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Mega Uranium Ltd.
211 Yonge Street, Suite 502
Toronto, Ontario, Canada
2010 News Releases
Mega Uranium Ltd. Releases Audited Results for the Year Ended September 30, 2010
December 20, 2010
TORONTO, Ontario (December 20, 2010) – Mega Uranium Ltd. ("Mega") (TSX: "MGA") announces its audited results for the year ended September 30, 2010.
SUMMARY FINANCIAL RESULTS
As at September 30, 2010, Mega had cash, cash equivalents and marketable securities totaling $49.9 million, as compared to $21.9 million at the end of September 30, 2009, an increase of 127.8%. The increase is primarily attributable to the proceeds from the public offering which closed during the first quarter. Subsequent to the year end, Mega completed a flow through private placement financing raising approximately $3.2 million.
As at September 30, 2010, the Company had mineral properties and related expenditures from its continuing operations of $251.7 million, as compared to $280.1 million as at September 30, 2009. The decrease is due to write downs of mineral properties of $36.4 million, utilization of $9.5 million of funds received under the Farm-in Agreement entered into with subsidiaries of JAURD (the Japan Australia Uranium Resources Development Company Ltd.) and ITOCHU Corporation, which are recorded as a reduction from mineral properties, offset by expenditures of $17.6 million in Australia, Cameroon and Canada.
Summary results for the year ended September 30, 2010, as compared to the year ended September 30, 2009:
- Income from financial and trading activities from continuing operations for the year was $1.8 million, most of which relates to unrealized gain on investments in public companies, as compared to a financial income of $6.7 million last year.
- Total expenses from continuing operations, excluding write-downs of mineral properties and related expenditures, were $12.3 million as compared to $16.7 million in the prior year.
- Write-downs of mineral properties and related expenditures from continuing operations totaled $36.4 million in fiscal 2010 as compared to $6.3 million last year.
- Net and comprehensive loss from continuing operations in the year was $35.2 million ($0.14 per common share), as compared to a net income of $22.4 million in the previous year ($0.11 per common share).
- Net and comprehensive loss from discontinued operations in the year was $6.4 million ($0.03 per common share), as compared to a net loss of $0.9 million in the previous year's quarter ($0.00 per common share).
"During fiscal 2010, we continued to focus Mega's efforts on the development of our flagship Lake Maitland Project in Western Australia in close co-operation with our Japanese partners. We also completed a successful spin-out of our South American assets for the direct benefit of our shareholders, who also became shareholders in U308 Corp. as a result. We anticipate that 2011 will be another exciting year for Mega as we advance Lake Maitland and evaluate other corporate transactions aimed at enhancing shareholder value.", said Sheldon Inwentash, Mega's CEO.
In fiscal 2010, Mega advanced its feasibility studies of the Lake Maitland uranium project in Western Australia and made significant progress in the approvals process for mine development. Exploration work continued on priority projects in Australia, Canada and Cameroon. Properties in Argentina and Colombia, plus $4 million in cash, were sold to U3O8 Corp. ("U3O8") in April 2010 in exchange for 30,564,858 common shares of U308 valued at $13.9 million. The company then distributed the U3O8 shares to Mega shareholders by way of a dividend-in-kind paid on its common shares on April 26, 2010. The divestiture and dividend-in-kind were undertaken by the Company as part of its initiative to unlock shareholder value attributable to Mega's non-core exploration properties, as it continues to focus on bringing its Lake Maitland project to production. Progress on Lake Maitland and the company's priority exploration projects in Australia, Cameroon and Canada is summarized below:
The calcrete-style Lake Maitland resource is located close to infrastructure in the Eastern Goldfields region of Western Australia. At a 100ppm U3O8
cut-off, it contains a NI43-101 compliant Indicated Resource of 28.7 million tonnes @ 376ppm U3O8
) and an Inferred Resource of 3.6 million tonnes @ 274ppm U3O8
). The deposit is conducive to low cost open cut mining as it occurs in the form of a single, coherent, horizontal layer, 1-3m thick (average 1.7m), lying only 1-2m from surface. Due to the soft nature of the ore and overburden, drilling and blasting will not be required. Metallurgical test work to date indicates satisfactory uranium recoveries of >90% using atmospheric alkaline tank leaching.
Under agreements signed in June 2009, the Japan Australia Uranium Resources Development Company Ltd (JAURD), through its subsidiary JAURD International Lake Maitland Project Pty. Ltd., and ITOCHU Corporation, through its subsidiary ITOCHU Minerals and Energy of Australia Pty. Ltd., can acquire an aggregate 35% interest in the Lake Maitland resource through staged payments totaling $US49 million.
During fiscal 2010 Mega successfully advanced the Lake Maitland feasibility studies and made significant progress in the approvals process leading to mine development, as follows. More details can be found in the relevant news releases on Mega's website:
- Granting of a mining lease by the Western Australian government (October 2009).
- Lodgement of environmental referral documents with the Western Australian Environmental Protection Authority ("EPA") and the Federal Department of Environment, Water, Heritage and the Arts (November 2009)
- Purchase of Barwidgee pastoral station on which the Lake Maitland project is located (November 2009)
- Excavation of trenches in the resource to obtain bulk samples for metallurgical testing (December 2009).
- Commencement of a comprehensive metallurgical test work program (January 2010).
- Drilling of sterilization holes over the proposed locations for processing and potential infrastructure facilities (April 2010).
- Receipt of advice from the EPA finalizing the environmental assessment and the environmental approvals process at the level of Environmental Review and Management Program ("ERMP") (April 2010).
- Release of the Environmental Scoping Document ("ESD") for public review (June 2010).
- Commencement of a test pit mining program in order to assess proposed mining methods, investigate grade control techniques and test dewatering procedures (October 2010).
- Receipt of approval for the ESD from the EPA (October 2010).
- Ongoing environmental baseline studies and impact assessment throughout the year.
- Commencement of stakeholder engagement and the Social Impact Assessment
The next stage in the assessment and approvals process for Lake Maitland is the ERMP which involves a public review period of 14 weeks, during which individuals, organizations and government agencies can make submissions on the project to the EPA. Mega is aiming to release the ERMP for public review in the third quarter of 2011. The approval of the final ERMP is one of the last permitting stages before the construction phase of the project can commence.
Mega's wholly-owned Kintyre Rocks property in Western Australia is located adjacent to the lease containing the Cameco-Mitsubishi joint venture's 79 million pounds U3O8
Kintyre resource, which is currently in prefeasibility. In 2010 Mega drilled two prospects, Area 1 and Gleneagles, both of which are located within 6km of the Kintyre resource. At Area 1 the drilling enhanced the uranium discovery potential as it intersected the stratigraphy that hosts the Kintyre resource below 32-77m of Permian cover rocks. Follow up drilling is planned for 2011. At Gleneagles drilling of geophysical targets failed to intersect anything that would justify further drilling. For further information, refer to Mega's news releases of September 22 2010 and November 23 2010.
In the Georgetown Project in Queensland, activities in the 2010 field season focused on drilling two prospects south of the Maureen resource. At the Shear Zone prospect, hole 9313 intersected 4m @ 0.87% U3O8
and 0.42% Mo at 73-77m hole depth, but three additional holes intersected nothing of significance. However, it is planned to conduct further drilling of this prospect in 2011, as 80m to the southwest of hole 9313, a percussion hole by a previous explorer is reported to have intersected 9m @ 0.097% eU3O8
based on downhole gamma logging.
In Cameroon encouraging results were obtained in the Salaki prospect in the Kitongo Project in a program of 15 diamond drill holes located within the 600m strike length investigated in 2009, and also testing the projected trend of the mineralized zone extending 300m to the NW of the previously drilled area. Of the 15 holes, 12 intersected >200ppm U3O8
over minimum widths of one meter, the best intersections being 3.7m @ 0.13% U3O8
, 3.2m @ 0.11% U3O8
and 2.0m @ 0.11% U3O8
. Further drilling planned for 2011 will seek to establish the resource potential of these high grade intersections.
In the Kitongo prospect, some 22km ENE of Salaki, the main intention of the 2010 drilling program was to investigate the strike projections to the NE and SW of the known mineralization. A total of 2000m was planned on 12 holes, but after three barren holes had been drilled over a 300m portion of the mineralized trend to the NE, the decision was taken to terminate the program. A detailed review of all available Kitongo drill core has since been undertaken to reassess the merits of the planned targets and revise the 2011 drilling program accordingly.
In the Lolodorf Project, nothing of economic significance was intersected in 15 diamond drill holes testing a 550m long portion of a prominent and easily accessible radiometric anomaly in the Ngombas sector. Only five of the holes intersected >200ppm U3O8
over a minimum width of one meter, the best intersection being one meter @ 0.12% U3O8
. It should be noted, however, that the 2010 drilling tested only a small portion of the 70km long prospective uraniferous belt as delineated by the airborne radiometric data. Ground radiometric surveys and prospecting activities are ongoing over several large radiometric anomalies in other portions of the belt in order to identify targets to be drilled in 2011.
Further details of Mega's drilling in Cameroon can be found in its news release of November 10 2010.
In Canada, Mega's exploration activities produced promising uranium results in rock chip samples from the Bruce River and Ailik East properties of the Central Mineral belt in Labrador. In the Greenwich Lake property in Ontario, the exploration focus switched to the PGM metals potential of gabbro-peridotite intrusives similar to the host rocks at Magma Metals Ltd's Current Lake PGM discovery in an adjoining property – refer to Mega's news release of January 12 2010.
Stewart Taylor, Mega's President and Qualified Person under NI 43-101, has reviewed the technical information in this release and has verified the contents disclosed.
ABOUT MEGA URANIUM
Mega Uranium Ltd. is a Toronto-based mineral resources company with a focus on uranium properties in Australia, Canada and Cameroon. Further information on Mega can be found on the company's website at www.megauranium.com. Mega Uranium's Ben Lomond and Maureen properties in Queensland, Australia, are subject to a State policy which presently prohibits the mining of uranium.
For further information, please contact:
Mega Uranium Ltd.
EVP Corporate Affairs
T: (416) 643-7630
Note Regarding Forward-Looking information
Certain information contained in this press release constitutes "forward-looking information", which is information regarding possible events, conditions or results of operations that is based upon assumptions about future economic conditions and courses of action. All information other than matters of historical fact may be forward-looking information. In some cases, forward-looking information can be identified by the use of words such as "seek", "expect", "anticipate", "budget", "plan", "estimate", "continue", "forecast", "intend", "believe", "predict", "potential", "target", "may", "could", "would", "might", "will" and similar words or phrases (including negative variations) suggesting future outcomes or statements regarding an outlook. Forward-looking information in this press release includes, but is not limited to, statements about our plans regarding future acquisitions and property development, our expectations regarding the uranium market, global growth and the use of nuclear power, our drill results, commodity prices and core intersection lengths, in that they constitute estimates, based on certain assumptions of mineralization that may be encountered if a deposit were to be mined.
By its nature, forward-looking information involves known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause our actual results, performance or achievements, or industry results, to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward-looking information. Some of the risks and other factors that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking information contained in this release include, but are not limited to: risks and uncertainties relating to the interpretation of drill results, the geology, grade and continuity of mineral deposits and conclusions of economic evaluations; results of initial feasibility, pre-feasibility and feasibility studies, and the possibility that future exploration, development or mining results will not be consistent with the Company's expectations; risks relating to possible variations in reserves, grade, planned mining dilution and ore loss, or recovery rates and changes in project parameters as plans continue to be refined; mining and development risks, including risks related to accidents, equipment breakdowns, labour disputes (including work stoppages and strikes) or other unanticipated difficulties with or interruptions in exploration and development; the potential for delays in exploration or development activities or the completion of feasibility studies; risks related to the inherent uncertainty of production and cost estimates and the potential for unexpected costs and expenses; risks related to commodity price and foreign exchange rate fluctuations; the uncertainty of profitability based upon the cyclical nature of the industry in which the Company operates; risks related to failure to obtain adequate financing on a timely basis and on acceptable terms or delays in obtaining governmental approvals or in the completion of development or construction activities; risks related to environmental regulation and liability; political and regulatory risks associated with mining and exploration; and other risks and uncertainties related to the Company's prospects, properties and business strategy.
Although we have attempted to identify important factors that could cause actual results or events to differ materially from those described in the forward-looking information, readers are cautioned that this list is not exhaustive and there may be other factors that we have not identified. Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking information contained in this release. Forward-looking information is based upon our beliefs, estimates and opinions as at the date of this release, which we believe are reasonable, but no assurance can be given that these will prove to be correct. Furthermore, we undertake no obligation to update or revise forward-looking information if these beliefs, estimates and opinions or other circumstances should change, except as otherwise required by applicable law.
All forward-looking information contained in this release is expressly qualified by this cautionary note.
Note Regarding Disclosure for Mineral Projects
This press release contains disclosure regarding our mineral resources. Mineral resources are not mineral reserves and do not have demonstrated economic viability. Mineral resources may never be converted into reserves. Furthermore, inferred resources are considered too speculative geologically to have the economic considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as mineral reserves. Further exploration will be required to upgrade the inferred resources to a higher resource category.