---ADDS BROKER COMMENT, PRICE TARGET AND BACKGROUND---
Total contained copper increased by 43% to 887mln pounds, or 402,000 tonnes.
The resource confidence has also been significantly upgraded with 26% now in indicated category. There were indicated resources in the maiden statement.
Asiamet reckons there is a ‘substantial inventory’ of further copper at a 0.5% cut-off grade that provides a ‘solid basis’ for the upcoming mining studies being carried out as part of the important preliminary economic assessment (PEA) of BKM.
Additionally, the latest round of drilling has identified two near-surface high-grade zones that could act as low cost starter pits with enhanced economics.
The PEA is expected to be published in the first quarter of next year and will provide the company with some guide to the economics (start-up costs and returns) of a low cost mining operation on the site.
"Asiamet is very pleased with the updated mineral resource estimate for the BKM deposit,” said chief executive Tony Manini.
“The positive attributes of the deposit delineated by the 2015 drilling programme are clearly highlighted in this new estimate.
“The mineral resource inventory has significantly increased in size; resource confidence has been substantially upgraded; and discrete zones of shallow higher grade mineralization have been identified and delineated.
“The focus of our work programmes now moves to the key mining studies, detailed copper heap leach test work and the various inputs into the PEA.
“Excellent progress has been made to achieve this important milestone on time and budget and our focus now moves to completing the PEA.
“This is an exciting time for Asiamet and we look forward to providing stakeholders with a strong news flow over the coming months as the various parts of the PEA are completed and reported."
“The most encouraging result of the recent drilling campaign has been to confirm the potential of the low cost nature of the project,” the broker said in a note to clients.
“The resource is close to surface indicating the potential for very low strip ratios and opencast mining which will benefit mining costs.
“Furthermore, the strong drilling results have indicated two near surface lobes with significant high grade concentrations.
“There is therefore potential for selective mining of early starter pits that would enable Asiamet to generate cash flows ahead of the main pit at low cost thereby maximising the project economics.”
VSA has updated its price target to a very punchy 4p a share – the stock is currently changing hands for 1.45p.
BKM is part of the KSK Project in Central Kalimantan.