Following a long restructure period, Force Commodities (ASX: 4CE) has sparked back to life and is now the official owner of two high-grade copper projects in Oman after successfully purchasing the assets from AIM-listed Savannah Resources.
The company announced in September it was acquiring Savannah’s interests in Bock 4 and Block 5 copper projects in Oman, along with a 70% stake in two exploration licence applications to the west.
Force now owns 51% of Block 4, which comprises a granted exploration licence and 65% of Block 5, which includes a granted exploration licence and two mining lease applications.
All up, the landholding covers 999 square kilometres in the Sultanate of Oman. The licences are on the region’s copper-rich Ophiolite belt, which is known to host clusters of high-grade copper deposits with silver and gold credits.
Force chief executive officer Simon Pooley said the company was “delighted” to complete the acquisition.
As part of the handover process prior to settlement, Mr Pooley said the company’s team in Oman had already provided detailed updates on the exploration activities over the blocks, including geological mapping of geophysical targets.
Commenting on the acquisition and the company’s reinstatement to the ASX, Force chairman Jess Oram said it was a result of “considerable” collaborative effort.
“Our revitalised board and executives have the skill required for project development and advancing exploration projects and building mines,” Mr Oram added.
To bed down its ownership of the assets, Force issued 50 million shares to Savannah.
Savannah will also be repaid a $3.5 million loan out of cash flow generated from Block 5.
Additionally, Force will pay Savannah a 1% net smelter royalty on any ore sales from Block 4 and Block 5.
Block 5 copper project
As the most advanced asset, Force is focused on moving Block 5 into production and generating revenue as soon as possible.
The project has two primary deposits Mahab 4 and Maqail South which have combined resources of 820,000t at 3.4% copper for 28,000t of contained copper, 5,900 ounces of gold and 220,000oz silver.
Within that resource is a higher-grade zone of 500,000t at 4.5% copper.
Force claims there is opportunity to “significantly increase” resources with previous drilling returning 55.6m at 6.32% copper from 63.2m.
“Significantly, the Ophiolite belt is characterised by small to medium size, high-grade copper deposits that have been shown to be amenable to low capital expenditure, profitable open cut development producing high quality copper concentrates for local or overseas smelters,” Mr Pooley said.
He added that despite the region’s rich copper production, that had been limited modern exploration.
Advancing Oman copper assets
Force has a two-fold strategy in advancing the Oman assets.
The company has committed to ongoing exploration across both Block 4 and Block 5. Additionally, it will review the next steps required to develop Mahab 4 and Maqail South within Block 5.
“Given the high-grade nature of the projects, exploitation of these resources in a timely manner will focus on possible toll treatment,” Mr Pooley explained.
“Accordingly, the next step is to complete a scoping study and then proceed to a feasibility study.”
“This is an exciting chapter in Force’s development to get into production and generate revenue,” Mr Pooley added.