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Tuesday, August 30, 2011

The National Instrument 43-101 (the NI 43-101 or the NI


This is a mineral resource scheme that is used in Canada for the public disclosure of information about mineral properties in Canada or by extension all over the world if securities in the companies promoting such properties are sold to the Canadian Public.  In practice the NI 43-101 is a strict guideline about how companies whose stock is traded in Canada can disclose both scientific and technical information about mineral projects on bourses under the supervision of the Canadian Securities Administrators.  The list includes the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSX) or the TSX Venture Exchange (TSX-V).  Many of these companies are listed on other stock exchanges outside Canada, such as the Johannesburg Stock Exchange, Australian Securities, the London Stock Exchange and all the exchanges headquartered in New York City.

There are many different types of reports that are covered including press releases, reports, the reporting of resources and reserves, presentations, oral comments and websites.  Included in the classes of minerals covered are metalliferous deposits, precious metals, coal, bulk minerals, dimension stone, precious stones and mineral sands (placer deposits).  For TSX listing purposes the NI 43-101 Technical Report would have to be accompanied by a report that is prepared in accordance with NI 43-101 specifications.

The NI 43-101 grew out of one of the biggest mining scams in history, the Bre-X (Busang) scandal to protect investors from mineral project disclosures that weren’t substantiated.  The Bre-X scandal occurred when it was claimed there were over 200,000,000 ounces of gold in the deposit or 8% of the total world’s supply.  It was all smoke and mirrors and a huge fraud.  Its chief geologist committed suicide by jumping from a helicopter over the mine-site.  The whole thing was a massive fraud with no gold.  The core samples had been salted with gold, and after analysis in an independent lab many of them proved to be scrapings from jewelry.  The investors lost their shirts!

Bluntly, the purpose of the NI 43-101 is to protect investors from misleading, erroneous or fraudulent information or claims relating to mineral properties is not published or promoted to investors on stock exchanges that are overseen by the Canadian Securities Authority.  This includes stock issued by foreign corporations selling securities in Canada.  

The NI 43-101 stipulates and codifies the form and content of a compliant report (i.e.; a report that complies with the Reporting Standard).
Prescribed disclosure within the National Instrument relates to;
§                    All disclosure of scientific or technical data, including disclosure of a mineral resource or mineral reserve, concerning a mineral project on a property material to the issuer must be based upon information prepared by or under the supervision of a qualified person

§                    What the National Instrument is to be used for, such as which types of mineral properties must be covered by a compliant report
§                    Prescribes the terminology to be used to describe various features, both geologically and financially, within the report
§                    Stipulates the type of information to be discussed and the technical data which must be portrayed, for various levels of reporting
§                    Prescribes a list of approved Competent Persons, and the definition of Groups and Associations which may qualify to certify such a person as "Qualified"
§                    Prescribes that a Qualified Person vouches for the accuracy and completeness of the contained information and the manner in which it is presented
§                    Provides guidance on reporting Historical mineral resource estimates
Proscribed disclosure within the National Instrument precludes a company from reporting;
§                    quantity, grade, or metal or mineral content of a deposit that has not been categorized as an inferred mineral resource, an indicated mineral resource, a measured mineral resource, a probable mineral reserve or a proven mineral reserve
§                    results of an economic analysis that includes inferred mineral resources
§                                allows for the potential grade, quantity and metal or mineral content of an exploration property, provided that a qualifying statement is made as to this being conceptual in nature
§                    the term preliminary feasibility study, pre-feasibility study or feasibility study when referring to a study unless the study satisfies the criteria set out in the National Instrument

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