ASX-listed aspiring West Africa gold developer, Tietto Minerals has picked up a further slice of its prized, majority owned Abujar mining licence in Cote d’Ivoire, taking its interest in the three-million-ounce gold project to 88 per cent. The Perth-based company struck a deal with its private joint venture partners to bump up its stake by three per cent for a cash payment of US$400,000, 7.5 million Tietto shares and five million Tietto options.
Last month the Cote d’Ivoire Ministry of Mines, Petroleum and Energy approved the application for the Abujar project mining licence or exploitation permit covering an area of 120 square kilometres, which contains the Abujar gold resource.
The Abujar tenement that takes in the mining licence area was fully held under an entity called Tiebaya Gold, of which Tietto spoke for 90 per cent and its private joint venture partners 10 per cent.
Under the Cote d’Ivoire mining code, Tiebaya Gold was required to incorporate a new Ivorian company to house the Abujar mining licence, in which the Ivorian Government would hold a 10 per cent free-carried interest and Tietto’s interest would reduce from 90 per cent to 85 per cent.
Tietto has now struck an agreement with the private JV partners to boost its stake by three per cent to 88 per cent bringing the ownership structure closer to its starting position of 90 per cent.
Securing this additional interest in the Abujar gold project mining licence will create additional value for our shareholders as we move closer to the development of Abujar as West Africa’s next gold mine.
In October last year the company increased the overall indicated and inferred mineral resource estimate for Abujar to 81.2 million tonnes of ore at an average grade of 1.2 grams per tonne gold for 3.02 million ounces of contained gold.
Of the total global Abujar gold resource, the AG deposit accounts for an indicated and inferred 49.6 million tonnes of ore going 1.5 g/t gold for 2.3 million ounces of contained gold.
Tietto’s board recently gave the green light to sink US$2.5 million of CAPEX into initial site works at Abujar and into starting the process of buying long-lead time items in anticipation of the final regulatory approvals and finishing the pre-feasibility study on the proposed Abujar mine.
According to the $180 million market-capped company, the PFS on the potential development of an open-cut mining and conventional gold processing operation at Abujar remains on track to be delivered in the current quarter.
Tietto has previously indicated it also plans to release further updated mineral resource numbers for Abujar in the June quarter and complete a definitive feasibility study in the following quarter.
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