Manus Island drilling

NEWCREST Mining could soon kick off an 11-hole program to drill targets at the Kisi epithermal gold prospect and the Arie porphyry-copper-gold prospect of the Manus Island project it shares with London-based Triple Plate Junction in northern Papua New Guinea.
Manus Island drilling Manus Island drilling Manus Island drilling Manus Island drilling Manus Island drilling

TPJ announced Newcrest's project update to the market.

The 11-hole diamond core program is expected to drill a total of 3000m and start in "early 2012".

Eight of the holes will be at the Kisi prospect and drilled to a depth of 175m to 300m.

"The aim of this drilling is to demonstrate potential for a large low-sulfidation epithermal system to exist which is capable of hosting a multi-million ounce gold deposit," Newcrest said.

A drilling rig and a helicopter have been secured and TPJ expects drilling will start soon.

TPJ exploration director Bill Howell said sampling and mapping at the two prospects indicated the early potential for the size and type of mineralisation majors like Newcrest aimed for in new discoveries.

"Namely, at least 5 million ounces of gold or gold equivalent for porphyry-type deposits and 3 million ounces for higher grade gold in epithermal vein or vein replacement type deposits," he clarified.

Newcrest can earn up to 80% of TPJ's 75.98% stake of the joint venture project by spending $A6 million in exploration expenditure over five years.

Newcrest would then gain a 60.78% stake of the project and TPJ's interest would drop to 15.2%.

Pacrim Energy owns 13.43% of the project, while Golden Success has 10.59%.

loader
  • NEW: Digital version of PNG Report magazine - View here
  • Porgera: Barrick-PNG talks go on - Read more
  • Follow the companies investing in the PNG market - Read more