ALARA Resources has increased the total JORC-compliant resource by 14% for the Washihi copper-gold deposit within the Al Hadeetha project in the Sultanate of Oman. The indicated resource has increased 81% to 12.39 million tonnes @ 0.89% copper and 0.22 grams/tonne (g/t) gold.

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Alara Resources’ Al Hadeetha project in Oman comprises the Washihi, Mullaq and Al Ajal exploration licences.

There are also 3.7 million tonnes in the inferred category @ 0.79% copper and 0.23 g/t gold.

Alara defined new shallow gold mineralisation at Gossan prospect, outside Washihi, which added 310,000 tonnes @ 0.51 g/t gold to the inferred estimate.

Alara updated the Washihi resource estimates to comply with the JORC 2012 code and the revision incorporates results of a recent drilling program.

The company has also announced a maiden Al Hadeetha ore reserve estimate, prepared by Mining Focus Consultants based on a 0.3% copper cut-off and using a feasibility study prepared in 2015-16. It stands at 9.7 million tonnes @ 0.88% copper and 0.22 g/t gold.

The reserves bolster the strategic positioning of Al Hadeetha having the single largest volcanogenic massive sulphide (VMS) type JORC copper and gold resource in Oman.

Alara’s managing director Justin Richard said, “Following the upgrade of the Washihi copper-gold resource statement and in light of recent feedback from the Mining Authority, Alara is pleased to confirm an ore reserve for Al Hadeetha, underpinning a 1 million tonnes per annum copper concentration plant over an initial 10 year mine life.”

The project, which is about 120km southwest of the capital Muscat, remains on track to commence construction this year, subject to the Public Authority for Mining formally issuing a mining licence. The application was submitted in April 2013 and remains pending. The indicated resource can be converted into a reserve only after the licence is issued.

Al Hadeetha includes three exploration licences - Washihi, Mullaq and Al Ajal - and entails development of the Washihi deposit by means of an open pit mine and processing facility to produce copper concentrates.

Alara has completed an advanced scoping study on the Daris and Al Hadeetha projects in Oman, and a feasibility study for the Washihi deposit within Al Hadeetha. It has also completed a definitive feasibility study on the Khnaiguiyah Zinc-Copper Project in Saudi Arabia, which is the subject of legal proceedings.

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