Akora Resources’ (ASX: AKO) first deep hole at its Bekisopa project in Madagascar has hit two zones of massive iron ore mineralisation, extending to a depth of 185m down hole.
The company describes the results as “very encouraging” with mineralisation confirmed at depth as well 5km along strike.
Iron was intercepted at 39.55m down hole and this first zone extended over 9.42m, with the second interval beginning at 50.9m and extending down 134.43m.
Akora, founded in 2009, has three iron ore projects on the island — the reasonably advanced Bekisopa, 220km inland from Madagascar’s west coast, and two upgradable projects close to the east coast.
In April the company reported what it termed “further outstanding drill results” from Bekisopa with iron ore grades up to 66.9% iron after crushing.
The company noted that assays confirmed the continuation of what it termed significant, near surface, mineralisation along a 4km strike.
Its aim is to drill and define around 100 million tonnes of direct shipping ore.
Deeper diamond drilling continues at Bekisopa
The Bekisopa 2021 drilling campaign continues with deeper diamond drill holes.
Of the first deep hole now reported, Akora says this result is important because it suggests that the recently identified southwest area may be continuous with the main southern area, significantly increasing tonnage potential in the southern part of the project area.
Two drilling crews are working at Bekisopa, with 20 holes being sunk to between 150m and 250m. The program is due to be finished by late October.
Assaying in Perth is underway and on schedule, with a mineral resource estimate expected by the end of this year.
Akora’s projects are only a short sea voyage away from the vast Indian market.
Secondly, China is looking for alternative iron ore supply as it tries to reduce its dependence on Australia, which now meets up to 60% of its needs.
Main project has had extensive exploration
Bekisopa has seen considerable exploration over the years.
Between 1959 and 1962 the French geological agency, BRGM — long active in Francophone Africa — did 4,000m of trenching at Bekisopa, along with digging 564 pits and drilling 22 holes, the last of which intersected high-grade iron occurrences.
In the period 1976-1978, the United Nations Development Program did more drilling at the project.
Akora followed up this work in 2014 by collecting 118 rock chip samples, assays of which revealed an average 66.7% iron content and with low impurities; and 21 of those samples returned grades above 69%.
The other two projects are close to the east coast with one, Tratramarina located just 16km inland.