MYANMAR Metals plans to begin a new program of drilling in January leading to an updated mineral resource estimate at the Bawdwin polymetallic project in Myanmar. The company intends to produce a new estimate for the zinc, lead, silver and copper project in the second quarter of 2018.

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Myanmar Metals’ Bawdwin project is in Shan state of northern Myanmar.

The aim of the drilling is to improve inferred resources to the indicated category within the first pit shell.

This work follows the completion of a scoping study into development of an open pit mining operation at the project with conventional milling and flotation circuits.

As further follow-up to this study, the company also intends to carry out supplementary technical studies in the first half of this year, including metallurgy and environmental assessments.

This will lead to exercise of its option in May 2018 to purchase the project from Win Myint Mo Industries Co, the Myanmar company that holds the 38sqkm mining concession under a production sharing agreement with state mining company, Mining Enterprise No 1.

If the option is exercised, Myanmar Metals will then prepare a definitive feasibility study.

The scoping study was completed by CSA Global and is based on the inferred resource estimate of 75.9 million tonnes @ 4.6% lead, 2.3% zinc, 0.25% copper and 119 g/t silver.

The results confirm the potential of the Bawdwin project to be redeveloped as a large-scale mining operation with robust project fundamentals, rapid capital pay-back, ongoing positive operational cash flow, and low technical risk.

Bawdwin will be assessed more fully in a definitive feasibility study.

Myanmar Metals’ chairman John Lamb said, “I am delighted that the scoping study confirms the Board’s long-held view of the outstanding potential and many advantages at Bawdwin. It describes a productive, low-cost open pit mine that generates an immediate return and funds the development of processing and mining infrastructure for the long-term.

“The concept outlined comprises three stages of pit cut-backs; use of the existing tunnel and railway corridor for ore transport; and treatment in a standard sulphide flotation plant. “Concentrate produced would be sold to buyers in China via the Yunnan railway due to reach the Myanmar border at Ruili in 2018.”

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