In a statement announcing its 2017 fiscal results, the company said it “delivered a modest increase in revenue” and posted record production at its Topia operations.
In addition, it also completed plant upgrades, installed a tailings handling facility at Topia and saw a significant increase in the Mineral Resource Estimate at the GMC, and completed the purchase of Coricancha.
Jim Bannantine, the President and CEO said that these activities were “were funded by our operating cash-flow as we improved our cash position” and kept its balance sheet debt-free.
In the year ended December 31, 2017, Great Panther Silver saw revenues rise 3% year-on-year to US$63.7mln from US$61.9mln, primarily due to the increase in production ounces (on a silver equivalent basis) and improved average realised metal prices.
Higher production costs however saw mine operating earnings before non-cash items of US$22.0mln fall by 21% from the year before.
The increased drilling activities at its operating mines in Mexico and ongoing costs to progress the Coricancha project in Peru also resulted in an increase in exploration and evaluation expenditures in 2017.
The company recorded a net income of US$1.3mln in 2017, against a net loss of US$4.1mln in 2016.
Focus in 2018
For 2018, the company expects production to be in the range of 4.0 to 4.1mln Ag eq oz (at a 70:1 silver to gold ratio).
The company said the focus in 2018 will be to maintain steady and efficient operations in Mexico, while advancing the Coricancha Mine to set a platform for production growth in 2019 and 2020.
It believes, based on historic production records, the mine has the potential to add 3 million Ag eq oz of annual production.
The Company is conducting evaluations of the mine and processing infrastructure and undertaking certain environmental studies. Remediation activities are also being conducted.
Depending on the outcome of the evaluations, investments in support of a restart of mine development could commence in 2018.
The Company plans to release additional technical studies for the project in the second quarter of 2018.