Adelaide-based gold junior Monax Mining (ASX: MOX) is set to try its hand at discovering lithium, after announcing its intention to acquire a lithium prospect at Moolyella in the Pilbara region of Western Australia.
Monax said it has signed an option agreement to acquire a 90% stake in a project located around 20 kilometres east of Marble Bar consisting of one exploration licence covering 90 square kilometres.
The terms of the agreement state that Monax will pay $18,000 for an option to purchase 90% of licence E45/4462, with an expiry date of 31 December 2018. The option can be further extended to 31 December 2019 by a further payment of $30,000.
The licence may be purchased by Monax at any time during the option period, by paying A$50,000 and issuing 15 million Monax shares to the tenement holder. Given the company’s shares are currently priced at $0.004 per share, the potential share issuance is worth an approximate A$60,000.
The acquisition thrusts Monax into one of the highest lithium-bearing regions in Australia and raises hopes that the explorer will build up a sizeable lithium resource over time, although the project will have to undergo extensive exploration in the months (and years) to come.
The area covered by the licence was subject to extensive tin and tantalum production from the late 1890’s until 1986 with the area undergoing limited lithium exploration to date. The only work done so far has been rock chip sampling of outcropping pegmatites and some soil samples which returned “anomalous lithium, tin and tantalum,” according to Monax.
Monax is planning to commence reconnaissance work, including sampling, to identify areas for further exploration. It is expected that this work will commence in June 2018 and cost approximately A$20,000.
Once new lithium targets have been identified, Monax plans to commence a drilling program in Q4 2018.
In addition to its acquisition of a prospective licence at Moolyella, Monax says it intends to seek further projects in the battery metals space and is currently “reviewing several new opportunities.”