Dual listed New Zealand based minerals development and exploration company, New Talisman Gold Mines Limited (NZSX & ASX:NTL) ended the 2019 year with great strides, making considerable progress at its Talisman Gold Mine in Karangahake.
Talisman mine is one among the most historically productive gold mines of New Zealand, situated in Hauraki Goldfields between Waihi and Paeroa, North Island, New Zealand. The Company has commenced prospecting and upgrading activities at the mine in order to advance the exploration project to expand its significant global exploration target into JORC 2012 resources.
Recently, the Company reported solid quarterly results for the quarter ended 31st December 2019, a quarter in which its complete focus was to secure the long-term future of its Talisman Gold Mine.
Let’s scroll through the key developments made at its signature operation during the quarter:
Signed Term Sheet for Processing Plant Development
An agreement was reached with Terra Firma Mining Limited regarding the commercial terms and conditions for operation and construction of a plant sufficient in size to cater for the mines longer term needs.
A binding term sheet was signed detailing the conditions for development of a processing plant by Terra Firma Mining Limited, through which the Company has secured a processing route for ore from the Talisman Mine.
Moreover, other parties have also approached the Company with an intention to work with it on the project in various forms. The Company is reviewing their applications with an aim to speed up gold production from the bulk sampling project.
The Company informed that the design work on the commercial scale plant is progressing as per schedule and enquiries have been put with equipment suppliers. Moreover, it has been notified about the completion of the Phase 1 metallurgical test work programme in the latter half 2019.
Completed Planning Assessment for Resource Consent
During the quarter, planning assessment for resource consent application was completed for long term mine, and the subject matter specialists are being recruited.
At present, NTL holds a resource consent at the Talisman Mine permitting bulk sampling of up to 20,000 m3 of ore per year for about two years. During the quarter, Company contracted an independent planner to evaluate the impact of planned mining operations, broadly similar to those for which the operation is already consented.
The assessment identified numerous technical assessments that will be needed to support the resource consent application.
Once the application is submitted, the external stakeholders will ascertain the pathway and timing to long term consenting for the mine. The Company is confident of obtaining the resource consents to mine for duration of the Mining Permit.
Initiated Extraction at Dubbo
The Company mentioned that the Waihi processing plant that has been kept on care and maintenance for an extended period, has closed out any near-term processing options for it. However, the strategy implemented by management over the last two quarters to build a non-chemical gravity plant has provided a self-sufficient alternate processing route.
The final requirements for a larger plant consent are being fast-tracked for the processing of extracted ore to occur in the coming months.
The Company has planned for the near term extraction of high grade ore in Dubbo, which is expected to result in the removal of high grade ore, appropriate for gravity processing in batches at either the larger plant to commence in the near term or the pilot plant.
Peer review of MRE is Close to Completion
Late in 2019, the Company announced the peer review of the updated Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) for the Talisman Mine, which is close to completion with no material issues detected.
The Company is encouraged by the positive outcome of the review process that has been very thorough. Supported by the peer reviewed MRE, the life of mine planning and mine design is well on track.
Life of Mine Planning Currently Underway
The Company is progressing well with the life of mine planning and mine design undertaken for the Talisman Mine Feasibility Study.
The life of mine planning is expected to result in high grade operational plan defining comprehensive developmental and infrastructure requirements needed to support the Company’s objective to attaining the maximum possible return to shareholders from extracting the world class gold deposit presented at the mine.
Below are the intended outcomes of this high-level operational plan:
In addition to these developments, the Company has also aligned with a local company, ATS to investigate the likelihood of deploying digital electro seismic mapping underground to mitigate the risk of the potential occurrence of unknown excavations adjacent to new workings that can hinder the ongoing development of the mine.
Matthew Hill the CEO stated “The company has delivered significant progress this quarter in providing the required information from the pilot plant for it to complete the application for a resource consent for both full mining and a large scale plant which will meet the 400t per month needs of the current mine plan. With a target of delivering meaningful quantities of gold for the September AGM, the fast tracking of the plant is paramount and has been the focus of the management team. Extraction activities aimed at reaching the high grade zone in Dubbo vertically have commenced, with ore being stockpiled until a processing route is fulfilled. Small batches of high grad ore will continue to be processed at the pilot plant.
With low interest rates and geopolitical tensions driving the price of gold to a six-year high, New Talisman Gold Mines Limited remains the only pure gold play available on the NZX. The Company seems well funded to progress on the development of its projects, with a cash balance of NZD 3.04 million as at 31st December 2019.
NTL settled the day’s trade on the NZX at $0.008 on 31 January 2020, a 14% increase to the previous close.