The exploration team at ASX and JSE listed Orion Minerals’ Prieska project in the Northern Cape Province of South Africa has intersected base metal sulphides at two prospects. The prospects are within 15km of the proposed mill at the planned Prieska Copper-Zinc Mine (PCZM), within the Prieska Copper-Zinc Project (Prieska Project).
Drilling was undertaken at the K3 and K6 prospects within the Kielder Project, located on the Dooniespan prospecting right, which is located 15km north-west of the planned PCZM, within the Prieska Project. The drill rigs have now moved to the northern prospecting rights where drilling will be carried out on the companies Namaqua-Disawell and Masiqhame prospecting right at the Boksputs, Kantienpan and Jacomynspan prospects. Rigs will test targets at the Jacomynspan Ni-Cu-Co-PGE Prospect on Orion’s Areachap prospecting rights, where it will test for shallow high-grade nickel-copper mineralisation and provide samples for metallurgical test work.
According to Errol Smart, Orion’s managing director and CEO this is an exciting start to Orion’s recently commenced high-impact exploration program at Prieska. “We have intersected shallow, base metal massive sulphide at two different prospects in our very first holes at the near-mine Kielder Project. This is a clear demonstration of the enormous exploration upside around the proposed Prieska Copper-Zinc mill which offer opportunities to extend the mine life and grow our production profile in the future,” says Smart.
Based on visual observations, the intersections are geologically very similar to the intersections at the main Prieska copper zinc deposit and they occur at very shallow depths which bodes well for their future economic potential.
“The planned Prieska Copper-Zinc Mine is one of the few fully permitted and development-ready base metal assets worldwide, underpinned by a compelling investment case outlined in the updated BFS of May 2020 which included an NPV (at an 8% discount rate) of AUD779 million from a 12-year foundation phase mine, planned to produce ~22ktpa of copper and ~70ktpa of zinc1. Exploration success in the near-mine environment will build on these strong fundamentals, unlocking the potential of what we believe to be a significantly under-explored, district-scale opportunity in the Northern Cape Province,” says Smart.