Polymetallic explorer Axiom Mining (ASX: AVQ) has received approval for two keenly-awaited mineral rights applications at its flagship Isabel nickel project in the Solomon Islands, which sets the stage for resources company to make exploration progress and move towards becoming a nickel producer within a low-cost region.
The granted applications are for a mining lease over San Jorge and for a prospecting licence on Isabel Island, both in the Solomon Islands.
The mining lease application regarding San Jorge covers the entire swathe of the 36 square kilometre area held by Axiom’s prospecting licence.
Its San Jorge lease has been conditionally approved by the Solomon Islands Government (SIG) through the Ministry of Mines with verbal consent expected to be formally substantiated in written form from the Attorney General in the Solomon Islands. Axiom has already been granted with “development consent” at the end of last month.
“We are delighted to have completed most of the government licencing process for our pending applications. These government approvals validate our strategy and reaffirm our leading commercial position in the Solomon Islands,” said Mr Ryan Mount, CEO of Axiom Mining.
“We look forward to developing this transformational project for shareholders, landowners, for the Solomon Islands, and to the mutual benefits that will derive from our responsible mining of these projects,” said Mr Mount.
Regarding its prospecting licence applications, dubbed ‘Kolosori’ and ‘Tenement D’, Axiom says that the region’s Minerals Board approved both its applications, covering a total area of 181 square kilometres.
Kolosori spans 36 square kilometres with Axiom now authorised to negotiate and obtain agreements from the landowners of these areas. Tenement D spans 145 square kilometres and has just like San Jorge, has been verbally approved subject to formal endorsement by the Attorney General.
Axiom said that it expects its prospecting licence applications to eventually become granted mining leases, and confirmed that its further applications for minerals rights are “pending over other areas of the Isabel nickel project and elsewhere in the Solomon Islands,” and said that it expects these to be “processed shortly.”
The flurry of licencing approvals announced his morning pushed Axiom shares up by around 28% up to A$0.185 per share, valuing the company at approximately A$75 million by market capitalisation.