Canyon plans to release the bankable feasibility study for its Minim Martap bauxite project in January 2022, streamlining efficiencies and economics.
This optimisation work centres around improving rail production capacity and developing a superior port handling facility.
Fresh modelling from West African rail engineering consultant Vecturis has concluded rail traffic capacity is significantly better than previously anticipated, allowing the project’s throughput to be increased by more than 20% from the original target of 5m/t per annum assumed in the pre-feasibility study.
Canyon Resources (ASX:CAY) and the Cameroon Ministry of Transport and Camrail have also carried out a review of rail operations methodology that has identified further opportunities to increase tonnage and improve rail efficiencies.
Separately, ongoing negotiations with the Douala Port Authority (PAD) have identified an alternative rail unloading and barge loading solution at the port that will facilitate operations and easily accommodate future increases in production.
China Minmetals Corporation subsidiary, Zhongye Changtian International Engineering Co., Ltd. (MCC CIE) is also revisiting the mining schedule and designs to ensure capital and operating costs accurately reflect the project’s increased throughput in line with the increased rail capacity identified by Vecturis.
These areas of improvement in project logistics are expected to improve Minim Martap’s economics over the PFS.
Key terms reached on mining conventions
Canyon also says it’s come to key terms for the Minim Martap project’s Mining Convention following four rounds of negotiations with the government.
This finalises the formal negotiations for the Mining Convention between the company’s wholly owned Cameroon subsidiary Camalco Cameroon and the state with formal execution anticipated for the first quarter of 2022.
“We are very pleased with the positive outcome of the negotiations and are appreciative of the Ministry of Mines hosting the very productive discussions over the past few weeks,” managing director Phillip Gallagher said.
“It is clear that all sides involved see the short and long term benefits of the Minim Martap Bauxite Project to the State of Cameroon and there is a positive intent to see the project developed.”
He added that the company can now enter into binding rail and port agreements as well as advance project financing and strategic partner discussions.
Minim Martap bauxite project
The Minim Martap project in Cameroon has an ore reserve of 99 million tonnes grading 51.6% aluminium oxide and 2.4% silica dioxide within a broader resource of 1bn tonnes at 45.3% aluminium oxide and 2.7% silica dioxide.
It is currently envisaged as a two-stage, two-port project with initial production exported through Douala using existing rail and port infrastructure.
While the PFS had outlined the first stage as a 5Mtpa direct shipping ore project with low development capital requirements of just US$120m ($163.35m), the most recent findings could result in a substantial improvement in the production rate.
Bridges on the rail lines leading from the project have also been found to be suitable for the planned tonnages required to transport greater quantities of bauxite under the second stage, meaning that the company can avoid having to carry out upgrades that will increase costs and delay the project’s development.
This article was developed in collaboration with Canyon Resources, 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.