Alma now has more than 1Mt of copper at Briggs, and it’s not done by a long shot
Alma’s promised upgrade for its Briggs copper project in Central Queensland has arrived in style with contained copper resources more than doubling to the 1 million tonne mark.
Briggs now has an Inferred Resource of 415Mt grading 0.25% copper and 31 parts per million (ppm) molybdenum, well above the previous estimate of 143Mt at 0.29% copper and placing it in the top 10 undeveloped copper projects in Australia just on the contained red metal.
The inclusion of molybdenum (28.6Mlbs contained) for the first time also adds further value to the project.
Good news for Alma Metals (ASX:ALM) no doubt, particularly given the sunny long-term prospects for copper, but there is probably more good news waiting to be dropped over time.
For starters, the upgraded resource estimate comprises estimates for both the Northern Porphyry and Briggs Central, both of which remain open in all directions – meaning that extensional drilling could well deliver further growth.
Another substantial upgrade could come from the inclusion of the Southern Porphyry target, which has an Exploration Target of between 85Mt and 155Mt grading from 0.2% copper to 0.35% copper, though further exploration work – including drilling – will be needed to turn this into a proper JORC Resource.
“This is a great result for shareholders and confirms our view that Briggs is a nationally significant porphyry copper deposit that is likely to grow substantially with further drilling,” managing director Frazer Tabeart said.
“With a looming global copper shortage predicted by many market observers, the emergence of this large resource is perfectly timed.”
Alma is sole funding exploration – totalling $16m over a little more than nine years – under a earn-in joint venture agreement with Canterbury Resources (ASX:CBY) to earn up to 70% in the Briggs, Mannersley and Fig Tree Hill project, funds which certainly look well spent given the resource upgrade.
The project is located about 60km west of the deep-water port of Gladstone, and less than 15km to the north of a regionally significant road, rail and power corridor providing excellent infrastructure and logistics connections to the port.
Preliminary metallurgical testwork has already demonstrated high copper recoveries of between 92% and 95% are possible using standard crushing, grinding and flotation to produce viable concentrate grades.
Further drilling to expand the Inferred Resource and to evaluate higher grade zones within the Inferred Resource will begin in the current quarter.
This article was developed in collaboration with Alma Metals, a Stockhead advertiser at the time of publishing.
This article does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.