BELLZONE HITTING THE RIGHT NOTES WITH WORLD SCALE GUINEA IRON ORE PROJECTS
Whichever way you look at it, Bellzone Mining plc’s (AIM: BZM) advancement of its projects in the West African nation of Guinea is truly remarkable.
and be capable of producing iron ore and iron ore concentrate at a rate of 50 million tonnes per annum in 2018.Currently the Kalia Mine Project has a 3.74 billion tonne magnetite JORC resource and an initial surface oxide JORC resource producing107 million tonnes of 58% product. However, that figure has come from work done on just 4.2 per cent of the 55 sq. km of mapped surface oxides on the Kalia permit and drilling results and internal estimates indicate that the Kalia Mine Project has the potential to host more than 10 billion tonnes of magnetite and two billion tonnes of in situ oxide material.The scale and value of the Kalia Mine Project is quite remarkable. It has been estimated that285 million tonnes (Mt) of oxide and supergene BIF will produce approximately 107 Mt of saleable ore at a 58% grade. That, on today’s prices, should cover the entire Kalia Mine capital costs a few times over on its own.
Bellzone’s Managing Director, Nikolajs Zuks, believes that in many ways the Company has been “the quiet achiever” but that is about to change with Bellzone now leading the development of the iron ore industry in mineral rich Guinea.Certainly the Company’s record of achievement since listing has really
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The Jersey registered mining company, which only listed on London’s AIM stock exchange in April 2010, is set to begin exporting from its Forécariah iron ore project in early 2012 – the first step in a carefully mapped programme that will see Bellzone become a sizeable new global iron ore producer within the next three years through its world class Kalia Mine Project in Guinea.Forécariah Project
Bellzone Mining has a fully funded 50:50programme which is on track to provide resource information in September. That timing will allow detailed mine planning and production scheduling to be undertaken a month later.Importantly, the in fr as t ru ct ur e supporting BellzoneAnd that figures only covers part of the stripping requirement for the magnetite ore development. Bellzone is confident it will continually improve those numbers.Those are truly world-class figures.CIF Agreement
Bellzone silenced any doubters that it could bring a project of the magnitude of Kalia to market in August 2010 when it signed a Definitive Agreement with CIF.That Agreement contains CIF’s commitment tohad industry – and in particular, African watchers – sit up and take notice.At the time of listing the Company had a magnetite JORC resource (inferred) of 2.4 billion tonnes (Bt) at Kalia I, along with a mine and infrastructure capital cost estimated to be $4.5 billion, along with two other Guinea exploration permits which had not been developed.Since then Bellzone has:
Bellzone’s Guinean projects have the potential to provide new opportunities to the country’s population.
A key piece of that infrastructure will be the deep water port, which will be designed to bejoint venture with its partner, ChinaInternational Fund Limited (CIF), on the Forécariah iron ore permits, which are located throughout an area between 40km and 80km from the coast of Guinea, with road access to the port of Konta.Production is scheduled to start in the first quarter of 2012 at the Yomboyeli site within the large Forécariah permit area at an initial production rate of three to four million tonnes per annum (mtpa) of oxide ore, ramping up to a rate of 10 mtpa in2013.Bellzone recently showed it was on target to achieve that aggressive development timetable when it announced it had delineated an initial iron oxide cap volume of eight million cubic metres at the Yomboyeli site through a concerted drillingand CIF’s fast- track development of Forécariah can be readily and economically upgraded with workprogrammes on both the road and port already underway.A number of contracts have already been awarded for the upgrading and new road construction work along the 76 km road route to support the bulk ore road trains that will take iron ore from Forécariah to the Konta port. The road development is on track for completion to allow trucking of ore in February 2012 as per schedule.At the same time, Port EPCM contracts have been awarded to China Communications and Construction Company (CCCC) and detailed engineering andp r o c u r e m e n t activities are in progress awaiting work approvals from the Government.Negotiations and vessel marine inspection have also commenced for the marine fleet required for the trans-shipping operation.The Bellzone and CIF mining team has also completed the mining andprocessing feasibility study and key long lead items have been purchased, which include:
• The crushing and screening plant;
• The road haulage truck fleet;
• Mining haulage fleet;
• Earthmoving equipment;
• Accommodation camp; and
• Drill and blasting equipment.
A vessel has been chartered and is scheduled to leave China in early October to deliver the purchased equipment and plant to Guinea. The aggressive procurement strategy implemented from the Bellzone / CIF Beijing office has effectively mitigated the long lead item delivery risk.Kalia A World Class MiningDevelopment
However, while Forécariah will provide Bellzone and CIF with some early cash flow and critical experience in establishing a mining project in Guinea, it is the massive Kalia Mine Project that will see Bellzone become a major global iron ore industry participant in a remarkably short space of time.Kalia, the company’s flagship project, is planned to commence production in 2014fund and build commercially operated rail and port infrastructure that will enable Bellzone to export production from the Kalia Mine Project.The infrastructure is being developed by KaliaHorizon Minerals Pte Limited, an entity that is90 per cent owned by CIF, with Bellzone having a 10 per cent carried interest. The Agreement provides for Bellzone to be the lowest cost user with permanent priority access to the infrastructure.The Agreement also gives CIF right of first refusal to purchase the Kalia Mine Project’s production at market rates and commits CIF to providing Bellzone with commercially related funding for its share of the development of Kalia.The rapid progress Bellzone has made at Forécariah and Kalia and the quality agreements it has reached with CIF, are a real indication that this is a company on the move and definitely a company for investors to follow.
Kalia drilling team.
• Increased its Magnetite JORC resource to
3.74 billion tonnes (Bt) JORC, with 670 million tonnes classified at measured and indicated and the remainder at inferred - on just six km of the 19 km long Kalia I strike.
• Completed an exploration drilling programme on the mapped 10 km of material at its Kalia II prospect.
• Signed the definitive agreement with China International Fund Limited (CIF) for the latter to fund and develop the estimated US$2.7 billion rail, port and associated infrastructure services required for the
Kalia Iron Project.
• Secured near term cash flow through the
50:50 Forécariah JV.
• Taken Forécariah to the construction and development stage.Significant developments
These are significant developments for not onlyBellzone, but for the people of Guinea as well.For example, the bulk materials infrastructure being developed by its partner CIF that will support Bellzone’s projects:
• Will cost the Government nothing in terms of investment;
• Will be open for commercial use by third parties;
• Will have the capacity to meet third party needs; and
• Will readily be extended to provide deposits in the Simandou region with an opportunity to export their material.
an effective, efficient facility to initially handle100 mtpa of iron ore product for export - with the potential to be expanded at a future date.Nik Zuks says there are a number of key ingredients in Bellzone’s record of success.“Guinea has enormous potential and we are well positioned to be at the forefront of the iron ore industry as it develops.“I believe that Bellzone’s ability to deliver great results in such a short time is also a reflection of the capability of the management team. We have actively sought to build a team with African mining and project development experience that has the tenacity and commitment to deliver.”Nik Zuks says the Bellzone story is just beginning and the people of Guinea, along with the Company’s partners and investors, will benefit from the company’s achievements for many years to come.“For example, we have identified additional resources in the Forécariah region, which we believe have the potential to lead to the creation of an iron ore ‘mini province’.“We also have exploration activities of other promising targets in Guinea and elsewhere.”With the fast-track Forécariah project set to come into production within six months and a world-class iron project fully funded and targeted for a 2014 start-up, you could definitely say that Bellzone won’t be the quite achievers for long.
10 THE PICK ISSUE 3 SEPTEMBER 2011 VISIT THE PICK WEBSITE AT WWW.THE-PICK.COM.AU
THE PICK ISSUE 3 SEPTEMBER 2011