Call it cross-pollination: Mining companies in Australia are taking up projects in Canada and Canadian mining companies are enthusiastic about projects in Australia. Here are eight companies to watch.
Focus Minerals (ASX: FML; US-OTC: FCSUF) has two 100%-owned gold projects in Western Australia — Coolgardie and Laverton. Total resources in all categories at both projects contain 6.1 million oz., not an inconsiderable amount. At Coolgardie, the resource includes 1.4 million measured tonnes grading 2.3 grams gold per tonne, 18.1 million indicated tonnes grading 2.3 grams gold per tonne, and 15.3 million inferred tonnes grading 2.1 grams gold per tonne. The total contained gold is close to 2.5 million ounces.
An updated prefeasibility study for Coolgardie outlines proven and probable reserves of 6.6 million tonnes grading 1.97 grams gold for 422,000 ounces. About A$28 million ($26 million) of the A$48 million ($44.6 million) pre-production capex budget is to be spent rehabilitating the existing Three Mile Hill mill and tailings containment. The remaining A$20 million ($18.6 million) will go toward the development of two open pits and an underground mine. The project carries an after-tax net present value at a 7.5% discount rate of A$183 million ($170 million) and an internal rate of return of 71%.
Focus is the largest landholder in the Coolgardie camp, and has explored only 2% of the area so far. The company is planning an exploration program to test the potential for new, higher grade orebodies near the mill as well as a regional program near Coolgardie.