Mineral Securities executive chairman Keith Liddell will join the County Diamonds board if an agreement to sell off a joint venture interest in a Chinese gold project goes to plan.
County is purchasing Mineral Sec-urities’ subsidiary Tianshan Gold Limited from Mineral Securities, which holds the interest in the Gold Mountain project in the Tianshan gold belt, a region considered "hot" by explorers.
The deal is subject to due diligence, shareholder approval, and the issue of Chinese approvals and licences.
During due diligence, County will fund $100,000 of exploration, to be undertaken by a Mineral Securities geological team.
Mr Liddell said the group is pegging ground, to increase its holdings from 45 square kilometres to 100 square kilometres.
Drilling will commence next quarter and the group’s resource will be known by the end of next year.
The company has been paying four Australian cents per kilowatt hour for power, Mr Liddell said, for operations just 30 kilometres north of a town of half a million people and offering good support services.
Mineral Securities will initially gain 8.5 million County shares and five million options, but could ultimately gain 34.5 million shares.
County could earn up to 72 per cent in one part of the Gold Mountain project.
Since announcing the plan, County shares have jumped from around four to seven cents.
Mr Liddell said the deal will securitise a further Mineral Securities asset, something the "resource investment bank" has aimed to do every six months.
The East Kimberley Speewah fluorite venture is another Minerals Securities project-in-waiting.
Mr Liddell has reported an "overwhelming response" to samples sent out to potential markets, and says the company is talking with potential investors and project partners.
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