Hot Chili (ASX:HCH) thinks it could have a major new discovery on its hands after confirming near-surface copper and gold at its new Cortadera project.

The company only recently struck a deal that gives it the option to buy the privately owned Cortadera project, which is located near its Productora and El Fuego copper projects in Chile.

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Initial shallow drilling by Hot Chili has shown the copper and gold mineralisation so far starts at surface and extends down to nearly 60m.

Hits include 72m at 0.5 per cent copper and 0.3 grams per tonne (g/t) gold from surface and 20m at 1.2 per cent copper and 0.5 g/t gold from 40m.

Cortadera is a porphyry deposit, which means it is hosted in a type of granite rock, the same as most of the major copper deposits around the world.

Porphyry deposits are usually large and low-grade but can be mined at low cost due to their scale. Globally, over 60 per cent of copper, all of the world’s molybdenum, 10-15 per cent of uranium and a significant amount of gold comes from porphyry deposits.

Chairman Murray Black said that the early results validated Hot Chili’s view of Cortadera as a major new copper-gold porphyry discovery.

He added that it had the potential to be “transformative” for the company.

“Under a combined development scenario, Cortadera and Productora look likely to underpin a globally significant new copper development on the coastal range of Chile, virtually unrivalled in size, location and infrastructure advantage by our peers,” Black said.

Hot Chili is now undertaking deeper drilling.


In other base metals news:

TNT Mines (ASX:TIN)is acquiring a zinc project in Montana, US via the takeover of Metals of Americas. The deal won’t cost the company anything initially and will only require the issue of 6.75 million performance shares if TNT defines an indicated resource of over 2 million tonnes at 6 per cent zinc equivalent.

Copper explorer Kopore Metals (ASX:KMT)is undertaking a placement to raise $1m. The cash will be used to drill high-priority targets on its exploration licences in Botswana and Namibia.

Estrella Resources (ASX:ESR) will soon start drilling at its Carr Boyd nickel project in Western Australia after receiving state government approval. The company plans to drill the “Target 5” anomaly in the current quarter.