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Kutcho, Tahltan build working relationship

 

April 20, 2018

First Nations mineral exploration Golden Triangle BC

Kutcho Copper Corp.

Kutcho Copper Vice President of Exploration Rory Kutluoglu visits the Kutcho project prior to the company acquiring the northern British Columbia project from Capstone Mining Corp in 2017.

Kutcho Copper Corp. and Tahltan Central Government April 17 said they have entered into exploration and communication agreements aimed at building a positive and mutually beneficial working relationship on the Kutcho Copper project in northwestern British Columbia.

About 100 kilometers (62 miles) east of Dease Lake, Kutcho project is an advance staged copper exploration project in Tahltan First Nation traditional territory, which blankets roughly 93,500 square kilometers (36,100 square miles) of northwestern B.C.

Tahltan Central Council is the governing body of the Tahltan Nation.

The agreements provide a framework for Kutcho Copper and TGC to establish a cooperative working arrangement; promote timely dialogue to foster an open and respectful relationship; identify employment and business opportunities for Tahltan associated with the exploration activities; enhance Tahltan's capacity to participate in opportunities related to the exploration activities and baseline data collection; and establish a working group.

"We are pleased to sign these agreements with Kutcho Copper as they help set the standard for how exploration should be done in Tahltan territory. We look forward to working with Kutcho Copper to advance our people's understanding of both the project's potential impacts and benefits," said Tahltan Central Council President Chad Day.

Since acquiring Kutcho from Capstone Mining Corp. last year, Kutcho Copper has made stakeholder engagement a key part of its program to advance the project towards permitting and development.

"The key to successfully moving our project through feasibility, environmental assessment, permitting and development is having robust baseline data and strong relationships with First Nations," Kutcho Copper President and CEO Vince Sorace said in February.

A prefeasibility study prepared for Kutcho Copper outlines a mine at the Kutcho project that would produce 378 million pounds of copper and 473 million lb of zinc, plus by-product gold and silver, over 12 years of production.

The company has developed plans to complete a feasibility study for Kutcho in 2019 and a decision on mine development in 2020.

Towards these goals, the 2018 program includes additional geotechnical work on the deposits; a drill program to upgrade a portion of the inferred mineral resources to the measured and indicated categories; additional metallurgical test work; and environmental baseline studies.

Tahltan Nation Development Corp., the business arm of the Tahltan Nation, has a suite of specialized contracting services for the resource exploration, mine development and mining that could be utilized at Kutcho.

"The signing of the exploration agreement and the communication agreement with Tahltan Central Government marks a significant milestone in the evolution of the Kutcho Project," said Sorace. "These agreements confirm Kutcho Copper and Tahltan's commitment to work collaboratively while maximizing opportunities for Tahltan as the project advances towards development of the feasibility study."

–SHANE LASLEY

 

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