Benton's Partner Initiates Drill Program on the BCF Property in Marathon
Benton Resources Corp. ("Benton" or the "Company") is pleased to report that the Company has been notified by its joint venture partner Marathon PGM Corporation ("MAR") that diamond drilling has started on Benton's BCF (formerly east part of the Bermuda) property north of the Marathon Cu-PGE Deposit. Benton and MAR have recently entered into a joint venture agreement to develop the project. The drilling will initially concentrate on defining the northern extension of the Marathon Deposit and incorporating the results into MAR's resource estimates. MAR has indicated that 8,000 to 10,000 metres of drilling will be completed over the next few months. Results of the drilling will be released as they are received and compiled.
Under the terms of the OJVA, MAR has the option to earn a 60% participating interest in the BCF Property by (i) issuing Benton 120,000 common shares on signing of the OJVA, subject to regulatory approval; (ii) completing work expenditures of $1.5 million per year during the first four years of the OJVA and an additional $2 million on or before the fifth anniversary and; (iii) making cash payments of $500,000 per year on or before the anniversary date of the OJVA for the first three years (for a total $1.5 million).
During the earn-in period, all work will be supervised and carried out by MAR. After MAR has issued the 120,000 shares, made the $1.5 million cash payments and spent the $8 million, Marathon will have "earned in" to 60% of the JV.
During the earn-in period MAR may mine up to 200 metres north of its property into the BCF Property. If Marathon mines any part of the BCF Property prior to the JV, MAR will receive all revenue and (i) pay all costs, (ii) pay all royalties due from the BCF Property, and (iii) pay an additional 2% NSR royalty to Benton.
After the JV is formed, MAR will be operator and any ore that is discovered on the BCF property will be mined and processed by Marathon at its facilities. Under the JV agreement, Marathon will charge the JV for all direct, indirect and overhead costs including a charge to recover its capital costs as well as a 4% management fee.
Clinton Barr (P.Geo.), V.P. Exploration for Benton Resources Corp., is the qualified person responsible for this release.
About Benton Resources Corp:
Benton Resources Corp. (the "Company") is a mineral exploration company listed on the TSX Venture Exchange under the symbol BTC. Benton's aggressive and experienced management team is focused on base and precious group metal exploration. The Company's diverse property portfolio includes Canadian projects which are highly prospective for gold, uranium, platinum, palladium, nickel and copper. The Company currently has approximately $20 million in working capital and many of its projects are being funded by Joint Venture partners such as Teck Cominco Limited, Stillwater Mining Company and junior exploration companies.
On behalf of the Board of Directors of Benton Resources Corp.
Stephen Stares, President
THE TSX VENTURE EXCHANGE HAS NOT REVIEWED AND DOES NOT ACCEPT RESPONSIBILITY FOR THE ADEQUACY OR ACCURACY OF THIS RELEASE.
Forward-looking statements in this release are made pursuant to the safe harbor provisions of the Private Securities Litigation Reform act of 1995. Investors are cautioned that such forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties.