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Various Global Events Drive the Value of Palladium Higher

NEW YORK, Feb. 13, 2019 /CNW/ -- Palladium prices have skyrocketed in the past year due to what analysts consider an annual supply/demand deficit. The prices were trading at approximately USD 990 per ounce in early 2018. Just a year later, palladium prices have surged by 42% to USD 1,411 per ounce. The metal is considered a precious metal and is predominately being used to supply the automotive industry in order to manufacturer catalytic converters. These catalytic converters help reduce the amount of carbon monoxide emitted from automobiles. The metal is also being leveraged in electronics, dentistry, jewelry, groundwater treatment, and chemical applications, according to American Precious Metals Exchange. In combination with the supply and demand deficit, palladium's explosive rise is also a result of the ongoing U.S. and China trade war tensions. The global economic concerns and demand for electric vehicles have caused the price of palladium to surpass gold prices, which were trading at approximately USD 1,300 in early February. According to data compiled by Technavio analysts, the global precious metals market is projected to grow at a CAGR of 4.07% throughout the forecast period from 2017 to 2021. Gold, silver, platinum, and palladium are considered to be precious metals. Declan Cobalt Inc. (OTC:DCNNF - News) (CSE:LAN), North American Palladium Ltd. (OTC:PALDF - News) (TSX:PDL.TO - News), EMX Royalty Corporation (NYSE:EMX - News) (TSX-V:EMX.V - News), Alexco Resource Corp. (NYSE:AXU - News) (TSX:AXR.TO - News), Almaden Minerals Ltd. (NYSE:AAU - News) (TSX:AMM.TO - News).

"While the escalating U.S.-China trade war hurt many commodities in 2018, it couldn't dent palladium's rise. Demand for palladium was especially strong last year, as environmental concerns have prompted a global shift from diesel to gasoline and hybrid vehicles," said John Ciampaglia, Chief Executive Officer of Sprott Asset Management, according to MarketWatch. "Supply shortages continue to support palladium's performance, with strong multi-year growth in palladium demand now straining a fixed supply. Palladium is especially scarce and its supply is inelastic since it is usually a by-product of ores that are being mined for other metals, like platinum and rhodium."

Declan Cobalt Inc. (OTCQB:DCNNF - News) (CSE:LAN) is also listed on the Canadian Securities Exchange under the ticker (CSE:LAN). Earlier today the company announced that, "it paid a non-refundable deposit and entered into a term sheet (the "Term Sheet") dated February 7, 2019, through its wholly-owned subsidiary, East Bull Resources Inc. ("East Bull"), with Pavey Ark Minerals Inc. ("Pavey Ark"), an arm's length private company that generates mineral exploration projects.  The Term Sheet proposes that East Bull would be granted, on an arms' length basis, an option from Pavey Ark to acquire a 100% interest in the East Bull palladium property in the Sudbury Mining Division (Ontario) (the "Property").  P&E Mining Consultants Inc. of Brampton, Ontario has prepared a NI 43-101 compliant report on the Property dated April 5, 2018 (the "43-101 Report").  The NI 43-101 Report references an pit-constrained inferred resource of 11.1 million tonnes of 1.46 grams per tonne (523,000 ounces) palladium equivalent.  The NI 43-101 Report is available for review at www.paveyarkminerals.com, and will be filed on SEDAR within 180 days of this announcement.

Palladium has recently rallied to a price exceeding that of gold.  Palladium is the principal element used in internal combustion engine catalytic converters.  Deposits are rare, found generally in South Africa, Russia, Montana and the Sudbury Basin in Ontario, where the Property is located.  High demand for palladium is expected to continue due to many jurisdictions (including China) implementing more stringent domestic emissions standards.

The Property consists of approximately 1000 hectares covering more than 3.6 kilometres of the East Bull layered intrusion.  This area consists of an inclusion bearing zone hosting palladium mineralization. 

The 43-101 Report recommends an exploration program to extend and define the known mineralization. Declan has not undertaken any independent detailed investigation of the information contained in NI 43-101 Report in order to verify the accuracy of the information. However, Declan believes that following the recommended exploration work program will increase the current resource and help to define the extent of the palladium mineralization.

Under the proposed terms of the transaction, Declan would issue stock, make cash payments and discharge work commitments over the course of a four-year period.  Over the four-year period, a total of $1 million in cash will be paid, 4.5 million shares of Declan will be issued and priced within the context of the market at the time of issuance, and a work commitment of $1.75 million will be completed. The Term Sheet also contemplates that if the option is exercised in full, Declan would acquire a 100% interest in the Property and would grant to Pavey Ark a Net Smelter Royalty on any mineral production from the Property.  If Declan does not exercise the option in full, then a 100% interest in the Property will remain with Pavey Ark.  The terms and conditions of the transaction will be set out in a definitive binding agreement to be negotiated between the parties and intended to be executed on or before February 28, 2019. 

The definitive agreement will be subject to a number of conditions including, without limitation, the parties having received any necessary approvals, consents and authorizations.  In addition, each party shall have completed their due diligence to their satisfaction including, without limitation, Declan being satisfied that it will acquire good and valid title to the Property, free and clear of any and all liabilities and encumbrances. A finder's fee will be payable on closing in connection with this transaction.

Mr Wayne Tisdale, CEO of the Company reports: "We have been presented with a rather unique opportunity to acquire a palladium resource located within 70 kilometres of Sudbury, Ontario.  By pursuing, inter alia, the recommended work program referenced in the P&E 43-101, this resource appears to have excellent potential to add palladium ounces to a current diamond drill permitted area.  This palladium asset perfectly complements our current copper-cobalt project.  At Declan, we are actively pursuing the metals required for current demand (palladium) while also preparing for the increasing demand for cobalt and copper.  We call our strategy Metals for Today and Tomorrow."

Eugene Puritch, P.Eng., President of P&E Mining Consultants Inc., is the independent qualified person (as defined in NI 43-101) responsible for preparing the NI 43-101 Report on the Property.  Mr. Puritch has reviewed and approved the technical contents of this press release as they pertain to the Property."

North American Palladium Ltd. (OTC:PALDF - News) (TSX:PDL.TO - News) provided an update recently on its 2018 exploration programs at the Lac des Iles Mine ("LDI") property, located 90 kms north of Thunder Bay, Ontario. All dollar amounts cited refer to Canadian dollars. Figure 1: Plan map of the eastern part of the Lac des Iles Mine Property, showing the location of 2018 Creek and Baker Zone drill hole collars, planned and completed fence drilling collars, fall 2018 geophysical survey coverages, and current drill targets. Abbreviations: mag = magnetic; DCIP = direct current induced polarization; MT = magnetotelluric. The Company's President and CEO, Mr. Jim Gallagher, commented, "We are very encouraged by the large number of high-quality exploration targets we have developed in a relatively short timeframe, with our renewed focus on exploration. We are increasing our 2019 exploration budget and remain committed to extending the life of the LDI operations through future exploration success." 

EMX Royalty Corporation (NYSE:EMX - News) (TSX-V:EMX.V - News) announced Boreal Metals Corp.'s recent drill results and the discovery of a high grade zone of zinc-silver-lead-gold mineralization at EMX's Gumsberg royalty property. EMX is a royalty holder on the Gumsberg project, and currently owns a 9.4% equity interest in Boreal. Gumsberg is located in the Bergslagen mining district of southern Sweden. The drill results include 11.00 meters averaging 5.90% zinc, 239.0 g/t silver, 2.51% lead, and 0.96 g/t gold in hole GUM-18-003, and 11.01 meters averaging 7.45% zinc, 275.1 g/t silver, 2.65% lead, and 0.77 g/t gold in hole GUM-18-004 (true widths estimated at 50% of reported interval lengths). EMX congratulates Boreal on its new high grade discovery, termed the South Zone, and looks forward to further advancement of the Company's Gumsberg royalty interests.

Alexco Resource Corp. (NYSE:AXU - News) (TSX:AXR.TO - News) announced recently that the Reconnaissance drilling confirms continuation of Bermingham mineralization at depth and identifies an fffset extension, identifies new gold targets. The company released the remaining results from its 2018 7,687 meter ("m") surface reconnaissance and deep drilling program comprising 26 drill holes on six targets scattered across the Keno Hill Silver District in Canada's Yukon Territory. The targets were mostly blind, and were selected to determine if the ore control model developed for the Bermingham deposit is duplicated in other areas across the district. In addition, two of the targets were significant step outs – along strike and down dip – from the recently defined Bermingham silver deposit. The results from four surface in-fill holes comprising 1,052 m at the Bermingham NE Zone are also included herein. The presence of up to 76.3 g/t gold over a true width of 1.5 m in drill hole K-18-0718 and 5.36 g/t gold over a true width of 0.7 m in drill hole K-18-0714 represent a new discovery of gold in the historical No Cash area, approximately one kilometer north of Bermingham. Further work is required to understand the significance of this discovery.  

Almaden Minerals Ltd. (NYSE:AAU - News) (TSX:AMM.TO - News) that the independent NI 43-101 Technical Report on the Feasibility Study of the Ixtaca Gold-Silver Project located in Puebla State, Mexico (the "FS"), has been filed on SEDAR. A summary of findings from the FS was announced in Almaden's press release issued December 11, 2018. The full report, prepared by Moose Mountain Technical Services ("MMTS"), can be viewed under the Company's profile on www.sedar.com. owns 100% of the Ixtaca project in Puebla State, Mexico, subject to a 2.0% NSR royalty held by Almadex Minerals Ltd. The Ixtaca Gold-Silver Deposit was discovered by Almaden in 2010.

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