Galena Mining’s new Abra resource estimate ‘exceeds’ expectations as lead market takes off

Galena Mining ASX G1A Abra resource lead silver
Drilling at Galena Mining's Abra base metals deposit.

After being admitted to the ASX in September last year, Galena Mining (ASX: G1A) has exceeded its own expectations after posting a resource for its Abra lead and silver project in Western Australia’s Gascoyne region.

According to Galena, the new resource positions Abra as one of world’s largest undeveloped lead and silver project.

Total resources for Abra are 36.6 million tonnes grading 7.3% lead and 18 grams per tonne silver. Within that, is a higher-grade resource of 11.2mt at 10.1% lead and 28g/t silver.

“These resource numbers have exceeded our expectations and confirm Abra as a truly world-class asset with global significance in the lead market,” Galena chief executive officer Ed Turner said.

Mr Turner added this resource could be boosted with “potential upside” existing around where the company has drilled.

The resource update is based on 8,024m of diamond drilling between September and December last year as well as data from previous owners’ drilling between 1981 and 2017.

Preliminary metallurgy on the ore in 2008, indicated the lead and silver sulphide mineralisation was amenable to conventional processing methods.

Galena has sent 130 half core samples from six mineralised zones for metallurgical analysis to expand on the 2008 results.

The company also claims high grade zinc, copper and gold have been identified within the core mineralised zone which has a 400m strike length and extends at depth between 300m to 750m.

However, a resource estimate has not been calculated for the additional mineralisation.

A pre-feasibility study is scheduled to be delivered in the second half of this year.

Lead market fundamentals

Perhaps not as popular as the primary battery minerals lithium, cobalt, nickel and graphite, which are all experiencing rising prices, the lead market is also on the move.

The lead price hit US$2,342 per tonne at the start of this week after reaching its highest price in seven years in January.

Driving the upward momentum is increasing demand and eroding stockpiles.

Lead is primarily used in the lead-acid batteries and in solar power storage.

According to Galena, the majority of hybrid vehicles use lead-acid batteries in addition to lithium-ion batteries.

The company claims consumption of lead-acid batteries will grow in line with the surging electric vehicle market.

By mid-afternoon trade, Galena’s share price had surged almost 24% to A$1.19.

Lorna has more than 10 years' experience as a finance journalist and editor. She has written for an array of industry publications reporting on various sectors, including: resources, energy, construction, biotech, pharma, science and technology, agriculture, and chemicals. Specialising in resources, Lorna has covered a myriad of small and large cap ASX and dual-listed stocks.