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Newmont grants Mirasol option to acquire Chilean gold project

Vancouver, British Columbia-based Mirasol Resources Ltd. secured an option to acquire the Inca gold project in Chile from subsidiaries of gold major Newmont Corp.

Mirasol can own the property by completing a 1,000-meter drilling program over two years, spending US$3 million on exploration within five years and granting a 1.5% net smelter return royalty.

The company can terminate the agreement after concluding the initial drilling commitment.

Upon completion of the option, Newmont has the right to buy back 70% of the project in two stages. In the first stage, Newmont is required to reimburse Mirasol's US$3 million exploration spend and fund a US$6 million exploration program over three years.

In the second stage, Newmont must deliver a National Instrument 43-101-compliant pre-feasibility study with a resource of at least 2 million ounces of gold equivalent and incur an additional US$15 million in exploration expenditures over three years.

If Newmont completes the first stage but not the second stage, Mirasol will retain full ownership and grant Newmont an additional 0.5% NSR, which Mirasol can buy back at fair market value.

If Newmont satisfies both stages, it will form a 70/30 joint venture with Mirasol, which will have an option to either fund its 30% interest or reduce it to 25% in exchange for a loan from Newmont to bring the project to commercial production.

The 14,000-hectare project is underexplored and hosts five target areas that have yet to be drill tested, according to a Jan. 13 release.