Mining skills for Philippine nationals
St. Augustine Gold & Copper subsidary St. Augustine Services Inc. (SASI), has signed a Memorandum of Agreement with the Technical Education and Skills Development Authority (TESDA) of the Philippines, the first MOA for a mining company. TESDA will both facilitate and participate in the conduct of workforce training for the King-king project through construction and operation. Secretary and TESDA Director-General Joel Villanueva and SASI President and Chief Executive Officer Andy Russell both signed the MOA at the TESDA central office in Taguig City. The MOA sets in motion detailed plans jointly developed over the previous year to prepare the local Mindanao work force in Pantukan and Compostela Valley to move the project into the development phase, pending approval of the submitted Declaration of Mine Project Feasibility (DMPF) application.The DMPF application was submitted in May of this year, ahead of schedule. The DMPF application currently resides with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources’ (DENR) Mines and the Geosciences Bureau (MGB).Andy Russell, CEO: “The agreement with TESDA supports the training of Pantukan residents as they develop the required skills to successfully participate in the construction and operation of the project. This agreement achieves another milestone in the advancement of the project and reflects the continued commitment of the company and the project to the local community and the Philippines.”Secretary Villanueva, a cabinet appointee of President Benigno Aquino, leads TESDA as the organisation works towards meeting the high demand for a technically skilled labour force. Tom Henderson, the company’s Chief Operating Officer stated, “The Secretary’s prior experience as a three time congressman and Secretary General of the regional anti-corruption body, Southeast Asia Parliamentarians Against Corruption (SEAPAC), and his consistent involvement with SASI was pivotal in this achievement of another important project milestone.”TESDA maintains more than 200 training assessments and courses with certification for those who complete the training. SASI intends to use at least 70 of the established courses and partner with TESDA to develop and register additional training courses for the mining industry.King-king is one of the largest undeveloped copper-gold deposits in the world. As released in the October 2010 Technical Report and the updated resource released August 15, 2011, Measured and Indicated mineral resource is 962.3 Mt at 0.254% total Cu, 0.062% soluble Cu, and 0.334 g/t Au. Inferred mineral resource is an additional 188.8 Mt at 0.215% total Cu, 0.048% soluble Cu, and 0.265 g/t Au.The King-king deposit is a gold rich copper-gold porphyry deposit located in the southeast of the Philippine Island of Mindanao, 35 km east of Davao City and 13 km from the coast. The project is listed as one of the top priority projects by the Philippine Mines and Geosciences Bureau. It has a low strip ratio (0.8:1) and is at an advanced stage with 95,651 m of drilling composed of 291 core and reverse circulation holes, including 6,052 m of new drilling composed of 14 core holes (and 1 RC) in 2011. King-king has entered into the feasibility stage of development (social, environmental and engineering phases).