Resources Top 5: A critical zinc project, copper hits, and ‘one of the highest-grade iron ore deposits in the world’
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Here are the biggest small cap resources winners in early trade, Tuesday November 23.
(Up on no news)
AKO says ‘Bekisopa’ in Madagascar is shaping up “as one of the highest-grade iron ore projects in the world”.
A recently completed ~5,100m drilling program confirmed super high grade iron grades near surface – like 8.2m at 68.2%Fe and 4.5m at 65.5%Fe — as well as good iron mineralisation at depth, the company says.
More assays are pending.
“I have to say that in all my experience in iron ore exploration and development I have never been more excited with a project as I have become with Bekisopa,” AKO managing director Paul Bibby says.
“The grades, the depth, the extent, the quality of the iron mineralisation and how readily upgradable the iron looks to be, has all been even better than what I anticipated.”
“During one of the most trying periods in decades, we have completed an extensive and hugely successful campaign of drilling discovery and now, with the amount and analysis of the data, I’m confident that AKORA will deliver a good maiden JORC Resource.”
AKO is now expecting the JORC Resource to be released during the first quarter of 2022.
$14m market cap AKO is up 20% over the past month. It had $2.5m in the bank at the end of September.
IBG’s large SEDEX style ‘Citronen’ project in Greenland is at the pointy end of the development cycle.
Today, it announced that Citronen was now the first standalone project application worldwide to qualify for “privileged” 402(A) support status under the US Government’s recently introduced China and Transformational Export Program (CTEP), administered by EXIM Bank.
The 402 program is way to protect US interests by reserving not less than 20% of the agency’s total financing authority — US$27bn out of a total of US$135bn — “…to support the extension of loans, guarantees, and insurance, at rates and on terms and other conditions, to the extent practicable, that are fully competitive with rates, terms, and other conditions established by the People’s Republic of China”.
This means extended repayments, an extended drawdown, and reduced fees, IBG says.
“The strategic importance of Ironbark’s Citronen Zinc Project to US interests is implicit in today’s world first confirmation of 402(A) eligibility,” IBG managing director Michael Jardine says.
“Our original US EXIM application for funding broke new ground for Ironbark in its quest to see the Citronen Zinc Project developed, and today’s announcement provides further momentum for achieving our goal.”
“I must stress that while our funding application is still in the process of being assessed by EXIM, today’s announcement is encouraging, particularly with Zinc being recently added to the US Geological Survey’s Critical Minerals List.”
The $50m market cap stock is down 25% over the past month. It had $1.6m in the bank at the end of September.
KNB’s main game is its namesake project in NSW, where a soil sampling program has uncovered a new 1.8km long target called ‘Vegas’.
There has been no previous exploration at Vegas, the company says.
KNB intends to initially follow up with more soils to close the current gaps and define the geometry in readiness for drilling.
Mini-bulk rock chip samples were collected from this area, and concentrates are currently being assayed, with results due in early December.
“The portfolio of geochemical targets is expanding, and we continue to delineate multiple targets for further work and build more information to feed into the geological model to help us design the drill programme due to start in the next quarter,” KNB chief exec Karen O’Neill says.
The stock is down 15% on its IPO price of 20c per share. It had a cash balance of $7.5m at the end of September.
The ambitious iron ore project developer is trying to build a multi-use port called ‘Cape Hardy’ with JV partners Eyre Peninsula Co-operative Bulk Handling (EPCBH) and Macquarie Capital.
IRD now says it has received strong interest from multiple North Asian groups with respect to the potential of Cape Hardy as a credible, long-term, and large-scale green hydrogen/ green ammonia export gateway for South Australia and associated opportunities, like “green iron” pellet manufacturing.
“The State Government’s 2020 Hydrogen Export Prospectus recognises the ideal location of Cape Hardy on the Eyre Peninsula and potential to leverage proximate, large-scale renewable energy resources,” IRD says.
“This builds further on the tangible recognition and support of the Cape Hardy project from Infrastructure Australia and the Federal Government.”
“Similar to the government-led Port Bonython engagement process initiated in May 2021, Iron Road intends launching a wide-ranging Expression of Interest (EOI) process during 1H 2022 targeting Australian and international green hydrogen project proponents.”
“Experienced industry consultants are now being engaged to assist the Company in this process.”
The $166m market cap stock is up 7.5% over the past month. It had $3.1m in the bank at the end of September.
Several high-grade copper hits from minnow RDS, which is drilling to grow the ‘Tollu Copper Vein’ deposit, part of the ‘West Musgrave’ project in WA.
Tollu hosts “a giant swarm of hydrothermal copper rich veins” in a mineralised system covering a +5sqkm area, ~40km from OZ Minerals’ (ASX:OZL) world-class Nebo-Babel nickel-copper deposit.
RDS expects drilling to increase the size of the resource at Tollu of 3.8 million tonnes at 1% copper and 0.01% cobalt — containing 38,000 tonnes of copper, and 535 tonnes of contained cobalt.
Preliminary portable XRF analysis of new drilling suggests the thick high grade copper intersected in historical drilling at ‘Chatsworth’ – part of the Tollu Copper Vein’ deposit — is relatively continuous between drill holes and extends beyond historical limits, including towards the surface.
Nearer to surface = cheaper to mine.
While XRF tech is not as reliable as lab assays in reflecting what and how much mineralisation is in a sample, it still gives a solid indicator. It is also quick, unlike assays which can take months to get back from the lab.
Highlight hits included 16m at 2.62% copper from 74m downhole including 6m at 6% copper from 76m. These will be confirmed by traditional assay, the company says.
“With only a limited number of drill holes Redstone has shown that, in the vast majority of cases, the thick high grade copper lenses extend beyond the historical drill holes they have so far been delineated in with the thickness and grade either maintained or expanded,” RDS chairman Richard Homsany says.
“Importantly, opportunities for extensions of mineralisation at Chatsworth include toward much shallower depths.
In addition, extensions with intersections of over 10 metres containing over 1% copper potential provide opportunities in the Tollu resource that are yet to be thoroughly investigated.”
RDS say exploration will continue “at the earliest opportunity” in 2022 with a deeper RC drilling program at priority targets.
The $10m market cap stock is up 70% over the past month. It had $2.6m in the bank at the end of the September quarter.