Bitesize briefing – Hard rock lithium production levels. Large, mid or small?
Published on 28 March 2019
Dr Ryan D Long - Director of Mining - Edison
Production levels can be difficult to interpret without the content of a wider peer group. In this video we assess the planned production levels from hard rock lithium projects, separating concentrate producers from carbonate and hydroxide producers.
#BCN #EMH #PREM
27 July 2018
Premier African Minerals Limited
Final Accounts Published
Premier African Minerals Limited, the AIM-traded, multi-commodity mining and natural resource development company focused in Southern and Western Africa, is pleased to announce publication of its audited Annual Report and Accounts for the year ended 31 December 2017 (the "Annual Report"). The Annual Report is available on the Company's website, www.premierafricanminerals.com, and is being posted to Shareholders today. A further RNS will be released when trading resumes.
The Annual Report for the year ended 31 December 2017 is set out in full below.
"Premier African Min - Final Accounts Published #PREM https://www.voxmarkets.co.uk/rns/announcement/d254d4a1-0c47-44e7-9b3c-f72a14153e54 via @voxmarkets @Premafrimin"
Chairman & CEO Statement
The past year has seen significant changes that I believe will underpin the future and the value of Premier African Minerals Limited ("Premier" or "PREM"). Dramatic improvements in the political and business landscape in Zimbabwe and completion of the robust scoping study on Zulu Lithium and Tantalite Project ("Zulu") are certainly highlights. This was tempered by the slower than expected progress at RHA Tungsten Mine ("RHA"), suspension of production following the period end and subsequent decision to fully impair this asset, but with a potentially better outlook considering the increased demand for tungsten and continuously improving prices after period end. Events following the period end may well result in a reversal of this impairment.
During the year we continued our exploration efforts at Zulu and have now drilled more than 8,000 metres. In June, we established a sizable Maiden Mineral Resource of 20.1 Million tonnes grading 1.06% Li20 in the Main Zone. We completed a metallurgical test work study demonstrating a viable process route as well as being able to produce a commercial battery grade lithium concentrate. Our exploration and drilling activities identified several large outcropping pegmatites in a step-out zone, which we believe has an exploration target of up to 80 million tonnes of ore. Drilling in this new zone continued to expose broad intervals of mineralised pegmatite. Many high grade intersections included a best reported grade of 4.24% Li20 over 0.95m in an intersection of 11.47m in ZDD45 grading at 1.90% Li2O over the entire width.
During the second half of the year, we continued to make excellent progress with our engineering studies which culminated in the completion of a scoping study at Zulu. The scoping study demonstrates that there is an opportunity to develop a robust, low capital cost lithium mine with low operating costs. Strong prices for spodumene concentrates and sustained demand for high-grade petalite, coupled to compelling forecasts for the lithium market, support our confidence in the future of this project. Normally, in an AIM environment, Premier would seek to advance Zulu into full definitive feasibility through equity funding but given the size of the project we looked to bring in a strategic equity partner to rapidly develop this exciting project. Negotiation that recognises the real value is neither quick nor easy. Mine development from commencement of exploration to commissioning is often a 12 to 15 year cycle, one that is not easy for an investor set on short term gain to endure. Premier is well into this cycle with Zulu and in anticipation of funding, has the potential to be in concentrate production within the next 2-3 years.
Similarly, at RHA where despite the disappointment of not attaining profitable production, development of the underground stopes has advanced to that point that a definite completion date is now possible and a far better understanding of the mineralisation and what still needs to be done, has followed. Subsequent events at RHA are set out below, but these should be viewed in the context of anticipated amendments to the 49/51 ownership requirements in Zimbabwe and the continuously improving tungsten concentrate prices we have seen over the past 12 months leading up to the date of this statement. Premier has carefully assessed options for operations at RHA and has engaged an independent engineering practice to validate the lowest cost baseline restart alternative based on low tonnages from existing underground operations.
We hold 5,010,333 shares in Circum Minerals Limited ("Circum"), currently valued in total at $6,262,916.25. Recent developments in the settlement of historic border disputes and future potential access to nearby Eritrean ports, together with a number of other factors, potentially add substantial value and make this project far more attractive. The Company believes that updates to the Definitive Feasibility Study ("DFS") indicate a modular approach which reduces the original forecast capital cost and retains an NPV of approximately $1.7 billion. The Company believes that Circum has engaged major brokerages and other debt advisors and a liquidity event may be anticipated during Q1 2019.
On a corporate level, in September, we appointed Godfrey Manhambara to the Board. Godfrey Manhambara is a Zimbabwean national with extensive commercial experienced. He has proved to be a great asset to the Company with respect to the ongoing negotiations with National Indigenisation and Economic Empowerment Fund ("NIEEF") and the Zimbabwean authorities.
In March 2018, John (Ian) Stalker retired from the Board to decrease his workload. Again, I would like to thank him for his valuable contribution on a wide range of matters during the Company's more formative years. At the same time, we bolstered the Board with the appointment of Wolfgang Hampel who has made a significant contribution to the Company and has extensive rare earth experience. This expertise becomes significantly more important to the Company with the development of the feasibility study at Zulu as well as to advance the Katete rare earth element project, which has the potential to contain significant amounts of critical rare earths such as neodymium.
As the Company develops, we are actively seeking to strengthen the Board and management team to improve the leadership of Premier and so we have alsoannounced that Michael Foster, a Senior Non-Executive Director on the Board of Premier has been appointed as Chairman of the Company with effect from 20 July 2018. I will remain as CEO of Premier. The separation of Chairman and CEO roles is long overdue and is expected to enhance board oversight and direction. Michael has a wealth of experience in management and development of resource companies and I am appreciative that he has agreed to work with me over the next critical period to realising the potential that Premier offers.
As we look ahead into 2018, we see a strong market for lithium and tungsten. Premier will remain focussed on increasing the value of our assets by delivering a feasibility study on Zulu as well as finalising the restructuring negotiations at RHA. We look forward to expanding exploration activities at the Katete Rare Earths (Katete Mining Private Limited) and the ongoing changing landscape in Zimbabwe that is expected to present other opportunities for Premier to exploit.
As a final note, I would like to thank all our employees, directors and consultants for their continued hard work.
I look forward to 2018 and beyond with a greater degree of optimism than I have had for some years.
Chief Executive Officer & Outgoing Chairman
26 July 2018
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