Long-time West Africa gold explorer Golden Rim Resources (ASX: GMR) has hit a key milestone, reporting it has increased its mineral resource at the Kouri gold project in Burkina Faso by 43% to a contained gold total of 2 million ounces.
This is based on a global indicated and inferred resource of 50 million tonnes at an average 1.3 grams per tonne gold.
Golden Rim settled on Burkina Faso as its prime target more than a decade ago after initially pinning its hopes on gold in Fiji and Vanuatu, then looking at prospects in northern Africa.
Golden Rim has been exploring Kouri, covering 325sq km and located 230km north of the capital Ouagadougou, since 2013.
The new 2Moz resource figure replaces the previous mineral resource released in December 2018.
The indicated part of the resource has now increased by 41% to 310,000oz at an average grade of 1.4g/t gold.
New resource a “major milestone”
Golden Rim managing director Craig Mackay described the 2Moz figure as a “major milestone”.
The additional 600,000oz added since 2018 was established after the drilling of 12 diamond holes and 235 reverse circulation ones.
“Importantly, we have been able to increase our indicated resources by 41% to 310,000oz,” he added.
The company now intends to proceed with infill drilling focused on the high-grade areas in order to define mineralisation that can be processed in the early years of a mine development.
“Such [high-grade] mineralisation would significantly enhance the project economics,” Mr Mackay said.
Golden Rim plans to complete a scoping study in the March 2021 quarter and hopes to begin the pre-feasibility study in the September quarter next year.
Potential to increase size and grade
Three areas of mineral resource have been defined — the West, Central and East lodes.
Some 95% of the resource lies in the Central Lodes, which comprises the Banouassi prospect and the previous mineral resource area.
Golden Rim said there is “considerable” upside in increasing the resource further.
The more densely drilled part of Kouri is 17% higher than the average of the inferred resource.
In addition, most of the multiple, parallel lodes of gold mineralisation are open at depth.
Then, at the East Lodes, the company has a shallow inferred 48,000oz at 3.2g/t gold, most of that on what is called the Diabatou Gold Shoot.
“The bottom of the pit shell at the Diabatou Gold Shoot sits in 10g/t gold mineralisation and deeper drilling offers an outstanding opportunity to add additional high-grade gold ounces,” the company noted.
A new drilling program will begin in the current quarter to increase the indicated resource estimate, lift the gold grade, and target and expand additional areas of higher-grade mineralisation.