Antilles Gold Limited (ASX: AAU) (OTCQB: ANTMF) has obtained high-grade drilling results from the La Demajagua gold/silver deposit in Cuba.
The company has completed approximately 10,000m (90 holes) of the current 15,000m programme with completion expected in early August 2021. 14 of the 17 cored holes have been analysed to date, with assays to be continued to be received through to the end of September 2021.
Highlight results include: 20m @ 6.30 g/t Au; 31.5m @ 4.95 g/t Au; 31m @ 4.97 g/t Au; and 4.2m @ 8.71 g/t Au.
Executive Chairman, Brian Johnson, said silver is evident in numerous intercepts, with grades of up to 736 g/t Ag.
Mr Johnson said results to date have reflected high grade mineralisation evidenced in 50,000m of drilling of the La Demajagua ore body undertaken by Canadian mining companies. Samples are being analysed at Activation Laboratories in Toronto.
The current drilling programme, and a 10,000m in-fill programme scheduled for early 2022 are aimed at establishing JORC Resources and finalising planning for the proposed open pit mine at La Demajagua.
Approximately 2,000kg of representative drill core will be air-freighted to a laboratory in either Australia or Canada around October 2021 for metallurgical test work and the production of concentrate samples for marketing purposes.
Additional holes will be drilled in August/September 2021 for geotechnical and hydrogeology investigations which will form part of the Bankable Feasibility Study (BFS) for the proposed open pit mine.
The BFS will be compiled by an Australian engineering group and should be completed in time for a development decision for the La Demajagua mine, in Q4 2022.
Exploration for the planned underground operation will most likely not take place until three years after the open pit mine is commissioned, which is targeted for late 2023.
We are pleased to receive the first set of results from the current drilling programne and are impressed at this stage of the program with the high grade of ore that could be available for a straight forward and low cost open pit mining operation at La Demajagua,” Mr Johnson said.
Proposes La Demajagua Open Pit Mine
Based on historic drilling results and previous metallurgical test work, the joint venture company, Minera La Victoria SA (MLV), in which Antilles Gold has a 49% shareholding, is planning an open pit operation at La Demajagua to mine approximately 800,000 tpa of ore for six years to produce 60,000 tpa of high grade concentrate.
For its 49% shareholding in MLV, Antilles Gold is contributing US$7.0 million in 2021-22 for a Bankable Feasibility Study for the mine development, including a 25,000m drilling program. The company will also pay for US$6.0 million of mine infrastructure in 2023.
Capital cost estimates for the proposed mine based on a preliminary pit design, quotations for mining equipment, and turnkey offers for the design and construction of the milling and flotation circuits, and a 10Mw power station, are in the order of US$60 million including financing costs during construction, but excluding contingency.
Operating costs in Cuba are low and the Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) for the mine completed by MLV indicated a financially robust project. Economics should improve with the planned 10 year underground operation.