Commerce Resources Corp. Confirms Middle and Heavy Rare Earth Enrichment at Ashram Rare Earth Deposit, Eldor Property, Quebec

VANCOUVER, Aug. 4, 2011 /PRNewswire/ - Commerce Resources Corp. (TSXV: CCE), (FSE: D7H), (OTCQX: CMRZF) (the "Company" or "Commerce") is pleased to report the assay results for the final four holes completed as part of the winter drill program at the Company's 100%-owned Eldor Property in northern Quebec.

A highlight of these new results is EC11-053 which intersected 2.06% Total Rare Earth Oxides ("TREO") over 344.49 metres from 39.56 metres. The hole was drilled midway between EC10-047 and EC11-048 and targeted the near surface zone of middle and heavy rare earth oxide ("MHREO") enrichment previously encountered in hole EC10-047. The hole was successful in encountering this zone of enrichment with 12.4% MHREO as well as 21.1% Nd2O3 over 32.75 metres at 1.37% TREO starting near surface (6.81 to 39.56 metres). Highly anomalous MHREO enriched intersections continued down hole including one sample with 25.9% MHREO at 2.60% TREO. EC11-053 bottomed in mineralization, with the final sample returning 2.66% TREO.

A further highlight was EC11-054 which intersected 1.99% TREO over 243.54 metres (305.10 to 548.64 metres). EC11-054 is the northernmost hole drilled to date at Ashram and was located approximately 150 metres north of hole EC11-051. The hole extended the mineralization at Ashram by over 275 metres to the northeast of the area used in the previous resource estimate and confirmed the presence of significantly higher grades within the deposit to the north and at depth. Grades increased significantly at depth with the final 37.18 metres returning 2.83% TREO including 3.0% TREO over 22.27 metres with the final sample assaying 5.36% TREO. The hole ended in mineralization at 548.64 metres.

The winter drill program consisted of eight holes (seven at Ashram) totalling 3,656 metres. Based on the winter program, the rare earth element mineralization at Ashram has been significantly expanded and has now been confirmed over an approximate area of 600 metres east-west, by 650 metres north-south, to depths of greater than 600 metres. The winter program has roughly doubled the size of footprint and depth extent of the deposit beyond that of the current NI 43-101 resource. Average grades have increased as drilling has progressed northward. The deposit remains open to the north, east, south, at depth, and is not fully constrained to the west.

The highlights from holes EC11-052 through EC11-055 are summarized in the table below:

General Location Hole From (m) To  (m) Interval (m) TREO (%) Neodymium Oxide
(% of TREO)
Ashram EC11-052 6.85 243.84 236.99 1.67 17.6
Incl. 126.00 243.84 117.84 1.99 17.2
Incl. 202.89 227.91 25.02 2.25 15.1
Ashram EC11-053 39.56 384.05 344.49 2.06 17.1
Incl. 133.24 172.00 38.76 2.35 16.1
Incl. 250.92 273.54 22.62 2.44 16.4
Incl. 367.46 372.36 4.90 2.95 15.5
Ashram EC11-054 9.93 305.10 295.17 0.73 21.6
  305.10 548.64 243.54 1.99 16.4
Incl. 468.95 474.62 5.67 2.97 14.0
Incl. 511.46 548.64 37.18 2.83 13.2
Or 526.37 548.64 22.27 3.00 13.1
Triple D EC11-055 113.97 123.97 10.00 1.38 8.9
Incl. 117.91 121.52 3.61 1.83 8.5

* All samples were analyzed by Activation Laboratories of Ancaster, ON using its method eight -- major oxide, rare earths and trace element package by fusion ICP and ICP/MS in addition to niobium by XRF, and fluorine by method 4F-F. The four most abundant Rare Earth Elements ("REEs") that make up the TREO reported above are cerium, lanthanum / neodymium and praseodymium. All holes were drilled with BTW Core. EC11-048 thru 054 were vertical holes, while EC11-055 was drilled at an azimuth of 250° and dip of 55°. As the deposit(s) geometry is still being determined actual drill widths are unknown but are estimated to be near to true thickness.

Holes EC11-052 through EC11-054 were drilled at Ashram. All of the holes were collared in and bottomed in mineralization. The final hole of the program (EC11-055) was drilled approximately 1.2 kilometres north of Ashram at a separate, previously untested REE exploration target known as the Triple D Target. A map showing the location of drill holes, along with detailed analytical results, will be posted on the Company's website at: http://www.commerceresources.com/s/Eldor.asp

The winter drill program at Ashram exceeded the Company's expectations, with all holes completed returning significant grades and widths of mineralization. Highlights from the winter program include:

  • A significant expansion of the footprint and depth extent of the Ashram Deposit; beyond that of the current Inferred Resource of 117.34 million tonnes of 1.74% TREO;
  • Confirmation of enrichment in the middle and heavy rare earth oxides within the near-surface, north-central portions of the deposit; and
  • Recognition of increasing REE grades within the northern portion of the deposit and at depth where drill intersections of 3%+ TREO have increased in occurrence with 4% assays now not unusual, with a new peak sample value of 9.88% TREO.

Altogether since its discovery in 2010, a total of 6,680 metres of drilling has been completed at Ashram. Commerce is continuing exploration and drilling through the summer. Details of the program will be announced in a news release shortly.

"Drilling at Eldor continues to support management's view that the Ashram Rare Earth Deposit represents a very large, near surface resource of uniquely distributed rare earth elements," said David Hodge, Commerce's President. "The deposit remains open in all directions, with grade increasing to the north, and continued enrichment in the middle and heavy rare earths. The results provide ample encouragement for Commerce to expand our exploration and development work and advance the project towards a Preliminary Economic Assessment."

Ashram is a large tonnage rare earth discovery and is ranked as one of the largest REE deposits outside of China. In early 2011, Commerce reported an initial NI 43-101 resource estimate for the Ashram Zone of 117.34 million tonnes averaging 1.74% TREO in the Inferred Category using a base case cutoff of 1.25% TREO (SGS Geostat, April 2011). The resource estimate was based on twelve holes totalling 3,313 metres drilled in 2010.

Drilling has outlined the potential for near-surface enrichment in the valuable, middle and heavy REEs within the Ashram Deposit. The enrichment is rare for a carbonatite-hosted orebody and its definition is an important priority for ongoing drilling.

Preliminary mineralogical work completed by Roger Mitchell of Lakehead University in Ontario has indicated that monazite-(Ce) along with lesser bastnaesite-(Ce) and trace amounts of xenotime-(Dy) and nioboaeschynite-(Dy) are the main REE bearing minerals at Ashram. Areas of enrichment in the middle and heavy rare earth elements are marked by an increase in xenotime-(Dy), which is a dominantly heavy rare earth bearing mineral, and/or a decrease is monazite-(Ce).

The Eldor Property is located in northern Quebec approximately 130 kilometres south of the town of Kuujjuaq and 100 kilometres north of Adriana Resources Inc.'s Lac Otelnuk Iron Deposit. The property is 100%-owned by Commerce and encompasses 404 claims totalling approximately 19,006 hectares. The Company is well financed and has sufficient working capital available to complete all of its development and exploration plans. The Company currently has approximately $14 million in cash and investments.

NI 43-101 Disclosure
Darren L. Smith, M.Sc., P.Geol., a qualified person as defined by National Instrument 43-101, supervised the preparation of the technical information in this news release.

Middle and Heavy Rare Earth Oxides ("MHREO") is defined as the sum of the middle rare earth oxides (Sm2O3, Eu2O3, Gd2O3) and the heavy rare earth oxides (Tb2O3, Dy2O3, Ho2O3, Er2O3, Tm2O3, Yb2O3, Lu2O3) plus Y2O3 expressed as a percent out of the TREO content.

Total Rare Earth Oxides ("TREO") include: La2O3, Ce2O3, Pr2O3, Nd2O3, Sm2O3, Eu2O3, Gd2O3, Tb2O3, Dy2O3, Ho2O3, Er2O3, Tm2O3, Yb2O3, Lu2O3 and Y2O3.

Neodymium Oxide ("Nd2O3") is expressed as a percent out of the TREO content.

About Commerce Resources Corp.
Commerce Resources Corp. is focused on building shareholder value through the discovery and development of rare metal deposits with a 100% focus on Canadian assets. Commerce's principal assets are its Blue River Tantalum-Niobium Project in British Columbia and its Eldor Rare Earth Project in Quebec.

At Blue River, Commerce is advancing its Upper Fir Tantalum and Niobium Deposit through development with a Preliminary Economic Assessment in the advanced stages of completion. At the Eldor Project, Commerce's 2010 exploration program led to the discovery of a significant new rare earth deposit known as Ashram. Commerce recently filed an initial NI 43-101 Inferred Resource Estimate for Ashram and is continuing exploration and drilling in combination with metallurgical work with the aim to collect the data necessary to complete a Preliminary Economic Assessment for the deposit. The Ashram Deposit is a large tonnage rare earth discovery and is ranked as one of the largest rare earth deposits outside of China.

Commerce Resources Corp. trades on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol "CCE", the Frankfurt Stock Exchange under the symbol "D7H" and the U.S. OTCQX under the symbol "CMRZF."

On Behalf of the Board of Directors
COMMERCE RESOURCES CORP.

"David Hodge"
David Hodge President and Director
Tel:  604.484.2700
TF:   866.484.2700
Email: dhodge@commerceresources.com

Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.

Statements in this document which are not purely historical are forward-looking statements, including any statements regarding beliefs, plans, expectations or intentions regarding the future.  Forward looking statements in this news release include that the company will be continuing exploration and drilling through the summer and that details of the program will be announced in a news release shortly.

It is important to note that actual outcomes and the Company's actual results could differ materially from those in such forward-looking statements. Risks and uncertainties include economic, competitive, governmental, environmental and technological factors that may affect the Company's operations, markets, products and prices. Factors that could cause actual results to differ materially may include misinterpretation of data; that we may not be able to get equipment or labour as we need it; that we may not be able to raise sufficient funds to complete our intended exploration and development; that our applications to drill may be denied; that weather, logistical problems or hazards may prevent us from exploration; that equipment may not work as well as expected; that analysis of data may not be possible accurately; that results which we or others have found in any particular location are not necessarily indicative of larger areas of our properties; that we may not complete environmental programs in a timely manner or at all; that market prices for rare earth elements may not justify commercial production costs; and that despite encouraging data there may be no commercially exploitable mineralization on our properties.

Readers should refer to the risk disclosures outlined in the Company's Management Discussion & Analysis of its audited financial statements filed with the British Columbia Securities Commission.

SOURCE Commerce Resources Corp.



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