A JOINT-VENTURE agreement between Sally Malay Mining and Thundelarra Exploration to develop the Copernicus open pit mining resource has been cancelled because of a dispute between the partners surrounding Sally Malay’s 60 per cent stake.
As part of the agreement signed in 2003 between the two local companies, Sally Malay was required to produce a feasibility study aimed at determining the viability of mining the resource, which is located 30 kilometres south of Sally Malay’s processing plant. That study was to determine the viability of trucking the ore to the nearby processing plant.
Sally Malay submitted this study to Thundelarra on January 8.
However, the board of Thundelarra has submitted a statement to the Australian Stock Exchange in which it terminates the agreement and outlines the explorer’s view that: “Sally Malay has not delivered a feasibility study for the purposes of the Heads of Agreement”.
In a reply to the Thundelarra statement, Sally Malay managing director Peter Harold made clear his belief that his company had fulfilled its end of the agreement and that it “will act immediately to protect its rights and seek confirmation that it has earned its 60 per cent interest”.
He also said the matter was with the company’s lawyers and he was unable to comment further.
Drilling in late 2003 at the resource led to indicated reserve estimates of approximately 359,000 tonnes, composed of 1.3 per cent nickel, 0.7 per cent copper and 0.05 per cent cobalt.
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