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Aug 19, 2008
Mindoro Reports Further Excellent Drill Results From Agata Nickel Laterite Project
EDMONTON, Alberta; August 19, 2008 - Mindoro Resources Ltd. (TSXV: MIO; Frankfurt: WKN 906167) is pleased to report results for a further 35 drill holes from the Agata North Nickel Laterite Project, Philippines. The limonite horizon averages 1.12 percent nickel, 0.12 percent cobalt and 47.76 percent iron over an average thickness of 2.88 meters. The underlying saprolite horizon averages 1.42 percent nickel over an average thickness of 5.67 meters. The drill program is continuing to expand the resource.
Grades and thicknesses are consistent with those previously reported and continue to be of potential economic interest. An increase in average saprolite grade is noted in this part of the resource (central area), and includes excellent saprolite intercepts of 19.7 meters of 1.78 percent nickel, 18.1 meters of 1.69 percent nickel, and 12.75 meters of 1.86 percent nickel.
On August 12, 2008, Mindoro reported an NI 43-101 mineral resource estimate from Agata North (see About the Agata Nickel Laterite Project). Objectives of the ongoing drill program are to completely drill out the Agata North resource; leading to an evaluation of the most applicable processing technologies, and selection of the optimal method to advance the project. Results of a further 50 drill holes are awaited and drilling is ongoing with six drill rigs. Current drill spacing is on 100 meter centers, adequate for at least inferred resource category and likely indicated resource category for much of the mineralization.
A full listing of the latest drill results and a drill hole location map is available with this release on Mindoro's website. The following table presents the average values from the latest assay results from 35 drill holes:
ABOUT THE AGATA NICKEL LATERITE PROJECT
Location in the Prolific Surigao Copper-Gold and Nickel District
The Agata Nickel Laterite Project is situated on the Agata Project, Surigao Gold District, northern Mindanao, the Philippines. The Surigao Gold District is not only a current and historical gold producing district but, with the discovery of a cluster of porphyry copper gold deposits by Anglo American, it also has high potential to become a major copper-gold camp. Mindoro has multiple gold and copper-gold targets in the Surigao District at varying stages of drill evaluation. The Surigao Region is now emerging as a major nickel laterite district, and there are a number of nickel laterite deposits either in production or being developed.
Agata North Mineral Resource Estimate and Exploration Target
On April 30, 2008, Mindoro announced an early-stage NI 43-101 compliant mineral resource estimate for the Agata Nickel Laterite Project. The estimate was updated on August 12, 2008.
The estimate for combined Measured and Indicated Resources is 4.95 million wet metric tonnes (WMT) grading 1.18 percent nickel, 0.074 percent cobalt and 28 percent iron, at a cut-off grade of 0.80 percent nickel; conatining approximately 92.4 million pounds nickel. In addition, the Inferred Resource estimate is 4.37 million WMT grading 1.26 percent nickel, 0.047 percent cobalt and 20 percent iron, also at a cut-off grade of 0.80 percent nickel; containing approximately 92.5 million pounds nickel. Breakdown between limonite and saprolite is given in the August 12, 2008, news release. A total of 228 drill holes, comprising 4,507 meters of diamond drill core and 4,480 assay samples, were used for the estimate. This resource estimate covers about 25% of the Agata North laterite as mapped to date.
The Exploration Target for Agata North is 30 to 40 million WMT at a grade of 0.9% to 1.5% nickel and 18% to 28% iron. This does not include other areas of laterite mineralization on the Agata Project, nor other Mindoro Projects in the Surigao District.
The reader is cautioned that mineral resources which are not mineral reserves do not have demonstrated economic viability. Further, the potential quantity and grade of the exploration target described above is conceptual in nature. There has been insufficient exploration to define mineral resources other than those disclosed in this release, and it is uncertain if further exploration will result in the targets delineating additional mineral resources or that these resources, if delineated, will be economic or sufficient to support a commercial mining operation. Until a feasibility study has been completed there is no certainty that the company's projections will be economically viable.
Enhanced Value, On-Site Processing Alternatives
While sulphide nickel deposits have dominated historical nickel production, the future belongs to nickel laterite deposits. Once regarded as too difficult metallurgically, break-throughs and technological refinements, still in their relative infancy, are leading rapidly to a new generation of nickel production centers from laterite deposits. The Agata Project with its excellent infrastructure, proximity to tide water, potential hydro-electric power on an adjacent river, and the markets that really count, is attractively placed for potential development.
While much of the Surigao District nickel laterite production has been as direct shipping ore (DSO) to processing plants in Japan, Australia and China, several attractive alternatives are emerging for local processing, which include; constructing an on-site blast or electric arc furnace for nickel pig iron production (a low grade ferronickel product); ferronickel smelting (a ferronickel smelter recently commenced operation not far away in NW Mindanao); heap-leaching, for which pilot testing on another Philippine laterite deposit has produced promising results; atmospheric (tank) leaching; and an improved generation of High Pressure Acid Leach (HPAL) plants. HPAL technology is currently being used with great success by Sumitomo on its Philippine Coral Bay operation, and shows considerable promise for the local processing of Surigao ores.
Processing technologies which may be especially suited to the Agata Laterite Project include atmospheric (tank) leaching, or ferronickel smelting which could potentially utilize power from a "mini-hydro plant" constructed on an adjacent large river.
As noted in a February 7, 2008, news release, there is abundant evidence of the beginning of a trend for local/on-site processing of Philippine laterite ores and the growth of a large high-value industry in the Philippines. Mindoro expects that the prolifically nickel laterite-mineralized Surigao District will be an important part of this evolution.
While options are being kept open for DSO production in the short term, on-site processing offers much more exciting and high value opportunities. Construction of a local processing plant, rather than simply shipping out raw product, would greatly increase the returns to all stakeholders; including Mindoro's shareholders, its Philippine partner, the local people, local government units, and to the Philippines itself.
Programs are carried out under the supervision of Tony Climie, P.Geol., CEO and COO of Mindoro, who is a qualified person as defined by National Instrument 43-101. Previous sample preparation and assaying were performed by McPhar Laboratory of Manila, an ISO 9001/2000 accredited laboratory. Ni, Co, Fe, MgO and Al2O3 assays are performed by AAS after an HCl-HNO3-HClO4 digest, and SiO2 by gravimetric method. More recent results were from Intertek Testing Services Phils, XRF analysis are performed to determine total element concentrations (13 elements). Normal Quality Control and Quality Assurance procedures are being carried out, using a system of duplicate samples. MRL has conducted assays verification by using standard samples and re-assaying of field, coarse and pulp duplicates.
Mindoro is a Tier 1 Issuer trading on the TSX Venture Exchange (MIO) and the Frankfurt Stock Exchange (WKN 906167). In addition to advancing the Agata Nickel Laterite Project, Mindoro has announced an initial 43-101 compliant gold-silver mineral resource estimate on its Kay Tanda gold-silver project, and is proceeding to advance this project. The company has also identified 22 porphyry copper-gold prospects in the Philippines and is currently involved in several advanced joint venture discussions.
For further information, contact:
INVESTOR RELATIONS -- CANADA
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The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
This release may contain forward-looking statements including management's assessments of future plans and operations, and expectations of future production. These statements are based on current expectations that involve a number of risks and uncertainties, which could cause actual results to differ materially from those anticipated. These risks include, but are not limited to, the risks associated with the mining and exploration industry (e.g. operational risks in development, exploration and production; delays or changes in plans with respect to exploration or development projects or capital expenditures; the uncertainty of reserve estimates; the uncertainty of estimates and projections relating to production). The assumptions used in the preparation of such statements, although considered reasonable at the time of preparation, may prove to be imprecise and, as such, undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements.
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