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Australians mount fresh Zim drilling campaign

AUSTRALIA-BASED Prospect Resources on Monday said it had mounted the second phase of a crucial diamond drilling campaign at Step Aside lithium project, east of Harare.

This comes as the firm shifted focus after selling Arcadia Mine to a Chinese firm last year, in a US$378 million deal.

In a market update, managing director Sam Hosack said the campaign which kicked off on Monday involved an evaluation of lateral and vertical extents of Step Aside’s three largest identified pegmatites.

The programme was designed to expand on the success of the first phase of the campaign, Hosack told investors.

“Our experienced in-country exploration team is focused on quickly advancing Step Aside towards this aim. The Phase 2 drilling is designed to test the lateral and vertical extents of the three largest observed pegmatites at Step Aside. Pegmatite D, in particular, offers a significant existing defined scale and remains open in multiple directions. We look forward to reporting on the outcomes from the Step Aside Phase 2 programme as they become available. Drilling is also continuing at Omaruru as are project generation activities and the company is expecting strong news flow in 2023,” he said.

The 100% Prospect-owned Step Aside lithium project is situated in the Archaean Harare Greenstone Belt, about 35km east of Harare.

The claim is about 100 hectares in size.

Step Aside is located eight kilometres north of Arcadia Lithium Mine, which is expected to begin production this first quarter.

It was also discovered by Prospect, which sold it to Chinese giant, Huayou Cobalt last year for about US$378 million.

Last week, Prospect said the multi-million-dollar takeover of Arcadia Mine boosted its capacity to attract high-end investors, as it moves to new claims.

In a note to investors last week, the Australia Stock Exchange-listed outfit said it would be devoting its energies to exploiting the Step Aside resources, boosted by a US$21 million war chest.

“The successful completion of our Arcadia transaction continues to attract first-rate partners seeking development partners, putting the organisation in a leading position to capitalise on the mineral rich sub-Saharan region,” Hosack said in last week’s update.

In Zimbabwe and the larger sub-Saharan African region, the company is targeting mining projects involving raw materials for batteries and electrification.

“It has been another robust quarter for the company,” Hosack said.

“Prospect is well positioned for the year ahead with strong cash reserves of approximately A$30,3 million and a clear, continued advancement of our broader strategic objective, which is to be a leading battery and electrification metals focused exploration and development business,” he added. – (Newsday)

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