THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Gold Road Resources (ASX: GOR) has executed a binding exploration Joint Venture Agreement with Sumitomo Metal Mining Oceania, a subsidiary of Sumitomo Metal Mining Co. over Gold Road’s southern tenements of its Yamarna land holding, to be known as the South Yamarna Joint Venture.
Under the terms of the South Yamarna JV, Sumitomo can earn up to a 50 per cent interest by funding $8 million of exploration activities over the period to 31 December 2016.
The terms of the agreement include:
– Sumitomo Metal Mining must spend a minimum of $3.5 million prior to the end of 2014;
– Sumitomo Metal Mining may earn a 30 per cent interest in the South Yamarna JV by spending $5 million; and
– Sumitomo Metal Mining may increase its interest to 50 per cent by spending a further $3 million prior to the end of 2016.
“Attracting a global mining company of Sumitomo’s history, experience and scale is a strong endorsement of the quality of the exploration opportunity Gold Road has throughout its Yamarna greenstone belt in Western Australia,” Gold Road Resources executive chairman Ian Murray said in the company’s announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange.
“Over the next 18 months, Gold Road will be focussed on progressing its 100 per cent-owned high-grade Central Bore project through to production, as well as exploring its 100 per cent-owned northern tenements.
Gold Road 100 per cent tenements and Gold Road-Sumitomo South Yamarna JV tenements. Source: Company announcement
“Through this transaction, Gold Road has made a conscious decision to bring forward the testing of some of these exploration targets on the southern portion of its tenements by several years in order to give them the near term attention they deserve.
“Gold Road retains a 100 per cent interest in the northern tenements, which includes the Central Bore project, the Attila gold resource and surrounding exploration opportunities.
“We are very pleased to have reached this agreement with Sumitomo, we now have a Joint Venture partner of the highest calibre, with decades of experience in very high-grade underground gold operations similar in grade to Gold Road’s Central Bore project.
“Both companies are keen to commence the drilling campaign and make new discoveries that will add value for our respective shareholders.”
Sumitomo Metal Mining is a major non-ferrous metal mining and manufacturing company, with expertise in gold and copper mining, owning the Hishikari gold mine in Japan and the Pogo mine in Alaska.
Sumitomo Metal Mining also has interests in some of the world’s largest copper (gold-molybdenum) mines with Rio Tinto (Northparkes, NSW), Freeport-McMoran (La Candelaria/Ojo del Salado in Chile, Cerro Verde in Peru and Morenci in USA) and KGHM Polska (Sierra Gorda in Chile).
Sumitomo Metal Mining and Gold Road have agreed a budget of $1.75 million for a program consisting of surface geochemical sampling and Heli-SAM surveys followed by 15,000m of RAB/Aircore drilling.
The Joint venture exploration activities will commence in May 2013.