Through two C$1.5 million equity investments in Medgold Resources Corp. (see Medgold’s news release dated January 9, 2017), Fortuna Silver Mines is funding a Strategic Alliance with Medgold and has the option to nominate two Selected Properties over the course of 2017 to form joint ventures with Medgold. Exploration will center on high and low-sulfidation epithermal gold-silver mineralization in the western portion of the Tethyan orogenic system. Each joint venture, if formed, will allow Fortuna the right to earn a 51 percent interest by spending $3.0 million over three years, with a first-year commitment of $1.0 million, and gain an additional 19 percent interest by spending a further $5.0 million and completing a Preliminary Economic Assessment.
The following jurisdictional and exploration summary is taken verbatim from the Medgold Resources website (effective 7 September 2016):
"Serbia is a relatively small land-locked country in southern Europe, approximately one third the size of the UK with a population of just over 7 million people. It borders Bulgaria and Romania to the east, Hungary to the north; Macedonia to the south; and Croatia, Bosnia, and Montenegro to the west. After the political turmoil that swept the Balkans following the breakup of Yugoslavia in the 1980s and 1990s, the country has finally stabilized and Serbia officially applied for membership of the EU in 2009.
Mining has always been an important part of the Serbian economy. In 2013, mining and quarrying accounted for 2% of the GDP and employed over 22,000 people. The industry produces primarily copper, iron and steel with significant production of gold, lead, coal, salt and selenium. For many decades the largest mining operation in the country has been the State-owned Rudarsko Topionicki Bazen Bor ("Bor") copper-gold mine.
In the last few years, there's been a huge increase in interest in Serbia's mineral potential following Reservoir Minerals discovery of high sulphidation copper-gold mineralization at Cukaru just south of Bor. Medgold joins at least six other companies which were engaged in gold and copper exploration in Serbia, including Canadian companies Avala Resources Ltd., Euromax Resources Ltd., Mundoro Capital Inc., First Quantum Minerals Ltd., and Reservoir Minerals Inc., as well as Orogen Gold plc of the United Kingdom. In addition, the major miners Rio Tinto and Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold are working in the country under JV's with third parties.