Blackstone Minerals Limited (ASX: BSX) has exercised the option to acquire a 90% interest in the Ta Khoa Nickel-PGE Project in northern Vietnam.
The company has executed the binding option agreement to purchase AMR Nickel Limited’s 90% interest in the project as per an agreement announced in May 2019.
Blackstone will issue 8.6 million shares to Ta Khoa Mining Limited as per the binding term sheet agreement of A$1 million of Blackstone Minerals shares based on the VWAP for the past 30 trading days. The consideration shares will be subject to shareholder approval under Listing Rule 7.1.
Managing Director, Scott Williamson, said that by exercising the option to acquire a 90% interest in the Ta Khoa Nickel-PGE Project, Blackstone has now completed an important condition precedent of the binding share purchase agreement with EcoPro.
“We are pleased to announce the acquisition of the Ta Khoa Nickel-PGE Project and welcome Steve Ennor and all of the team in Vietnam to the Blackstone group, we now look forward to the future of the Ta Khoa Nickel-PGE project with our new partner EcoPro,” Mr Williamson said.
He added that Blackstone aims to deliver a maiden resource in Q3, focused initially on the disseminated sulfide (DSS) at Ban Phuc and continues to investigate the potential to restart the existing Ban Phuc concentrator through focused exploration on both massive sulfide veins (MSV) and DSS deposits.
The company has commenced a scoping study on the downstream processing facility at Ta Khoa.
The scoping study, also to be announced in Q3, will provide details for joint venture partners to formalise the next stage of investment. Blackstone Minerals has commenced metallurgical testing on the Ban Phuc DSS deposit with an aim to develop a flow sheet for a product suitable for the lithium-ion battery industry.
In addition, Blackstone Minerals will investigate the potential to develop downstream processing infrastructure in Vietnam to produce a downstream nickel and cobalt product to supply Asia’s growing lithium-ion battery industry.
The Ta Khoa Nickel-PGE Project in Vietnam includes an existing modern nickel mine which has been under care and maintenance since 2016 due to falling nickel prices. Existing infrastructure includes an internationally designed 450ktpa processing plant.
Previous project owners focused mining and exploration efforts primarily on the MSV at Ban Phuc. Blackstone Minerals plans to explore both MSV and DSS targets throughout the project, initially within a 5km radius of the existing processing facility.
Blackstone plans to conduct further geophysics on the MSV and DSS targets and continue its maiden drilling campaign. Online readers can click here for footage taken at our Ta Khoa Nickel-PGE Project in January 2020.