16:42:15 EST Tue 07 Feb 2023
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Rio2 Ltd (2)
Symbol RIO
Shares Issued 257,510,649
Close 2022-07-11 C$ 0.15
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Rio2 awaits Fenix qualification resolution

2022-07-11 15:04 ET - News Release

Mr. Alex Black reports


Rio2 Ltd. is providing an update of its activities following the announcement made on July 5, 2022, in respect to the Atacama Regional Evaluation Commission's decision to not approve the environmental impact assessment (EIA) for its Fenix gold project in Chile.

The company, along with its Chilean environmental and legal advisers, is currently evaluating options to continue to advance the project. A key document the company is waiting for is the environmental qualification resolution (RCA) which is the administrative document with which the Environmental Assessment Service (SEA) outlines the rationale for its decision. The RCA is expected within the next three weeks and the company is finalizing its action plan thereafter.

Once the EIA action plan is completed, the company anticipates announcing a revised timeline of its proposed activities and how it intends to execute and finance the plan forward.

Key considerations for developing a plan forward is to use all the well-established options within the permitting process and working with all relevant government authorities to ensure it secures a successful path forward for the development of the Fenix gold project.

The company is thankful for the support it has received following the EIA decision from various government authorities and community organizations that participated in the participacion ciudadana (citizen participation) and consulta indigena (indigenous consultation) as part of the EIA process. The company is also encouraged that the SEA decision states that the EIA fulfills all the applicable regulations and meets the environmental requirements for the granting of applicable sectorial permits.

The Fenix gold project is one of the largest undeveloped gold oxide heap leach projects in the Americas, hosting a measured and indicated mineral resource (as such term is defined in National Instrument 43-101 (Standards of Disclosure for Mineral Projects)) of five million ounces of gold which the company believes will make a positive contribution to the Atacama region and Chile. The project is an example of modern gold mining where a full complement of technical, environmental and social considerations have been consulted on and designed in from the outset. The project represents a significant investment in the gold mining business in Chile by a junior mining company of approximately $210-million of initial and sustaining capital and will generate employment for at least 1,200 people during the construction phase and 550 people during the 17-year operations phase. The mine being contemplated at the project will be a run-of-mine heap leach operation; no crushing or tailings storage facilities are required, thereby minimizing the overall impact and footprint of the project.

As at March 31, 2022, the company had cash of approximately $33-million (U.S.) and working capital of approximately $25-million (U.S.) which had been allocated to predevelopment activities for the project. A significant amount of money has been invested so far in the predevelopment of the project, including the construction of the camp facilities at its infrastructure subsidiary, Lince SA, prefabrication of elements of the processing plant and water loading facilities in Copiapo.

Technical information

The scientific and technical content of this news release has been reviewed, approved and verified by Enrique Garay, MSc, P Geo (AIG member), senior vice president geology of Rio2 Ltd., who is a qualified person under NI 43-101, has also reviewed, approved and verified the scientific and technical content of this news release. For additional information regarding the project, including key parameters, assumptions and risks associated with its development, see the independent technical report entitled "Updated Pre-Feasibility Study for the Fenix Gold Project, Atacama, III Region, Chile," dated Aug. 3, 2021, with an effective date of Aug. 15, 2019, a copy of which document is available under Rio2's SEDAR profile.

About Rio2 Ltd.

Rio2 is a mining company with a focus on development and mining operations with a team that has proven technical skills, as well as a successful capital markets record. Rio2 is focused on taking its Fenix gold project in Chile to production in the shortest possible time frame based on a staged development strategy. In addition to the Fenix gold project in development in Chile, Rio2 continues to pursue additional strategic acquisitions where it can deploy its operational excellence and responsible mining practices to build a multiasset multijurisdiction precious metals company.

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