Harry Barr Puts Pacific North West Capital At The
Forefront Of PGM Exploration In Canada
By Charles Wyatt
Hardly surprising that Canadian listed Pacific
North West Capital has decided to switch its focus back onto platinum group
metals. Recently it appeared that nickel might take up the running, but now that
platinum has broken through the US$2,000 per ounce barrier and palladium is
pushing up towards US$500 per ounce - both a long way north of where they were
in 2005 and 2006 - there is not much choice.
Ironically, Anglo Platinum is the company's joint venture partner at
the River Valley project near Sudbury in Ontario and poor old Anglo Platinum has
just had to announce that it will lose around 150,000 ounces of platinum
production this year due to power shortages in South Africa. As this amounts to
2.25 per cent of total world production it is little wonder that the metal price
has gone into orbit. Not that this trend will be without setbacks. There was
evidence of profit taking earlier in the week, while the imposition of clearing
margin deposits by the Tokyo Commodity Exchange after an increase in price
volatility, is also taking a toll.
Metals prices have to be viewed over a year or two to discern underlying trends,
so it is interesting to read Rio Tinto's views, particularly those pertaining
to North America. Vivek Tulpul�, its chief economist, writes, "it is arguable
that even as negative sentiment in relation to the US economy and credit markets
has continued to increase in 2008, the market's perceptions about the
fundamentals in most resource markets do not appear to have been much
affected." In other words the outlook is still bullish as the US becomes
decoupled from the rest of the world. It's also worth bearing in mind that the
power problems in South Africa will not be cured in a month or two, or even a
year or two. A historic lack of government support and funding means that it
will take ten years or more to bring that country's power industry up to
Anglo Platinum will therefore be redoubling its efforts to find
more new sources of platinum group metals, and, as a tried and
tested partner Pacific
North West Capital is in a strong position to take
advantage. The two companies have been working together since
2000. At that time Pacific North West was exploring Agnew Lake,
said to be the best preserved of the four large intrusions which
comprise the East Bull/River Valley Suite. Agnew Lake is some 60
kilometres west of Sudbury in Ontario, whereas the other key
property, River Valley, is a similar distance to the north east.
Agnew Lake covers most of the layered Shakespeare-Dunlop mafic
intrusion, which is of similar age and composition to that of
the River Valley layered intrusion. These days River Valley is
making most of the running. The two partners operate on a 50:50
basis, but Anglo Platinum can take its interest up to 60 per
cent by taking the project to feasibility and to 65 per cent by
taking it to production.
According to Pacific North West's president Harry Barr, a
total of US$22 million has been spent on the River Valley
project by Anglo Platinum - so it's not playing games. As a
result of all this work the current resource in the
indicated and inferred categories amounts to 30.5 million tonnes
containing 953,900 ounces palladium at an average grade of
0.97grammes per tonne, 325,500 ounces platinum at 0.34 grammes
per tonne, and 59,500 ounces of gold at 0.061 grammes pert
tonne. Quite modest and not very high grade, but it still
has a lot going for it when compared with the Bushveld Complex.
Before it was taken over by Impala in a �297m deal last year,
Aim-traded African Platinum had resources of around 100 million
ounces of platinum group metals, but production was a big ask,
entailing sinking twin shafts 1,300 metres to intercept the UG2
River Valley is a very different proposition. Some high grade
zones have already been established and one of the tasks to be
carried out this year, according to Harry Barr, is to decide
whether these zones can be mined efficiently and whether it
would be economically viable to transport the ore direct to a
smelter in Sudbury. Cash flow would transform investor
perception of the company, and Harry points out that both North
American Palladium and Stillwater - the only platinum group
metals producers in North America at present - have seen their
shares double in recent weeks as metals prices advanced. Two
other priorities for 2008 will be to carry out some deeper
drilling as far down as 500 metres to test for increasing grade,
as well as carrying out more aggressive infill drilling across
the property. There is a possibility that the mineralization
currently identified may just be the near surface expression of
something many times bigger with higher grades and different
styles of mineralization.
Mention of Stillwater is appropriate as Pacific North West also
has a joint venture with that company at the Goodnews Bay
platinum project in Alaska. In the past this area has had a
history of placer production, and the partners are now seeking
the source rock by drilling targets identified in 2007.
Stillwater is due to spend US$4 million by 2010 to earn a 50 per
cent interest and can go up to 65 per cent if it arranges
finances to take the project into production.
But this isn't the sum total of Pacific North West's
involvement in platinum group Metals
Exploration. It is also looking for projects elsewhere
in Alaska and has recently acquired one on the Coldwell Complex,
near Marathon in northern Ontario, on the largest composite
alkaline intrusive complex in North America, a complex which has
much in common geologically with the Bushveld Complex in South
Africa. Last, but not least is the joint venture agreement with
SOQUEM to research platinum properties in Quebec.
Harry Barr's strategy to place his company at the forefront of
platinum group Metals
Exploration in North America is therefore paying off -
at an ideal moment. This is true also from a personal viewpoint
as he has shed his management responsibilities at CanAlaska
Ventures and El
Nino Ventures over recent months, and is now free to
concentrate on the platinum metals which have long been close to
his heart. Pacific North West may be the last play in which the
great promoter appears, but it could be the one for which he
will be remembered.
information, please visit www.pfncapital.com
or call Toll free 1.800.667.1870
Not to be construed as an
offer to buy or sell securities of Pacific North West Capital Corp.
|Corporate Presentations of Pacific North West Capital Corp.
|Annual reports of Pacific North West Capital Corp.
|Financings of Pacific North West Capital Corp.
|Nominations of Pacific North West Capital Corp.
|Project news of Pacific North West Capital Corp.
|Corporate news of Pacific North West Capital Corp.
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|12/16/2008||Options Fiedmont Platinum Group Metals (PGM) Property
|11/27/2008||Visit Pacific North West Capital at the 2008 Hard Assets Inv...
|11/19/2008||and Benton Resources Corp. Announce Drill Results from the S...
|9/30/2008||and Benton Resources Commence Drill Program on Heenan Proper...
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|4/7/2008|| to Attend European Gold Forum
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|11/5/2007||Phase 9B $525,000 Exploration Budget on River Valley, Valley...
|10/11/2007||Completes Phase III Acquisition Program, Nickel Plats Projec...
|9/18/2007||Acquires Three New PGM Projects, Coldwell Complex, Ontario
|8/13/2007||President's Message / 2007 Summer Update
|6/28/2007||announces Completion of Phase II Nickel Acquisition, Saskatc...
|6/21/2007||Joins Benton and Teck in Search for Nickel in Labrador
|6/19/2007||Nickelmuir Project Acquired, Timmins, Ontario - Aggressive N...
|6/14/2007||Phase I Nickel Acquisition Program Completed Saskatchewan, P...
|5/16/2007||Corp. (PFN.TSX) joins Golden Chalice Resources (GCR.TSX-V) i...
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