Alma to earn up to 70% in highly prospective Queensland copper play
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Alma has exercised its option to earn up to 70% in the Briggs, Mannersley and Fig Tree Hill copper project in central Queensland by spending $15.2m over nine years.
While the project already hosts an Inferred Resource of 143Mt at 0.29% copper at the Briggs Central deposit, it also has plenty of room for growth with an exploration target of between 455Mt and 850Mt grading 0.2% to 0.35% copper.
This exploration target is split over the Briggs Central, Northern Porphyry and Southern Porphyry, which are each defined as outcropping mineralised granodioritic to tonalitic intrusions and adjacent volcanic sediments containing copper bearing quartz stockworks.
Alma Metals (ASX:ALM) plans to kick off its earn-in with a six-hole core drilling campaign totalling 3,000m to test the validity of the exploration target during the second half of 2022.
Four holes will seek to expand the resource and evaluate the exploration target at Briggs Central while two holes will test the Northern Porphyry target.
It follows on more than $750,000 worth of assessment work – including a 12-hole RC drill program, grid-based soil sampling and metallurgical test work – that the company had sole funded during the option period.
Meanwhile, current part-time chief executive officer Dr Frazer Tabeart will move into a full-time managing director role to oversee the expanded activities associated with the earn-in JV and to the company’s other exploration and business development activities related to copper and copper-gold exploration in Australia.
The Briggs, Mannersley and Fig Tree Hill project is located close to major infrastructure including sealed roads, rail, grid power and gas pipelines while the Gladstone deepwater port is located just 50km to the east.
Just 47 holes have been drilled to date at Briggs despite undrilled porphyry copper mineralisation being visible at surface within the 2km geochemical anomaly surrounding the resource.
Higher-grade mineralisation identified in volcanic sediments surrounding the intrusive core and in internal quartz rich bodies also indicate the potential for drilling to increase the grade of the deposit.
Alma can earn the first 30% in the project by funding $2.25m in exploration expenditure by 30 June 2024.
This can be increased to 51% by spending a further $3m by 30 June 2026 and to 70% by spending another $10m on exploration before 30 June 2031.
Upon Alma reaching 70% project interest, the project will become a JV funded pro-rata by each party.
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.