Rupert Resources

Harte Gold Reports Production Results for Fourth Quarter and Full Year 2020 and Provides 2021 Guidance

Harte Gold achieves record quarterly production and exceeds full year production guidance

TORONTO, Jan. 7, 2021 /CNW/ - HARTE GOLD CORP. ("Harte Gold" or the "Company") (TSX: HRT) (OTC: HRTFF) (Frankfurt: H4O) is pleased to report its production results for the fourth quarter ("Q4") and full year 2020 and provide production guidance for 2021. All dollar figures are in CAD, unless otherwise noted.

2020 Highlights:

  • Full year gold production from the Sugar Zone mine of 25,649 ounces, exceeding the upper range of guidance of 20,000 to 24,000 ounces.
  • Q4 2020 gold production of 10,835 ounces, the highest quarterly period of production on record.
  • Average head grade of 7.7 g/t Au processed in Q4, which reconciled well to the mineral resource model.
  • Mine capital development is trending positively, setting the Company up for continued operational improvements in 2021.

2021 Guidance:

  • Gold production of 60,000 to 65,000 ounces.
    • Approximately two thirds of gold production will be unhedged.
  • Expecting to reach average throughput rate of 800 tpd during Q1 2021 and then through the remainder of 2021.
  • Cash Cost per ounce1 of US$800 to US$850.
    • Includes full owner-operated workforce.
  • All-in sustaining cost ("AISC") of US$1,400 to US$1,550 per ounce1.
    • Mine development: $26 million.
    • Other capital: $13 million, includes upgrade of existing camp and construction of a heavy equipment shop.
  • Regional exploration approximately $5 million to identify and develop new zones of mineralization.

1. Cash Cost and AISC are non-GAAP financial measures. Please refer to the Company's MD&A for additional information.

Frazer Bourchier, President and CEO commented:

"2020 was an important transitional year for Harte Gold; one in which we made a series of operational enhancements to production and mine planning at the Sugar Zone mine. Since restarting operations, we have made steady improvements across a number of key metrics – including mine ore production, development metres, and processed grades. These changes have resulted in record quarterly production for Harte Gold and exceeding our revised production guidance for 2020."

Mr. Bourchier added, "I am confident that the improved processes we've instituted in 2020 have set the foundation for consistent, stable operational growth and reduced unit costs in 2021 and beyond. We expect to lift our production from 25,649 ounces of gold in 2020 to between 60,000 – 65,000 ounces of gold recovered in 2021, with cash costs between US$800 - US$850 per ounce, due in large part to achieving and maintaining an average daily throughput rate of 800 tpd at near mineral reserve grade."

Operating Summary for 2020:

The following table compares Harte Gold's operating performance for Q4 2020 relative to the previous quarters of operations for 2020. In Q2 2020, operations were placed on temporary care-and-maintenance due to the COVID-19 pandemic so Q2 2020 is not considered an operating quarter.

 

Units

FY 2020

Q4 2020

Q3 2020

Q1 2020

Operating Performance

         

Ore Tonnes Processed

tonnes

134,360

46,288

36,367

51,705

Ore Tonnes Mined

tpd

526

514

473

575

Head Grade

g/t Au

6.3

7.7

5.7

5.5

Recovery

%

94.2%

94.9%

93.4%

94.0%

Gold Ounces Produced

oz Au

25,649

10,835

6,218

8,597

The Sugar Zone Mine Is Well Positioned to Grow Production in 2021:

Mine Development Trending Positively

Development rates have improved steadily since the restart of the mine in late July. Improved efficiencies, along with additional mobile equipment, had a positive impact on development rates for Q4, which are expected to manifest by Q1 2021 into increased ore mining rates.

The Company plans to add an additional single boom jumbo in Q1 2021, at which point the equipment fleet should be sufficient to achieve targeted rates for 2021. The focus will then remain on manpower productivities, mine planning and geology, longhole ore drilling and blasting, and equipment availability to ensure improved throughput rates are maintained throughout 2021.

 

Q3 2020

Q4 2020

FY 2021

Mine Development Metres (m/day)

9.2

11.4

13.5

Mine Development Metres (m/day) (CNW Group/Harte Gold Corp.)

Grade Control Practices Well Managed

Processed grade at the Sugar Zone mine improved in Q4 2020 due to the higher-grade areas of the mine that became accessible at depth and, overall, reconciled positively to the mineral resource model. Grade control practices continue to be a priority which help minimize ore dilution. For 2021, the average grade is expected to remain consistent to what the Company is currently mining – at or around the average reserve grade of 7.1 g/t Au.

 

Q3 2020

Q4 2020

FY 2021

Processed Grade (g/t) Au

5.7

7.7

7.1

Processed Grade (g/t) (CNW Group/Harte Gold Corp.)

Mine Production

As mine development continues and new areas of the mine become accessible, additional stoping flexibility is expected. In Q1 2021, the Company expects to have new working areas available. Once these areas are accessible, the focus will be to manage planning, manpower and equipment availability and utilization to ensure a consistent 800 tpd throughput rate is achieved.

 

Q3 2020

Q4 2020

FY 2021

Mine Production (tpd)

473

514

800

Mine Production (tpd) (CNW Group/Harte Gold Corp.)

Ounces Recovered

Daily mined and recovered ounces have improved, with continued focus on leading indicators and managing the factors mentioned above.

 

Q3 2020

Q4 2020

FY 2021

Ore Feed Ounces1 (oz Au/day)

89

124

176

Ore Feed Ounces(1) (oz Au/day) - 1. Product of mined production and grade divided by mine operating days (CNW Group/Harte Gold Corp.)

1. Product of mined production and grade divided by mine operating days.

Feasibility Study Update:

The Feasibility Study for expansion to a 1,200 tpd throughput rate is progressing well. The Company plans to announce the results of the Feasibility Study via press release after market close on January 20, 2021.

Feasibility Study Conference Call and Webcast

The Company will host a technical briefing for shareholders, analysts and investors on January 21, 2021 at 10:00 AM ET to present the Feasibility Study results. Access to the conference call and webcast is as follows:

Telephone access:

Toronto Local and International

647-427-7450

Toll-free (North America)

1-888-231-8191

Conference ID

8644876

Webcast access:

Via Harte Gold's website at www.hartegold.com (details on home page) or the following link: https://produceredition.webcasts.com/starthere.jsp?ei=1419006&tp_key=60cb47b240

A replay of the conference call and webcast will be available until 11:59 pm on February 28, 2021, and can be accessed using the following dial-in number:

Local

416-849-0833

Toll-free (North America)

1-855-859-2056

Replay code

8644876

Upcoming Market Information:

  • Feasibility Study Results (January 20, 2021)
  • Updated Mineral Resource and Mineral Reserve Estimate (January 20, 2021)
  • Feasibility Study – Analyst and Investor Webcast (January 21, 2021)
  • Filing of NI 43-101 Technical Report (early March 2021)
  • Q4 and full year 2020 Financial Results (March 23, 2021)

Technical Information

Scientific and technical information contained in this news release was reviewed and approved by Chris McCann, who is a "qualified person" as defined by National Instrument 43-101 - Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects.

The Company has implemented a quality assurance and control program to ensure sampling and analysis of mine and exploration work is conducted in accordance with industry standards. Drill core is sawn in half with one half of the core shipped to Activation Laboratories located in Thunder Bay, ON, while the other half is retained at the Company's core facilities in White River, ON, for future verification. Gold analysis is performed by fire assay using atomic absorption, gravimetric or pulp metallic finish.

About Harte Gold Corp.

Harte Gold holds a 100% interest in the Sugar Zone mine located in White River, Canada. The Sugar Zone Mine entered commercial production in 2019. Production guidance is 60,000 to 65,000 oz Au for 2021. The Company has further potential through exploration at the Sugar Zone Property, which encompasses 79,335 hectares covering a significant greenstone belt. Harte Gold trades on the TSX under the symbol "HRT", on the OTC under the symbol "HRTFF" and on the Frankfurt Exchange under the symbol "H4O".

Cautionary note regarding forward-looking information:

This news release includes "forward-looking statements", within the meaning of applicable securities legislation, which are based on the opinions and estimates of management and are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements are often, but not always, identified by the use of words such as "seek", "anticipate", "budget", "plan", "continue", "estimate", "expect", "forecast", "may", "will", "project", "predict", "potential", "targeting", "intend", "could", "might", "should", "believe" and similar words suggesting future outcomes or statements regarding an outlook. Specific forward-looking statements in this press release include, but are not limited to, 2021 gold production of 60,000 to 65,000 ounces; average throughput rate increasing to 800 tpd in Q1 2021 and through remainder of 2021; cash cost per ounce of US$800 to US$850; AISC of US$1,400 to US$1,550 per ounce; mine capital development of $26 million in 2021; other capital of $13 million in 2021; regional exploration of $4 to $5 million in 2021; increasing ore mining rates; adding an additional single boom jumbo in Q1 2021; the equipment fleet being sufficient to achieve targeted rates for 2021; focusing on manpower productivities, longhole ore drilling and blasting, and equipment availability to ensure improved throughput rates are achieved heading into 2022; increasing development rates of up to 15 metres per day for 2021; achieving processed grade of 7.1 g/t Au for 2021; new areas of the mine becoming accessible and providing additional stoping flexibility; focusing on planning, manpower and equipment utilization to ensure a consistent 800 tpd throughput rate; achieving ounces recovered of 165 oz/day for 2021; announcing the results of the Feasibility Study on January 20, 2021; hosting a technical briefing for shareholders, analysts and institutional investors on January 21, 2021; drilling for phase one of the TT8 exploration program including nine holes for approximately 720 metres; providing an update on exploration at the end of Q1 2021; and announcing financial results for the fourth quarter and full year 2020 on March 23, 2021. Forward-looking statements are necessarily based upon a number of estimates and assumptions including material estimates and assumptions related to the factors set forth below that, while considered reasonable by the Company as at the date of this press release in light of management's experience and perception of current conditions and expected developments, are inherently subject to significant business, economic, and competitive uncertainties and contingencies. Known and unknown factors could cause actual results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements, and undue reliance should not be placed on such statements and information. Such risks and uncertainties include, but are not limited to, there being no events of default or breaches of key financing agreements, including agreements with BNP Paribas and Appian; the Company being able to attract and retain qualified candidates to join the Company's management team and board of directors, risks associated with the mining industry, including operational risks in exploration, development and production; delays or changes in plans with respect to exploration or development projects or capital expenditures; the uncertainty of reserve estimates; the uncertainty of estimates and projections in relation to production, costs and expenses; the uncertainty surrounding the ability of the Company to obtain all permits, agreements, consents or authorizations required for its operations and activities; and health, safety and environmental risks, the risk of commodity price and foreign exchange rate fluctuations, the ability of Harte Gold to fund the capital and operating expenses necessary to achieve the business objectives of Harte Gold, the uncertainty associated with commercial negotiations and negotiating with contractors and other parties and risks associated with international business activities, as well as other risks and uncertainties which are more fully described in the Company's Annual Information Form dated March 25, 2020, and in other filings of the Company with securities and regulatory authorities which are available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.

Due to the risks, uncertainties and assumptions inherent in forward-looking statements, prospective investors in securities of the Company should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements.

Readers are cautioned that the foregoing list of risks, uncertainties and other factors are not exhaustive. The forward-looking statements contained in this news release are made as of the date hereof and the Company undertakes no obligation to update publicly or revise any forward-looking statements or in any other documents filed with Canadian securities regulatory authorities, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise, except in accordance with applicable securities laws. The forward-looking statements are expressly qualified by this cautionary statement.

The Toronto Stock Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.

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