Rare Earth Minerals PLC: Mexico Lithium Project Update
September 13, 2013 (Source: Rare Earth Minerals PLC) — Rare Earth Minerals (AIM: REM) is pleased to announce that a significantly larger Stage 2 drilling programme has been commissioned on the Joint Venture Lands (“JV Lands” or “Project”, i.e. Fleur – El Sauz concessions) of the Sonora Lithium Project. In additional, detailed metallurgical test work has now commenced to assist with determining the economic parameters for a Preliminary Economic Assessment.
David Lenigas, the Company’s Chairman commented:
“The prime focus for the Joint Venture partners for the Stage 2 exploration programme on the JV Lands is to significantly expand the global lithium resource, assess the metallurgy and recovery options and provide a realistic and meaningful economic assessment of the potential commercial value of this deposit.”
Stage 2 Drilling Programme:
The Stage 2 drilling programme on the JV Lands of the Sonora Lithium Project in northern Mexico has now been agreed between REM and Bacanora Minerals Ltd (“Bacanora”) and will comprise a programme nearly three times larger than the initial Stage 1 drilling programme used to define the initial maiden resource.
The Stage 2 programme will consist of a series diamond drill holes totalling some 3,000 to 3,500 metres. The drilling is designed to not only infill the known mineralisation into better defined categories under the NI 43-101 reporting standards, but is also designed to test for extensions of the deposit, both down dip to the east and along strike to the south, as the deposit remained open in both of these directions. Surface mapping over recent weeks has identified the further potential to extend the lithium-bearing clays by approximately 2km along strike to the south-east from the previously identified mineralisation and some of this potential will be tested in the upcoming drill programme.
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Drilling contracts have now been awarded for initially one drill rig with additional rigs available from the contractor, if required, in order to meet a planned timeframe of approximately 6 months for the Stage 2 programme. Drilling crews are already on site assessing the task and are planning for a drilling start sometime in the next few weeks.
Samples of diamond drill core, from the initial Stage 1 diamond drill programme were assayed by ALS Chemex as will be samples from Stage 2. Sample rejects from both Stage 1 and 2 will be dispatched to Inspectorate International Limited, a leading independent multinational group with capabilities in an extensive range of commodities that provides independent inspection, sampling and testing services to many business sectors. This metallurgical test work will provide estimates of potential lithium recoveries and an assessment of processing methods suitable for the extraction of lithium from the Project. The work will provide the basis for estimating treatment plant capital and operating costs necessary for building a financial model for an initial Preliminary Economic Assessment (“PEA”) of the JV Lands. An initial PEA is expected to be available over the coming months.
REM has formally exercised its option under the joint venture agreement with Bacanora to move to Stage 2 and purchase a further 20% interest in the JV Lands in northern Mexico (the “Project”), increasing its total interest to 30% as announced on September 5, 2013.
REM has a first right of refusal, under the agreement with Bacanora, to negotiate terms with Bacanora to further increase its interest in the Project to 49.9%.
Qualified Person’s Statement:
Information in this announcement relates to information compiled by Carl G Verley, P.Geo, a consultant to the Company, who is a member of the Association of Professional Engineers and Geoscientists of British Columbia and is a Qualified Person with respect to the information disclosed herein.
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