Agata Mining Ventures Inc (AMVI) has completed an initial 17-hole drill program at the Agata Limestone Project in northern Mindanao. The results confirm the presence of a high-purity recrystallized limestone deposit covering an area of 600 metres by 650 metres.
The results will form the basis for an initial NI43-101 compliant report expected for completion in the third quarter of 2015.
AMVI is a joint venture company in which TVI Pacific’s Philippines subsidiary TVI Resource Development (Phils) TVIRD holds a 60% interest and is the operator. The other 40% is held by Mindoro Resources.
The limestone project is situated to the south of AMVI’s current Agata nickel laterite DSO operation and in close proximity to the causeway facilities that were built to support operations. The project consists of a number of separate deposits, of which only one, Payong Payong covering approximately 27.7 hectares, has been drilled to date. Other deposits occur nearby and will be explored in stages in the future.
“We are very pleased with these preliminary results as the presence of high-purity metamorphosed limestone at the Agata project could represent another potential source of future cash flow,” said TVI’s chairman and CEO Clifford James.
“In addition, the project would benefit from having the same infrastructure established for the nickel laterite direct shipping ore operations and may be supportive of TVIRD’s valuation as it seeks a listing on the Philippine Stock Exchange later this year.”
AMVI commenced exploration activities focusing on the Payong Payong deposit in early November 2014. The exploration program included a detailed review and verification of previous work carried out in 2011 by Mindoro Resources as well as more detailed surface mapping and sampling of the area.
A total of 17 drill holes were completed at 100-metre to 200-metre spacing and core samples exhibited white to grey metamorphosed limestone.
A preliminary assessment of drill data suggests that the metamorphosed limestone is relatively clean with minimal to negligible impurities of iron and other base metals. Clay materials occur as fracture fills but can be easily removed through washing.
A model will be produced based on the drill hole data in order to come up with a resource estimate of the limestone prospect.
Upon completion of the technical report, AMVI may conduct further drilling programs and undertake process test work to determine future mining and processing options. Due to the project's close proximity to the causeway where materials will be shipped, potential operations could benefit from low transport and handling costs.
High-purity limestone is in great demand as a paper coating and whitener for the paper-making industry; as filler in the production of plastics, paints and adhesives; and as calcined and hydrated lime for a variety of industrial purposes. The Payong Payong limestone can also be used as dimension stone in construction and architecture including facing stone, floor tiles, stair treads, window sills and many other high-value applications. Market prices for high-purity limestone currently range from $50 to over $700 per tonne depending on market application, quality and fineness of the product.