EIA Baseline Study Completed, Mankayan Cu Project
15 July 2019
Bezant Resources Plc
("Bezant" or the "Company")
EIA Baseline Study Completed, Mankayan Cu Project, Luzon, Philippines
Bezant (AIM: BZT), the copper-gold exploration and development company, is pleased to announce that it has completed a key component of the Environmental Impact Assessment ("EIA") baseline study required for the successful future completion of a pre-feasibility study. The dry season water quality baseline study at the Company's Mankayan copper-gold project, located in Luzon in the Philippines, has been undertaken in order to establish the monitoring levels for the potential development of a sustainable mining project. GHD Group Pty. Ltd ("GHD") were engaged to undertake the independent environmental survey work over the Mankayan Project's site covering an area of 533.4 hectares under the Mineral Production Sharing Agreement ("MPSA") Number 057-96-CAR.
The baseline water quality assessment comprised the following scope of work:
· Review of previous water quality baseline report and related documents
· Site reconnaissance, interview of personnel and documentation of the existing conditions of the 12 established sampling stations within and outside the MPSA area
· Surface and ground water quality sampling in the 12 abovementioned established stations
· Analytical testing (i.e. physico-chemical, microbiological and metals) of the collected surface and groundwater samples through a Department of Environment and Natural Resources ("DENR") recognised laboratory
· Analysis of in situ, physio-chemical, microbiological, and metal parameters based on laboratory results
· Preparation and submission of a report
A total of 12 sampling stations comprised of nine surface water and three groundwater-sampling stations were established for the baseline study. Water samples were analysed for physico-chemical (i.e. pH, total suspended solids, total dissolved solids, biological oxygen demand, chemical oxygen demand, oil and grease, nitrates and phosphates), microbiological (i.e. total coliform and faecal coliform) and metals (i.e. arsenic, cadmium, copper, chromium, lead, iron, mercury and zinc) parameters. The analytical results of the freshwater samples were compared to the prescribed criteria of the DENR Administrative Order No. 2016-08 (DAO 2016-08) Water Quality Guidelines (WQG) for Class A waters, while the analytical results for groundwater were compared to the Philippine National Standard for Drinking Water (PNSDW) 2017 values.
All baseline conditions for dry season water measurement have now been collected and processed within the independent July 2019 report submitted to the Company by GHD. Alongside further environmental studies required for the EIA in due course, the baseline study will allow informed development decisions to be made, working closely with local stakeholders and in full compliance with the laws and regulations of the Philippines. The findings of GHD's report will be communicated to local stakeholders through community engagement. This baseline component has been concluded to a level compliant with local and global reporting standards.
Laurence Read, CEO of Bezant, commented:
"Ensuring the correct environmental baseline studies are in place for a major copper-gold development project, especially in respect to water, is essential. The results of this independent study will be communicated to local and governmental stakeholders and form a key part of the pre-feasibility study programme to ensure that informed, sustainable decisions are made in the future potential construction, consultation and planning stages of Mankayan. Operating within an existing mining area our intention is to support the potential future development of an underground, modern mining operation where ongoing environmental monitoring is in place at all stages in the project's lifespan."
For further information, please contact:
Bezant Resources plc
Chief Executive Officer
Strand Hanson Limited (Nomad)
James Harris / Matthew Chandler / James Dance
Novum Securities Limited (Broker)
or visit http://www.bezantresources.com
Tel: +44 (0)20 3289 9923
Tel: +44 (0)20 7409 3494
Tel: +44 (0)20 7399 9400
Qualified Person's Statement
In accordance with the AIM Note for Mining and Oil & Gas Companies, June 2009 (the "Guidance Note"), Colin Bird, CEng, FIMMM, a South African and UK Certified Mine Manager and Executive Chairman of Bezant, with more than 40 years relevant experience, is the qualified person who has reviewed and approved the technical information contained herein.
The information contained within this announcement is deemed by the Company to constitute inside information as stipulated under the Market Abuse Regulation (EU) No. 596/2014.
Notes to Editors:
Mankayan Cu-Au Project, Philippines
Fly-through videos for the Company's Mankayan copper-gold project located north of Manilla on Luzon island are hosted on "Youku" in both Standard Chinese and English.
The Chinese version can be accessed via the following link: https://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XNDIyNTAwNTc0OA==.html
The English version and can be accessed via the following link: https://v.youku.com/v_show/id_XNDIyNTM2MjA3Ng==.html
Mankayan has a copper-gold resource estimate completed by Snowden Mining Industry Pty Limited ("Snowden") in 2009 under JORC (2004) which defined an indicated resource of 1.1 million tonnes of contained copper and 3.7 million ounces of contained gold and an inferred resource of 0.2 million tonnes of contained copper and 0.6 million ounces of contained gold.
Following the Mining Plus Pty Limited independent economic study completed in February 2019, the Mankayan copper-gold porphyry supports different robust routes for potential future development, including, a Sub-Level Caving ("SLC") 'stepping stone' scenario, with two main Block Caving ("BC") routes identified for progression, from a total of 11 scenarios assessed, with both supporting an average production grade in excess of 0.64% copper equivalent ("CuEq").
5 year lead time to production: Under all four of the representative options selected for further analysis in the study, the time to initial production was approximately five years and the first five years of production are sequenced in order to deliver production from the higher grade areas of the deposit, in some cases demonstrating average grades achievable of up to 0.77% CuEq* during this initial period.
The three main representative options summarised below, taken from the 11 modelled scenarios, comprise two BC scenarios and one SLC 'stepping stone' scenario (the option numbers being those used in the study)
The two preferred BC scenarios
• Option 4: medium production rate with lower start-up costs than those associated with higher production rate models
• US$1,181m net present value ("NPV")*, US$11,647m total revenue, US$19.1/t average cost, 27% internal rate of return before tax and royalty ("IRR"), US$896m start-up Capex
• Option 8: lower start-up costs, coupled with a good overall project value maintained by ramping-up the production rate after the first footprint
• US$797m NPV*, US$11,473m total revenue, US$19.7/t average cost, 21% IRR, US$633m start-up Capex
SLC intermediary route
• Option 9: a more flexible/low start-up cost SLC method has been determined as an intermediary step towards full block caving scenarios, with start-up Capex of US$529m, a slightly reduced time to first production, a first phase period into higher grade core and US$19.9/t average cost
* The NPV calculated is for comparative purposes only, as full financial analysis was not undertaken for the study. A mean copper price scenario of US$3/lb was used and all costs are mine and processing combined. Due to the current uncertainty surrounding the Philippine tax/royalty rates, neither have been included in the comparison. Inclusion of tax and royalty would reduce the NPV and IRR, but it is expected that the relative economic merits of each scenario would not change significantly.
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