We are excited to hear about a couple of economic boosters this week.
On Monday came the announcement that the old Sigurdson mill by Hanceville will be reopened this week.
And yesterday Taseko Mines Ltd. announced plans to increase production at Gibraltar Mine near McLeese Lake.
The region could definitely use these projects more than ever, especially since the federal government rejected the Prosperity mine as proposed, since BC Hydro rejected the Tsilhqot’in biomass project, and since the economy doesn’t appear to have improved all on its own.
The mill, renamed River West Forest Products, is being resurrected with the help of financial investment from four First Nations communities.
It will officially start up on Friday.
The increases to Gibraltar’s production still need co-operation of Taseko’s Gibraltar Joint Venture partner Cariboo Copper Corp (parties are currently in discussions), but we are confident the project will go ahead.
Included in the increases are molybdenum production increases to the tune of more than one million pounds per year.
And capital costs for the Gibraltar Development Plan 3 are expected to be $235 million for the concentrator and molybdenum plant and approximately $90 million for mining equipment.
We expect the expansion will translate into more jobs in the local area and give this region a much-needed lift.
We still have a long way to go to economic recovery, but we are delighted to hear these two projects move forward.