Altus Strategies Plc / Index: AIM / EPIC: ALS / Sector: Mining
12 September 2017
Altus Strategies Plc
(“Altus” or the “Company”)
Exploration Update on Agdz Copper-Silver Project, Morocco
Altus Strategies Plc (AIM: ALS), the Africa focused exploration project generator, provides an update on exploration activities at its Agdz copper-silver project ("Agdz") in central Morocco.
- Reconnaissance trenching has defined numerous mineralised epithermal structures
- Multiple alteration and breccia zones within volcanic and meta-conglomerate sequences
- Previous sampling yielded grades up to 8% Cu, 448 g/t Ag and 3.74 g/t Au
- Systematic trenching programme to be completed in Q4 2017
- Project is located within an established copper-silver mining district
Steven Poulton, Chief Executive of Altus, commented:
“The Agdz Cu-Ag project is a recent discovery by Altus in the heart of a significant and growing copper and silver mining district in central Morocco and 14km south west from the newly opened Bouskour Cu-Ag mine operated by Group Managem. Our field teams have recently completed a 275m reconnaissance trenching programme across two prospects with a combined strike length of approximately 4km and widths up to 0.5km. The trenches targeted bedrock below highly weathered surface material and mapping of these trenches has confirmed the presence of significant alteration zones, as well as copper oxide and sulphide mineralisation."
"Based on the encouraging results from this phase of work the Company will complete a systematic 800m trenching programme across both prospects, to define priority targets for drilling.”
Agdz Project: Reconnaissance trenching results
The Company has recently completed a 275m reconnaissance trenching programme at the Amzwaro and Makarn prospects to an average depth of 0.5m. The trenching was undertaken to confirm bedrock lithology and alteration assemblages in order to assess the correlation between ground magnetic survey data and high grade assay results from surface sampling. Two trenches were dug at the Makarn North prospect (18m and 22m long respectively). Previous surface sample results of weathered rock proximal to MKN-T-02 has returned up to 1.14% Cu and 95.1 g/t Ag. Trench MKN-T-02 revealed silicified and chloritised meta-conglomerates with intermittent zones of copper oxide mineralisation. The surface expression of the meta-conglomerate has subsequently been mapped for over 150m along strike. Trench MKN-T-03 revealed disseminated and vein-hosted copper oxide and copper sulphides (including chalcopyrite and bornite) over 14.8m. Channel sampling at approximately 1m intervals returned a grade of 0.2% Cu over 14m from the highly weathered banded rhyolite host rock.
At the Amzwaro prospect four reconnaissance trenches have been excavated for a total of 236.5m. Three trenches were cut between 10m and 25m long and one (namely AM-T-09) was 192m long. Trench AM-T-09 exposed a series of weathered, highly altered, brecciated and fractured zones in packages over widths of up to 33m. These zones encompassed intense areas of chloritisation, silicification, haematisation and potassic alteration and are interpreted to represent the highly weathered surface expression of a potential primary mineralised source. Notably copper sulphides and oxides were observed in the trench having been near absent at surface. Trench AM-T-10 exposed meta-volcanoclastic with 3.5m of malachite and chrysocolla mapped. Trench AM-T-11 revealed 7.5m of alteration with variable copper oxides mapped over two closely spaced zones. Trench AM-T-12 revealed 3.1m of alteration with copper oxides and galena mapped.
Agdz Project: Next phase of work
The reconnaissance trenching programme has successfully correlated the ground magnetic and surface sampling data with the presence of mineralisation and alteration in weathered bedrock. A phase-one systematic trenching programme, with seven trenches up to 200m each in length is planned, in conjunction with further detailed structural and alteration mapping. The programme will be designed to locate and test the continuity of the primary copper-silver mineralised and / or altered structures to define potential drill targets. The Company may also complete an Induced Polarisation geophysical survey at Agdz prior to finalising these drill targets.
The following figures have been prepared in relation to the disclosures in this announcement and are visible in the version of this announcement on the Company's website (www.altus-strategies.com) or in PDF format by clicking the following link: http://altus-strategies.com/site/assets/files/4222/exploration_update_on_agdz_copper-silver_project-_morocco.pdf:
- Location of the Agdz Copper-Silver Project is shown in Figure 1.
- The Makarn and Amzwaro prospects with magnetic and sampling data are shown in Figure 2.
- The reconnaissance trenches completed at the Makarn prospect are shown in Figure 3.
- The reconnaissance trenches completed at the Amzwaro prospect are shown in Figure 4.
- A selection of photos of the trenching programme and rock samples are shown in Figure 5.
|Trench cutting||Reconnaissance trench|
|Meta-volcanoclastic with copper mineralisation||Sample grading 448 g/t and 4.5 % Cu|
Agdz Project: Location
The Company's wholly owned subsidiary, Aterian Resources Limited, has a 100 per cent interest in the 59.7km2 Agdz project which comprises four contiguous licence blocks in the Souss-Massa-Drâa region of the Anti-Atlas mountains of central Morocco, approximately 350km south of the capital Rabat and approximately 14km southwest of the Bouskour copper mine. Bouskour is operated by the Moroccan mining group Managem and has a reported (non-JORC) resource of 20Mt at 1.6% Cu and 20 g/t Ag. Group Managem was founded in 1930 and has approximately 5,600 employees. The project is located approximately 35 km east south east of the city of Ouarzazate where infrastructure and services are of a high standard, including a regional airport. Agdz is located approximately 40 km south east of the 'Noor 1' solar power plant, the world's largest concentrated solar power plant with planned output of 580 MW. The project is accessed via a paved road and there is a network of vehicle tracks within the licence.
Agdz Project: Geological setting
The Agdz project is located in the Neoproterozoic Sidi Flah-Bou Skour inlier of the Saghro Massif, located in the Anti-Atlas Mountains. The Saghro Massif basement comprises a volcano-sedimentary sequence, including turbidites and tholeiitic pillow basalts. The basement is discordantly overlain by Upper Neoproterozoic tuffs, conglomerates, andesites, dacites, ignimbrites and rhyolites intruded by quartz-diorites and granodiorites and a cover sequence comprising basal conglomerates, sandstones, tuffs, basalts, andesites, dacite, ignimbrites and rhyolites. The Saghro Massif was deposited in a back-arc basin type environment which was subjected to heterogeneous deformation during the two Pan-African orogenic events between 750 and 550 Ma. The first event was collisional leading to strong folding and ophiolite emplacement (Bou Azzer inlier) with the second event causing moderate shortening, tilting and middle to upper greenschist facies metamorphism attaining amphibolite facies near intrusive rocks.
Mineralisation at Agdz is typical of the epithermal-type deposit model with strong structural controls and alteration styles where multiple, sub-parallel mineralised structures exist in relatively close proximity. Mineralisation is hosted in several different lithologies including metaconglomerates, metavolcaniclastics, rhyolites, andesites, granodiorites and dolerite dykes. Copper mineralisation is predominantly seen in oxide species as malachite with subordinate chrysocolla and azurite in veins and as fracture and clast coatings within the host rock.
Agdz Project: Exploration history
The Company's 100% owned subsidiary, Aterian Resources has discovered five prospects at the Agdz project to date, with the two most advanced being Makarn and Amzwaro. A high resolution magnetic and radiometric survey undertaken by the Company across these prospects has defined a number of distinct north east / south west trending structures, interpreted to be dykes, faults and veins within the Neoproterozoic aged volcanic sequences. Many of the structures are coincident with mineralisation mapped at surface. Surface sampling across these prospects has returned numerous high-grade copper (up to 8.00% Cu), silver (up to 448g/t Ag), gold (up to 3.74 g/t) and manganese (up to 10% Mn) occurrences within packages of alteration (up to 5m wide). A total of 575 m of shallow reconnaissance trenches in highly weathered, oxidised material have been completed at the Makarn and Amzwaro prospects to date. Results include 14.12 m at 0.65% Cu and 36.54 g/t Ag and 9.3 m at 1.25% Cu and 96 g/t Ag.
The technical disclosure in this regulatory announcement has been read and approved by Steven Poulton, Chief Executive of Altus. A graduate of the University of Southampton in Geology (Hons), he also holds a Master's degree from the Camborne School of Mines (Exeter University) in Mining Geology. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Materials, Minerals and Mining and a Fellow of the Geological Society of London. He has over 18 years of experience in mineral exploration and is a Qualified Person under the AIM rules.
Market Abuse Regulation (MAR) Disclosure
Certain information contained in this announcement would have been deemed inside information for the purposes of Article 7 of Regulation (EU) No 596/2014 until the release of this announcement.
For further information you are invited to visit the Company’s website www.altus-strategies.com or contact:
Altus Strategies Plc
Steven Poulton, Chief Executive
Matthew Grainger, Executive Director
Greg Owen, VP Corporate Development
Tel: +44 (0) 1235 511 767
SP Angel (Nominated Adviser)
Ewan Leggat / Richard Morrison / Soltan Tagiev
Tel: +44 (0) 20 3470 0470
SP Angel (Joint Broker)
Elizabeth Johnson / Richard Parlons
Tel: +44 (0) 20 3470 0471
Beaufort Securities (Joint Broker)
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7382 8300
Blytheweigh (Financial PR)
Tim Blythe / Camilla Horsfall / Nick Elwes
Tel: +44 (0) 20 7138 3204
Notes to editors:
About Altus Strategies Plc
Altus is a diversified Africa focused project generator in the natural resource sector. Through our subsidiaries we discover new projects and attract third party capital to fund their growth, development and ultimately exit optionality. This strategy enables Altus to remain focused on the acquisition of new opportunities to be fed into the project generation cycle and aims to minimise shareholder dilution. Our business model is designed to create a growing portfolio of well managed and high growth potential projects which is diversified by commodity and by country. We aim to position our shareholders at the vanguard of value creation, but with significantly reduced risks traditionally associated with investments in the mineral exploration sector.
The following is a summary of the Company’s key projects:
Cameroon - Gold
The Company holds the 189km2 Laboum gold exploration licence in northern Cameroon through its 99% owned subsidiary Auramin Ltd. At Laboum an approximately 18km and 5km wide long gold-bearing shear zone has been discovered. High resolution ground geophysics and a concurrent gold in soil survey are defining priority targets for a systematic trenching programme. The Laboum licence hosts a number of artisanal gold mining sites and rock chips up to 6.86 g/t Au have been returned from strongly sheared meta-sediments.
Morocco - Copper
The Company holds the 60km2 Agdz copper-silver exploration licence in central Morocco through its 100% owned subsidiary Aterian Resources Ltd. Five prospects have been defined to date, the best of which retuned grades up to 8% Cu, 448 g/t Ag and 3.74 g/t Au. The project is located close to a number of operating mines, notably the recently commissioned Bouskour Cu-Ag mine located 14km NE of Agdz.
Ethiopia - Copper
The Company holds the 322km2 Tigray-Afar and Negash copper-silver exploration licences ('Tigray-Afar') in northern Ethiopia through its 100% owned subsidiary Altau Resources Ltd. Tigray-Afar is subject to a memorandum of agreement with Japan Oil Gas and Metals Corporation and comprises manto style copper-silver mineralisation, forming lenses, pipes or veins.
Cameroon - Bauxite
The Company holds the 601km2 Birsok & Mandoum bauxite exploration licences in central Cameroon through its 97.3% owned subsidiary Aluvance Ltd. The Birsok & Mandoum licences are subject to a joint venture agreement with ASX-listed Canyon Resources Ltd. The project is within 10km of an operating rail line to the port of Douala on the Atlantic Ocean.
Liberia - Gold
The Company holds the 639.6km2 Bella Yella gold exploration licence in western Liberia through its 99% owned subsidiary Auramin Ltd. At Bella Yella a 7.5km NE-SW striking gold in soil anomaly has been defined. A number of artisanal gold workings have been discovered, from which rock chip assay results have returned grades up to 233 g/t Au.
Cameroon - Iron Ore
The Company holds the 400km2 Bikoula & Ndjele iron ore exploration licences in southern Cameroon through its 97.3% owned subsidiary Aluvance Ltd. An independent (JORC 2012 compliant), inferred mineral resource estimate comprising 46Mt @ 44% Fe has been completed. The resource estimate is from less than 25% of the 17km long target as identified from airborne geophysics.
Morocco - Other
The Company holds 226km2 across five exploration licence throughout Morocco through its 100% owned subsidiary Aterian Resources Ltd. The licences areas are prospective for zinc, lead, copper, tin, tungsten and gold. Grades from these licences include 8.15% Pb, 4.48% Zn, 9.18% Cu and 9.61 g/t Au.
Glossary of Terms
The following is a glossary of technical terms:
"Au" means gold
"Ag" means silver
"Cu means copper
"g/t" means grams per tonne
"m" means metres
"Ma" means million years ago