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AVZ technical director Graeme Johnston (left) and DRC President Felix Tshisekedi Tshilombo (right)

AVZ improves met work at giant lithium play

AVZ Minerals has improved on the initial results of its metallurgical test work programs at its massive Manono lithium project in the Democratic Republic of the Congo, or the “DRC”.

Heavy liquid separation work on ores crushed to a size of 3.35mm produced a lithium concentrate grade of 6.6% with recoveries of 70.4%.

The most recent met work marks an improvement over the work on ores crushed to a coarser size of 5.6mm previously, which produced a lithium concentrate with a grade 6.2% and a 66% recovery.

AVZ said the finer crush results will set the parameter for comparative dense media separation testing that will be carried out over the next few weeks.

The company has also met and updated the DRC President, Tshisekedi Tshilombo and senior government officials on the progress being made at the Manono lithium project which currently boasts close to the largest  undeveloped in-ground lithium resource anywhere in the world today. 

The Presidential briefing included the successful resource drilling carried out in 2018 that led the company to fast track the project’s definitive feasibility study.

President Tshilombo appears to be supportive of the country’s mining industry generally with global gold miner Barrick Gold saying that it was encouraged by his vision of attracting foreign investment and supporting the development of the country’s mining industry.

Africa-focused developer Ivanhoe Mines has also committed to further investment in the DRC.

AVZ Managing Director Nigel Ferguson said:

“We welcome His Excellency’s interest in the Manono Lithium and Tin Project and the support of his office to bring certainty to the DRC’s first, and the world’s largest, undeveloped hard rock lithium deposit.”

The company also said that de-watering of the main Roche Dure pit at the Manono project is continuing at a steady rate with full pit access expected in two to three months.

This access will allow AVZ to carry out comprehensive pit wall and floor mapping to augment planned geotechnical drilling, further selective resource drilling to allow an upgrade of previously inaccessible pit floor resources and a possible grade control drill program.  

Roche Dure holds 400 million tonnes grading a very impressive 1.65% lithium oxide and 715 parts per million tin.

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