The Canadian Securities Administrators ("CSA")
Staff Notice 43-307 Mining Technical Reports –
Preliminary Economic Assessments, which is intended to clarify
the definition of "preliminary economic assessment"
("PEA") in National Instrument 43-101 Standards of
Disclosure for Mineral Projects ("NI 43-101"). NI 43-101
defines a PEA as "a study, other than a pre-feasibility study
or feasibility study, which includes an economic analysis of the
potential viability of mineral resources". The terms
pre-feasibility study ("PFS") and feasibility study
("FS") have the meanings ascribed by the CIM Definition
Standards for Mineral Resources and Mineral Reserves, as amended.
The CSA notes that certain issues have been identified in
monitoring PEA disclosure since June 2011 when this definition was
included in NI 43-101.
The Notice emphasizes to issuers that a PEA is to be kept
separate and distinct from both PFS and FS, which indicate more
comprehensive studies, and provides further guidance to issuers on
other aspects of PEA preparation and disclosure to address the
issues that have arisen. The CSA notes that the definition of PEA
has two elements that distinguish it from other studies, namely
that, by definition it cannot be a PFS or FS and it can only
demonstrate the potential viability of mineral resources, not the
technical or economic viability of a project. The Notice provides
guidance to issuers regarding how to properly identify and disclose
a PEA and avoid the staff challenging the study or taking the
position that the issuer is treating the PEA as a PFS.
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