THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Antipa Minerals (ASX: AZY) informed the market that Rio Tinto (ASX: RIO) has earned an initial 51 per cent interest in the Citadel project in Western Australia.
Antipa Minerals explained that Rio had reached the 51 per cent milestone by way of sole funding $11 million of exploration expenditure on the project and that a Joint Venture has now been struck between the two companies.
The Citadel project comprises a 1,330 square kilometre tenement package located in the prospective Paterson Province in northern WA, 80 kilometres north of Newcrest’s Telfer gold‐copper‐silver mine and 5km east of Rio Tinto’s Winu copper‐gold‐silver deposit.
The project hosts a global Mineral Resource of 63.8 million tonnes at 0.8 grams per tonne gold and 0.2 per cent copper for 1.6 million ounces of gold and 127,000 tonnes of copper.
Under the terms of the Citadel Project Farm-in Agreement, Rio Tinto has now assumed operatorship of the Citadel JV and has until 30 January 2020 to elect whether to sole fund an additional $14 million of exploration expenditure within three years to increase its interest in the JV to 65 per cent.
Rio Tinto also has the ability to earn up to a 75 per cent interest in the Citadel Joint Venture by sole funding a further $35 million within a further three years.