with little or no investment experience. CSA publicity campaigns encourage awareness of the cryptocurrency world.

Through its Regulatory Sandbox, the CSA tries to streamline the entry of innovative fintech firms into the regulatory world. The CSA’s new Market Analysis Platform will use updated surveillance technology to monitor manipulation and insider trading. Canada’s first Pump and Dump Summit, held in Calgary last September, brought together four Canadian securities commissions and the RCMP, along with the U.S. SEC and FBI. Across Canada and abroad, inter-jurisdictional collaboration helps regulators join forces, says Morisset.

“We are innovative and we have to be, because the markets are innovative.”

But when the regulators fail, others might step in—with fraudsters on one side and, on the other, maybe opportunistic vigilantes like Muddy Waters.

Mining commentator Stan Sudol points out how policy-makers remain under-informed about the industry’s accomplishments, contributions, potential and challenges

July 9th, 2018

…Read more

OSC whistleblower inducements bring wronged investors over $368 million

June 29th, 2018

by Greg Klein | June 29, 2018

Rewards to informers have yet to be revealed but the Ontario Securities Commission says wronged investors have benefited from Canada’s first-such cash-for-tips program. During its two years of operation an average of two tips a week has resulted in 11 no-contest settlements that returned over $368 million to investors. Company employees who provide information receive protection, as well as rewards of up to $5 million. But that money could take several years to arrive, given the complexity of investigations, the length of proceedings and the time granted to appeal.

OSC whistleblower inducements bring wronged investors over $368 million

The program calls for inside scoop that’s “high-quality, timely, specific and includes credible facts” about actions including fraud, insider trading, misleading financial statements and trading-related misconduct.

The commission referred 19 tips, about 10% of the total received, to its enforcement branch, where 15 “are associated with active investigations.” Sixty-eight tips “were or are in the process of being shared with another OSC operating branch or another regulator for further action.”

The commission says it endeavours to protect whistleblowers’ identities, guards against employer reprisals and allows informers to act anonymously through a lawyer. Company officials wracked with guilt or apprehension, meanwhile, may also turn themselves in for a possible no-contest settlement.

“The program is still in its infancy, but is already proving to be a powerful enforcement tool, as with our no-contest settlements and the option to self-report,” commented OSC director of enforcement Jeff Kehoe. “These all serve to promote a strong culture of compliance in Ontario’s business community, effectively extending our reach and allowing us to do more to protect investors.”

Read more about the OSC whistleblower program.

Pistol Bay Mining releases zinc-copper assays from Ontario, prepares for new drilling

June 13th, 2018

by Greg Klein | June 13, 2018

As a long-overdue modern exploration program continues on northwestern Ontario’s Confederation Lake, Pistol Bay Mining TSXV:PST released assays for an initial three-hole 1,555-metre program on the property’s Arrow zone. The results “confirm the consistent nature of mineralization in the Arrow zone and give us more confidence in the existing mineral resource estimate,” noted president/CEO Charles Desjardins. The assays show:

Hole GL18-01

  • 0.73% copper, 2.22% zinc, 12 g/t silver, 0.307 g/t gold and 0.03% lead for 4.34% zinc-equivalent over 10.9 metres, starting at 432.7 metres in downhole depth
  • (including 0.69% copper, 4.49% zinc, 22.2 g/t silver, 0.217 g/t gold and 0.1% lead for 6.65% zinc-equivalent over 2.9 metres)
  • (and including 1.16% copper, 1.48% zinc, 12.8 g/t silver, 0.64 g/t gold and 0.01% lead for 4.91% zinc-equivalent over 3 metres)
Pistol Bay Mining releases zinc-copper assays from Ontario, prepares for new drilling

Drilling will soon resume
at Confederation Lake’s
Fredart zone.

GL18-03

  • 0.13% copper, 1.13% zinc, 3.3 g/t silver, 0.044 g/t gold and 0.02% lead for 1.54% zinc-equivalent over 12.9 metres, starting at 563.1 metres
  • (including 0.2% copper, 1.93% zinc, 4.3 g/t silver, 0.083 g/t gold and 0.04% lead for 2.54% zinc-equivalent over 3.8 metres)
  • (which includes 0.11% copper, 2.69% zinc, 3.4 g/t silver, 0.04 g/t gold and 0.07% lead for 3.09% zinc-equivalent over 1.5 metres)
  • (and also includes 0.48% copper, 2.92% zinc, 8.5 g/t silver, 0.15 g/t gold and 0.05% lead for 4.28% zinc-equivalent over 1.3 metres)

True widths weren’t provided.

In early May the company released the program’s first hole, showing 5.15% zinc-equivalent over 12.85 metres.

Last year Pistol Bay filed a 43-101 resource for Arrow, with a base case 3% zinc-equivalent cutoff for an inferred category showing:

  • 2.1 million tonnes averaging 5.78% zinc, 0.72% copper,19.5 g/t silver and 0.6 g/t gold, for a zinc-equivalent grade of 8.42%

Contained amounts come to:

  • 274 million pounds zinc, 34.3 million pounds copper, 1.33 million ounces silver and 41,000 ounces gold

As the rig moves to the project’s Fredart copper-gold zone, the team keeps busy re-compiling all Arrow drill results and incorporating new surveys of collar locations and azimuths using differential GPS equipment, Pistol Bay stated.

Although Fredart underwent extensive drilling between 1965 and 1985, the zone lacks a 43-101 resource due to uncertainty about drill hole locations and the lack of previous core to confirm historic assays, the company added.

The drill campaign follows the 15,000-hectare property’s first survey by modern geophysics which, in another first for Confederation Lake, was conducted on a regional scale.

Read more about Pistol Bay Mining.

The Ontario election: What does Ford’s nation have in store for mining?

June 7th, 2018

by Greg Klein | June 7, 2018

He reportedly promised to get Ring of Fire development started even if he had to climb onto a bulldozer to blaze a trail himself. Now Doug Ford and Ontario’s Progressive Conservatives have won a resounding majority, already apparent less than half an hour after polls closed and five days after Liberal leader Kathleen Wynne conceded defeat.

The Ontario election: What does Ford’s nation have in store for mining?

As a popular newcomer facing an increasingly unpopular incumbent,
Doug Ford needed few details to back up his platform.
(Photo: Ontario Progressive Conservatives)

Canada-wide, this has probably been the most closely watched provincial election outside Quebec for many years.

Celebrated by some as a populist and disliked by the establishment for the same reason, Ford was nevertheless granted a degree of civility that the media generally begrudged his late brother, former Toronto mayor Rob Ford. Although a veteran of municipal politics and a long-time PC member, this marks Doug Ford’s first foray as a provincial candidate.

Elegant for its simplicity was his party’s five-point plan, starting with “scrap the carbon tax.” He’d “cut gas prices by 10 cents a litre, reduce middle class income taxes by 20%, cut your hydro bills by 12%,” create “quality” jobs, slash government waste and “end hallway health care” with new beds and additional treatment.

No doubt more details will come. But his Ring of Fire rhetoric drew criticism for a lack of specifics. At a debate on Northern issues last month, the Ottawa Citizen quoted him saying, “For years, all we’ve heard is talk, talk, talk. No action whatsoever. We’re going to work with the people of the North, we’re going to work with the First Nations, we’re going to respect the treaties that are in place right now. But we’re not going to talk. We’re going to get in there, after the agreements, and get to work.”

According to the Citizen, the Liberal leader “practically threw up her hands. Doing things right takes time, she said, and the agreements you just mentioned are made by talking. ‘You’re just going to drive a bulldozer right across northern Ontario,’ she said.”

Earlier that month Ford announced a revenue-sharing plan for Northern communities, including natives, using provincial revenue from forestry and mining. Again, specifics were scarce but he beat a similar, more detailed, announcement from the Liberals by a few days.

Yet the issues that all parties either neglected in detail or ignored altogether have been documented by mining commentator Stan Sudol at The Republic of Mining and serialized in the Sudbury Star. Sudol wrote the piece with the election in mind, but it’s worth bookmarking for future reference. If the PCs were really serious about mining, they might even hire him as a special adviser.

In other election notes, leaders of all three main parties—plus the Greens—won their own ridings. But Wynne, who edged out her PC challenger by less than 200 votes and dragged the Liberals down to third-place status, announced her resignation as party leader.

Guelph elected Ontario’s first Green Party MPP, Mike Schreiner. Canada has just five other Greens elected provincially (three in British Columbia and one each in New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island), along with a sole MP from B.C.

Ottawa Centre elected NDP candidate Joel Harden, who publicly supports the party’s extremist Leap Manifesto.

Lanark-Frontenac-Kingston re-elected PC Randy Hillier, defeating a challenge by NDPer and former MiningWatch activist Ramsey Hart.

The huge new northern riding of Mushkegowuk-James Bay—which hosts the Ring of Fire—elected the NDP’s Guy Bourgouin, maintaining a longstanding NDP tradition from the region’s former riding of Timmins-James Bay.

Kiiwetinoong, the massive new riding to the west, had no results available as of 10:30 p.m. local time.

While the election was considered “seismic” by some commentators, the most historic significance might have been high voter turnout on the last game of the Stanley Cup series.

Stan Sudol: Ontario politicians disregard mining issues, to the province’s peril

June 1st, 2018

by Greg Klein | June 1, 2018

One of Canada’s greatest mineral discoveries since 1883, the Ring of Fire offers tremendous potential to a region plagued by endemic poverty and to a province burdened with the world’s largest sub-national debt. Meanwhile Ontario law requires mining companies to monitor carbon emissions from portable toilets. With a provincial election coming on June 7, something’s terribly lacking in campaign discussion, not to mention political vision, says Stan Sudol. Backing up his insights with factual detail, the Sudbury native, former mine worker, communications consultant and mining commentator presents a highly informed perspective at his website, The Republic of Mining.

Stan Sudol: Ontario politicians disregard mining issues, to the province’s peril

(Photo: Elections Ontario)

Are the hurdles to Ring of Fire development insurmountable? Sudol points out:

In contrast, the equally isolated territory of Nunavut has built two gold mines (Agnico-Eagle’s Meadowbank and TMAX Resources’ Doris) and one iron ore operation (Baffinland’s Mary River) in some of the most hostile terrain on the planet. A fourth gold mine (Agnico Eagle) should be in operation in 2019 and junior miner Sabina Gold and Silver Corp has been given continued development approvals by the Nunavut Impact Review Board.

Economic benefits to the indigenous population have been powerful enough to include the bemusing effect of insufficient parking spots in the hamlet of Baker Lake.

Do decision-makers realize, let alone appreciate, the world-class technical expertise centred around Sudbury? Canada’s tallest skyscraper, for example, is downtown Toronto’s 72-storey Bank of Montreal building. But consider this:

The deepest mines in northeastern Ontario and northwestern Quebec are roughly equal to 650 stories underground! It takes an amazing amount of advanced technology to safely bring workers to those depths. A tidal wave of innovation is engulfing a new era of the digital underground.

Ontario politicians show inadequate concern, let alone leadership, on issues ranging from community consultation, public awareness, problematic regulations and the need for infrastructure. These often intertwined issues remain crucial to an industry that can deliver much more to Ontario than it already does, Sudol explains.

In compiling this call to action he chose thoroughness over brevity, and has no doubt exceeded the typical politician’s attention span. But each party should have someone write a précise for their leader to study. Their federal counterparts would learn something too.

Meanwhile others can learn a lot about the mining industry, its challenges and contributions, by reading Sudol’s post here.

Pistol Bay drills 5.15% zinc-equivalent over 12.85 metres at NW Ontario’s Confederation Lake

May 3rd, 2018

by Greg Klein | May 3, 2018

With three holes totalling 1,525 metres now complete out of a 3,500-metre winter-spring campaign, Pistol Bay Mining TSXV:PST released the first assay on May 2. The initial holes targeted the Arrow zone, part of the 100%-optioned, 15,000-hectare Confederation Lake project in northwestern Ontario.

Sunk on Arrow’s main sulphide zone, hole DDH GL18-02 gave up Russian doll interval-within-interval assays as follows:

Pistol Bay drills 5.15% zinc-equivalent over 12.85 metres at NW Ontario’s Confederation Lake

Pistol Bay hopes to upgrade last year’s
resource estimate for the project’s Arrow zone.

  • 3.07% zinc, 0.42% copper, 0.12% lead, 22.2 g/t silver and 0.59 g/t gold for 5.15% zinc-equivalent over 12.85 metres, starting at 422.95 metres in downhole depth
  • (including 3.82% zinc, 0.5% copper, 0.15% lead, 27.3 g/t silver and 0.71 g/t gold for 6.33% zinc-equivalent over 9.8 metres)
  • (which includes 4.83% zinc, 0.56% copper, 0.15% lead, 26.4 g/t silver and 0.45 g/t gold for 7.13% zinc-equivalent over 7.3 metres)
  • (which includes 8.88% zinc, 0.92% copper, 0.38% lead, 44.3 g/t silver and 0.38 g/t gold for 12.3% zinc-equivalent over 2 metres)
  • (which includes 22% zinc, 0.28% copper, 0.77% lead, 74.9 g/t silver and 0.77 g/t gold for 24.8% zinc-equivalent over 0.6 metres)

Overlapping some of these intervals was a three-metre section described as “conspicuous gold enrichment towards the top of the main sulphide zone”:

  • 0.83% zinc, 0.33% copper, 0.17% lead, 40.4 g/t silver and 1.65 g/t gold for 4.41% zinc-equivalent over 3 metres, starting at 426 metres

A 43-101 resource released last year for Arrow used a base case 3% zinc-equivalent cutoff for an inferred category showing:

  • 2.1 million tonnes averaging 5.78% zinc, 0.72% copper,19.5 g/t silver and 0.6 g/t gold, for a zinc-equivalent grade of 8.42%

Contained amounts come to:

  • 274 million pounds zinc, 34.3 million pounds copper, 1.33 million ounces silver and 41,000 ounces gold

But recent drilling suggests Arrow might consist of “two separate zones arranged en echelon or that the southwestern part is displaced from the northeastern part by a fault,” Pistol Bay stated.

Still to come are assays for the two remaining holes.

From Arrow, the rig moves about eight kilometres west to sink three more holes on the property’s Fredart A zone, also known as Copperlode A. Work dating to the 1960s resulted in two conflicting historic, non-43-101 estimates of 386,000 tonnes averaging 1.56% copper and 33.6 g/t silver, or 219,500 tonnes averaging 1.95% copper and 41.8 g/t silver.

The drill program follows last year’s VTEM-Plus survey, the area’s first exposure to state-of-the-art regional geophysics.