RareX has put drill rigs on the ground at Cummins Range critical minerals project, right as Federal Government support for critical minerals ramps up.

Up to three rigs will be turning at RareX’s (ASX:REE) Cummins Range as part of the largest program in the project’s history, designed to convert an exploration target to resources.

For those playing at home, the conceptual exploration target announced for Cummins Range in February was 23 million tonnes at 1.6% total rare earth oxides to 41Mt at 2.4% TREO – positioning the project as potentially one of the largest rare earths deposits in the country.

The project currently has a resource of 18.8Mt at 1.15 TREO and 0.14% niobium which RareX is drilling to expand on.

RareX raised $10.6 million in March to fund its exploration ambitions, and managing director Jeremy Robinson says it’s an exciting time for his team and everyone involved.

“We are excited to have commenced this fully funded important drilling program to take the deposit to the next level as a globally significant critical minerals project,” he said.

Rigs on the ground at Cummins Range. Pic: supplied.

Broad REE support bodes well

The timing of RareX’s drilling couldn’t be better, following the landmark Australian government support for critical minerals – and most especially rare earths.

The most prominent news in the space was $1.2 worth of support from Export Finance Australia to Iluka Resources (ASX:ILU) to fund a rare earth oxide refinery in WA – a loan announced this month worth almost $500 million more than the agency granted in total via loans, guarantees and bonds the previous financial year.

In February, Hastings Technology Metals (ASX:HAS) secured a loan of up to $140 million from the Northern Australian Infrastructure Fund for its Yangibana mixed carbonate rare earth project, while Arafura (ASX:AFU) was given $30 million grant funding in March under the federal government’s Modern Manufacturing Initiative.


Capital REE critical

In addition, EcoGraf Limited (ASX:EGR) and Renascor Resources (ASX:RNU) received a combined $239 million worth of loans through the Critical Minerals Facility.

All of the support is fuelled by a massive uptick in rare earths prices driven by strong demand from the burgeoning electric vehicle market.

The price of neodymium-praseodymium (NdPr) oxide has increased 370% on the Shanghai Metals Exchange since April 2020, from US$37 per kilogram to US$138/kg.


This thing is global

Robinson said the broader shifting sentiment towards rare earths in Australia was part of a larger global trend.

A trend which is changing the entire landscape of the national mining sector.

“These recent events clearly show that we are witnessing a fundamental change in the Australian critical materials space,” he said.

“We believe that RareX can play a vital role in this sector through the development of our Cummins Range project.”

RareX owns 100% of the Cummins Range project, located in WA.

This article was developed in collaboration with RareX Limited, 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.