Joint Venture Agreement implemented with BHP Billiton

Petra Diamonds Limited (‘Petra’ or ‘the Company’), the AIM quoted diamond mining group, announces the implementation of the formal Joint Venture Agreement with BHP Billiton World Exploration Inc (‘BHP Billiton’) regarding the Alto Cuilo diamond project in north eastern Angola.

On Tuesday 30 November BHP Billiton subscribed for 901,060 shares in the Company at a price of 88.2 pence per share. The price was based on the average of the closing mid-market prices of Petra’s shares for the ten dealing days to 26 November 2004.

Application has been made for these shares to be admitted for trading on AIM and dealings are expected to commence on 6 December 2004.

As announced on 14 September 2004, under the terms of the Joint Venture Agreement BHP Billiton can, by investing up to US$60 million in the JV vehicle (‘Vehicle’) which holds Petra’s share in Alto Cuilo, acquire a share of up to 75% of the Vehicle.

Petra has, to date, focused its work on the area around the Mussunuige-Luangue river interfluve (‘the ML Complex’) in which Petra, along with its Angolan partners Endiama and Moyoweno, has already established the presence of a diamondiferous kimberlite and alluvial complex. Under the terms of the Joint Venture, BHP Billiton will work with the Company to undertake regional exploration on the balance of the concession and to develop the ML Complex further.

Adonis Pouroulis, Chairman of Petra Diamonds, commented, “Further to the announcement of the Joint Venture terms on 14 September, we are delighted to have completed the formal Joint Venture Agreement with BHP Billiton. This is a very exciting project and although exploration is still at an early stage, results so far have been encouraging. Along with BHP Billiton, we hope to expedite exploration on the Alto Cuilo project and look forward to obtaining further definition of the deposits. ”

~ Ends ~

For further information, please contact:

Adonis Pouroulis / David Abery
Petra Diamonds
Tel: +27 11 467 6710 Cathy Malins / Annabel Leather
Parkgreen Communications
Tel: +44 20 7493 3713

Philippine Supreme Court Opens for Increases Foreign Ownership in Mining Projects

LONDON, United Kingdom, DATE: December 3rd 2004. Crew Gold Corporation (“Crew”) (TSE & OSE: CRU; Frankfurt: KNC; OTC-BB- other: CRUGF.PK.

On December 1st 2004, the Supreme Court of the Philippines reversed an earlier negative decision on the Technical Assistance Agreement (FTAA) where foreign companies can enter into an agreement with the government owning up to 100% of a mining project.

The President of the Philippines, Gloria Macapgal-Arroyo said the decision of the Supreme Court upholding the constitutionality of the Mining Act would attract investments, which would “boost jobs and productivity” in the rural areas, citing that the Philippines ranked number three in gold production, number four in copper, number five in nickel, and number six in chromite deposits.

For Crew’s two development projects in the Philippines; the Mindoro Nickel Deposit (MNP) and The Pamplona Sulphur Project (PSP) the decision has been welcomed as very good news. Crew and its Philippine associated companies have for several months held ongoing discussions with potential partners on both projects. We believe the Supreme Court decision will help these discussions to be concluded.

Further more Crew has for some time worked on identifying gold projects in the Philippines. Again with the present Supreme Court favourable decision we hope to be able to materialize on this work.  

Jan A. Vestrum

President & CEO

This news release contains certain “Forward-Looking Statements”. All statements, other than statements of historical fact, included in this release, and/or statements made by company officers or directors at any given time, as well as Crew’s future plans are such forward-looking statements that involve various risks and uncertainties. There can be no assurance that such statements will prove to be accurate, and actual results and future events could differ materially from those anticipated in such statements. Forward-looking statements are based on the estimates and opinions of management on the date the statements are made, and Crew does not undertake any obligation to update forward-looking statements should conditions or management’s estimates or opinions change. For more information please contact our UK Head Office (TEL +44 -1932 268755) or by email to For more information about Crew, additional contact information or to subscribe to future news releases, please visit our new website

BacTech And Medusa Provide Dizon Tailings Update

TORONTO, ONTARIO – Dec. 2, 2004 – BacTech Mining Corporation (TSX VENTURE:BM) (“BacTech”) today announced a progress report for the Dizon tailings project in the Philippines. The Dizon project is located 100 km northwest of Manila near Olongapo City at Subic Bay. BacTech and Medusa Mining Limited (“Medusa”) previously entered into a Joint Venture Memorandum of Understanding to focus on the identification of refractory gold-copper deposits in the Philippines that are amenable to BacTech’s bioleaching process. The Dizon Project is the first project to be evaluated by the joint venture.

The Dizon project operated as a 50/50 joint venture between Dizon Copper and Silver Mines Inc. (“DCSMI”) and Benguet Consolidated Inc. (“Benguet”) from 1979 to 1997 and mined 110 million tonnes of ore. The mill tailings are impounded at the head of a valley behind an earth wall dam, and at their deepest point are 126 metres deep. Benguet has subsequently withdrawn from the joint venture and returned 100% ownership to DCSMI. Medusa has signed a Memorandum of Understanding (“MOU”) with DCSMI to evaluate the potential of retreating the Dizon tails for metal recovery.

Medusa has completed a sample drilling program on the upper 50 metres of the Dizon tails whereby 578 metres of Denison tube coring was undertaken over 12 holes to recover 800 kilograms of tailings material. The cored tailings samples were collected, logged onsite by a Medusa geologist, packaged, and transported to the Manila laboratory of McPhar Geoservices Inc. (“McPhar Geoservices”), where they were dried and composited into two groups of samples per hole. McPhar Geoservices assayed the 24 samples for gold, silver, total sulphur, silica and a suite of base metals. These samples have been forwarded to Perth, Australia to undergo metallurgical testwork including bioleaching work on the sulphides.

The composite grades from the 24 drillhole samples show good consistency in grade and have returned average values of 0.3 g/t gold 0.6 g/t silver and 0.074 % copper, which are similar to previous estimates based on historic mill operating data. In addition, the tailings also contain approximately 4% magnetite. Gravity concentrates from 5 of the core composite samples have returned head grade estimates of 2.7 to 11.6 g/t gold due to the presence of free gold.

A conceptual model for metal recovery consisting of a mineral sands mining and gravity processing operation to recover free gold, magnetite and sulphides is being considered by the joint venture. Testwork is now planned to obtain further details on processing alternatives for the gold and magnetite, as well as processing the sulphides to recover additional metal. Results of the first stage test results are expected in the first quarter of 2005.

The sample drilling program was conducted under the supervision of Geoff J. Davis of Medusa Mining Limited, a member of the Australian Institute of Geoscientists. Mr. Davis is a Qualified Person under National Instrument 43-101.


BacTech has developed and patented bioleach technology for the treatment of refractory ores and concentrates over the past 16 years to enhance the recovery of gold, silver and base metals. BacTech has successfully commissioned three bioleach plants for gold and successfully demonstrated its technology in the selective recovery of base metals from complex sulphide concentrates in a joint project with Industrias Penoles de C.V. of Mexico.

BacTech acquired a 55% stake in Tonkin Springs LLC, the owner of the Tonkin Springs gold project in north central Nevada, in July 2003. BacTech has also acquired an option on 100% of the McKinnon Creek polymetallic deposit near Revelstoke, British Columbia. Finally, BacTech has entered into a series of agreements in China and the Philippines that could see the Company participating in certain projects.


Except for statements of historical fact relating to the Corporation, certain information contained herein constitutes “forward-looking statements” within the meaning of Section 21E of the United States Securities Exchange Act of 1934, as amended. Forward-looking statements are frequently characterized by words such as “plan,” “expect,” “project,” “intend,” “believe,” “anticipate” and other similar words, or statements that certain events or conditions “may” or “will” occur. Forward-looking statements are based on the opinions and estimates of management at the date the statements are made, and are subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking statements. These factors include the inherent risks involved in the exploration and development of mineral properties, the uncertainties involved in interpreting drilling results and other ecological data, fluctuating metal prices, the possibility of project cost overruns or unanticipated costs and expenses, uncertainties relating to the availability and costs of financing needed in the future and other factors described in the section entitled “General Development of the Business of the Company – Risks of the Business” in the Corporation’s annual information form dated May 17, 2004. Circumstances or management’s estimates or opinions could change. The reader is cautioned not to place undue reliance on forward-looking statements.

Shares Outstanding 37,447,412


BacTech Mining Corp.
Ross Orr
President & CEO
(416) 813-0303
Linear Capital Corporation
Phil Williams
Toll Free: (877) 600-6001
Direct: (416) 364-2266

Oriel Receives First Round of Drill Hole and Trench Assay Results from the Kupol Gold Project, Urup Island

Oriel Receives First Round of Drill Hole and Trench Assay Results from the Kupol Gold Project, Urup Island.

Oriel Receives First Round of Drill Hole and Trench Assay Results from the Kupol Gold Project, Urup Island.

Dr Sergey V Kurzin, the Chairman and CEO of Oriel Resources PLC (“Oriel”) said today “we are pleased to announce the initial results of Oriel’s exploration and drilling campaign for the 2004 season on the Urup Project in the Kuril Islands. The campaign was completed despite inclement weather conditions, permitting issues and the necessity to set up a mining camp on an uninhabited island. As a result drilling did not commence until late August 2004.”

During the limited seasonal campaign 15 drill holes were completed and the assays for the first two drill holes received so far are shown below in addition to the assays for the first two of the 9 trenches completed.

The results from the first 271 samples of the 2004 drilling and trenching program at Kupol during the summer, which was completed in September, are as follows:

Hole ID Type From m To m Interval Au g/t
KPDD1 Drill Hole 2.6 58.4 55.8 3.97
KPDD1 includes 3.6 28.1 24.5 6.45
KPDD1 includes 9.6 16.8 7.2 11.7

KPDD2 Drill Hole 0.8 17.8 17 2.0

KPTR6 Trench 0 19.8 19.8 15.5
KPTR6 includes 0 6 6 30

KPTR8 Trench 0 17 17 5.3
KPTR8 includes 0 6 6 9.24

The 2004 field program comprised the following work,
• 604m of channel sampling from 9 separate trenches (633 samples).
• 15 diamond drill holes with a total length of 2,015.25m (1,656 samples)
• Detailed geological mapping and ground geophysics.

The mineralized body at Kupol had been interpreted by the Sakhalin Geological Institute as a +150m long by 50m wide mineralized body dipping at approximately 65 degrees to the east, and interpreted as extending to a depth of 100m or more below the surface. However, as a result of the geological mapping and drilling completed during the 2004 program, Oriel has reinterpreted the mineralized body as being a relatively flat-lying 10 to 20m thick zone, covering an area of approximately 150 by 100 metres, bounded along the west side by sea-cliffs. Since the intensity and grade of mineralization increases to the west, we interpret this as indicating that the bulk of this particular deposit has been eroded away. In view of this reinterpretation, Oriel has decided to pause the 2004 drilling program at 2,015 metres total length to allow Oriel to re-evaluate the Project once all the assay data becomes available in February 2005.

The original 70 square kilometre licence area has approximately ten additional exploration targets which will be evaluated beginning in 2005.

The Chairman and CEO, Dr Sergey V Kurzin said, “We are very encouraged that our original thoughts on the high grade, open pittable nature and good thickness of this deposit have been confirmed. However, the tonnage potential may be more limited than we originally thought, but reinterpretation has allowed us to identify high quality targets in the licence area for next season.

For further information, or to download the entire press release, please visit our website at or contact:

Sergey V Kurzin

Stephen R Dattels

18 Upper Brook Street. • London W1K 7PU • England
Telephone +44 (0) 20 7514 0590 Facsimile +44 (0) 20 7514 0591