Explorer AusQuest reckons two of the projects it has been exploring with global miner South32 aren’t worth the effort after underwhelming drilling results in 2018.

AusQuest (ASX:AQD) told investors that the Blue Billy zinc and Jimberlana nickel projects in Western Australia will not be progressing into 2019 under its strategic alliance agreement with the $16.5 billion market cap miner South32.

Managing director Graeme Drew called this “disappointing”, but said there were plenty of other prospects for the alliance to test, both in Peru and Australia.

The alliance between minnow AusQuest and South32 was stuck in early 2017, and involved 11 projects in Western Australia, Queensland and Peru.

Five of those were drilled last year.

AusQuest managed the initial program with funding from South32, which can earn a 70 per cent stake in each project by spending $US4m.

The explorer’s intraday share price was up almost 7 per cent to 1.7c.