Orion Minerals secures mining rights for Flat Mines Area of Okiep Copper Project

Orion Minerals secures mining rights for Flat Mines Area of Okiep Copper Project

Orion Minerals Ltd (ASX:ORN, JSE:ORN) has secured mining rights over the key Flats Mines Area at the core of Okiep Copper Project (OCP) in Northern Cape, South Africa.

The grant of the mining right represents a major step toward the development of the OCP and clears the way for final engineering studies, mineral resource upgrade, drilling and bulk sampling for metallurgical optimisation.

Moving forward, Orion’s feasibility studies upgrading the 2021 scoping feasibility study for the OCP are well advanced, with targeted completion in early 2023.

BFS in advanced stage

Orion managing director and CEO Errol Smart said: “The grant of the SAFTA mining right is a major step forward for Orion and our objective of early production of copper and other ‘Future Facing’ metals while continuing to expand our mineral resources and beneficiation capacity in the Northern Cape, South Africa.

“Our bankable feasibility study on the granted mining right area is at an advanced stage and can now be completed with access to the property for bulk sampling and final confirmation drilling purposes.”

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Positive scoping study

The mining right granted to Southern African Tantalum Mining (Pty) Ltd (SAFTA) under the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act, is valid for an initial 15 years and can be renewed on the application for a further period which may not exceed 30 years.

In May 2021, Orion completed a positive scoping study for the Flat Mines SAFTA area, which demonstrated the economic merit of developing a foundation phase mining operation at the SAFTA properties.

The scoping study supported a moderate-scale start-up mining operation on known, drilled copper deposits.

Orion’s aspiration, with project partner the Industrial Development Corporation (IDC), is an early re-establishment of mining operations on the brownfields site while conducting the required work and engineering studies to support the longer-term goal of achieving production at a similar scale to past owners Newmont and later Goldfields under the Okiep Copper Company.

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