The US$240m deal for Manono lithium-tin project in Democratic Republic of Congo has been completed.
The agreement between ASX-listed AVZ Minerals with Chinese operator Suzhou CATH Energy Technologies, provides certainty of funding to progress the venture, pending the award of a mining licence and collaboration development agreement with the local government.
The two have agreed to waive a number of conditions in relation to Dathcom Mining. The DRC government owns a fraction of Dathcom Mining, who are also the principal joint venture vehicle the Manono project is held in.
Manono lithium-tin project
The waived conditions include the granting of a project mining licence to Dathcom Mining SA, the signing of a collaboration development agreement between Dathcom and the DRC government and the requirement for Dathcom and its shareholders to make a final investment decision and approve the transaction.
Manono lithium-tin project, located 500km north of Lubumbashi, hosts the Roche Dure Mineral Resource, which is claimed to be one of the world’s largest undeveloped hard rock lithium deposits. The investment will also be used to fund a resource extension drilling programme at the Roche Dure deposit which has the potential to significantly expand the Joint Ore Reserves Committee-compliant mineral resource and ore reserves estimate that was reported earlier.
“The drilling programme has the potential to add significant value with respect to expanding the reserve life of the Roche Dure deposit whilst also identifying high-grade ore zones for initial feed to the plant, providing increased SC6 production volumes from the start of operations,” said Mr. Ferguson
The company is planning to allocate around $13.6m (A$19m) for the early works programme during the second half of the 2021/2022 financial year while the remaining $4.3m (A$6m) will be used for additional resource drilling at Roche Dure deposit.