Metal Tiger plc (AIM:MTR), the London Stock Exchange AIM listed investor in strategic natural resource opportunities, today provided a quarterly (Q4 2018) update regarding the exploration activities of the Company’s Joint Venture (the “JV”), Tshukudu Exploration (Pty) Ltd (“Tshukudu Exploration”), as well as certain other exploration updates in relation to MOD Resources Limited (MOD), in the Kalahari Copper Belt, Botswana.
Q4 2018 Highlights
Completion of transaction to sell Metal Tiger’s 30% share in T3 Copper Project (exploration licence PL190/2008) to MOD for MOD shares and options (announced 16 November 2018). Resulting in MTR holding approximately 12.5% of the issued share capital of MOD.
Metal Tiger’s Chief Executive Officer, Michael McNeilly, appointed to the Board of Directors of MOD as a Non-Executive Director and as a nominee of MTR.
Feasibility Study for T3 Copper Project (MOD 100%) remains on track for completion at the end of Q1 2019.
Tshukudu Exploration, established by MOD and Metal Tiger to hold the 18 JV exploration licences over a total 8,163km2 area (17 existing licences and 1 new licence).
All JV Prospecting Licences (PLs) granted two-year extensions, all ground is retained under the extensions;
New licence area PL093/2018 issued for three years to 30 September 2021.
Total of 148 drill holes completed during 2018 (within MOD and JV licences), with 41 holes drilled during Q4 2018;
25 holes at T3 Copper Project: Resource, geotechnical & sterilisation drill holes
11 holes at A4 Dome, 9 of which holes intersected NPF and / or vein hosted copper
One-hole at A1 Dome intersected wide zone of disseminated copper
4 holes at T23 Dome, 3 holes intersected visible copper, 1 hole to be completed.
Additional assay results received for drilling at A1 Dome and T23 Dome.
Michael McNeilly, Chief Executive Officer of Metal Tiger, commented:
“The period saw significant advancements the exploration work, undertaken by both MOD and the JV, continuing to deliver encouraging drilling results that demonstrate the potential of area. The highly anticipated T3 Copper Project feasibility study is expected to be completed by the end of Q1 2019. At the corporate level, Metal Tiger completed an important and value adding transaction resulting in Metal Tiger becoming MOD’s largest shareholder whilst positioning the Company to continue to benefit from, not only T3’s development, but the underexplored, district scale potential of the Kalahari Copper Belt through the JV.
The tireless work by our JV partners and our on the ground team has continued to add value to the JV. 2019 will no doubt prove to be an exciting year with T3 moving towards a decision to mine and the extensive JV land holdings continuing to indicate new copper discoveries.
We look forward to providing further updates to shareholders in due course.”
This announcement coincides with an update released today by MOD which can be viewed through the following link: https://www.asx.com.au/asx/share-price-research/company/MOD
Plans for 2019
During Q1 2019 the JV plans to conduct follow-up drilling of very encouraging shallow mineralisation along the T4-T23 Dome area and undertake initial testing of the extensive Cu-Zn soil anomalies within the adjacent T20 Exploration Project.
During the second half of 2019, the JV plans to conduct follow-up drilling on the A4 Dome.
T3 Expansion Project Summary
T3 Expansion Project (963km2) comprises PL 189/2008, PL 190/2008 and PL 074/2017 which covers the ground located around the T3 Copper Project (100% owned by MOD). It includes the joint venture A4 Dome and A1 Dome areas and the 100% MOD owned T3 Underground and T1 Projects. The T3 Expansion Project forms part of a strategy to explore for additional resources within transport distance of the planned T3 Copper Project process plant, to potentially add significant value to the project.
The large A4 Dome, 8km from T3 is the first of several ‘buried domes’, outside of the T3 Project, to be drilled within the T3 Expansion Project.
Preliminary 20-hole drilling programme, which commenced mid-August, was completed to test a small part of the potential of the larger A4 Dome area (announced on 20 December 2018). Many of the 18 holes that reached the target depth, intersected encouraging grades and widths of both vein hosted and Ngwako Pan Formation (“NPF”) contact copper mineralisation. Hole MO-A4-003D intersecting 52m @ 1.5% Cu and 14 g/t Ag in from 232.2m downhole depth, including 15.5m @ 2.9% Cu and 42g/t Ag (announced 6 August 2018).
During the quarter, a preliminary, conceptual underground mining study was commended, this evaluated the merits of developing a decline to access the NPF contact, incorporating a room-and-pillar method for the higher-grade contact mineralisation and a long hole, open stop methodology for the overlying, disseminated mineralisation. While the study is conceptual at this stage, preliminary findings are encouraging. Drilling is planned during the second half of 2019 with the aim of moving the A4 Dome into a JORC compliant Mineral Resource estimate.
The A1 Dome is the second ‘buried dome’ drilled at the T3 Expansion Project and lies approximately 22km northeast of the T3 Copper Project.
Drilling activities commenced during Q3 2018, with six widely spaced holes (MO-A1-001D to MO-A1-006D) completed by the end Q4 2018. Drilling was successful in intersecting significant copper mineralisation across a wide area, including encouraging intersections of disseminated copper and of NPF Contact mineralisation (announced on 15 November 2018).
These significant copper intersections within the first, widely spaced drill holes spread along 4km, may indicate the potential for a much larger mineralised system. Results will be reviewed to identify additional drill targets within the A1 Dome area with a specific drilling programme for 2019 yet to be determined.
Significant downhole intersections from the first six holes into A1 Dome include (with mineralisation style and hole assay status):
7.0m @ 0.90% Cu and 14g/t Ag from 190m (vein, complete)
19.0m @ 0.80% Cu and 6g/t Ag from 660m, including (disseminated, complete)
3.0m @ 2.0% Cu & 15g/t Ag from 676m (NPF contact)
130.0m @ 0.52% Cu and 3.5g/t Ag from 590m (disseminated, complete)
52.0m @ 0.61% Cu and 4.6g/t Ag from 624m, including (disseminated, complete)
1.4m @ 3.8% Cu & 26g/t Ag from 673m (NPF contact)
T3 Underground Project & T1 (Mahumo) Underground Project (100% owned by MOD)
As part of the T3 Copper Project Feasibility Study, open pit optimisation studies will define the final boundaries of the T3 open pit. Following this, it will be possible to estimate the tonnes and grade of ore that could be available for underground mining. A conceptual underground mining study commenced in Q4 2018, the results of which are expected in Q1 2019.
Airborne electromagnetic (“AEM”) geophysics data covering the T1 deposit and associated prospective structures immediately south of the current drilling, has been received and is being interpreted.
T20 Exploration Project Summary
T20 Exploration Project area (approximately 3,350km2) lies 120km west of the T3 Expansion Project and includes the extensive T20 soil anomaly, T23 Dome, and T4 prospect. The T20 Exploration Project is interpreted to occur within the same structural corridor which hosts the T3 Copper Project and the T3 Expansion Project.
Area contains multiple copper and zinc soil anomalies, several with similar or higher values to those associated with the original T3 discovery. Soil anomalies occur within an approximate 750km2 area extending approximately 60km along the T20 Dome to T4. A surface calcrete layer covers large areas of the T20 Exploration Project.
EMP for drilling within an approximate 700km2 area in the northern section of the T20 Exploration Project was approved in September 2018 following the public review period. Drilling of T23 Dome commenced in Q4 2018. No known previous exploration drilling apart from the shallow drilling at the T4 Prospect and the four shallow drill holes drilled during Q4 2018 at the T23 Dome.
Initial shallow drilling at T4 Prospect intersected 2m @ 6% Cu and 111g/t Ag from 101m depth, along the same structural zone that hosts the T23 Dome. T4 remains a prospect for follow-up drilling during 2019.
Assays from three initial drill holes from the T23 Dome prospect have now been received. Drilling comprised four shallow holes on two sections spaced 720m apart, to test the potential of the prospective NPF contact mineralisation, interpreted to occur at shallow depths. The fourth hole, MO-T23-004D did not reach target depth before the Christmas break and will be deepened in Q1 2019.
Significant downhole intersections from the first three holes into A23 Dome include (with mineralisation style and hole assay status):
25.0m @ 0.36% Cu and 4g/t Ag from 65m, including (disseminated, complete)
3.0m @ 0.7% Cu & 10g/t Ag from 65m
1.0m @ 1.0% Cu & 13g/t Ag 80m
1.7m @ 1.20% Cu and 24g/t Ag from 225m (disseminated, complete)
18.0m @ 0.40% Cu and 10g/t Ag from 172m, including (disseminated, complete)
7.0m @ 0.50% Cu & 16g/t Ag from 172m
0.6m @ 3.10% Cu & 128g/t Ag from 268m (vein)
4.0m @ 0.50% Cu & 22g/t Ag from 353m (disseminated)
5.3m @ 0.40% Cu & 22g/t Ag from 367m (disseminated)
9.0m @ 0.40% Cu & 18g/t Ag from 376m (disseminated)
Initial results from T23 Dome, while not yet demonstrating economic grades, indicate the presence of wide intervals of shallow, lower grade disseminated copper mineralisation, with relatively high silver value. This supports the potential within a structural zone, which may extend 15km east to the T4 prospect.
Further drilling is planned at T23 Dome and along the regional structural zone towards T4, during 2019..
T3 Copper Project Update (100% owned by MOD)
T3 Copper Project Feasibility Study remains on track for completion at the end of the first quarter of 2019.
Infill drilling of T3 Copper Project resource will commence in Q1 2019, to upgrade early stage production to a higher confidence, JORC compliant Measured Resource category.
T3 Project draft Environmental and Social Impact Assessment (“ESIA”) submitted to the Department of Environmental Affairs (“DEA”) on 24 December 2018. ESIA review panel is expected to visit site during Q1 2019 to review the project and hold discussions with key stakeholders.
Following completion of the Feasibility Study and approval of the ESIA, MOD intends to lodge an application to the Department of Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security for the T3 Copper Project Mining Licence, with a view to targeting approval before end Q2 2019.
Construction of 40-person T3 accommodation village completed. Request made to DEA to increase the size of village from 40 to 400-person, to accommodate operational personnel plus an additional 300 personnel during T3 project construction (announced 16 October 2018). DEA has advised that the village expansion requires an Environmental Management Plan (“EMP”), rather than a more onerous ESIA. MOD expects to submit this EMP to the DEA by the end of Q1 2019.
Further to the detailed Feasibility Study progress update announced on 16 October 2018, a summary of the current status is as follows:
Feasibility Study Activity Status
Geotechnical Study (mining engineering) Draft report received
Shadow Mining Estimate Estimate developed, pending input mining costs from contractors
Mining Study Pit optimisation and production scheduling commenced. Request For Quotation sent to proposed mining contractors to obtain mining costs
Pit Dewatering – Drilling, pump testing and water modelling Completed
Process Engineering FS 3D model complete
Draft operating and capital expenditure received; under review
Recovery models being developed from test work
Flotation Test work Completed
Engineering Test work All engineering test work completed
Commenced concentrate self-heating assessment; other transport related tests commenced
Engineering Services (Geotech, TSF, WRD, Water) Water modelling and plant site geotechnical report received
Additional geochemical samples being tested – preliminary results received
TSF design continuing; civil contractor costs under review
Developing surface water management and drainage system
ESIA Draft ESIA report submitted to DEA for review
EIA for accommodation village expansion commenced
Closure and Rehabilitation Planning Closure plan submitted to DEA as part of ESIA
Closure costs for FS to commence once site GA completed
Transport and Logistics Study Draft report received, currently under review