February 21, 2013, Vancouver, BC -- Taseko Mines Limited (TSX: TKO; NYSE MKT: TGB) ("Taseko" or the "Company") reports the results for the year ended December 31, 2012.
- Gross profit for the year was $51.7 million.
- Revenues for 2012 were $253.6 million from the sale of 66.0 million pounds of copper and 1.0 million pounds of molybdenum (Taseko's 75% share).
- Total production at Gibraltar (100%) for 2012 was 89.7 million pounds of copper and 1.3 million pounds of molybdenum.
- Gibraltar Development Plan 3 (GDP3) is now in the commissioning phase of start-up. During the fourth quarter, the electrical power distribution and reclaim water systems were successfully tied in and became operational and water testing of the new tailings system was completed.
- Spending on the New Prosperity and Aley development projects in 2012 totalled $17.6 million.
- On December 27, 2012 the Gibraltar Mine signed a long-term labour agreement with its unionized employees. The new agreement will be in place until May 31, 2016.
- Realized copper prices for 2012 were US$3.61 per pound, in line with the average London Metal Exchange price for 2012.
For the 12 months ended December 31, 2012, Taseko had gross profit of $51.7 million, a net loss of $15.7 million and adjusted net earnings of $1.9 million. This compares to gross profit of $86.3 million, net earnings of $27.0 million and adjusted net earnings of $17.8 million for the 12 months ended December 31, 2011.
Russell Hallbauer, President and CEO of Taseko, commented, "2012 was a year of major transformation for Taseko. While mining companies around the world announced asset write-downs, capital expenditure overruns and operating cost inflation, we advanced our business plan of investing in our mining operations and development assets within defined economic constraints.
While our earnings were affected by our investments on Aley and New Prosperity, we now find ourselves in a position to move these projects forward in 2013. In combination with the completion of our new GDP3 concentrator and continued strength in copper prices, as a result of the ongoing copper market deficit, we expect to generate significant free cash flow over the near term as we position Taseko for future growth."
Mr. Hallbauer continued, "GDP3 is the consummation of six years of modernization and production increases which was only temporarily interrupted by the global financial crisis. Gibraltar is now positioned to be a significant cash flow generator thereby supporting the next phase of our growth strategy.
Gibraltar, when it achieves its full operating potential, will be one of the largest open pit copper mines in North America and notably, one of the largest reserve bases.
During the fourth quarter, tie-ins associated with the GDP3 concentrator were completed and we are systematically progressing through commissioning. Ore has been fed to the concentrator and a short ramp up to commercial production is expected."
Mr. Hallbauer concluded, "Our New Prosperity project team has nearly completed the information requests from the Federal Environmental Review Panel and we anticipate public hearings to begin early in the second quarter.
We are advancing metallurgical testing on Aley ore samples and have now produced a niobium concentrate. We expect to finalize the process flowsheet in the near future which will allow us to complete the feasibility study on the project."
Taseko will host a conference call on Friday, February 22, 2013 at 10:30 a.m. Eastern Time (7:30 a.m. Pacific) to discuss these results. The conference call may be accessed by dialing (877) 303-9079, or (970) 315-0461 internationally. Accompanying presentation slides will be available to download at tasekomines.com. Alternatively, a live and archived webcast will also be available at tasekomines.com. The conference call will be archived for later playback until February 28, 2013 and can be accessed by dialing (855) 859-2056 in Canada and the United States, or (404) 537-3406 internationally and using the passcode 86515171.
For further information contact:Brian Bergot, Investor Relations -- 778-373-4554, toll free 1-800-667-2114