December 16, 2003
Exploration Program Update

Abacus Mining & Exploration Corp. (the "Company") is please to provide an update of its geophysical survey and diamond drill program on the Rainbow copper-gold property near Kamloops, British Columbia. The Rainbow property is one of the seven properties that Abacus is earning an interest in from Teck Cominco Limited. The program has concluded for the Christmas break and will resume in mid-January.

Drilling to date has focused on the No. 2 Zone in an effort to expand the down dip potential to mineralization encountered in the 2002 diamond drill program. Four drill holes totaling 1,865 metres and a 61 line kilometre three-dimensional Induced Polarization Survey ("3D IP") were completed. The 3D-IP survey covered a portion of the favourable northwest trending structural corridor that extends from the Company's Ajax mine pit to DRC Resources' Afton mine pit. The Company's technical team believes the 2003 program has been successful in expanding the known mineralized zones.

Drill holes R-03-013 and R-03-014 are the most significantly mineralized holes of the four drill holes. Drilled 50 metres west of drill hole R-02-010, drill hole R-03-013 intersected a 9.0 metre interval grading 2.10% copper and 0.55 grams per ton gold (2.44% copper equivalent) within a wider zone grading 1.35% copper and 0.38 grams per ton gold (1.58% copper equivalent) over 22.5 metres. 

Drill hole R-03-014 was drilled from the same collar as R-03-013 at a steeper angle (61 degrees) to test the continuity of the mineralization at depth. Mineralization grading 1.17% copper and 0.24 g/t gold (1.32% copper equivalent) over a width of 7.5 metres was intercepted 90 metres beneath the mineralization encountered in R-02-013.

Drill hole R-03-012 was designed to test the down dip extension of the mineralization discovered in drill hole R-02-006 in 2002. Due to deviation in the drill hole, the mineralized horizon was intersected 50 metres above the intended target zone. However, R-03-012 still intersected significant mineralization - 9.0 metres grading 0.57% copper and 0.19 g/t gold and a further 15.0 metres grading 0.57% copper and 0.15 g/t gold. The Company's technical staff interprets this intercept to be the top part of a mineralized zone that may exist at depth as evident on adjacent drill sections.

Hole R-03-011 was drilled at a steeper angle (66 degrees) to intersect potential mineralization 100 metres beneath the high-grade intercept discovered in drill hole R-02-009 in 2002. The mineralization is interpreted to have flattened at depth, dipping parallel to R-03-011. As a result, hole R-03-011 likely only intersected the bottom edge of the mineralized zone. A follow up drill hole from a new collar location and different orientation remain a priority in 2004.

The 3D IP survey is a technologically advanced geophysical system that has never been used in the Afton camp. Previous conventional IP data has proven to be very effective in defining mineralized zones elsewhere in the Afton area. Preliminary 3D IP results indicate numerous chargeability anomalies. Some of these anomalies are associated with mineralization discovered in previous exploration programs while others anomalies remain untested. As the final results are obtained and compiled with the other exploration data, a more definitive interpretation of the geophysics will be made. 

The exploration program in 2004 is expected to resume in mid-January and will comprise of an additional 10,000 metres of diamond drilling on the Afton properties. Additional 3D IP surveys will also be conducted on the DM, Audra and Crescent deposits to better define drill targets.

Eco Tech Laboratory Ltd. of Kamloops, B.C. has completed all of Abacus' analytical work on the project to date. A quality control program, using specific standards and blank samples, is ongoing using both Eco Tech and Chemex Labs of North Vancouver, B.C. The qualified person responsible for the design and conduct of the work performed is Bob Friesen, P. Geo. All copper equivalent numbers were based on US $400 per ounce gold and US $0.95 per pound copper.

On behalf of the Board,

"Doug Fulcher" 
Doug Fulcher

The TSX Venture Exchange has not reviewed and does not accept the responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this news release.

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