THE BOURSE WHISPERER: Northern Minerals has signed a Joint Venture Heads of Agreement (HoA) with ASX-listed company Toro Energy.
The Agreement will allow Northern to earn up to 80 per cent interest in all mineral rights other than uranium within Toro Energy’s Browns Range tenements in the Northern Territory.
The HoA includes seven tenements comprising 1,403 square kilometres situated adjacent to Northern Minerals Browns Range project on the Western Australia / Northern Territory border.
Source: Northern Minerals announcement
Northern Minerals has identified high-grade Heavy Rare Earth Elements at Browns range and is aiming to be in production by 2015.
The agreement will expand Northern Minerals landholding on the Browns Range Dome, and will form part of the company’s broader HREE exploration and development program in 2012.
Under the terms of the HoA, Northern Minerals will spend $4 million on exploration over a three year period to earn a 51 per cent interest.
Northern Minerals has the option to increase its interest to 70 per cent, by spending an additional $2 million on exploration over a further two year period.
Northern Minerals can elect to complete a bankable or definitive feasibility study to increase its equity to 80 per cent.
Toro will retain all uranium rights on the tenements.
“We are very pleased to have reached this agreement with Toro which gives us a dominant position in the region,” Northern Minerals managing director George Bauk said in the company’s announcement to the Australian Securities Exchange.
“It complements our strategy to expand our rare earth portfolio and it further bolsters the already exciting potential of our Browns Range REE project.”
“Our aim is to commence a strategic exploration program across the tenements as soon as possible, and test whether the geological setting identified at Browns Range continues into the NT.”
Northern Minerals said that exploration was expected to get underway in 2012, and will commence with airborne surveys over the seven tenements.