Commodities, Copper, Exploration/Development, News

Glencore eager to grow Mount Isa footprint


Glencore subsidiary Mount Isa Mines (MIM) and Austral Resources have entered into reciprocal earn-in agreements to explore their respective tenements.

As part of the joint venture (JV), MIM can acquire up to a 65 per cent interest in Austral’s EPMs (exploration permit for minerals) surrounding MIM’s Lady Loretta zinc-lead-silver mine and Austral’s Lady Annie copper mine by spending $6.3 million on exploration over four years.

Austral retains the right to explore for and commercially exploit copper ore within this exploration area. The company can also earn up to a 65 per cent interest within MIM’s Russell Fault EPM by spending $2 million on exploration over four years.

“We are excited to collaborate with Glencore on this exploration JV in Queensland’s North West Minerals province,” Austral chief executive officer Steve Tambanis said.

“Both parties hold a significant tenure position within the region, and it makes absolute sense to combine the tenure for an intensive exploration program.

“This is a win-win transaction for both Austral and Glencore, with the potential to discover new orebodies that can extend operations of both companies in the region.

“Glencore is focused on discovering new base/precious metal orebodies in this metal-rich area and Austral believes there is excellent potential to define additional oxide copper resources to be processed at its nearby Mt Kelly SXEW (solvent extraction/electrowinning) plant.”

Glencore bought into Austral’s Anthill mine in Queensland in February, enabling it the right to acquire up to 40,000 tonnes of copper cathode from the project.

Mining commenced at the project in early January and surpassed 70,000 tonnes per day of overburden mining one week later.

Hauling first ore at Anthill in March, Austral plans to be producing 10,000 tonnes per annum of copper cathode from the project from mid-2022.

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