Cockatoo Coal Ltd has entered into a joint exploration agreement (JEA) with JOGMEC, a Japanese Government-owned corporation. The firms will undertake and extensive exploration programme on Cockatoo’s Dingo West coal mine in Australia.
JOGMEC will provide up to AU$ 3.5 million to Cockatoo over a three year period, for exploration expenditure on the Dingo West project. JOGMEC will earn up to a 35% economic interest in the Dingo West project, while also possessing the right to assign that interest to a Japanese nominee company in future, in order to progress the project to development. Commencement of the JEA is subject to Australian Foreign Investment Review Board (‘FIRB’) approval.
The Dingo West Project is a 76 km2 area in the South-Eastern limb of the Bowen Basin, and is approximately 50 km north of Cockatoo’s Baralaba mining complex. It is also adjacent to Cockatoo’s 30% owned Dingo joint venture project with Whitehaven Coal. Cockatoo acquired the Dingo West project through the takeover of Blackwood Corporation in late 2013. Preliminary scout drilling completed in 2013 by Blackwood Corporation intercepted coal seams of PCI quality within the tenure. Apart from this scout exploration, the Dingo West project has had no additional field exploration undertaken.
The JEA provides Cockatoo with funding for all planned exploration activities over three years, including drilling, coal quality analysis and feasibility studies within the Dingo West project area.
Cockatoo said the funding will also allow the firm to enhance its regional geological models.
Exploration preparation activities have commenced, and first drilling activities are expected to commence this quarter. The initial drilling campaign will focus on shallow coal targets identified by 2D seismic which is also planned in Q4 2014.
Managing Director of Cockatoo, Andrew Lawson, welcomed the partnership with JOGMEC. “I am pleased to welcome JOGMEC as our exploration partner in the Dingo West project,” he said.
“Cockatoo has vast experience in exploring and mining the Baralaba coal measures, and we believe that PCI coal will become increasingly sought after in the next decade, particularly in East Asia. Accordingly, we see JOGMEC’s investment in the greenfield exploration of Dingo West coal as a vote of confidence in the future of PCI coal, as well as Cockatoo as a manager,” Lawson added.
Adapted from press release by Sam Dodson
Read the article online at: https://www.worldcoal.com/coal/16102014/cockatoo-coal-in-joint-exploration-agreement-1416/