Castillo Copper targets untapped potential at NWQ project’s Big One deposit

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By Imelda Cotton - 
Castillo Copper ASX CCZ Big One Mt Isa

Castillo Copper (ASX: CCZ) is preparing to launch a comprehensive soil sampling campaign at its Big One deposit within the NWQ project in Queensland.

The company will focus on an area north of the known orebody, where there is a sizeable untested bedrock conductor.

Previous surface sampling work has confirmed the orebody starts at the surface, is open to the north, east and down dip and is not fully defined.

Results from the surface sampling are expected to provide sufficient data for a drilling campaign to test key targets and extend the known mineralisation.

Blue-chip neighbourhood

Located within the Mt Isa copper belt, next to land owned by global blue-chip companies including Anglo American, the Big One deposit has a mineral resource estimate of 2.1 million tonnes grading 1.1% copper for 21,886t of contained metal.

This estimate was modelled from historic data and three recent drilling campaigns, which produced high-grade results including 40 metres at 1.64% copper from the surface, with subsets of 11m at 4.40% from 24m, 5m at 7.34% from 28m and 1m at 16.65% from 29m, as well as 44m at 1.19% copper from the surface including 14m at 3.55% from 27m, 3m at 10.88% from 37m and 1m at 12.6% from 37m.

Promising ground

Non-executive director and chief geologist Joel Logan said the ground north of Big One’s line of lode is highly promising.

“Drill hole designs can be inferred using the nearby orientation of multiple extensions from confirmed mineralised lodes [while] the structural and petrographic analysis suggest the potential for shear-hosted and iron-oxide-copper-gold-style mineralisation in the current areas of interest,” he said.

“We believe Big One’s exploration potential is underpinned by the presence of malachite-azurite-cuprite at the surface above our potential targets, plus adjacent tenement holdings owned by majors as well as the relative proximity to established and historic mine sites.”

Copper revival

The soil sampling campaign follows a recent copper market revival and bullish forecasts from leading investment banks.

The commodity’s price has increased by 17% since January and the market is reported to be experiencing steady growth, with strong gains last month that saw prices momentarily climb to US$10,000/t before settling around US$9,700/t.

Probable and intensified supply stress has prompted investment bank Goldman Sachs to raise its end-of-year price target to US$12,000/t.

“With the current upcycle rekindling significant interest in the world-class Mt Isa copper belt, the board of Castillo has decided to prioritise the advancement of the NWQ copper project and seek development partners for our remaining assets in NSW and Zambia,” the company said.