The Japanese Ministry of Energy, Trade and Industry (METI) has granted Japan Gold’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Southern Arc Minerals Japan KK (SAMJ), prospecting rights over its nine contiguous applications covering the Eboshi project of 3000 hectares in northern Honshu.
The project is centred on an area of intermediate volcanic rocks which show the development of extensive zones of advanced argillic alteration and occurrences of residual-vuggy silica. Such styles of alteration are characteristic of lithocaps, large hydrothermal alteration systems interpreted as forming in the vicinity of magmatic intrusions which are often associated with porphyry-copper and high-sulphidation epithermal styles of mineralisation.
Along the northern part of the NE Japan Arc in northern Honshu and southwest Hokkaido several areas of extensive lithocap development have been recognised by the Geological Survey of Japan.
SAMJ has had applications accepted over four of the documented lithocaps at Eboshi, Minamikayabe, Kobui and Ponkutosan.
Although porphyry-copper type mineralisation has not yet been identified in Japan, due to the country's position on the Pacific Rim and the recognition of lithocap styles of alteration, Japan Gold considers the Japanese volcanic arcs to be prospective for porphyry-copper deposits.
During the 2017 field season SAMJ plans to complete detailed geological and alteration mapping of the Eboshi lithocap as well as a high resolution aeromagnetic survey in order to establish drill targets to test for blind porphyry style mineralisation beneath the Eboshi lithocap. It is anticipated that drilling proposals will be submitted to METI with the aim of drilling in the second half of 2017.
Japan Gold chairman and CEO John Proust said, “We are very pleased to receive our first conversion of applications into prospecting rights. This demonstrates that Japan Gold can successfully navigate through the Japanese permitting process and bodes well for future rights awards authorising advanced exploration and drill programs within all the company’s other eight project areas.”