Bezant (AIM: BZT), the copper-gold exploration and development company, is pleased to provide shareholders with an update on the Hope and Gorob near-surface drill programme targeting copper – gold mineralisation and to provide notice of the submission of both a Mining Licence Application and an Exploration Licence Renewal Application.
Assay results for a further nine diamond drillholes at the Hope and Vendome prospects have been received following on from the encouraging results achieved and announced to the Market on 14 June 2022 for the near-surface drill programme completed at Gorob.
· Bezant has submitted a Mining Licence application together with an Exploration Licence Renewal Application to the Namibian authorities covering the Hope and Gorob Project.
· The Mining Licence application is based on an updated Scoping Study completed by external consultants in May 2022 incorporating historic mineral resource estimates but excluding any subsequent additional resources to be generated from the Company’s recent shallow drill programme.
· The Scoping Study indicated that the potential for the development of a surface and underground copper mine exists at the Hope and Gorob deposits and recommended completion of the additional work required for optimisation of mine development plans including the work necessary to obtain granting of environmental permits.
· The Scoping Study also recommended that further exploration work continues to fully define resource potential at these deposits.
· Recently completed shallow drilling has continued to extend the strike and up-dip extension of mineralisation at both the Hope and Vendome prospects. The current drillholes have added more than 1.5km to the mineralised strike length, with the potential to add significantly to the previously estimated mineral resource.
· Continuous copper and gold mineralisation has been intersected in drill intercepts over substantial downhole widths of up to 29.74m.
· Downhole assay peak intercepts include:
o 4.6% Cu, 2.80g/t Au over 3.81m from 39.32m depth in hole VED001
o 2.4% Cu, 0.36g/t Au over 14.28m from 25.2m depth in hole HPD003
o 1.90% Cu, 0.36g/t Au over 9.30m from 33.80m depth in hole HPD005
o 1.49% Cu, 0.23g/t Au over 16.97m from 15.50m depth in hole HPD004
· Gold values typically return grades of approximately 0.3g/t Au providing a significant potential by-product value addition.
· The drill programme has proven successful, confirming the presence of shallow mineralisation at three prospects to date. Results are sufficiently encouraging to warrant further drilling along strike to evaluate an estimated additional linear 10km or more of projected mineralisation never previously tested.
Colin Bird, Executive Chairman of Bezant commented “The completion of the Scoping Study and submission of the Mining Licence application for the Hope-Gorob project represents a significant project milestone. The Study indicates the potential for the development of a surface and underground copper mine at the Hope and Gorob deposits. The Company will continue refining and finessing all the engineering required to bring the project forward towards production.
The latest drill assay results from this programme are very encouraging and in advance of our expectations. The implication is that clearly the near-surface area potentially contains enough mineralisation over good widths sufficient to support open pit mining, providing an opportunity to accelerate development of our mining plans. It should be noted that these results can be expanded beyond the immediate vicinity of the recent drilling and towards other areas where there has been no historic drilling or any systematic exploration. We are very excited at the potential offered by these results to add to the Project’s copper and gold base resource and further effort will be directed towards significant growth of Hope and Gorob and nearby targets.”
Strike Extension Drilling Update
Assay results have been received for 2 holes drilled at Vendome and 7 out of 8 holes at the Hope prospect, as detailed in Table 1. Two drillholes, HDP001 and HDP002 were drilled for geological purposes, not with the aim of intersecting mineralisation and hence are not included in Table 1 below. Results for HPD007 are still pending.
Table 1: Selected Drill Assay Results for Holes VED001 – 02 (Vendome) and HDP001 – 008 (Hope)
*CuEq: Copper equivalent grade is based on a copper and gold equivalent using a copper price of US$9,000 per tonne and a gold price of US$1,800 per ounce. No account has been taken of relative recoveries for the two metals.
21 angled diamond drillholes were completed in the shallow drill programme for a total of 1,371.47m. Holes were collared at the Hope, Gorob, Vendome, Anomaly and Du Preez prospects. Drilling commenced at the Gorob prospect where 8 holes were completed with assay results reported to shareholders in June of this year. The Gorob drill intercepts extended mineralisation near-surface over a strike length of more than 500m, returning peak downhole intercepts of 2.16% Cu, 0.35g/t Au over 2.4m in hole GRD006 and 2.03% Cu, 0.18g/t Au over 5.5m in GRD003. Corresponding gold grades at Gorob were low compared to the consistent presence of gold in drill results to date for Hope and Vendome.
Assay results from Hope and Vendome continue to confirm the Company’s hypothesis that copper – gold mineralisation extends close to surface. Discovery of near-surface mineralisation provides the scope for the extension of the existing mineral resource estimate upwards from a variable depth of between 100m and 60m below surface where the current model typically terminates due to an absence of drilling in the intervening zone to surface.
The programme aims to generate sufficient drill data including assay results and detailed geological logs to allow external resource consultants to update both the geological model and the mineral resource estimate. An updated Scoping Study completed in May 2022 noted that near-surface drilling at Hope and Gorob could be expected to add significantly to the current resource. Based on the recent drill intercepts in respect of both grade and mineralised widths, the Company believes that the eventual additional resource tonnes derived from near-surface mineralisation may exceed the preliminary estimate.
Mining Licence Application & Exploration Licence Renewal Application
Bezant has submitted a Mining Licence (“ML”) application together with an Exploration Licence (“EPL”) renewal application covering the Hope and Gorob Project as the Company believes that sufficient exploration has been completed to warrant the application. The accompanying Environmental & Social Impact Assessment is also underway. The ML application is based on an updated Scoping Study (“Study”) completed by external consultants in May 2022 incorporating existing and upgraded internal mineral resource estimates but excluding any subsequent additional resources to be generated from the current drill programme. The ML application covers a specific area of the original Hope and Gorob licence related to future planned mining activity.
The Study undertaken covered the following areas:
Environmental and Permitting
Geological Setting and Mineralisation
Key Success Factors and Project Risk
Further Work Required
The Study concluded that the potential for the development of a surface and underground copper mine exists at the Hope and Gorob deposits and recommended further engineering and optimisation work to be undertaken to advance the Project to a Feasibility level study to finalise the development option for Hope and Gorob . The Study also recommended that further exploration work be continued to fully define resource potential at the deposits.
The total area covered by the renewal application for EPL 5796 has been reduced by approximately 25% as required by licence regulations. The EPL renewal, if granted, will provide the Company with the ability to continue to test strike extensions and further up-dip copper-gold mineralisation that can in time be included in an updated JORC-compliant mineral resource.
Background Historical Data Compilation
Historic drilling was focussed on defining a resource at downhole depths ranging from 100m to >300m below surface. Historical resource estimates undertaken prior to Bezant ownership identified a combined mineralised 6.4km of strike length associated with the Hope, Gorob, Vendome, Luigi and Anomalies West, Central and East prospects. Previous drilling was frequently wide-spaced, making no attempt to confirm continuity both along strike or up-dip towards surface from the typically deeper intercepts. Bezant is targeting similar grades in the up-dip extension of this mineralisation at or near-surface.
The Hope shaft, sunk by Johannesburg Consolidated Investment Co Ltd, in the late 1970’s to a vertical depth of 140m intersected high-grade mineralisation with notable intersections achieved in both drilling and channel sampling. Mineralisation exposed in the shaft sidewalls and two drives excavated at the 100m and 140m levels was not projected up-dip to surface. This will be tested in due course by diamond drilling by Bezant. The close proximity of the shaft to the Hope mineralisation as well as multiple other high quality targets including Luigi, Du Preez, Anomalies West, East and Central and the up-dip extension of all other mineralisation defined by diamond drilling at depth provides the opportunity to utilise the shaft infrastructure for future mining. Development of drives from the current 140m level for example, effectively reduces the requirement for further underground drive development to access mineralisation by approximately 900m, representing a considerable reduction in future infrastructure capital cost.
Hope and Gorob Copper-Gold Project Background Information
Project Area: The Hope Copper-Gold project comprises three exclusive prospecting licences, EPL 5796 (Bezant interest = 70%) , EPL 7170 and EPL 6605 (Bezant interest in both = 80%) , totalling approximately 1,053km2, located in central Namibia approximately 100km to the southwest of Windhoek, the capital of Namibia.
Regional Geology and Mines: The area covered by the Hope Copper-Gold Project is characterised by superficial quaternary sand and gravel overlying the Swakop Group of the Damara Supergroup. The area is dominated by massive mica schists of the Kuiseb Formation of the Pan-African Damara Orogen. These lithologies host multiple high-grade copper-gold Besshi Type massive sulphide deposits, such as the historically mined Otjihase Copper deposit (>16Mt @ 2.2% Cu & 1.2g/t Au) to the northeast of the Hope property.
JORC Resource: The Hope Copper-Gold Project covers a significant portion of the highly prospective Matchless Copper Belt. The Bezant project area contains a series of copper deposits, of which three (Hope, Gorob-Vendome, and Anomaly) make up a combined Indicated and Inferred Mineral Resource of 10.2Mt @ 1.9% Cu and 0.3g/t Au at a 0.7% Cu cut-off, reported in accordance with the JORC Code (2012), containing 192kt of Cu metal and 3,190kg of Au. Approximately 30% of the Mineral Resource tonnage is classified in the “Indicated” Mineral Resource category with the balance in the “Inferred” Mineral Resource category and the estimate was based on 339 drill holes for a total of 63,855 metres.
For further information, please contact:
Bezant Resources Plc
+44 (0) 20 3416 3695
If anyone reads this article found it useful, helpful? Then please subscribe www.share-talk.com or follow SHARE TALK on our Twitter page for future updates.
Terms of Website Use
All information is provided on an as-is basis. Where we allow Bloggers to publish articles on our platform please note these are not our opinions or views and we have no affiliation with the companies mentioned