|Development has commenced at the Company’s wholly owned and fully permitted Valencia uranium deposit located in the mining friendly and politically stable country of Namibia, Africa.The Valencia deposit is situated approximately 55 km from Usakos, 25 km from Rössing. It is located 35 km along strike to the world class Rössing Uranium Mine which has been in production for over 30 years and 50 km north of the Langer Heinrich Uranium Mine. It is 6 km southwest from the 70% owned Namibplaas Uranium Project.What sets Valencia apart from many other uranium exploration and development projects, is that it is fully permitted including all environmental approvals. In August 2008, the Namibian government issued a 25 year Mining Licence for the Project. In February 2010 the company updated its initial scoping studies, pit optimization, metallurgical environmental and economic studies for the development of Valencia and released an Addendum to the June 2009 Valencia Project Technical Report, which incorporates 2009 Valencia drilling results, and reports an 18% increase in reserves to 60.5 million pounds U3O8grading 156 ppm, with a cut-off of 67 ppm. The project supports a 17 year mine life. In the second quarter of 2010 an important access road was completed, joining the Valencia mine site to the main highway. Construction of power infrastructure has commenced in conjunction with NamPower and the Company has entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with NamWater to obtain water required for the mine construction phase and production.Given the advanced stage of the project, its world class location, infrastructure agreements, politically stable environment with a track record of supporting the successful development of its uranium resources, the Valencia development presents a rare opportunity for the investor to participate in what could potentially be one of the next uranium producing mines.
Valencia Uranium Mine Location Map
In August 2008, the Company’s wholly owned subsidiary was awarded Mining Licence ML149 for its Valencia permit which covers an area of 735.6 hectares. The granting to the Company of this 25 year renewable mining licence for the Valencia deposit is the most significant milestone in the development of Valencia, and this is only the second licence to be granted within the last few decades in Namibia. Awarding of this Mining Licence followed receipt of approval and clearance by the Namibian Ministry of Environment and Tourism on both the Environmental Impact Assessment and the Environmental Management Plan. A summary of permits received is as follows:
Valencia is now fully permitted and has current NI 43-101 compliant reserves of 60.5 Mlbs , supporting a 17 year mine life. Valencia also has current measured and indicated resources of 77.2 Mlbs with a further 9.5 Mlbs inferred .
Valencia Reserve Highlights and Technical Reports
In preparation for the development of the Valencia uranium deposit, the Company has complete and extensive exploration program and completed a prefeasibility report in 2007 on the development of the Valencia uranium deposit.
Valencia drilling results to the end of 2008 are summarized in the following technical reports prepared Snowden Mining Industry Consultants (Pty) Ltd. In 2008 the company completed 205 percussion holes for 65, 765m.
During 2009 the Company completed an infill drilling program, consisting of an additional 200 percussion drill holes comprising 49,562m aimed at bringing the drill spacing in the critical areas to 40m x 40m to a depth of 380m below surface. Following completion of this 2009 Valencia drilling program, a reinterpretation of the Valencia geology was completed by Dr. Roger Laine, the Company’s Chief Geologist, at that time, who applied the CIM definition standard to reclassify the inferred resource within the pit to the indicated category and as a result a significant portion of the ore body was moved from an “Inferred” status to the indicated resource category and an updated pit optimization was completed leading to the determination of a new Valencia reserve estimate which is summarized in the January 2010 addendum to the NI 43-101 Valencia Reserve Technical Report (June 2009). Prepared by Snowden Mining Industry Consultants (Pty) ltd.
Resource Information from the NI 43-101 Addendum to Valencia Reserve Technical Report
The mineral resources are summarized in Tables 1 and 2 below and are reported in a manner consistent with the guidelines of the JORC code, which is a recognized foreign code under NI 43-101 including the CIM Definition Standards (CIM, 2005).
The resource has been constrained to a maximum depth of 380m below surface and limited to geological modeling of the alaskite, which was conditionally simulated in blocks of 5m x 5m x 5m. These blocks were re-blocked to 20m x 20m x 5m and then estimated by ordinary kriging. Only mineralization associated with the alaskite has been estimated and reported. The resource has been reported at a cut-off grade of both 60ppm and 100ppm U3O8.
Table 1 – Summary of Valencia Uranium Deposit Mineral Resources, estimated at the anticipated SMU scale as at November 2009
* 50th percentile of 100 simulations based on metal content
Mineral Reserve Information from Addendum to Valencia Reserve Report (January 2010)
The Resource information above is the basis for the following updated reserve estimate for Valencia as shown in the following table:
Table 2 – Summary of Valencia Uranium Deposit Reserves, with cut-off grades of 67 ppm and 100 ppm as at November 2009
In 2010, the Company`s uranium exploration drilling program focused on the Namibplaas Permit which is 6 km from the Valencia mine site and further described on this website under the Namibplaas Exploration Project.
At the Valencia Licence (ML149) based on current knowledge and exploration success to date, the Company believes that very good potential exists for future increases in the Valencia uranium reserve base of 60.5 million Measured and Indicated pounds U3O8 metal as set out in Table 2 above and more fully described in the January 2010 Addendum to the Valencia Reserve Technical Report June 2009.
Specifically, potential exists for continuity and additional discoveries of resources within the area covered by the Mining Licence; to the north and to the east of the currently defined Valencia pit. Furthermore, below the currently defined pit and six kilometres from the Valencia license at the Namibplaas, which is covered under exploration license EPL 3638.
The development and exploration program of the last few years (2007 through to 2013) and the resulting increase in NI 43- 101 compliant measured and indicated reserves gives us assurance that we have mineralization on surface within 600 m north and 500m east of the current pit surface boundary and that ore will be added to our reserve base following completing of additional drilling. This will increase the total tonnage available for milling but not likely significantly change the grades. In addition, drilling of inferred material around the current pit would bring them into the Valencia resource base and enable inclusion of these resources in future modelling and pit optimization and as a result potential increases in Valencia reserves in the future.
Engineering Cost Study
In May 2013, AMEC Australia Pty Ltd. completed an engineering cost study of the Valencia Uranium Project. The full technical report and results can be found here:
Possible Valencia exploration drilling opportunities are:
Namibian Government completed tender process to develop second seawater desalination project. The National Desalination Task Force confirmed additional water availability by end of 2014 approximating 20 million cubic metre capacity per annum