First Majestic reports commercial production at new cyanidation plant

8th April 2010 By: Liezel Hill

TORONTO ( - Vancouver-based First Majestic Silver has achieved commercial production at its new cyanidation plant at the company's La Encantada silver mine, in Coahuila, Mexico, the firm said on Thursday.

Commercial production was declared from April 1, at the 3 500-t/d plant, and the operation should reach full operating capacity next month, to produce an annualised four-million ounces a year of silver dóre bars.

The plant will help the company boost its silver production beyond six-million ounces this year, CEO Keith Neumeyer said.

The new plant is now 98% completed, with the only item remaining being the delivery and installation of the induction furnaces, First Majestic said.

This plant is currently producing silver precipitates which are being shipped regularly to the smelter until the new furnaces are installed later this quarter.

Once these furnaces are operating, the company will be producing its own dóre bars which will help reduce third-party smelting and refining charges.

"To have a plant of this size deemed commercial within five months of being inaugurated is an impressive achievement and something our team deserves a lot of credit for," COO Ramon Davila said.

Besides the new cyanidation plant, First Majestic also improved the existing flotation plant at La Encantada by installing new flotation cells and ancillary equipment, which immediately helped improve recoveries.

First Majestic also operates the La Parrilla and San Martin silver mines, both in Mexico.

Shares in the company were down 1,42% on Thursday morning, at C$3,46 apiece by 10:30 in Toronto.