Resources Top 5: Lithium minnows keeps running, copper play zeroes in on porphyry payday
Here are the biggest small cap resources winners in early trade, Tuesday, May 24.
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The explorer is now up ~50% since announcing a lithium acquisition early Monday morning.
The 570sqkm of ground in the ‘Litchfield’ pegmatite belt in the NT complements a previous acquisition announced mid-March.
RAS intends to start exploration works to target outcropping pegmatite rocks (main source of lithium) identified from prior exploration, to develop a more comprehensive exploration program.
“The company has secured extremely strategic and highly sought-after lithium prospective tenements in the centre of a well-renowned lithium district,” says RAS chair Jerko Zuvela, who is also MD at advanced lithium play Argosy Minerals (ASX:AGY).
“This is a significant opportunity to combine Ragusa’s existing NT lithium projects to create a combined ‘supergroup’ project area comparable to neighbours Core Lithium (ASX:CXO) and Lithium Plus (ASX:LPM), and utilise our exploration and development experience to rapidly progress our NT Lithium Project in a Tier 1 jurisdiction close to major infrastructure,” he says.
“With four currently granted tenements and considerable historic works to reference, Ragusa is in a strong position to rapidly accelerate the development of our project at a time of record lithium prices and within a proven high quality lithium district.”
The $14m market cap stock is up 44% year-to-date. It had $3.2m in the bank at the end of March.
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Dual-listed KCC reckons it is getting close to a porphyry motherlode at the Trundle project, which sits in the same rocks as ‘Northparkes’ — Australia’s second largest porphyry mine — in the Lachlan Fold Belt of NSW.
Over the past few months, new drilling assays have confirmed and subsequently expanded “a new geological discovery” in the Southern Extension Zone (SEZ).
Cumulative gold and copper mineralisation across 196m of gold and copper mineralisation was returned in three skarn zones in hole TRDD029, including:
Skarn rocks can contain economically valuable sources of metals such as tin, tungsten, manganese, copper, gold, zinc, lead, nickel, molybdenum, and iron.
Importantly, KCC believes these rocks could be sitting above a higher-grade, large porphyry deposit.
Results are pending for a further two completed diamond holes at the SEZ target and 72 air-core holes at seven other prospects across the company’s Trundle and Fairholme projects.
(Up on no news)
EQE became a junior gold and silver producer in 2021 via the processing of low-grade stockpiles at the flagship ‘Cerro Bayo’ project in Southern Chile.
The project – fully acquired from the vendor in December – includes an operational 0.5Mtpa flotation plant and stockpile processing, mining infrastructure, existing mineral resources and 295km2 mining claim package.
During the March quarter, revenues of $5.5m from the sale of 1,631oz gold and 77,600oz silver were overshadowed by production costs of $6.2m.
“Overall, higher comparable production costs in the March 2022 quarter relate to the processing of lower gold and silver grades plus higher fuel and transportation costs,” it says.
“Continued optimisation of stockpile processing via increased selectivity and implementation of ore particle size screening is expected to provide improvements in gold and silver feed grades.”
EQE says cashflow from the stockpiles, which represent ~3 years’ worth of production, will ostensibly assist in funding exploration and resource development.
If they can keep those costs down.
Longer term, EQE’s main game is proving up some high priority brownfields and greenfields targets and feeding high grade ore into the mill.
The $29m market cap stock is up 21% year to date. It had $3.3m in the bank at the end of March.
It’s been a good month thus far for the Torian Resources (ASX:TNR) spin-off.
On May 3, MMG announced plans to acquire the large ‘Scotty’ sediment-hosted lithium project in Nevada for $2m.
This is a good neighbourhood. The 14,000-acre project surrounds the ‘Bonnie Claire’ project (host to one of North America’s largest lithium resources at 18.3Mt LCE), is 70km from Albermarle’s ‘Clayton Valley’ mine (the only producing lithium mine in the US) and 330km from Tesla’s Gigafactory.
Today, it hit copper-gold paydirt at the ‘Providence’ prospect, part of the ‘Monger North’ project in WA.
Drilling hit 8m at 4.34g/t gold including 1m @ 21.30g/t, as well as 2m @ 0.46% copper.
The copper was a nice bonus, MMG says.
“This high-grade copper result of one metre at 0.56% associated with 21.30g/t gold within massive sulphides pleasantly surprised us because the adjacent Silver Lake Resources (ASX:SLR) mines do not contain this level of copper with gold in their ore,” MMG chair Peretz Schapiro says.
“This early-stage copper discovery in a drill hole at Providence dovetails nicely with our foray into battery metals used in electric vehicles.
“Over 3-5 times the amount of copper is used in an EV compared to a combustion engine vehicle, thereby significantly increasing the demand for both copper and lithium.
“We are fortunate to also possess exciting gold and other base metal projects in WA, providing us with multiple near-term catalysts. We look forward to keeping the market updated on our new copper and lithium projects.”
The discovery of high copper with gold adds value to the Providence Prospect if enough of this type of mineralisation can be discovered.
The copper-gold system at Providence remains ‘open’ (mineralisation continues) in two directions and at depth.
An EM survey planned for the Providence Prospect in June 2022 will enhance targeting for a follow up drill campaign.
The $9m market cap stock is up 76% year-to-date. It had $3.1m in the bank at the end of March.
GLA has finalised the acquisition of two key uranium projects in Tanzania — Minjingu and Mkuju.
The flagship Mkuju includes the 7.7Mt ‘Likuyu North’ deposit and uranium anomalies at Grand Central, Likuyu South and Likuyu North, the company says.
The main game now is updating the historical resource at Likuyu North so it is JORC 2012 compliant – a must-have for ASX listed explorers.
The $15m market cap stock is down 35% year-to-date. It had $1.9m in the bank at the end of March.