Nevada Gold Mines and Ridgeline Minerals have signed an earn-in agreement pertaining to the Swift gold project in Lander County, Nevada, US.

According to the agreement, Nevada Gold Mines can incur at least $20m in qualifying work expenditures over a five-year term to earn an initial 60% stake in the Swift project.

Nevada Gold Mines will immediately become the operator of the project.

Furthermore, the Nevada Gold Mines joint venture between Barrick Gold and Newmont will have options to increase the stake in the project to a total of 75%.

These include a one-time option to earn a further 10% stake through sole-funding an additional $10m in work expenditures before 31 December 2029, and a one-time option for another 5% stake by arranging to fund Ridgeline’s portion of debt should the joint venture decide to proceed with the development.

Ridgeline president, CEO and director Chad Peters said: “Our singular focus as a company is to create value per share through discovery and we are delighted to partner with the Nevada Gold Mines team as they apply their proven track record of discovery to the Swift gold project.

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“Through this partnership, Ridgeline will significantly reduce the exploration risk inherent with deep drilling in Nevada while retaining meaningful upside at Swift across all levels of project development moving forward.”

The property is located in the prolific Cortez District of the Battle Mountain – Eureka Trend approximately 30km south of the town of Battle Mountain, in Lander County.

Situated on trend to the Pipeline, Cortez Hills, and Goldrush deposits, the Swift gold project comprises 785 BLM claims and 3,697 acres of private fee ground for a combined total of 18,348 acres. This is located directly adjacent to the historic Elder Creek open-pit mine.