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Mercator Minerals copper and molybdenum production ramping up

First quarter results from Mercator Minerals (TSX: ML) reflected a company in transition. The copper-molybdenum producer has been busy with the task of expanding its mill operations to 25,000 tonnes per day at the Mineral Park Mine in Nevada.

Mercator is constructing a 50,000 ton per day copper and molybdenum milling operation mill facility in a two-stage expansion at Mineral Park.  Average annual copper and molybdenum production over the first ten years of a 25-year mine life is expected to increase to 56.4 million pounds of copper, 10.3 million pounds of molybdenum and 600,000 ounces of silver per year. The Mineral Park Mine is an open pit copper-molybdenum mine located in north-western Arizona, approximately 74 miles southeast of Las Vegas, Nevada.

For the first quarter of 2009, during the commissioning of the first stage of the mill expansion, the Company recorded Cathode Copper production of 1.175 million pounds, compared to the 2.47 million pounds for the quarter ended March 31, 2008, and the first production of 2.3 million pounds of copper in concentrates, 94,094 pounds of molybdenum and 12,240 ounces of silver.

Revenues from copper, molybdenum and silver sales and landscaping materials for the first quarter were $6.34 million (Q1 2008: $7.74 million).  The net loss was $10.65 million (Q1 2008: net loss $1.09 million).

"The first quarter of 2009 marked a significant change in the Company's production status, with the shipment of the first concentrates from the newly constructed mill at our Mineral Park Mine in Arizona," said Michael L. Surratt, President and CEO. "We continue to ramp up production levels and continued to exceeding design throughput. We expect the second quarter of 2009 to be an outstanding one for the Mineral Park Mine and for Mercator. In April, production at Mineral Park comprised 412,579 pounds of cathode copper, 3,399,988 pounds of copper in concentrates, 166,684 pounds of molybdenum in concentrate and 27,658 ounces of silver in concentrate.”

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