The market doesn’t have long to wait now to find out exactly how much hard cash can be churned out of the world’s largest undeveloped lithium mine as AVZ Minerals says it is 95% through its definitive feasibility study for the giant Manono lithium-tin project in the Democratic Republic of Congo. AVZ is now teetering right on the edge of making that difficult leap from explorer to miner.
The market doesn’t have long to wait now to find out exactly how much hard cash can be churned out of the world’s largest undeveloped lithium mine as AVZ Minerals says it is 95% through its definitive feasibility study for the giant Manono lithium-tin project in the Democratic Republic of Congo. AVZ is now teetering right on the edge of making that difficult leap from explorer to miner and the Perth-based ASX-listed company has already made significant inroads in developing the infrastructure required to support a fully-fledged mining operation.
Notably, infill drilling will be able to kick off soon as a major logistical milestone draws to a close with the “dewatering” of the historical Roche Dure pit now imminent.
The historic Manono Mine was mined for tin between 1919 and 1982 during which a total of 100 million cubic metres of ore were processed to produce 185,000 tonnes of cassiterite concentrate.
The company said that the pit floor is now exposed and with a bit of clean-up it will be able to complete drilling in order to potentially provide an upgrade to its lithium resource – not that it really needs it with a massive 400mt going 1.65% already on the books.
AVZ also said that it had made headway towards finalising transport arrangements for its lithium products to be transported from the mine to the Port of Dar es Salaam in Tanzania. All necessary comparisons have now been completed and the company will soon select the most cost-effective and suitable route.
Accommodation facilities that will house the all-important mining crews have recently been completed and it has now been officially named “Camp Colline”. Extra accommodation rooms, that will house up to 150 construction crews, along with kitchens and other facilities will also be nearing the build phase soon management said.
Other vital amenities such as treated water, sewage and power are also coming online as AVZ invests a noteworthy amount of cash into its mine support facilities.
AVZ Managing Director, Nigel Ferguson said: “We are no longer an exploration company having commenced site works for mining and are migrating towards becoming a fully-fledged mining company. With the DFS expected soon, financing and offtakes to soon follow, we are stepping up to ensure a successful mining operation is established at Manono.”
With definitive economics now looming from arguably one of the most meticulous mining studies going around, AVZ will be banking on making good from its project sometime soon.
With potentially the largest undeveloped lithium hard rock resource in the world and most likely the highest grade AVZ’s DFS should be the ultimate document on how to make money from a lithium deposit.
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