AVZ Minerals Limited (ASX: AVZ), domiciled in Mt Hawthorn, Australia, is a junior mineral exploration company. The company is engaged in the exploration of lithium, tin, tantalum and associated minerals through its three projects located in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Africa.
The Manono Project in the south of the DRC covers an area of 188 square km. AVZ holds 60% interest in the project and is responsible for funding expenditure to completion of a feasibility study, whereas 30% is owned by La Congolaise D’exploitation Miniere SA (a State-owned enterprise) and the remaining 10% is owned by a private company, Dathomir Mining Resources SARL. The project hosts lithium pegmatites with a strike length of more than 13km.
The Manono Extension Project surrounds the Manono Project hosting lithium pegmatites with two granted exploration licenses covering an area of 242.25 square km. AVZ holds 100% interest in the project.
The Katanga Regional Project is located within the Katanga province with seven exploration permits covering an area of 1,172 square km. AVZ holds 60% interest in the project, and the project is known to host lithium-bearing pegmatites.
Today, AVZ has announced quarterly updates for its second quarter of FY19 ending 31 December 2018. During the quarter, AVZ identified Manono as the largest undeveloped hard rock lithium project in terms of grade, expandability, and mine life through its Scoping Study. The Study also revealed that the saving of 26% in transportation cost has resulted in a 16% decline in total operating cost.
During the quarter, it continued drilling over the Manono Mineral Resource and continued Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS) over the Manono Lithium and Tin project. Drilling was conducted at Carriere De L’Este in Manono sector which confirmed visible spodumene in drill core with assay results pending. After the review of the DRC government, there were no changes in the Congo royalty rates for lithium.
During the quarter, AVZ reported net cash used in operating activities of A$5.631 million (as compared to the guidance of A$3.700 million as per 31 October 2018 report) arising from the payments for exploration and evaluation of A$4.743 million, staff costs of A$279 K, administration and corporate costs of A$674 K, interest of A$39 K received and A$26 K of other activities. For 1H19, it reported net cash used in operating activities of A$14.034 million. For the next quarter, AVZ estimates a net cash outflow of A$4.330 million.
There was no cash flow from investing and financing activities during the quarter. For 1H19 net cash used in investing activities was reported at A$1.393 million and no cash flow was reported from financing activities. It reported a cash balance of A$0.910 million at the end of the period.
Today, AVZ has placed its securities in a trading halt pending it releasing an announcement until 1 February 2019 or till the announcement is released.
The stock has generated a negative return of 25.71% during the past three months. It last traded at $0.049 (as on 30 January 2019) with a dip of 5.769% in the price during the day’s performance after the release of the news.
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