Tietto Minerals (ASX: TIE) has continued to build confidence in its 3.35 million-ounce Abujar gold project in Côte d’Ivoire, with infill drilling returning more high-grade intercepts.
Infill drilling at the AG Core target has unearthed 8m at 12.43 grams per tonne gold from 187m, including 2m at 48.37g/t gold; 12m at 6.1g/t gold from 208m, including 10m at 7.15g/t gold; and 18m at 4.36g/t gold from 214m, including 3m at 18.25g/t gold.
Tietto managing director Dr Caigen Wang said the current infill program aims to convert a portion of the 1.65Moz of indicated resources to measured status for inclusion in the first two years of the mining operation.
These latest results are the fifth assay batch comprising 12 holes for 2,526.5m that is part of the wider 30,000m infill drilling campaign.
To-date, Tietto has reported assays from 90 holes for 15,555m and is awaiting assays for 99 holes drilled for 19,312.5m.
Dr Wang said the company’s latest assay batch from infill drilling at Abujar continued to de-risk the proposed open pit operation.
Path to becoming West Africa’s next gold mine
Today’s drill results follow the company’s definitive feasibility study published last month and high interest from potential lenders to finance Abujar’s development.
“[The] definitive feasibility study confirmed Abujar’s potential to be one of the largest gold producing mines in Côte d’Ivoire – expected to produce more than 260,000oz of gold in the first year and 1.2Moz in the first six years,” Dr Wang said.
The study is based on an open pit probable ore reserve of 34.4Mt at 1.3g/t gold for 1.45Moz.
To get the project up and running, the study assumes a capital expenditure requirement of US$200 million (A$270 million).
With an initial 11-year mine life, production is anticipated to bring in US$2.87 billion (A$3.87 billion) in life of mine revenue, which will generate a post-tax cash flow of U$970 million (A$1.3 billion) over the same period.
Funding agreement anticipated
With what has been described as a “robust” definitive feasibility study, Tietto revealed earlier this week it had received strong funding interest for Abujar.
Tietto has received non-binding debt offers ranging between US$120 million (A$162 million) and US$180 million (A$243 million).
The company noted the financing offers were based on “attractive commercial terms” and were consistent with financing this field.
“We are also extremely pleased with the quality of the institutions that have indicated their interest to provide the project funds need to develop the Abujar gold project into West Africa’s next gold mine, as announced earlier this week.”