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UPDATE - Ortac outlines Eritrea drill plans

Ortac Resources and its partner are ready to start drilling their copper-gold project in Eritrea, the AIM-listed explorer said on Monday. 



Ortac Resources (LON:OTC) and its partner are ready to start drilling their copper-gold project in Eritrea, the AIM-listed explorer said on Monday.

The 1,400-metre programme will target the Yacob Dewar gold and copper discovery and the Ber Gebey mineralised zone, on the Haykota exploration licence.

The commencement of the work, to be carried out by Colonnade Mining, comes around six weeks after Ortac struck its strategic alliance with Andiamo Exploration.

Andiamo is a private UK registered company, which holds advanced stage, large scale VMS gold-copper exploration projects in Eritrea. 

Under the terms of the deal, Ortac will invest US$ 1.5mln to acquire an initial 26.7% stake, with an option to increase its holding by 21% for a further investment of US$2mln.

The initial exploration phase has three main aims.

It will look more closely at copper oxide mineralisation that occurs as a flat-lying zone within the top 50 metres or so at Yacob Dewar.

At the same it will assess the extent of the high-grade, gold-bearing "silica-barite" zone in this area.

And the programme will investigate additional silica-barite outcrops mapped at Ber Gebay, some three kilometres north of Yacob Dewar.

Geological mapping and geochemical surveys are already underway in the Yacob Dewar-Ber Gebay area, having started the middle of last month.

Ortac chief executive Vassilios Carellas said: "I look forward with great interest to seeing the results of this drill programme. 

“Andiamo's past drilling results show the potential of Yacob Dewar. 

“The oxide gold deposit has been investigated in greatest detail and Andiamo's internal calculations indicate that it can probably be developed as a viable stand-alone project.  

“Ortac believes that the copper oxide mineralisation may have even better potential, especially in the current markets, and the new drill programme will principally target this zone. 

“Ortac will assist Andiamo to re-interpret the structure and genesis of the copper mineralisation and to establish a mineral resource estimate in the near future."

Broker Northland noted the drill programme was due to start in the next two weeks.

Results from previous drilling at the Yacob Dewar copper oxide mineralisation included 11 metres (m) at 2% copper from 18.5m and 7m at 1.9% copper from 17m, it highlighted.

Meanwhile, results from previous drilling at the gold oxide mineralisation included 9m at 22.47g/t gold from 8m,19.9m at 6.16g/t gold from 28m and 16m at 10.8g/t gold from 6m.

Ortac shares rose 2.13% to stand at 0.24p.

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Price: 4.1 GBX

Market: AIM
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