Trafford Resources says the sale of its 5.89% share in Robust Resources has netted the company $7.43 million to allow exploration to step up at its Wilcherry Hill iron ore project in South Australia. Trafford was Robust’s third largest shareholder, with just over 5.3 million shares. The funds will be used not only to intensify exploration, but to commence shipping its maiden production in this quarter.

“The transaction injects immediate cash flow into the company which allows us to pursue some most promising business opportunities,” says Trafford Resources’ managing director Ian Finch.

“The effects of the global financial ‘slow down’ have presented some excellent opportunities, both in Australia and overseas, which are too good to overlook. In that environment, and while the quality of projects within Robust Resources remains first class, we have been investigating a broad range of other opportunities that we believe have the potential to deliver higher and swifter returns to our shareholders than would a longer term investment in Robust.”

Trafford has completed large initial air and ground surveys over the majority of its Weednanna gold project tenements on the Eyre Peninsula, adjacent to Wilcherry Hill. The company will now drill test the most advanced projects defined in the surveys, including the Weednanna, Death Adder and Telephone Dam targets.

“The current calendar year is already shaping up to be Trafford’s most active and exciting year since listing on the ASX in 2006,” says Ian Finch. “We already have parties from around the globe watching with interest our Wilcherry Hill project and we also have our eye on a number of other potential projects which have attracted our own interest.”

A crushing plant was taken to the Wilcherry project site in January and construction of a dry magnetic separation (DMS) plant has also begun. The joint venture with Ironclad Mining is 105km west of South Australia’s steel industry capital of Whyalla, and about 40km north of Kimba in the northern Eyre Penisula. It covers four tenements over an area of almost 1000 sqkm. IronClad plans to ramp up production at the plant rapidly, to become a 12 million tonne per annum operation by 2015.

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