Ark buys Indonesian project

THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Sydney-based Ark Mines is about to gain control of a highly prospective and advanced exploration project known as the Masuparia Contract of Work (COW) located in Central Kalimantan, Indonesia.

Control of the COW comes to Ark through the acquisition of 100 per cent Sphere Complex Limited, a company which is the indirect majority owner and controller of Indonesian coal company PT PMM, which holds the project.

The Masuparia project is located in a region well known for copper-gold projects. The Mount Muro, gold project, which has historically produced 1.3 m oz Au, is located 20 kilometres from Masupuria, and the Kelian gold project, which to date has produced 7 million ounces of gold, is in the same region.

There are seven advanced projects in Masuparia, with a further nine projects within the eight principal exploration areas, which are significant on the COW.

The most advanced of these is the Ongkang where Ark said production is likely to commence within twelve months.

Ongkang contains a large number of low sulphidation targets that Ark considers will require minimal additional drilling to define a substantial gold resource.

“This is a very exciting acquisition for Ark, as this advanced project gives us the capability to be producing gold within twelve months, and the opportunity to define significant resources on the tenement Ark Mines managing director Roger Jackson said in the company’s announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange.

“These are likely to be world class deposits as this is a geologically stunning location.

“Also encouraging about Masuparia is that it is well serviced by existing infrastructure, and with several mines in the region, toll treatment options are also potentially available.

“The project is well supported by a talented team of professionals, and with all infrastructure in place in Jakarta and near to the project, this is a walk-up opportunity for Ark.”

The Masuparia project comes with a fully functioning office in Jakarta, headed by an Australian geologist with 25 years’ experience working in Indonesia, and three senior Indonesian geologists with a combined 40 years’ experience.

There is also an operational base camp at Masuparia with all accommodation, communication and staffing facilities.

Under the terms of the agreement, Ark will acquire the business and COW for $4 million cash, and issue the vendors ten million Ark shares. Ark will be funding this through equity.

Ark said it expects the agreement should be finalised within six weeks. It is subject to shareholder approval and the completion of funding to finalise the purchase and initiate a drilling program at Masuparia.

Although the acquisition opens a new focus for the company Jackson added that Ark will remain active in the development of its New South Wales assets, which remain a priority for the company.

“We currently have a RC rig operating in New South Wales and we remain committed to the development of these projects,” Jackson said.

“Due to our successes, we propose to raise additional funds (equity) to further drill the Gundabooka, Babinda and Perserverance projects.

“This transaction does not alter our program in the Lachlan Fold Belt and we will continue to keep shareholders informed of our progress here.”