VANCOUVER, Sept. 30, 2013 /PRNewswire/ - Sierra Metals Inc. (TSX:SMT) (BVL:SMT) ("Sierra Metals" or the "Company") is pleased to announce that mill capacity at its Bolivar copper-zinc-silver mine has been doubled to 2,000 tonnes-per-day from 1,000 tonnes-per-day.
The Company installed a leased, 1,250 kva generator to increase mill throughput to bypass delays in the installation of the power substation that will provide power via the Company's newly-constructed 10 km power line. The mill is now working on a combination of generator power and line power. Once the work on the power substation is completed, which is expected to be complete by year-end, the mill will operate off the national grid power system.
The new circuit, which adds 1,000 tonnes-per-day capacity to Piedras Verde, went on-line on September 20th. This second circuit is equivalent to the original 1,000 tonnes-per-day circuit and doubles the mill capacity.
Since September 20th, the Piedras Verdes mill has increased daily throughput as the new circuit is being tuned and adjusted, with throughput now over 1,700 tonnes-per-day. Throughput will increase to 2,000 tonnes-per-day during October.
"The increase to 2,000 tonnes-per-day at the Piedras Verde plant is another important milestone achieved by the Mexico operating team. At this rate, we expect the production costs per pound of copper to be reduced significantly," says Daniel Tellechea, president and CEO.
The Company intends to operate the Piedras Verde mill at 2,000 tonnes-per-day throughout 2014 while evaluating a further increase to 3,000 tonnes-per-day during 2015.
The technical content of this news release has been approved by Thomas L. Robyn, Ph.D., CPG, RPG, and a Qualified Person as defined in NI 43-101.
About Sierra Metals
Sierra Metals Inc. is a Canadian mining company focused on precious and base metals from its Yauricocha Mine in Peru, its Bolivar Mine and Cusi Mine in Mexico. In addition, Sierra Metals is exploring several precious and base metal targets in Peru and Mexico. Projects in Peru include Adrico (gold), Victoria (copper-silver) and Ipillo (polymetallic) at the Yauricocha Property in the province of Yauyos and the San Miguelito gold properties in Northern Peru. Projects in Mexico include Bacerac (silver) in the state of Sonora, La Verde (gold) at the Batopilas Property in the state of Chihuahua, and Las Coloradas (silver) at the Melchor Ocampo Property in the state of Zacatecas.
The Company's shares trade on the Bolsa de Valores de Lima and the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "SMT".
Except for statements of historical fact contained herein, the information in this press release may constitute "forward-looking information" within the meaning of Canadian securities law. Other than statements of historical fact, all statements are "forward-looking statements", which involve various known and unknown risk and uncertainties and other factors, including market conditions that may affect the Company's ability to execute its current business plan. Actual results might differ materially from results suggested in any forward-looking statements. The Company assumes no obligation to update the forward-looking statements, or to update the reasons why actual results could differ from those reflected in the forward-looking statements unless and until required by securities laws applicable to the Company. Additional information identifying risks and uncertainties is contained in filings by the Company with the Canadian securities regulators, which filings are available at www.sedar.com.
SOURCE Sierra Metals Inc.