Special Report: First Lithium has reported a significant discovery at Blakala in Mali after returning a thick, shallow and high-grade intersection in one of the first 19 holes drilled into the emerging lithium deposit at its flagship Gouna project.

Blakala was one of only two Tier 1 priority targets in Mali ranked by CSA Global in 2008, the other being Leo Lithium’s (ASX:LEO) 211Mt Goulamina project – now proved as the fifth largest hard rock lithium deposit in the world.

The deposit is suitably situated less than 5km from the main highway connecting it to the port of Abidjan, and the first batch of diamond drilling results so far has confirmed the potential for Blakala to become a world-class lithium project.

Shares in First Lithium (ASX:FL1) jumped more than 100% in early trade this morning.


Drilling results confirm high-grade Li2O

After observing signification pegmatite intersections in all 19 drill holes at Blakala earlier this month, grades of up to 4.43% Li2O have been returned in the first three diamond hole assays, with an average grade of 1.5% Li2O across the cores.

Undoubtedly the highlight of the maiden diamond drilling results to date is an outstanding intersection of 111m @ 1.57% Li2O from 33m in hole BDFS02, including a 10m @ 3.39% Li2O and a 4.43% over 5m (34m to 39m) within this zone.

At BDFS03, a 60m intersection @ 1.59% Li2O from 39m, including a 38m intersection @ 1.76% Li2O was also confirmed from assays.

FL1 says these initial assays indicate the spodumene mineralisation is high grade, outcrops at surface and is open at depth and along strike. The company is eagerly awaiting further results from the 2,300m so far drilled out of the 6,000m campaign.

Second and third batches of assays from holes BDFS04 to BDSF15 – where the extension spans up to 35m in width along an open >1km strike – have been submitted to the lab and results are expected early next month.

Holes 17, 18 and 19 look to confirm Li2O mineralisation at the Western Pegmatite, which runs parallel to the main pegmatite.

First Lithium (ASX:FL1)
The 19 drill hole locations at the Blakala deposit. Source: FL1

FL1 MD Venkat Padala says lab results have delivered the outstanding grades we were all anticipating based on the previous visual estimates.

“The grades and depth of the discovery in this region provide further confidence the Blakala prospect could deliver a significant high grade mineral resource in 2024,” Padala says.

“Neighbouring Leo Lithium has previously reached a market capitalisation of over $1b based on their mineral resource in the Goulamina region, and the grades and depth of results to date at Blakala provide great confidence for our project.

“Drilling will continue at Blakala as the project advances towards completion of the initial 6,000m program, and with results remaining open at depth and along strike as well as opening up in the Western pegmatites the project appears destined for an expanded stage two drilling program to build on the mineral resource once defined.”



This article was developed in collaboration with First Lithium, 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.