By Oscar Nkala :
Australian miner AVZ Minerals has revealed a pre-tax and pre-royalties net value of US$1.6 billion for its Manono Lithium Project in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).
In a statement issued on October 9, AVZ Minerals Managing Director Nigel Ferguson said the Manono Lithium Project is now the largest undeveloped hard rock lithium project in the world when rated in terms of mineral grade, mine life and prospects for expansion.
The asset scoping value is ongoing and will be completed in the Second Quarter of 2019.
The full feasibility study is expected to be completed by Q2. So far, the study has projected annual production of up to 440 000 tonnes per annum, at a minimum of 5.8% lithium oxide concentrate from Case 1 throughput of 2 million tonnes per annum (mtpa) of pegmatite ore.
Ferguson said the company is very pleased with the high potential demonstrated in the results, and will immediately commence a full feasibility study.
“The studies undertaken not only demonstrate the potential for excellent economic outcomes, but also highlight the long-life, low-cost qualities typical of world-class Tier 1 assets. Manono is now the largest undeveloped hard rock lithium project globally in terms of grade, mine life and expandability.
“We are confident that the project economics can be improved further, especially in the areas of transport, processing, power costs by utilising a refurbished hydro plant at Piana Mwanga and the recovery of tin as a by-product which can add considerable value to the bottom line and has not been included in any financial modelling,” Ferguson said.