Investigator Resources unveils ‘outstanding’ prefeasibility study for Paris silver project

Investigator Resources ASX IVR Paris PFS South Australia silver
Investigator managing director Andrew McIlwain said the prefeasibility study confirms Paris as a “technologically sound” and “financially robust” project.

Investigator Resources (ASX: IVR) has unveiled what it describes as an “outstanding” prefeasibility study for its flagship Paris silver project in South Australia’s Eyre Peninsula, which gives it a pre-tax net present value of $202-245 million.

The study was based on an open pit scenario using a simple processing circuit to generate “robust” silver recoveries.

It gives Paris a internal rate of return of 47.9-54.1% and estimates capital expenditure of $131 million would be required to develop the operation.

The initial mine life is between five and seven years and underpinned by a resource of 18.8 million tonnes at 88 grams per tonne silver and 0.52% lead for 53.1 million ounces of silver and 97,600t lead.

Investigator managing director Andrew McIlwain said the prefeasibility study has demonstrated that Paris is a “technologically sound” and “financially robust” project.

“With our current market capitalisation of around $100 million, we consider Paris financeable and value-adding for Investigator shareholders,” he said.

Costs and revenue

Once operational, Paris is expected to generate pre-tax cash flow between $86 million and $97 million a year for a life-of-mine cash flow of $487-$602 million.

This is based on two silver price scenarios – $34.30/oz and $38/oz. All in sustaining costs of $17.45/oz have been estimated to deliver a 49% life-of-mine operating margin, with a payback period of 2.3-2.8 years.

“A key element of the project concept was to create a development option with an accelerated payback that could opportunistically capture what are at times a volatile silver price environment,” Mr McIlwain explained.

Upside and next steps

Mr McIlwain noted upside to the project remained with the potential inclusion of a lead recovery circuit which would generate a payable lead product.

Additionally, the project has “high” near-mine exploration potential.

“We have been able to include leading edge aspects such as using solar power to support power demand as well as adopting dry stacked tailings disposal that will maximise water recovery – vitally important in an arid environment,” Mr McIlwain said.

He added building the resource and improving metallurgical recoveries will be focused on when improving the project’s economics even further.

A definitive feasibility study will begin “immediately” to advance the project further towards development, with first production pencilled in for the second quarter of the 2024 financial year.

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