May 2, 2011 / 1:55 PM / in 7 years

Seabridge Gold says study indicates higher reserves at key mine

* says study indicates 27 higher gold reserves at KSM project

* Extends life of mine to 52 years from 37 years

* Sees start-up capital costs of $4.68 bln, higher than previous estimates

May 2 (Reuters) - Seabridge Gold Inc said a recent pre-feasibility study indicated higher reserves at its key KSM project in northern British Columbia, and the company raised the mine life by 15 years.

Toronto-based Seabridge also said start-up capital costs are estimated at $4.68 billion, including contingencies of $576 million. This is about $1.3 billion higher than the start-up capital cost estimate from an earlier study.

The latest study indicates an increase of 27 percent in gold reserves, 42 percent in copper reserves, 61 percent in silver and 22 percent in molybdenum reserves, Seabridge said in a statement.

The life of the mine, which has about 2.19 billion tonnes of proven and probable reserves, was extended to 52 years from 37 years, as estimated earlier.

The mine, with a capacity of 120,000 tonnes a day, is expected to produce gold at a base case cash operating cost of $105 per ounce in first seven years of mine life.

Shares of Seabridge, which also owns the Courageous Lake gold project in Canada’s northwest territories, were down 1 percent at C$31.70 in Monday morning trading on the Toronto Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Arnika Thakur in Bangalore; Editing by Maju Samuel)

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