As Galena Mining (ASX: G1A) advances its Abra project to development, it has struck further high-grade lead and silver while drilling at the Western Australian asset, with an updated resource imminent and project construction anticipated to begin before the end of the year.
The company has now completed its 2019 campaign which included 43 diamond core holes for 18,255m.
Notable results from the latest assay batch were 23.9m at 10.3% lead and 23 grams per tonne silver, including 7.2m at 24% lead and 55g/t silver; 13.7m at 14% lead and 26g/t silver; and 16.3m at 7.5% lead and 12g/t silver, including 6.6m at 10.2% lead and 15g/t silver.
Galena managing director Alex Molyneux said the high-grade intersections had been uncovered at much higher density within the project’s north-western area.
“This will enable us to complete an updated mineral resource estimate with a higher confidence, supporting our target to convert resources to ore reserves and continue to optimise our mine model.”
Mr Molyneux noted the company had also intersected copper mineralisation while drilling – revealing a 3.2m interval grading 2.3% copper.
He added the company had also unearthed its highest-grade silver interval of 457g/t over 5m.
The 2019 drilling program that ran between April and August focused on the stratiform Apron Zone, but also hit the Core Zone immediately beneath Apron, with the Core Zone returning 16.7m at 6.4% lead and 12g/t silver and the 2.3% copper interval.
Abra base metals project
Located in WA’s Gascoyne region, Abra has a current resource of 37.4 million tonnes at 7.5% lead and 18g/t silver and a reserve of 10.3Mt at 8.8% lead and 24g/t silver.
A feasibility study indicates a 16-year 1.2Mt per annum operation, which is forecast to generate earnings before interest tax depreciation amortisation of $114 million annually between years three and 15.
Galena is pushing the project to begin construction by the end of the year to target the lead market deficit with lead inventories close to record lows.
The company is in a number of offtake discussions and recently announced a $90 million investment from Toho Zinc, which will give Toho a 40% stake in Galena’s wholly-owned subsidiary and owner of Abra.
Prior to market open, Galena’s share price was at $0.37.