Vancouver, B.C. – Northisle Copper and Gold Inc. (TSX-V: NCX) (“Northisle” or the “Company”) is pleased to announce that its 100% owned subsidiary North Island Mining Corp. (“NIMC”) has entered into an agreement (the “Agreement”) with Quatsino First Nation (“Quatsino”, and together with NIMC, the “Parties”) which is the culmination of many years of mutually respectful engagement between the Parties. The Agreement covers all NIMC mineral claims within Quatsino Territory (as defined in the Agreement) and provides for an open, honest, transparent and fair process through which NIMC can conduct certain activities to determine the viability of developing mines, mills, or related facilities for the commercial production of minerals in a manner which recognizes Quatsino Rights (as defined in the agreement).
Quatsino Chief Tom Nelson stated, “This agreement represents a good first step and sets a strong foundation for our relationship with Northisle. We look forward to working with Northisle to further explore how we can work together to create a stronger future for our Nation today, and for the generations to follow, while standing firm in our duty as stewards of the land. The recognition of Quatsino rights embedded in the agreement will allow us to work together to continue to evaluate Northisle’s mineral projects within Quatsino Territory.”
Sam Lee, President and CEO of Northisle commented, “We deeply appreciate the time and effort Quatsino First Nation Council and representatives have invested in building our relationship to date. We acknowledge that our work does and will continue to have an impact on the traditional and unceded territories of Quatsino and other First Nations on the North Island while we seek to further advance the opportunity that our project could bring in the area. This agreement is a significant step and provides a clear process for us to ensure mutual understanding of and support for our activities.”
He continued, “From day one, Northisle has proactively engaged with potentially impacted First Nations, and we continue to focus on working in a collaborative, consent-driven basis. We are extremely pleased to have progressed our discussions with Quatsino First Nation to this point and are confident that the Joint Implementation Committee provides the framework to make increasingly complex decisions together. With this agreement in place, we have a clear path to finalize our 2023 exploration programs, engage all communities fully, and rapidly move the North Island Project forward.”
Bruce Ralston, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation commented, “In the 21st century, successful resource development companies see First Nations’ rights as an opportunity, a chance to nurture B.C.’s world-class exploration and mining sector through respect, reconciliation and support for local communities. The respectful process Northisle followed in developing this collaboration with the Quatsino First Nation exemplifies the goals and objectives of the BC Regional Mining Alliance, of which Northisle is a member, and will help to position B.C. as a leader in the critical metals revolution.”
Northisle continues to execute on its surface exploration program, as described in its November 1, 2022 press release (see here). 2023 drilling programs are currently being finalized and will be advanced in collaboration with Quatsino through the Joint Implementation Committee (the “JIC”), which is anticipated to augment existing BC Government permitting and referrals processes.
A key feature of the Agreement is the creation of a JIC through which the Parties will consider matters of mutual interest, including potential future activities by NIMC within Quatsino Territory.
In addition, the Agreement provides for, among other things:
• confirmation of support by Quatsino for NIMC’s existing exploration authorizations;
• advance review of new authorizations by Quatsino, via the JIC, prior to submission;
• funding by Northisle to support community initiatives and to support the principle of “no net cost” to Quatsino for its consideration of NIMC’s activities; and
• the Parties will work jointly to identify opportunities for business development and third-party funding.
The framework of the Agreement is anticipated to be a framework for continued relationship and trust building between Northisle and Quatsino First Nation as the North Island Project continues to advance.
About Quatsino First Nation
Our people have been living on the Northern tip of Vancouver Island for millennia. We are the descendants of five (5) traditional Kwakwa̱ka̱’wakw “tribes” which are as follows: T’latsinuxw (Klaskino), Huyalas (Hoyalas), Gusgimukw (Koskimo), Gob’inuxw (Giopino), Qwat’sinuxw (Quatsino) that spoke a similar dialect of the Kwak’wala language and amalgamated starting in the 1700’s. We have used and occupied the full extent of this territory since time immemorial. It was a land of plenty that supported a dense population, complex society and vibrant economy. We will always be the stewards of this land and rely on its rich bounty to support our culture, community and economy.
Northisle Copper and Gold Inc. is a Vancouver-based company whose mission is to become Canada’s leading sustainable mineral resource company for the future. Northisle, through its 100% owned subsidiary North Island Mining Corp., owns the North Island Project, which is one of the most promising copper and gold porphyry projects in Canada. The North Island Project is located near Port Hardy, British Columbia on a more than 34,000-hectare block of mineral titles 100% owned by Northisle stretching 50 kilometres northwest from the now closed Island Copper Mine operated by BHP Billiton. Northisle completed an updated preliminary economic assessment for the North Island Project in 2021 and is now focused on advancement of the project through a prefeasibility study while continuing exploration within this highly prospective land package.
For more information on Northisle please visit the Company’s website at www.northisle.ca.
On behalf of Northisle Copper and Gold Inc.
Nicholas Van Dyk, CFA
Chief Financial Officer
Tel: (604) 638-2515
Cautionary Statements regarding Forward-Looking Information
Neither the TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in the policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.
This news release contains forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based upon the reasonable beliefs of Northisle and its management as of the date of this news release; however, forward-looking statements involve risks and uncertainties and are based upon factors that may change and assumptions that may prove, with the passage of time, to be incorrect as a result of exploration and other risk factors associated with mineral exploration and development that are beyond the control of Northisle. Accordingly, undue reliance should not be placed upon such statements. If factors materially change or assumptions are materially incorrect, the actual results, performance or achievements of Northisle may be materially different from any future results, performances or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Northisle does not undertake any obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements to reflect new information, future events or otherwise, except as required by applicable law.