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Taseko announces 21% increase in quarterly copper production at its Gibraltar mine

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Taseko Mines Limited (NYSE: TGB) (the "Company") announces 2013 second quarter production of 28.1 million pounds of copper, a 21% increase over the prior quarter. Molybdenum production for the second quarter was 333 thousand pounds. Both production amounts are stated on a 100% basis.

Total sales of copper in the second quarter rose by 25% to 27.8 million pounds as a result of increased production as well as improved inventory and logistics management. Molybdenum sales were 317 thousand pounds. Taseko's 75% share of second quarter sales was 20.9 million pounds of copper and 238 thousand pounds of molybdenum.

Ramp up of the new concentrator progressed during the second quarter as operations and maintenance crews continued to fine tune and optimize equipment and operating parameters. The new concentrator has met all expectations and is beginning to consistently achieve throughput and recovery design criteria.

Overall availability of both concentrators was 83% for the quarter, 11% lower than the targeted rate of 93.5%. Copper recoveries in both concentrators improved during the second quarter, averaging 86%, and remain a focus. It is expected that by the fourth quarter, recoveries will be at the design rate of 89%.

Russell Hallbauer, President and CEO of Taseko, commented, "We continue to be very pleased with the ongoing ramp up of our new concentrator and have been addressing our copper recovery issues as we incorporate both plants into a single production unit. We expect to see continued increases in monthly copper and molybdenum production as we achieve full milling capacity in the months ahead."

Mr. Hallbauer continued, "With the increased production, our unit costs have already started to decline and will continue to do so in the back half of 2013. At current copper prices we expect strong operating margins.

Our focus on constructing and commissioning the new plant on time and on budget, combined with operating cost reductions, will generate a very compelling Return on Investment and strong cash flow going forward, even during periods of volatile metal markets."

Note: Gibraltar is a Joint Venture owned by Taseko Mines Limited (75%) and Cariboo Copper Corp. (25%). All production figures are reported on a 100% basis.

 

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