http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au Proactiveinvestors RSS feed en Thu, 23 Nov 2017 14:43:09 +1100 http://blogs.law.harvard.edu/tech/rss Genera CMS action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) action@proactiveinvestors.com (Proactiveinvestors) <![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining opens rights issue to fast-track coal mine development ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/187493/aspire-mining-opens-rights-issue-to-fast-track-coal-mine-development-187493.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has today opened its 6:5 renounceable rights issue priced at $0.012 with a 1:4 attaching option to raise up to A$16.5 million.

Significantly, the rights issue is fully underwritten and the company’s major shareholder, Noble Group (SGX:CGP), has pre-committed to take up its entitlement in full. 

Funds raised are to be used to expedite development of Aspire’s 90% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal project in Mongolia with the aim of taking the project into production within 18 months.

The rights issue is scheduled to close at 5.00PM AEDT on Monday, 4 December 2017.

READ NOW: Aspire Mining's David Paull talked railway to production at Proactive's CEO Sessions READ NOW: Aspire Mining rights issue to unlock coking coal production ]]>
Mon, 20 Nov 2017 19:52:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/187493/aspire-mining-opens-rights-issue-to-fast-track-coal-mine-development-187493.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining's David Paull talked railway to production at Proactive's CEO Sessions ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/187186/aspire-mining-s-david-paull-talked-railway-to-production-at-proactive-s-ceo-sessions-187186.html Aspire Mining Ltd's (ASX:AKM) managing director, David Paull, joined Proactive's CEO Sessions in Melbourne and Sydney this week.

Aspire is undertaking a transformational funding transaction allowing the company to pursue near-term coking coal production from Nuurstei in Mongolia.

Whilst Nuurstei can commence as a road based production operation, access to the proposed Erdenet to Ovoot Railway will reduce transport costs and unlock Aspire’s wholly-owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

Erdenet to Ovoot is 547 kilometres of rail that forms part of the Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

Aspire recently entered into a binding MOU to advance the rail project.

ACCESS THE FULL PRESENTATION HERE

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Fri, 17 Nov 2017 08:11:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/187186/aspire-mining-s-david-paull-talked-railway-to-production-at-proactive-s-ceo-sessions-187186.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining to discuss transformational funding at Proactive's CEO Sessions ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186894/aspire-mining-to-discuss-transformational-funding-at-proactive-s-ceo-sessions-186894.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) is undertaking a transformation funding package which will be used to expedite development of the company's 90%-owned Nuurstei Coking Coal project in Mongolia.

The goal is to take the project into production within 18 months.

Significantly, Noble Group (SGX:CGP) has agreed to a series of transactions that will reduce the US$6.65 million owing under the Noble debt facility to US$1.8 million.

Find out more from David Paull at Proactive's CEO Sessions.

Click below to register by email

- Melbourne: Tuesday 14th November.
- Sydney: Wednesday 15th November. (Seats full, please email Pauline to place name on reserve list).
- Email Pauline here.
- Call office on (02) 9280 0700.

Presenter list

- Zelda Therapeutics (ASX:ZLD): Dr. Stewart Washer
- Thred Ltd (ASX:THD): Geoff Marshall
- De Grey Mining (ASX:DEG): Simon Lill
- Peninsula Energy (ASX:PEN): David Coyle
- Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM): David Paull

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Fri, 10 Nov 2017 10:15:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186894/aspire-mining-to-discuss-transformational-funding-at-proactive-s-ceo-sessions-186894.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining rights issue to unlock coking coal production ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186706/aspire-mining-rights-issue-to-unlock-coking-coal-production-186706.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has proposed a 6:5 renounceable rights issue priced at $0.012 with a 1:4 attaching option to raise A$16.5 million.

Funds raised are to be used to expedite development of Aspire’s 90% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal project in Mongolia with the aim of taking the project into production within 18 months.

The rights issue is fully underwritten subject to the underwriter being satisfied with the upcoming prospectus to be issued.

Significantly, Noble Group (SGX:CGP) has agreed to a series of transactions that will reduce the US$6.65 million owing under the Noble debt facility to US$1.8 million.

The proposed $16.5 million raising, when combined with the debt reduction, will transform the company so that it can actively pursue a near-term production opportunity at Nuurstei.

Rights issue details

Each shareholder on the record date will have a right to acquire six shares for every five shares held at an issue price of $0.012.

For every four shares subscribed for, applicants will be entitled to one option exercisable at $0.018 expiring two years after the date of issue.

In a vote of confidence, Aspire’s board members have agreed to take up entitlements to a combined total minimum of A$500,000.

An indicative timetable for the process of the rights issue is as follows:

- 10 November: Prospectus lodged with ASIC and ASX;
- 14 November: Trading of rights commences;
- 15 November: Record date;
- 17 November: Despatch of notice of meeting to shareholders;
- 20 November: Opening date;
- 27 November: Trading of rights ends;
- 4 December: Offer closing date; and
- 11 December: Allotment of offer shares (including shortfall).

Restructure of Noble debt facility

In a show of support, major shareholder, Noble, has committed to take up its entitlement in full, and to sub-underwrite the rights issue to take its interest in Aspire to 19.9%.

Aspire currently has US$6.65 million owing under a loan facility with Noble that is due to be repaid on or before 17 August 2019.

In order to support Aspire’s recapitalisation and growth path, Noble has entered into a binding terms sheet reducing the amount owing to US$1.8 million through a series of transactions.

These transactions include:

- Noble’s participation and sub-underwriting of the rights issue;
- Noble agreeing to acquire an additional 10% equity interest in Northern Mongolian Railways Limited (NMRL) from Aspire; and
- Noble agreeing to acquire further equity in NMRL if required to maintain a 15% equity interest - or otherwise accept a prepayment of up to US$1 million in the form of Aspire shares.

The balance of US$1.8 million owing under that facility is to be repaid in instalments, with the first instalment of US$600,000 to be paid 6 months after the commencement of commercial production from the Nuurstei.

Next steps at Nuurstei Coking Coal Project

Subject to the successful completion of the rights issue, a proposed A$2 million drilling and exploration program is to be undertaken at the 90% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal Project.

The program aims to increase current resources and establish an Ore Reserve, which will then lead to a new resource model planned to be complete in the first quarter of 2018.

Capital costs for the development of Nuurstei have been further refined, with the current estimate of US$13 to US$14 million to be confirmed in the feasibility study process.

The end objective of these studies is to confirm an economically viable mining operation commencing within an estimated 18 month period.

Erdenet to Ovoot railway unlocks value

Whilst Nuurstei can commence as a road based production operation, access to the proposed Erdenet to Ovoot Railway will reduce transport costs and unlock Aspire’s 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

Erdenet to Ovoot is 547 kilometres of rail that forms part of the Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

The Erdenet to Ovoot Railway is required for the development of Aspire’s 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

Last month, Aspire entered into a binding MOU to advance the rail project.

READ NOW: Aspire Mining to complete bankable feasibility study for railway ]]>
Fri, 03 Nov 2017 16:09:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186706/aspire-mining-rights-issue-to-unlock-coking-coal-production-186706.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining moves towards finalising raising to advance assets ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186525/aspire-mining-moves-towards-finalising-raising-to-advance-assets-186525.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) has been granted additional time to finalise a capital raising by the ASX in the form of a voluntary suspension, which follows on from a two day trading halt.

Aspire expects to provide details before the commencement of trade on Thursday the 2nd November 2017.

The company remains focused on its coal assets in Mongolia, and advancing key infrastructure including railway.

READ NOW: Aspire Mining to complete bankable feasibility study for railway ]]>
Wed, 01 Nov 2017 09:44:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186525/aspire-mining-moves-towards-finalising-raising-to-advance-assets-186525.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining to lift cash to advance Mongolian assets ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186372/aspire-mining-to-lift-cash-to-advance-mongolian-assets-186372.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) remains focused on its coal assets in Mongolia, and advancing key infrastructure including railway.

Aspire has this morning been granted a trading halt by the ASX, pending details of a capital raising.

The halt will remain in place until the opening of trade on Wednesday 1st November 2017, or earlier if an announcement is made to the market.

READ NOW: Aspire Mining to complete bankable feasibility study for railway ]]>
Mon, 30 Oct 2017 09:41:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/186372/aspire-mining-to-lift-cash-to-advance-mongolian-assets-186372.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining to complete bankable feasibility study for railway ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/185548/aspire-mining-to-complete-bankable-feasibility-study-for-railway-185548.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has entered into a binding memorandum of understanding (MOU) to advance the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway Project located in Mongolia.

The Erdenet to Ovoot Railway is required for the development of Aspire’s 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The MOU was signed with China Gezhouba Group International Company Limited (CGGC) and commits CGGC to completing the second stage of the bankable feasibility study.

David Paull, managing director, commented: “Aspire is very pleased to be able to add a very large and experienced sponsor for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway Project.

“Being able to attract a large and significant engineering and construction company such as Gezhouba provides clear affirmation of the importance and role of the Ovoot to Erdenet Railway in fulfilling Mongolia’s potential to become a transit corridor for China-Europe Trade.”

MOU details

This MOU follows on from a June 2017 non-binding agreement between the parties to cooperate on developing the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

READ NOW: Aspire Mining enters agreement to advance railway

Under the current MOU, CGGC has agreed to complete the second and final stage of the Rail bankable feasibility study by 31 March 2018.

The MOU also sets out a pathway for the development of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway Project as well as the potential extension of that project from Ovoot through to the Mongolian-Russian border.

Door is open for equity investment

The MOU also provides the framework by which CGGC can provide additional equity investment in Northern Railways, Aspire’s subsidiary.

The investment would be to fund the company through to meeting the outstanding conditions precedent for the Erdenet to Ovoot Rail Concession and for EPC funding.

Such an additional equity investment is proposed to be made on or before 15 February 2018.

Rail unlocks coking coal project

The Erdenet to Ovoot Railway is required for the development of Aspire’s 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

Erdenet to Ovoot is 547 kilometres of rail that forms part of the Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

The more advanced this railway becomes the more value is realisable from Aspire’s 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

While this longer-term project continues to progress, Aspire remains leveraged to nearer term coal production through its Nuurstei Coking Coal Project.

READ NOW: Aspire Mining receives landmark mining licence ]]>
Fri, 13 Oct 2017 14:58:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/185548/aspire-mining-to-complete-bankable-feasibility-study-for-railway-185548.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining receives landmark mining licence ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/185217/aspire-mining-receives-landmark-mining-licence-185217.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has been granted and received a mining licence covering 860.9 hectares of its 90%-owned Nuurstei Coking Coal Project located in Mongolia.

The mining license provides Aspire with a minimum 30 year tenure over the licensed area.

Nuurstei is seen as a starter project for Aspire while it progresses the 100%-owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, Mongolia’s second largest coking coal project.

A conceptual mine plan has been prepared based on Nuurstei's 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.

The plan indicates a potentially attractive mining proposition to truck coal 420 kilometres to the nearest railhead at Erdenet for export to North Eastern coking coal customers.

Nuurstei coking coal has been successfully tested in Chinese coke plants as a high-quality low sulphur hard coking coal.

David Paull, managing director, commented

“Securing a mining license is an important milestone and reflects the Mongolian Government’s continued support for the company and the coal industry in general.

“This vindicates our original decision in June 2014 to look to add a new coking coal project which is not rail dependent and the decision in July 2017 to exercise our option to move to a 90% interest.

“The company is now working very hard on commercialising this high-quality coking coal project as soon as possible.”

Preparing for a bulk trial

Aspire is currently preparing for a bulk trial of indicative Nuurstei raw coal to test logistics paths and costs targeting delivery into the Tangshan coking coal market.

This coal is planned to be washed at a toll facility in northern China before delivery into Tangshan.

The trial will also provide valuable data for future wash plant design, be important in completing a feasibility study, and provide commercial scale samples for targeted end customers.

Xanadu Mines to receive Aspire shares

The grant of the license will result in Aspire issuing 10 million shares to Xanadu Mines Ltd (ASX: XAM) as required under the 2014 sale and purchase agreement.

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Mon, 09 Oct 2017 10:07:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/185217/aspire-mining-receives-landmark-mining-licence-185217.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining rebalances finances, eyes near-term production opportunity ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/182415/aspire-mining-rebalances-finances-eyes-near-term-production-opportunity-182415.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) has now finalised a balance sheet restructure, while also moving to a 90% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project located in Mongolia.

Nuurstei provides Aspire with the opportunity to pursue a near-term production opportunity to take advantage of improving conditions in the coking coal market.

A conceptual mining study shows a competitive delivered cost for hard coking coal into northern Chinese markets based on trucking.

Nuurstei is seen as a starter project for Aspire while it progresses the 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, Mongolia’s second largest coking coal project.

During 2016, a maiden JORC resource at Nuurstei was estimated measuring 12.85 million tonnes.

The mining license application process is advanced and additional drilling and sampling is required to convert Inferred resources into Indicated resources and build mine life.

Balance sheet restructure

Aspire has closed its capital raising after receiving applications for 54.9 million shares at $0.02 and 54.9 million free attaching options exercisable at $0.025 within 12 months of grant to raise $1.1 million before costs.

When combined with the previously announced $2.6 million in debt and other obligations being converted to equity, a total of 186.6 million shares and 186.6 million options will be issued, increasing equity by $3.7 million.

Funding pre-development work

Aspire is currently investigating additional funding sources, which includes a coal presale facility to assist in funding pre-development work and a 2017 drilling and sampling program at Nuurstei.

The company is currently evaluating the opportunity to initially commence mining raw coal from Nuurstei for toll washing before delivery to customers in Northern China.

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Tue, 15 Aug 2017 08:49:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/182415/aspire-mining-rebalances-finances-eyes-near-term-production-opportunity-182415.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining extends raising timeline for Nuurstei Coking Coal project ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/182228/aspire-mining-extends-raising-timeline-for-nuurstei-coking-coal-project-182228.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) has extended the timeline of its capital raising programme where new funds will be used for the acquisition of a further interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal project and a debt restructure.

Aspire currently owns 45% of the Nuurstei Coking Coal project located in Mongolia and it intends to exercise a US$1mln option to acquire an additional 45% interest in the project.

Funds raised under the placement will also be used for a 2017 drilling and sampling programme at Nuurstei.

The raising is now open until Monday 14th August 2017, and comprises up to 200 mln shares priced at A$0.02 to raise A$4 million.

Placement shares will come with a 1:2 attaching option exercisable at A$0.025 which expire 12 months from the date of issue.

Near-term opportunity at Nuurstei

A conceptual mining study shows a competitive delivered cost for hard coking coal into northern Chinese markets based on trucking.

Nuurstei is seen as a starter project for Aspire while it progresses the 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, Mongolia’s second largest coking coal project.

During 2016, a maiden JORC resource at Nuurstei was estimated measuring 12.85 mln tonnes.

The mining license application process is advanced and additional drilling and sampling is required to convert Inferred resources into Indicated resources and build mine life.

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Thu, 10 Aug 2017 10:31:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/182228/aspire-mining-extends-raising-timeline-for-nuurstei-coking-coal-project-182228.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining lowers cost estimate for Nuurstei Coal Project ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/181610/aspire-mining-lowers-cost-estimate-for-nuurstei-coal-project-181610.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has received revised capital estimates for the development of its Nuurstei Coking Coal Project located in Mongolia.

The new estimates come from mining contract and services company, Ferrostaal Mining Services LLC, and from German washplant design and construction company, MBE Coal & Minerals Technology GMBH.

MBE has estimated a capital cost of US$10-12 million for the plant as well as foundations, piping and materials handling.

In addition, Ferrostaal has provided a desk top analysis of the cost of associated infrastructure required to establish an operation at Nuurstei.

The desk top estimation is in the range of US$5.75-7.75 million with a 10% contingency allowance.

The above translates into a capital cost estimate for the Nuurstei Project of circa US$16-20 million.

These estimates are preliminary and will continue to be confirmed over the course of 2017.

Near-term opportunity at Nuurstei

Aspire currently owns 45% of the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project located in Mongolia and has the option to exercise a US$1 million option to acquire an additional 45% interest in the project.

A conceptual mining study shows a competitive delivered cost for hard coking coal into northern Chinese markets based on trucking.

Nuurstei is seen as a starter project for Aspire while it progresses the 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, Mongolia’s second largest coking coal project.

During 2016, a maiden JORC resource at Nuurstei was estimated measuring 12.85 million tonnes.

The mining license application process is advanced and additional drilling and sampling is required to convert Inferred resources into Indicated resources and build mine life.

 

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Fri, 28 Jul 2017 12:29:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/181610/aspire-mining-lowers-cost-estimate-for-nuurstei-coal-project-181610.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd gets boost from Russian support ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/180271/aspire-mining-ltd-gets-boost-from-russian-support-180271.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) and its rail subsidiary, Northern Railways LLC have attended a conference in the Russian city of Kyzyl.

Kyzyl is located within the Tyva Republic within Russian and shares a border with northern Mongolia.

The Northern Rail Corridor travels through Mongolia from China’s northeast coast and crosses the Mongolian border into Tyva on its way to connect with the existing Trans-Siberian Railway.

At the conclusion of the conference, a letter of intent (LOI) was signed by the Tyva Republic Government and Northern Railways which noted that the Northern Rail Corridor is in the interests of both Northern Railways and the Tyva Republic Government.

The LOI included an agreement to share data and work together to see this Northern Corridor realised.


Rail unlocks coal project

The Erdenet to Ovoot Railway is required for the development of Aspire’s 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

Erdenet to Ovoot is 547 kilometres of rail that forms part of the Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

The more advanced this railway becomes the more value is realisable from Aspire’s 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

While this longer term project continues to progress, Aspire remains leveraged to nearer term coal production through its Nuurstei Project.


Funding near-term Nuurstei

Aspire is set to open a placement tomorrow aimed at raising up to $4 million through the issue of 200 million shares priced at $0.02.

Placement shares will come with a 1:2 attaching option exercisable at $0.025 and expiring 12 months from the date of issue.

The completion of the capital raising is an important milestone for Aspire as it will allow for the acquisition of a further interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project and a debt restructure.

Aspire currently owns 45% of the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project located in Mongolia and it intends to exercise a US$1 million option to acquire an additional 45% interest in the project.

A conceptual mining study shows a competitive delivered cost for hard coking coal into northern Chinese markets based on trucking.

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Tue, 04 Jul 2017 14:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/180271/aspire-mining-ltd-gets-boost-from-russian-support-180271.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd to open capital raising for Nuurstei development ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/180164/aspire-mining-ltd-to-open-capital-raising-for-nuurstei-development-180164.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) is set to open a placement aimed at raising up to $4 million through the issue of 200 million shares priced at $0.02.

Placement shares will come with a 1:2 attaching option exercisable at $0.025 and expiring 12 months from the date of issue.

The completion of the capital raising is an important milestone for Aspire as it will allow for the acquisition of a further interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project and a debt restructure.

Aspire currently owns 45% of the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project located in Mongolia and it intends to exercise a US$1 million option to acquire an additional 45% interest in the project.

Funds raised under the placement will also be used for a 2017 drilling and sampling program at Nuurstei.

The exercise of the option, combined with the proposed debt restructure, is expected to strengthen the company’s balance sheet and provide a clear path for financing the further development of the Nuurstei Project.

Nuurstei is seen as a starter project for Aspire while it progresses the 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, Mongolia’s second largest coking coal project.

During 2016, a maiden JORC resource at Nuurstei was estimated measuring 12.85 million tonnes.

The mining license application process is advanced and additional drilling and sampling is required to convert Inferred resources into Indicated resources and build mine life.

A conceptual mining study shows a competitive delivered cost for hard coking coal into northern Chinese markets based on trucking.

The placement will open this Wednesday 5 July and can accept oversubscriptions valued at $1 million.

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Mon, 03 Jul 2017 09:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/180164/aspire-mining-ltd-to-open-capital-raising-for-nuurstei-development-180164.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining increases exposure to near-term coal production ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/179274/aspire-mining-increases-exposure-to-near-term-coal-production-179274.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has entered into an agreement to facilitate the exercise of its option to increase its ownership to 100% from 50% in the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV).

The ECJV owns a 90% interest in the near-term development opportunity, the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project located in Mongolia.

Nuurstei contains a JORC resource of 4.75 million tonnes in the Indicated category and 8.1 million tonnes in the Inferred category.

Aspire has also agreed to restructure existing debt and interest obligations as well as undertake a capital raising, which is expected to significantly strengthen the Aspire balance sheet.

These are important steps in the recapitalisation and repositioning of the company as a near term Mongolian coking coal miner, which can see the company achieve a valuation re-rating.


Capital raising details

In connection with these transactions, Spectral Investments Pty Ltd and major shareholder Mr Bat-Erdene Khadbaasan have agreed to convert amounts drawn down by Aspire under a short term debt facility into equity.

Each of these transactions is subject to Aspire successfully completing a proposed capital raising and shareholder approval.

Aspire is seeking to raise up to A$4 million by issuing up to 200 million shares priced at $0.02 in a prospectus offering.

Shares will come with a 1:1 attaching option exercisable at $0.025 expiring in 12 months.

The company will be able to accept oversubscription applications for an additional 50 million shares or A$1 million.


Financing details

The payment for exercise of the ECJV option is US$1 million and the grant of a royalty in respect to future production of saleable coking coal from the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project. 

It has further been agreed that the US$1 million payable can be satisfied through the issue of US$1 million in equity securities on the same terms as those issued under the capital raising.

Aspire also has debt outstanding that includes US$5 million under a long term debt facility and US$1.5 million under a short term facility.

It has been agreed that the US$1.5 million short term facility will be rolled into the long term debt facility, which has had its repayment date extended to 17 August, 2019.

Aspire has agreed to pay down the loan from 50% of net free cash flow before interest and tax from the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project once that project moves into production.

The impact of the debt for equity conversions, along with the option payment in shares results in the issuance of circa 131.6 million shares and options for a value of A$2.6 million.


Analysis

Collectively, these transactions are expected to significantly strengthen the Aspire balance sheet by:

- Aspire acquiring an additional 45% beneficial interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project;
- Consolidating and extending existing debt facilities out to August 2019;
- Adding up to A$4 million in cash (less capital raising expenses) pursuant to the capital raising; and
- Facilitating the issue of circa A$2.6 million in equity in lieu of cash payments (pursuant to the ECJV option exercise arrangements as well as existing debt and interest payment obligations).

By advancing Nuurstei into production, Aspire will expect a re-rating of its current valuation.

If the proposed capital raising and debt-equity swaps are completed, Aspire will have a market cap of circa $24.4 million and enterprise value of circa $29 million.

With Nuurstei in production, Aspire will join the ASX junior coal miner ranks alongside:

- Stanmore Coal (ASX:SMR) $83.3 million market cap and $91 million enterprise value;
- TerraCom (ASX:TER) $86.8 million market cap and $288 million enterprise value; and
- Universal Coal Plc (ASX:UNV) $75.7 million market cap and $86 million enterprise value.

While Nuurstei is only seen as a starter project for Aspire while it progresses Ovoot, Mongolia’s second largest coking coal project, it can still act as an important value catalyst for the company.

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Thu, 15 Jun 2017 11:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/179274/aspire-mining-increases-exposure-to-near-term-coal-production-179274.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining to reveal acquisition and other key details ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/179106/aspire-mining-to-reveal-acquisition-and-other-key-details-179106.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has been granted a trading halt by the ASX, with its shares placed in pre-open.

Aspire requested the halt pending details of a proposed asset acquisition, finance re-arrangements and balance sheet restructure.

The halt will remain in place until the opening of trade on Thursday 15th June 2017, or earlier if an announcement is made to the market.

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Tue, 13 Jun 2017 10:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/179106/aspire-mining-to-reveal-acquisition-and-other-key-details-179106.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining enters agreement to advance railway ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178874/aspire-mining-enters-agreement-to-advance-railway-178874.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has entered into a non-binding cooperation agreement with China Gezhouba Group Company Limited (CGGC) to advance the Erdenet to Ovoot Railways Project.

The Erdenet to Ovoot Railway is required for the development of Aspire’s 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The combination of Aspire’s subsidiary, Northern Railways LLC and CGGC would create a powerful and compelling consortium to attract funding for this rail project.

David Paull, managing director, commented: “Aspire through its subsidiary, Northern Railways LLC, is directly participating in the One Belt One Road initiative, a vision to enhance trade connectivity with China which will have dramatic and far reaching consequences for global trade.

“This has been recognised by China Gezhouba Group, a very large state owned enterprise which is also one of the preeminent international Chinese contractors with a deep experience base in arranging funding for large projects that they participate in, as well as providing direct investment.”


Cooperation agreement details

The non-binding cooperation agreement between Northern Railways and CGGC is to advance the Erdenet to Ovoot Railways Project as part of the Northern Rail Corridor. 
CGGC works in 142 countries and has established 99 overseas branches with 30,000 employees worldwide

Combining the large scale construction and financing expertise of CGGC with the rail technical abilities of the Northern Railways consortium member, China Railway 20 Bureau Group Corporation (CR20BGC), would create a powerful and compelling consortium to attract funding for this rail project which is part of China's One Belt One Road initiative.

Northern Railways will provide CGGC with access to the existing technical database and will work with CGGC to source debt and equity funding for the Rail Feasibility Study and EPC construction funding from Chinese funding institutions.

CGGC and Northern Railways will also work together to promote the Northern Rail Corridor and connectivity with the Russian Rail system. 


Northern Rail Corridor gaining momentum

This railway is 410 kilometres long with construction expected to be completed by 2022.

It is being financed through a concession agreement with the owners, at a total cost estimated at 163.5 billion roubles.


Background

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is focused on identifying, exploring and developing quality coking coal assets.

Aspire is the 100% owner of the world class Ovoot Coking Coal Project, which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways LLC.

Production from the Ovoot Project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

Aspire also has a 45% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project which has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.

Recently, Aspire signed a memorandum of understanding to mine and purchase raw coal from a coal mine adjacent to Nuurstei.

Analysis of the adjacent coal mine has indicated that it has similar hard coking coal qualities to Nuurstei even though the coal is being sold for local thermal consumption.

The strategy is to wash this purchased coal at Nuurstei for delivery of a washed coking coal to customers in China.


Analysis

The Erdenet to Ovoot  547 kilometre railway segment is a part of the Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

China’s One Belt One Road initiative is set to be the world’s largest infrastructure project costing an estimated $5 trillion and spanning across 60-plus countries in Asia, the Middle East, Europe, and Africa.

Aspire is well positioned to gain from this economic initiative and the combination of CR20BGC and CGGC further demonstrates the strategic regional importance of the Northern Rail Corridor.

The more advanced this railway becomes the more value is realisable from Aspire’s 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project, the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

While this longer term project continues to progress, Aspire remains leveraged to nearer term coal production through its Nuurstei Project.

During April, Aspire received a conceptual mine plan for the Nuurstei Project which confirms its near term potential based on trucking coal to the nearest rail head.

Subject to funding, a US$1.5 million drilling and sampling program is planned to confirm assumptions used in the conceptual mine plan and provide the basis for a development decision.

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Wed, 07 Jun 2017 08:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178874/aspire-mining-enters-agreement-to-advance-railway-178874.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining takes important step towards coal mine licence ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178522/aspire-mining-takes-important-step-towards-coal-mine-licence-178522.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has had the registration approved by the Mongolian Resource Authority for its 45% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal Project located in Mongolia.

This registration is an important procedural step in the application and issuance of a mining license will provide an initial 30 year tenure over Nuurstei’s deposit.

During April, Aspire received a conceptual mine plan for the Nuurstei Project which confirms its near term potential based on trucking coal to the nearest rail head.

Subject to funding, a US$1.5 million drilling and sampling program is planned to confirm assumptions used in the conceptual mine plan and provide the basis for a development decision.

David Paull, managing director, commented: “Gaining the approval for the registration of the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project is an important milestone in its development.

“The mining license is now anticipated to be received in the next few weeks.”


Nuurstei Coking Coal Project

The 45% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal Project is located in northern Mongolia and is held in the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) with the Noble Group.

It contains a JORC resource of 4.75 million tonnes in the Indicated category and 8.1 million tonnes in the Inferred category.

Nuurstei can be viewed as a starter project which assists with the development of Aspire’s much larger and 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is 160 kilometres further to the west.

Recently, Aspire signed a memorandum of understanding to mine and purchase raw coal from a coal mine adjacent to its Nuurstei.

Analysis of the adjacent coal mine has indicated that it has similar hard coking coal qualities to Nuurstei even though the coal is being sold for local thermal consumption.

The strategy is to wash this purchased coal at Nuurstei for delivery of a washed coking coal to customers in China.

Furthermore, Aspire has the option to increase its ownership to 90% in Nuurstei through the payment of $1 million and royalties.


Funding for Nuurstei

During May 2017, Aspire received an expression of interest (EOI) to fund a modular coal handling and processing plant at Nuurstei.

The EOI was from ODDO BHF, a German private bank and financial services group.

The terms and conditions are to be negotiated and approved following final confirmation of the economic feasibility of the Nuurstei Project.

The funding would likely be done under Hermes Fund cover, which is a German Government backed export credit agency.

Joint venture partner, Noble Group, has also confirmed that it will assist mine development funding using trade based funding opportunities including arranging coal pre-sales.

The EOI follows a recently executed an off-take agreement with Noble for 6 months of production from Nuurstei.

The off-take agreement covers the first six months of anticipated production in 2018.

A 400 kilogram bulk sample of raw coal is to be transported to toll washing facilities in China to produce washed hard coking coal marketing samples.

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Wed, 31 May 2017 12:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/178522/aspire-mining-takes-important-step-towards-coal-mine-licence-178522.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining receives interest to fund modular coal plant ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177616/aspire-mining-receives-interest-to-fund-modular-coal-plant-177616.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has received an expression of interest (EOI) to fund a modular coal handling and processing plant at the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

The EOI is from ODDO BHF, a German private bank and financial services group.

The terms and conditions are to be negotiated and approved following final confirmation of the economic feasibility of the Nuurstei Project.

The funding would likely be done under Hermes Fund cover, which is a German Government backed export credit agency.

Joint venture partner, Noble Group (SGX:N21), has also confirmed that it will assist mine development funding using trade based funding opportunities including arranging coal pre-sales.


Nuurstei Coking Coal Project

The 45% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal Project is located in northern Mongolia and is held in the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) with the Noble Group.

It contains a JORC resource of 4.75 million tonnes in the Indicated category and 8.1 million tonnes in the Inferred category.

Nuurstei can be viewed as a starter project which assists with the development of Aspire’s much larger and 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is 160 kilometres further to the west.

Recently, Aspire signed a memorandum of understanding to mine and purchase raw coal from a coal mine adjacent to its Nuurstei.

Analysis of the adjacent coal mine has indicated that it has similar hard coking coal qualities to Nuurstei even though the coal is being sold for local thermal consumption.

The strategy is to wash this purchased coal at Nuurstei for delivery of a washed coking coal to customers in China.

Furthermore, Aspire has the option to increase its ownership to 90% in Nuurstei through the payment of $1 million and royalties.


Recent off-take with Noble

Aspire recently executed an off-take agreement with Noble for 6 months of production from the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project.

The off-take agreement covers the first six months of anticipated production in 2018.

A 400 kilogram bulk sample of raw coal is currently being transported to toll washing facilities in China to produce washed hard coking coal marketing samples.

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Thu, 11 May 2017 08:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177616/aspire-mining-receives-interest-to-fund-modular-coal-plant-177616.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining signs coal off-take with Noble Group ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177195/aspire-mining-signs-coal-off-take-with-noble-group-177195.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has executed an off-take agreement with Noble Group (SGX:N21) for 6 months of production from the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project located in Mongolia.

Nuurstei is 90% owned by a 50:50 joint venture between Aspire and Noble meaning Aspire has a 45% interest in the project.

The off-take agreement covers the first six months of anticipated production in 2018.

A 400 kilogram bulk sample of raw coal is currently being transported to toll washing facilities in China to produce washed hard coking coal marketing samples.

David Paull, managing director, commented: “The off-take agreement with Noble Group is an important step in the continuing commercialisation of the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project”.


Nuurstei Coking Coal Project

The 45% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal Project is located in northern Mongolia and is held in the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) with the Noble Group.

It contains a JORC resource of 4.75 million tonnes in the Indicated category and 8.1 million tonnes in the Inferred category.

Nuurstei can be viewed as a starter project which assists with the development of Aspire’s much larger and 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is 160 kilometres further to the west.

Most recently, Aspire signed a memorandum of understanding to mine and purchase raw coal from a coal mine adjacent to its Nuurstei.

Analysis of the adjacent coal mine has indicated that it has similar hard coking coal qualities to Nuurstei even though the coal is being sold for local thermal consumption.

The strategy is to wash this purchased coal at Nuurstei for delivery of a washed coking coal to customers in China.

Furthermore, Aspire has the option to increase its ownership to 90% in Nuurstei through the payment of $1 million and royalties.


Analysis

The off-take agreement shows that Nuurstei can operate as a near-term starter project for Aspire and provide the company with an opportunity for early cash flow.

The deal with Noble is significant given their status as a large exporter of Mongolian coals into Chinese markets facilitating transport through to end customers.

Noble has previously noted that Nuurstei coking coal will attract significant demand and that over time, the coal will have a pricing advantage over Chinese domestic competitors on a delivered-to-end-user basis.

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Wed, 03 May 2017 11:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177195/aspire-mining-signs-coal-off-take-with-noble-group-177195.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining's coal purchase strategy to de-risk Nuurstei ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177121/aspire-mining-s-coal-purchase-strategy-to-de-risk-nuurstei-177121.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has signed a memorandum of understanding to mine and purchase raw coal from a coal mine adjacent to its Nuurstei Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

Analysis of the adjacent coal mine has indicated that it has similar hard coking coal qualities to Nuurstei even though the coal is being sold for local thermal consumption.

The strategy is to wash this purchased coal at Nuurstei for delivery of a washed coking coal to customers in China.

Regular purchases are conditional on the establishment of the Nuurstei Coal Project Wash Plant.

David Paull, managing director, commented:

"The ability to purchase material quantities of coal from an existing mine adjacent to the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project helps in de-risking development and is a further important step in the continuing commercialisation of the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project."


Agreement details

Aspire has entered into a memorandum of understanding (MoU) agreement to mine and purchase raw coal from an existing mine adjacent to Nuurstei.

The adjacent coal mine is currently being operated to produce small quantities of raw coal for local thermal consumption.

The coal purchase pricing will be based on the raw coal pricing received by the owner from existing local sales.

Aspire is to provide technical and other assistance as required, including facilitating the mining of
16,000 tonnes of raw coal in 2017 for the adjacent mine to meet its local sales commitments.

The coal purchases are expected to provide around 10% of the feed to a proposed modular coal wash plant to be acquired, constructed and located at Nuurstei.


Nuurstei Coking Coal Project

The 45% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal Project is located in northern Mongolia and is held in the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) with the Noble Group.

It contains a JORC resource of 4.75 million tonnes in the Indicated category and 8.1 million tonnes in the Inferred category.

Nuurstei can be viewed as a starter project which assists with the development of Aspire’s much larger and 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is 160 kilometres further to the west.

Aspire plans to confirm the study assumptions with the planned 2017 drilling and sampling program which is budgeted at US$1.5 million.

Conversion of Nuurstei’s exploration license to a 30 year mining license is well advanced as the company works towards a potential operational start in 2018.

Furthermore, Aspire has the option to increase its ownership to 90% in the project through the payment of $1 million and royalties.

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Tue, 02 May 2017 12:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/177121/aspire-mining-s-coal-purchase-strategy-to-de-risk-nuurstei-177121.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining study results support open cut coal mine ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176621/aspire-mining-study-results-support-open-cut-coal-mine-176621.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has received results from a conceptual mining study evaluating the viability of a mining operation at its 45% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

The aim of the study was to assess the economics for a conceptual open cut pit that would enable a significant portion of the deposit’s Indicated Resource to be mined.

A preliminary internal project development time line shows first production is possible within 12 to 15 months, subject to permitting and funding.

Results suggest an internationally competitive delivered cost onto Chinese rail for a washed hard coking coal.

The 2017 drilling and sampling program which is budgeted at US$1.5 million is planned to confirm the study assumptions.

David Paull, managing director, commented:

"The Nuurstei Coking Coal Project provides a potential path to production and associated rail connectivity and a long term cash-flow source while the company continues to evaluate the world class Ovoot Coking Coal Project."


Nuurstei Coking Coal Project

The Nuurstei Coking Coal Project is located in northern Mongolia and is held in the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) with the Noble Group.

It contains a JORC resource of 4.75 million tonnes in the Indicated category and 8.1 million tonnes in the Inferred category.

Nuurstei can be viewed as a starter project which assists with the development of Aspire’s much larger and 100% owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is 160 kilometres further to the west.

Aspire plans to confirm the study assumptions with the planned 2017 drilling and sampling program which is budgeted at US$1.5 million.

Conversion of Nuurstei’s exploration license to a 30 year mining license is well advanced as the company works towards a potential operational start in 2018.

Furthermore, Aspire has the option to increase its ownership to 90% in the project through the payment of $1 million and royalties.


Analysis

Nuurstei provides Aspire the opportunity to generate both cash flow and useful operational and logistics knowledge to assist in the development of the much larger Ovoot project.

The project could also benefit through future access to the planned Northern Rail Line just 70 kilometres to the south.

Given a successful 2017 drilling and sampling program and access to required funding, it is possible for a 2018 start to mining operations. 

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces, and the key to unlocking the deposit is infrastructure.

Production from the company's Ovoot Project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

Aspire stands to potentially gain significantly from China’s One Belt One Road policy, one of the world’s largest infrastructure initiatives.

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Thu, 20 Apr 2017 09:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176621/aspire-mining-study-results-support-open-cut-coal-mine-176621.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining: Access latest PPT from Proactive's CEO Sessions ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176395/aspire-mining-access-latest-ppt-from-proactive-s-ceo-sessions-176395.html Aspire Mining's (ASX:AKM) managing director, David Paull, joined Proactive's CEO Sessions in Sydney on Wednesday, 12th April.

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces, and the key to unlocking the deposit is infrastructure.

Production from the company's Ovoot Project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

ACCESS THE FULL PRESENTATION HERE

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Thu, 13 Apr 2017 13:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/176395/aspire-mining-access-latest-ppt-from-proactive-s-ceo-sessions-176395.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining highlights benefits to Mongolia for Erdenet to Ovoot Railway ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/175499/aspire-mining-highlights-benefits-to-mongolia-for-erdenet-to-ovoot-railway-175499.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces, and the key to unlocking the deposit is infrastructure.

Aspire has now, through its rail subsidiary, Northern Railways LLC, entered into a Memorandum of Understanding (MoU) with MTGT LLC, the 100% owner of the Huren Chuulut Iron Ore Project.

Huren Chuulut is a large iron ore deposit located 50 kilometres to the north west of the Khuvsgul capital of Moron and 60 kilometres north of the approved rail alignment for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

This project needs rail to Erdenet to be able to connect to customers in China.

Mongolia currently exports iron ore to Chinese customers along the Trans Mongolian Railway.

The importance of the nearby iron ore deposit is that this increases the number of other large users of rail services other than Ovoot.

If the owners of these deposits grow in confidence that infrastructure will be in place, then this could be a catalyst for development capital to flow to these projects.


MoU details

The MoU covers the sharing of development progress, mutual support in funding activities and the provisional allocation of 5 Mtpa of freight capacity.

This would be as soon as the rail line has been extended to the proposed connection point, which is around two thirds along the total 549 kilometre Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

It is expected that the Northern Rail Corridor will see significant demand for its freight capacity of at least 15Mtpa, growing to 30Mtpa in the long term.

David Paull, managing director for Aspire, said that the MoU demonstrated that the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway will not only benefit Mongolia’s coking coal industry.

"Once completed, the Northern Rail Corridor, of which the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway is an important part, will see transport of a range of resources, agriculture and manufactured goods."

Production from the Ovoot Project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

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Tue, 28 Mar 2017 12:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/175499/aspire-mining-highlights-benefits-to-mongolia-for-erdenet-to-ovoot-railway-175499.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining signs agreement to advance coal railway ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/173363/aspire-mining-signs-agreement-to-advance-coal-railway-173363.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has signed a memorandum of understanding with a Mongolian and Russian government joint venture to progress the commercialisation of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

Aspire owns the Ovoot Coking Coal Project and its development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway, which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways LLC.

The 547 kilometre railway segment has been included in a new Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

The Mongolian and Russian government joint venture, Ulaanbaartar Railways JSC (UBTZ) manages all railway operations in Mongolia and owns the Trans Mongolian Railway.

David Paull, managing director, commented: “A close working relationship between Northern Railways and UBTZ will be essential for the successful development of the Northern Rail Corridor which will add significant long term demand for UBTZ’s rail services”.


Memorandum of understanding details

The memorandum of understanding (MOU) that has been signed between UBTZ and Northern Railways aims to cooperate and negotiate with relation to:

- Access to the UBTZ rail network from Erdenet;
- Technical specifications of rolling stock required on the UBTZ Rail Network;
- Management of transport operations along the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway and integration into Trans Mongolian Rail traffic;
- Maintenance of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway post commissioning; and
- Cooperation on the rehabilitation of the Erdenet to Salkhit spur line that connects onto the Trans Mongolian Railway.
The signing occurred during a conference in Ulaanbaater sponsored by UBTZ focusing on developments that will see substantial freight volume growth through to 2030.


Background

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is focused on identifying, exploring and developing quality coking coal assets.

Aspire is the 100% owner of the world class Ovoot Coking Coal Project, which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways LLC.

Production from the Ovoot Project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

Aspire also has a 45% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project which has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.

While tonnages at Nuurstei are modest, the project presents as a commercial scale pilot project for logistics and market development.


Analysis

The MOU will help progress a number of key commercial agreements required to support construction funding of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

These include the commercial terms upon which the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway users can access the UBTZ line to move freight through to end markets in Mongolia, south to China or north to Russia.

The signing of the MOU continues the recent strong momentum gained from the positive first stage feasibility study results, received in January.

The study reduces the risk for investors to invest in the project now to fund the second and final stage of the feasibility study and other predevelopment works and permitting.

Importantly, it will also now enable China Development Bank and other Chinese policy banks to conduct commercial due diligence on investment for the construction contract.

Aspire shares have increased over 4x in the past 12 months and are currently trading at $0.029.

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Mon, 20 Feb 2017 09:30:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/173363/aspire-mining-signs-agreement-to-advance-coal-railway-173363.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining reveals Erdenet to Ovoot Rail concession extended ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/172749/aspire-mining-reveals-erdenet-to-ovoot-rail-concession-extended-172749.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has outlined that it has received confirmation from Mongolia’s National Development Agency that it has approved an 18 month extension to the time required to complete the conditions precedent for the Erdenet to Ovoot Rail Concession Agreement.

These activities include completion of feasibility studies, environmental studies and permits, land use agreements, commercial agreements including the EPC Contract and its funding.

Northern Railways, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Aspire, now has until August 2018 to complete all the conditions precedent for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

The Mongolian Cabinet also approved a submission from Northern Railways to alter the alignment as it approached Erdenet to avoid a potential overlap with other infrastructure.

This opened the way for approval for the extension in accordance with the Rail Concession Agreement.

Engineering work performed as part of the submission shows that the alternative alignment does not add to the capital or operating costs of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.


Background

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is focused on identifying, exploring and developing quality coking coal assets.

Aspire is the 100% owner of the world class Ovoot Coking Coal Project, which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

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Tue, 07 Feb 2017 15:30:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/172749/aspire-mining-reveals-erdenet-to-ovoot-rail-concession-extended-172749.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining receives favourable study results for railway ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/171289/aspire-mining-receives-favourable-study-results-for-railway-171289.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has received the first stage feasibility study results for the Erdenet to Ovoot railway in Mongolia, which conclude the project to be financially feasible.

The capital cost to construct the railway is estimated at US$1.25 billion plus contingency for a 20 million tonnes per annum capacity single line.

Aspire owns the Ovoot Coking Coal Project and its development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways now has the opportunity to continue its review of the study prior to commitment to the final stage feasibility study, which will take an estimated six months,

The study will be used by China Development Bank and other Chinese policy banks in assessing an investment in the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.


Study details

The study commenced in September 2016 and provides an interim review of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway including sufficient design engineering to provide a +\- 10% capital estimate, a construction schedule, a bill of quantities and financial analysis including the capital and operating cost estimates.

The construction timeframe for the entire line is programmed out at 60 months from commencement to commissioning.

The financial model gives a before tax net present value of US$665 million and hence the project has been deemed financially feasible, necessary and it is recommended that it be implemented as soon as possible.


Background

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is focused on identifying, exploring and developing quality coking coal assets.

Aspire is the 100% owner of the world class Ovoot Coking Coal Project, which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways LLC.

Production from the Ovoot Project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.


Analysis

The results from the first stage feasibility study are an important step in acceptance of the merits of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

The study reduces the risk for investors to invest in the project now to fund the second and final stage of the feasibility study and other predevelopment works and permitting.

Importantly, it will also now enable China Development Bank and other Chinese policy banks to conduct commercial due diligence on investment for the construction contract. 

The study has shown the railway to be consistent with Mongolia’s mineral resource development strategy to be supported by growth in rail infrastructure.

It will play a significant role in the promotion of regional and social development and is recommended to be implemented as soon as possible. 
Aspire has a 45% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project which has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.

Nuurstei is well placed to be an early user of the proposed Northern Railway Project which will service Aspire’s Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

While tonnages at Nuurstei are modest, the project presents as a commercial scale pilot project for logistics and market development.

Shares in Aspire are up 350% over the past 12 months.

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Mon, 09 Jan 2017 11:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/171289/aspire-mining-receives-favourable-study-results-for-railway-171289.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining director exercises in-the-money options ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/170825/aspire-mining-director-exercises-in-the-money-options-170825.html In total Lithgow exercised 3,333,333 options and therefore investing $100,000 in Aspire, bringing his stake to circa 182.6 million shares, and further aligning himself with the company.

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is the 100% owner of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways.

Production from the Ovoot project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Aspire also currently owns a 50% interest in and is the operator of the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV), and has an option to increase its ownership to 100% of the ECJV.

The ECJV owns a 90% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project which has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.

Nuurstei is well placed to be an early user of the proposed Northern Railway Project which will service Aspire’s Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

Nuurstei is viewed as a low capital cost starter project which could assist with the development of the much larger Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is 160 kilometres further to the west.

The stock is up 300% or 4x year to date trading at $0.031.

Aspire’s inclusion in the Economic Corridor in late June has been a key price catalyst for the stock.

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Thu, 22 Dec 2016 09:30:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/170825/aspire-mining-director-exercises-in-the-money-options-170825.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining responds to investor demand with share placement ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/170571/aspire-mining-responds-to-investor-demand-with-share-placement-170571.html Up to $220,000 worth of shares will be placed to a new investor priced at $0.03.

Neil Lithgow, director and substantial shareholder has also exercised $100,000 worth of options, priced at $0.03.

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is the 100% owner of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways.

Production from the Ovoot project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Aspire also currently owns a 50% interest in and is the operator of the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV), and has an option to increase its ownership to 100% of the ECJV.

The ECJV owns a 90% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project which has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.

Nuurstei is well placed to be an early user of the proposed Northern Railway Project which will service Aspire’s Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

Nuurstei is viewed as a low capital cost starter project which could assist with the development of the much larger Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is 160 kilometres further to the west.

While tonnages at Nuurstei are modest, the project presents as a commercial scale pilot project for logistics and market development.

The stock is up 300% or 4x year to date trading at $0.032.

Aspire’s inclusion in the Economic Corridor in late June has been a key price catalyst for the stock.

]]>
Fri, 16 Dec 2016 11:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/170571/aspire-mining-responds-to-investor-demand-with-share-placement-170571.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining sees potential for economic open pit coking coal mine ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/167737/aspire-mining-sees-potential-for-economic-open-pit-coking-coal-mine-167737.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) has completed preliminary pit optimisation work that indicates a large proportion of the current Nuurstei Coking Coal deposit could report to an economic open pit.

Aspire has a 45% ownership in Nuurstei located in Mongolia through its 50/50 Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) with Noble Group (SGX:N21), which currently has a 90% interest in Nuurstei.

Planning is underway to complete additional drilling to convert deposit tonnes from the Inferred to Indicated categories and to test deposit extensions.
 
The process is underway to convert exploration license to a mining license.


Background

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is the 100% owner of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways.

Production from the Ovoot project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Aspire also currently owns a 50% interest in and is the operator of the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV), and has an option to increase its ownership to 100% of the ECJV.

The ECJV owns a 90% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project which has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.

Aspire has an option expiring in March 2017 to increase its beneficial ownership in the Nuurstei project from 45% to 90% for US$1 million and a royalty.


Northern Rail Corridor

Nuurstei is well placed to be an early user of the proposed Northern Railway Project which will service Aspire’s Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

Aspire recently commenced the first stage of the rail feasibility study to extend Mongolia’s national rail network from the city of Erdenet to its flagship Ovoot Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

The 547 kilometre extension has recently been included in a new Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

Northern Railways has formed a consortium with two subsidiaries of China Railways Corporation to progress the development of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway – China Railways 20 Bureau Group Corporation (CR20G) and China Railway First Design Survey and Design Institute (FSDI).

CR20G is the nominated engineering, procurement and construction contractor and FSDI has been contracted to undertake the bankable feasibility study.

FSDI has commenced the first stage of a bankable feasibility study, which is due for completion by 31 December 2016.


Analysis

Nuurstei is viewed as a low capital cost starter project which could assist with the development of the much larger Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is 160 kilometres further to the west.

While tonnages at Nuurstei are modest, the project presents as a commercial scale pilot project for logistics and market development.

It could also provide commercial scale rail freight cargo’s onto the Northern Rail Line to iron out logistical teething problems before the much larger volumes from the Ovoot Coking Coal Project need to be dealt with.

Subject to the completion of a feasibility study, the Erdenet to Ovoot railway may receive priority funding from China’s Policy Banks, Sinosure, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and funds such as the Silk Road Fund.

The stock is up 400% or 5x year to date trading at $0.04.

Aspire’s inclusion in the Economic Corridor in late June has been a key price catalyst for the stock.

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Fri, 21 Oct 2016 10:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/167737/aspire-mining-sees-potential-for-economic-open-pit-coking-coal-mine-167737.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd’s David Paull takes Northern Rail Corridor to Washington D.C. ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/166495/aspire-mining-ltds-david-paull-takes-northern-rail-corridor-to-washington-dc-71231.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) has presented at the Silk Road Summit conference in Washington D.C. to introduce the New Northern Corridor to a broad audience of government and funding stakeholders.
 
The rail corridor is a new rail trade route between Russia and China through Mongolia and has been incorporated into China’s One Belt One Road policy.

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is the 100% owner of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is a part of the Northern Rail Corridor.

Aspire recently received an expression of interest (EOI) from China Development Bank to fund up to 75% of the engineering, procurement and construction contract to build the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway in Northern Mongolia.


Background

Production from the Ovoot project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Aspire recently commenced the first stage of the rail feasibility study to extend Mongolia’s national rail network from the city of Erdenet to its flagship Ovoot Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

The 547 kilometre extension has recently been included in a new Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

Northern Railways has formed a consortium with two subsidiaries of China Railways Corporation to progress the development of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway – China Railways 20 Bureau Group Corporation (CR20G) and China Railway First Design Survey and Design Institute (FSDI).

CR20G is the nominated engineering, procurement and construction contractor and FSDI has been contracted to undertake the bankable feasibility study.

FSDI has commenced the first stage of a bankable feasibility study, which is due for completion by 31 December 2016. 


Silk Road Summit

The 2016 Silk Road Summit conference was recently held in the U.S. capital or Washington D.C. to provide an opportunity for business development in a new emerging market– a trading belt from Asia to Europe.

Conference topics included:

- Silk Road Economic Belt;
- Business development and commercial opportunities;
- Infrastructure project pipeline; and
- Trade and cross-border investment.

Presenters included members representing government, national embassies, banks and trade organisations.


Analysis

Aspire’s involvement in the Silk Road Summit provides opportunity to attract new investors and gain valuable relationships.

Aspire’s inclusion in the Economic Corridor in late June has proven to be a key price catalyst for the stock and the foundation for development milestones.

Such milestones include the recently received EOI from China Development Bank (CDB) to fund up to 75% of the engineering, procurement and construction contract.

This interest from CBD increases the certainty of the railway’s construction required for the development of Ovoot, which in turn can unlock value for shareholders.

Subject to the completion of a feasibility study, the Erdenet to Ovoot railway may receive priority funding from China’s Policy Banks, Sinosure, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and funds such as the Silk Road Fund.

The stock is up 525% year to date, currently trading at $0.05.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Tue, 27 Sep 2016 12:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/166495/aspire-mining-ltds-david-paull-takes-northern-rail-corridor-to-washington-dc-71231.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd responds to ASX price and volume query ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/166207/aspire-mining-ltd-responds-to-asx-price-and-volume-query-71144.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) received an ASX price and volume query today noting the 81% increase to an intra-day high of $0.049 from the $0.027 close price on 14 September 2016.

In a reply to the ASX,  Aspire noted it was not aware of any information concerning it that has not been announced to the market which, if known by some in the market, could explain the recent trading in its securities.

Earlier in the month Aspire received an expression of interest (EOI) from China Development Bank to fund up to 75% of the engineering, procurement and construction contract to build the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway in Northern Mongolia.

The EOI comes after the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway was recently included in the new Northern Rail Corridor which is to connect China and Russia through Mongolia.

CDB intends to provide a non-binding term sheet in relation to the provision of a long term debt facility subject to being satisfied with the first stage of the bankable feasibility study.

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is the 100% owner of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Wed, 21 Sep 2016 11:46:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/166207/aspire-mining-ltd-responds-to-asx-price-and-volume-query-71144.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd receives interest from China Development Bank to fund railway ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/165476/aspire-mining-ltd-receives-interest-from-china-development-bank-to-fund-railway-70883.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) has received an expression of interest (EOI) from China Development Bank to fund up to 75% of the engineering, procurement and construction contract to build the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway in Northern Mongolia.

The EOI comes after the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway was recently included in the new Northern Rail Corridor which is to connect China and Russia through Mongolia.

CDB intends to provide a non-binding term sheet in relation to the provision of a long term debt facility subject to being satisfied with the first stage of the bankable feasibility study.

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is the 100% owner of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways.


China Development Bank

China Development Bank (CDB) is a Chinese Government owned policy financial institution that provides medium to long term financing facilities that serve China’s long term economic and social development strategies.

CDB notes that it is the world’s largest development finance institution and the largest Chinese Bank for foreign investment and financing cooperation, long term lending and bond issuance.

It was ranked 87 Fortune Global 500 in 2015.


Erdenet to Ovoot Railway

Production from the Ovoot project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Aspire recently commenced the first stage of the rail feasibility study to extend Mongolia’s national rail network from the city of Erdenet to its flagship Ovoot Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

The 547 kilometre extension has recently been included in a new Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

Northern Railways has formed a consortium with two subsidiaries of China Railways Corporation to progress the development of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway – China Railways 20 Bureau Group Corporation (CR20G) and China Railway First Design Survey and Design Institute (FSDI).

CR20G is the nominated engineering, procurement and construction contractor and FSDI has been contracted to undertake the bankable feasibility study.

FSDI has commenced the first stage of a bankable feasibility study, which is due for completion by 31 December 2016. 


Analysis

The EOI received from CBD confirms the importance and value of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway being included in the recently announced Northern Rail Economic Corridor.

This interest from CBD increases the certainty of the railway’s construction required for the development of Ovoot, which in turn can unlock value for shareholders.

Subject to the completion of a feasibility study, the Erdenet to Ovoot railway may receive priority funding from China’s Policy Banks, Sinosure, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and funds such as the Silk Road Fund.

The stock is up 55% intra-day trading at $0.028 and 150% year to date.

Aspire’s inclusion in the Economic Corridor in late June has been a key price catalyst for the stock.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Tue, 06 Sep 2016 14:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/165476/aspire-mining-ltd-receives-interest-from-china-development-bank-to-fund-railway-70883.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd begins study to develop valuable rail corridor ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/165475/aspire-mining-ltd-begins-study-to-develop-valuable-rail-corridor-70531.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) has commenced the first stage of the rail feasibility study to extend Mongolia’s national rail network from the city of Erdenet to its flagship Ovoot Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

The 547 kilometre extension has recently been included in a new Northern Rail Economic Corridor connecting China and Russia through Mongolia as part of China’s One Belt One Road Policy.

All infrastructure projects on the agreed route will have priority funding status from Chinese banks.  

The first stage feasibility study is expected to complete by December and Aspire will work on securing funding for the final feasibility study and construction in the interim.

Aspire has negotiated a US$2 million loan facility to commence rail pre-development activities for the extension.

David Paull, managing director, commented:

“The corridor is designed to facilitate growing trade between Asia and Europe and given Aspire’s strategic location along this corridor, the value for Aspire’s rail and metallurgical coal assets have been significantly enhanced.”


Loan facility

Quam Capital Limited has secured interim short term funding of US$2 million from a group of investors, including substantial shareholders, to progress time critical rail pre-development activities.

Funding will enable Aspire’s rail subsidiary, Northern Railways LLC, to complete the first stage rail feasibility study and environmental surveys.

The loan facility is for 12 months, will carry an interest rate of 9% per annum and will be drawn down in three tranches in August, October and December 2016.

Aspire has budgeted a total of US$15 million in costs to bring the project to completion as an engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) funding transaction.


Timeline to development

The pathway to construction involves:

- First stage feasibility study;
- Pre-development funding for rail;
- Preliminary EPC funding negotiations;
- Final stage feasibility study;
- Environmental and other permits;
- EPC contract finalisation;
- Final EPC funding negotiations;
- Clearance of concession agreement financing conditions precedent;
- EPC funding drawdown;
- Rail construction commencement; and
- Ovoot Coking Coal mine development.


Background

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is the 100% owner of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways.

Production from the Ovoot project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Aspire also currently owns a 50% interest in and is the operator of the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV), and has an option to increase its ownership to 100% of the ECJV.

The ECJV owns a 90% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project which has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.


Analysis

The commencement of the feasibility study is an important milestone for Aspire as the construction of this railway extension is essential to the development of Ovoot.

The US$2 million in funding will allow Aspire the time to identify and complete funding for the balance of rail pre-development activities without diluting the existing shareholder base.

The inclusion of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway in the Northern Rail Corridor is an important milestone for Aspire as it increases the certainty of its construction which is required for the development of Ovoot.

Subject to the completion of a feasibility study, the Erdenet to Ovoot railway may receive priority funding from China’s Policy Banks, Sinosure, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and funds such as the Silk Road Fund.

Furthermore, the newly elected Mongolian Government led by the Mongolian People’s Party confirms that commencement of construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway forms part of the new Government’s agenda.

While the feasibility study is expected to be complete by December, news flow is expected in the interim regarding the status of funding negotiations.

The stock is up 100% year to date thanks to Aspire’s inclusion in the Economic Corridor in late June, which acted as a catalyst for the stock price.

 

Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Thu, 18 Aug 2016 10:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/165475/aspire-mining-ltd-begins-study-to-develop-valuable-rail-corridor-70531.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd to soar with new China to Russia rail corridor ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149191/aspire-mining-ltd-to-soar-with-new-china-to-russia-rail-corridor-69515.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) is set to be a large beneficiary as the presidents of China, Russia and Mongolia have signed off on the establishment of a new rail corridor between Russia and China through Mongolia.

In August 2015, Aspire’s rail subsidiary, Northern Railways LLC received the green light to build and operate a 547 kilometre railway to extend Mongolia’s national rail network from the city of Erdenet to its flagship Ovoot Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

The new 3,500 kilometre rail corridor requires the development of 1,414 kilometres of rail to complete the route. The Erdenet to Ovoot 547 kilometre route is part of this undeveloped section.

The establishment of this new rail corridor confirms that the Erdenet to Ovoot railway has developed from being a rail connection to a large coking coal project, to now being part of an important new trade infrastructure route.

David Paull, managing director, commented:

“It is very significant news that the Erdenet to Ovoot railway is now recognised as a key part of a new rail trade route between Russia and China through Mongolia.

"This new corridor will be of significant long term value to the people of Mongolia.

"The Erdenet to Ovoot railway has now officially moved from a rail extension to service a world class coking coal deposit, to a strategic piece of rail infrastructure to facilitate China’s Silk Road Initiative and Mongolia’s Step Road trade initiative.”


Erdenet to Ovoot access to funding

As Erdenet to Ovoot is now part of the new Northern Rail Corridor and part of China’s One Belt One Road Trade Infrastructure Policy, it now becomes, subject to the completion of a feasibility study, a priority funding project.

Aspire may soon be able to access funding from China’s Policy Banks, Sinosure, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and funds such as the Silk Road Fund which has been specifically established to support the establishment of One Belt One Road logistics infrastructure.


Background

Aspire is the largest coal tenement holder in Mongolia’s Northern provinces and is the 100% owner of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project which is the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways.

Production from the Ovoot project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Aspire also currently owns a 50% interest in and is the operator of the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV), and has an option to increase its ownership to 100% of the ECJV.

The ECJV owns a 90% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project which has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.


Analysis

The inclusion of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway in the Northern Rail Corridor is a massive boost and a momentous important milestone for Aspire as it increases the certainty of its construction which is required for the development of Ovoot.

Subject to the completion of a feasibility study, the Erdenet to Ovoot railway may receive priority funding from China’s Policy Banks, Sinosure, Asian Infrastructure Investment Bank (AIIB) and funds such as the Silk Road Fund.

The inclusion of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway in the Northern Rail Corridor enhances the value adding opportunity for Ovoot Coking Coal to be blended with Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi non coking coals.

This announcement and recognition of the rail corridor as a key part of a new rail trade route between Russia and China through Mongolia and should ensure that Ovoot, the second largest coking coal project in Mongolia, by reserves, gains in prominence and in priority for development.

As pieces of newsflow and significance go, they do not get much better than this one.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Wed, 29 Jun 2016 13:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149191/aspire-mining-ltd-to-soar-with-new-china-to-russia-rail-corridor-69515.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd signs blending initiative with Mongolia's Tavan Tolgoi Coal mine ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149190/aspire-mining-ltd-signs-blending-initiative-with-mongolias-tavan-tolgoi-coal-mine-69399.html Mongolian coal explorer, Aspire Mining Limited (ASX:AKM) has signed an agreement with the Mongolian Government, owner of the world class Tavan Tolgoi Coal Mine to look into blending coal opportunities with Aspire's Ovoot mine.

The MoU was signed with Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi JSC (ETT), the Mongolian Government entity that owns the giant Tavan Tolgoi mine, one of the world’s largest untapped coking and thermal coal deposits.

Aspire's Ovoot Coking Coal Project is also world class in size and quality, ranked as the second largest coking coal project by reserves in Mongolia.

In 2014 Aspire conducted a number of blending tests with various coals including non-coking coal from the massive Tavan Tolgoi Mine.

Of note, that demonstrated the capacity to blend Ovoot Coking Coal and upgrade the coking ability of other coals.

It is expected that over the current life of mine plans there are very significant quantities of non-coking coal to be produced at Tavan Tolgoi without a current viable market to sell into.

The test work showed that blending relatively low proportions of Ovoot coking Coal (as low as 25% in the blend) resulted in a blended primary coking coal product under the Chinese system.

David Paull, managing director for Aspire, welcomed this positive development to work together with ETT to add material value to Mongolian coking coal.

"Tavan Tolgoi is by far the largest coking coal deposit in Mongolia with Ovoot being the second largest by reserves and it appears that there are numerous technical and commercial synergies in working together to improve the value of exported Mongolian coking coals."


MoU main points

Aspire and ETT have agreed to:

- share data and samples for further evaluation.
- establish a technical and commercial working group to prepare a feasibility study into the blending of Ovoot Coking Coal, Tavan Tolgoi non-coking coals and potentially other suitable Mongolia coals in a coal blending facility. This could have a capacity of 8 to 10 million tonnes per annum.

In the event that the feasibility study is positive, Aspire and ETT will jointly enter into commercial negotiations to establish a blending joint venture and to work together to attract necessary funding.

The Ovoot project development is dependent on the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary Northern Railways LLC (Northern Railways).

Northern Railways has been granted a rail concession in August 2015 and the project is undergoing a bankable feasibility study.

Production from the Ovoot project can coincide with the commissioning of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Aspire also currently owns a 50% interest in and is the operator of the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) and has an option to increase its ownership to 100% of the ECJV.

The ECJV owns a 90% interest in the Nuurstei Coking Coal Project (Nuurstei) which has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource.

Aspire has the option to purchase Noble's 50% interest in the ECJV through to March, 2017.

Of the 12.85 million tonne resource, 37% resides in the Indicated category and 63% is in the Inferred category.


Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Thu, 23 Jun 2016 12:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149190/aspire-mining-ltd-signs-blending-initiative-with-mongolias-tavan-tolgoi-coal-mine-69399.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd and Noble Group claim coal resource at Nuurstei ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149189/aspire-mining-ltd-and-noble-group-claim-coal-resource-at-nuurstei-68066.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) now has a 12.85 million tonne JORC resource at its 45% owned Nuurstei Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

Aspire's 45% ownership is through its 50/50 Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) with Noble Group (SGX:N21), which currently has a 90% interest in Nuurstei.

Aspire has the option to purchase Noble's 50% interest in the ECJV through to March, 2017.

Of the 12.85 million tonne resource, 37% sits in the Indicated category and 63% sits in the Inferred category.

The JORC resource captures the 1.6 kilometre long coal seam which dips from surface down to 200 metres in depth.

The majority of the resource, 59%, is located between the surface and 100 metres depth with the remainder, 41%, between 100 metres and 200 metres depth.


Background

Aspire is focussed on the exploration and development of metallurgical coal assets in Mongolia and is the largest coal tenement holder in the Orkhon-Selenge Coal Basin in northern Mongolia.

Aspire currently wholly owns the large scale, Ovoot Coking Coal Project, the Jilchigbulag Coal Project and the Myngan Exploration Licence.

Through its 50% ownership in the ECJV Aspire holds an interest in Nuurstei and the Erdenebulag Coal Project.

Northern Railways LLC, Aspire’s Mongolian rail infrastructure subsidiary is responsible for activities associated with the commercialisation and future development of the 547 kilometres Erdenet to Ovoot railway in northern Mongolia.


Nuurstei

Nuurstei is a low capital cost starter project to operate in conjunction with the much larger Ovoot Coking Coal Project located 160 kilometres to the west.

The ECJV completed its 55 hole exploration drilling program at Nuurstei in October, 2015.

Washed coal quality results indicate the presence of a good hard coking coal with strong plastic properties such as swelling, fluidity and dilation.

A coal such as this would ideally be blended with other materials to realise a premium grade coke.


Future development

Subject to further drilling work and sample analysis, Nuurstei has potential to be developed as a shallow open pit mining operation with a low strip ratio.

Other coal projects in the area will be assessed for consolidation with Nuurstei.

There is a modest opportunity to increase the resource to the west and north west.

The ECJV will apply for a mining license over Nuurstei which will give the ECJV tenure over the property for 30 years.

Nuurstei is ten kilometres from a town from which there is a paved road to rail infrastructure. Subject to commencement of construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway in 2017, a lower cost and higher capacity transport route will become available by 2019.

The Noble Group has 100% of the marketing and supply chain rights at Nuurstei.

While tonnages in the JORC resource categories are modest at Nuurstei, it presents as a commercial scale pilot project for logistics and market development for Ovoot and other coking coals from northern Mongolia.

 

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Thu, 14 Apr 2016 10:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149189/aspire-mining-ltd-and-noble-group-claim-coal-resource-at-nuurstei-68066.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd appoints Gan-Ochir Zunduisuren a non-executive director ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149188/aspire-mining-ltd-appoints-gan-ochir-zunduisuren-a-non-executive-director-67642.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM), a Mongolian metallurgical coal explorer and infrastructure company, has appointed Gan-Ochir Zunduisuren as a non-executive director on 21 March 2016.

Zunduisuren has over 15 years’ experience in the resource sector of Mongolia and Canada.

David Paull, managing director, commented:

“With his extensive experience and knowledge of the Mongolian resource industry and landscape, we are delighted to welcome back Gan-Ochir to the board.”

 

Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Tue, 22 Mar 2016 11:30:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149188/aspire-mining-ltd-appoints-gan-ochir-zunduisuren-a-non-executive-director-67642.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining Ltd looks to bridge Mongolian rail funding from China ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149187/aspire-mining-ltd-looks-to-bridge-mongolian-rail-funding-from-china-67513.html Aspire Mining Ltd (ASX:AKM) which is actively developing projects in Mongolia with stakes in both coal mining and railroad projects in the north of the country has announced it is working with China Railways Bureau 20 Group toward a debt facility to fund pre development rail activities.

Aspire's Mongolian rail infrastructure subsidiary, Northern Railways LLC is working with nominated EPC contractor and consortium partner China Railways Construction Bureau 20 Group source to source bridge funding from a Chinese bank.

The proposed funding is a line of credit to enable completion of all pre development activities required under the Erdenet to Ovoot Rail Concession Agreement.

The credit facility would allow the completion of a rail bankable feasibility study, environmental permitting and completion of a number of commercial agreements including the EPC and debt refinance.

The line of credit is intended to be supported by guarantees from Construction Contractors and Aspire.

Aspire’s managing director, David Paull said that “With the continued support of the Mongolian Government, CRCB20G and now with the support of UBTZ, the Erdenet to Ovoot to Arts Suuri railway continues to progress as a viable inclusion in Mongolia’s “Economic Corridor” between China and Russia.”

The Rail Project spans 547 kilometres and forms part of Mongolia’s Rail Policy to provide rail access to its northern provinces through the extension of its existing rail network from Erdenet to Ovoot to the Russian/Mongolian border at Arts Suuri with a Russian connection planned to Kyzyl.

At full operation, the Rail Project will have capacity to move 30 million tonnes per annum of bulk commodities, agricultural, general and passenger freight including transit freight between Russia and China.


Working group has Noble ambitions

Aspire has agreed with Mongolia’s Ulaanbaatar Railway Corporation (UBTZ) to establish a working group to work through the technical and commercial issues in connecting the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway onto the existing Mongolian rail network operated by UBTZ and the operational management of the Northern Railway.

UBTZ is a joint venture between Mongolia and Russia and operates the domestic Mongolian Rail network.

UBTZ and Northern Railways are to agree access, capacity and future rail tariff structures along Mongolia’s existing rail network.

Noble Group continues to be part of the Northern Rail consortium and welcomes the participation of new partners. Noble has agreed to revised terms on the existing loan with Aspire to allow the partnership time to complete its 24 month rail development process.

Aspire’s projects include the Ovoot metallurgical coal project and the Ekhgoviin-Chuluu joint venture with Noble Group (which owns a 90% stake in the Nuurstei metallurgical coal project).

Aspire also owns Northern Railways, which aims to connect Ovoot to the country’s national rail network and then onto Russia’s Trans-Siberian Railway.

Upon completion, the line will increase Mongolia’s access to Russian, Chinese and seaborne metallurgical coal markets.



Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Tue, 15 Mar 2016 07:30:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149187/aspire-mining-ltd-looks-to-bridge-mongolian-rail-funding-from-china-67513.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining finalises rail approvals for Mongolian coal ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149186/aspire-mining-finalises-rail-approvals-for-mongolian-coal-66456.html Metallurgical coal company Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has realised a significant milestone in the development of its massive Mongolian infrastructure ambitions after obtaining final approval for a rail connection point and alignment path.

This progress follows only about month after the company confirmed that its local subsidiary Northern Railways received its construction license for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

The approval in turn followed a string of other recent milestones, including a Scoping Study which indicated there were no technical obstacles to building a rail connection from Ovoot to the Russian city of Kyzyl.

The Erdenet to Ovoot railway project that spans 547 kilometres and forms part of a national policy aimed at connecting the northern provinces with Russia.

At full operation, the project will have capacity to move 30 million tonnes per annum of bulk commodities, agricultural, general and passenger freight including transit freight between Russia and China.

New negotiations with the Mongolian government have helped establish the project's most recent approvals, which include some redesign and re-engineering by Northern Railways to accommodate Aspire operations.

As a result, a rail route into the city of Erdenet will now be able to avoid significant relocation of established infrastructure and competing land uses.

Also, the rail alignment will take account of the road and power line requirements of the Egin Golin hydro power project, which was also recently approved by government.

The paths for both the Erdenet to Ovoot railway and Egin Golin both require access through a 40-kilometre long valley system to the west of Erdenet.


Recent progress

Advancement of Aspire's rail plans for the company's proposed coal operations has coincided with new enhancements of the mining assets themselves.

Last month, Aspire confirmed that its Nuurstei project will be able to produce a low to mid volatile, top tier hard coking coal that would be attractive to end-users in the market for cleaner coal properties.

Proximate analysis from 31 core holes drilling during the 2015 exploration program at the project have shown the coal to have moderate to high ash, mid to low volatility, low sulphur and high free swelling index. 

This development is particularly relevant in the context of Chinese political initiatives to curb the effects of its older and less efficient coal-fired power plants.

A maiden coal resource at Nuurstei is expected to be established in the near term, with an exploration target contemplating a resource of up to 25 million tonnes (at 0.1 metres coal thickness cut-off, rounded), down to 160 metres depth.

By comparison, Ovoot has a total coal resource of 281 million tonnes that will initially drive a production rate of 5 million tonnes per annum, increasing to 10mtpa over 21 years of saleable high-quality coking coal.


Analysis

This milestone is significant to Aspire’s investment case since it brings the crucial Erdenet to Ovoot railway to the point where all the necessary approvals are in place to prepare the way for the Bankable Feasibility Study, environmental surveys and permitting.

The final approvals allow for important revisions to the rail connections and alignments plan, which will help streamline the logistics of Aspire’s metallurgical coal operations.

Further potential catalysts for Aspire are evident in the company’s ongoing efforts to secure funding sources that would complete both the Rail Bankable Feasibility Studies and other environmental permitting activities.

Negotiations on this point have included Chinese and Russian contractors and potential investors.

The fact that Aspire’s rail plan is a government plan across three nations puts the company in an enviable position to realise the project.

This will allow for the exploitation of a massive resource which would otherwise be considered stranded by most junior developers. 


Proactive Investors is a global leader reporting financial news, media, research and hosts events for listed emerging growth companies and investors across four continents.

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Wed, 06 Jan 2016 13:52:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149186/aspire-mining-finalises-rail-approvals-for-mongolian-coal-66456.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining demonstrates marketability of Nuurstei coal ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149185/aspire-mining-demonstrates-marketability-of-nuurstei-coal-66267.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has confirmed that its Nuurstei project in Mongolia will be able to produce a low to mid volatile, top tier hard coking coal that would be attractive to end-users in the market for cleaner coal properties.

Proximate analysis from 31 core holes drilling during the 2015 exploration program at the project have shown the coal to have moderate to high ash, mid to low volatility, low sulphur and high free swelling index.

Washability test work on samples from the first four holes show moderate yields of a high quality coking coal.

Petrography results on five washed coal samples indicated excellent coking properties, maximum vitrinite reflectance ranges from 1.3–1.4 and vitrinite content averaging 90%.

Once JORC 2012 resource calculations are complete, the Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) with the Noble Group (SGX: N21) which controls the project will begin a Scoping Study.

Nuurstei is expected to initially deliver coal by road to the nearest rail head at Erdenet, about 360 kilometres to the east.

Nuurstei will also benefit from being able to access the Erdenet to Ovoot railway which is expected to pass about 70 kilometres to the south.

The Erdenet to Ovoot railway is to be constructed by Aspire's rail infrastructure subsidiary, Northern Railways, which executed a Concession Agreement with the Government of Mongolia in September and has recently received its Construction Licence.


Nuurstei progress

The latest coal quality testing results at Nuurstei add confidence on the heels of positive exploration work which has improved the project’s profile as a possible early-production operation during the longer-term rollout of more ambitious mining and rail plans.

Nuurstei’s prospects of providing small-scale, road-based coal delivery as the larger Erdenet-Ovoot railway and Ovoot mining projects came into focus recently with the delivery of a 5.6-metre intersection of coal from 34.7 metres and 6.94 metres of coal from 61.2 metres.

Twelve other seams identified in the first of these holes provided a total of 26.39 metres of coal from surface down to 108 metres, illustrating the existence of multiple, albeit relatively thin stacked seams.

Strike length of the correlated seams at the site was increased by 0.4 kilometres from to 1.6 kilometres in a recent exploration program.

A maiden coal resource at Nuurstei is expected to be established in the near term, with an exploration target contemplating a resource of up to 25 million tonnes (at 0.1 metres coal thickness cut-off, rounded), down to 160 metres depth.

By comparison, Ovoot has a total coal resource of 281 million tonnes that will initially drive a production rate of 5 million tonnes per annum, increasing to 10mtpa over 21 years of saleable high-quality coking coal.


Rail clearance

Aspire’s operational advancements in recent weeks have otherwise focused largely on the Erdenet to Ovoot railway, a project that spans 547 kilometres and forms part of a national policy aimed at connecting the northern provinces with Russia.

Significantly, this work resulted in the delivery of a key railway construction licence earlier this month which allows for the establishment of a commission comprising Northern Railways, the government and Mongolia’s national railway operator to agree on traffic management protocols and the point at which the proposed railway connects to the existing network.

At full operation, the project will have capacity to move 30 million tonnes per annum of bulk commodities, agricultural, general and passenger freight including transit freight between Russia and China.

Aspire’s new construction licence for the rail project builds on a string of recent milestones, including a Scoping Study what indicated there were no technical obstacles to building a rail connection from Ovoot to the Russian city of Kyzyl.

This connection, also known as the Steppe Railway, was projected to require capital costs to construct base infrastructure ranging from US$2 million to US$2.6 million per kilometre.


Analysis

The coal quality analysis at Nuurstei indicates that the project will be attractive to regional customers due to its properties associated with cleaner burning.

This development is particularly relevant in the context of Chinese political initiatives to curb the effects of its older and less efficient coal-fired power plants.

While raw ash levels are moderate to high, Nuurstei coal yields from washing indicate the coal can realise a product with ash in the range of 9% to 10%.

Potential price catalysts for Aspire moving forward include the definition of coal resource estimations at the project, which are currently being prepared by the ECJV’s geological consultants.

Importantly, Nuurstei is only a secondary project for Aspire, which benefits from the potential for longer-term value accretion in the development of the 281-million-tonne Ovoot coal project and 547 kilometres of rail connections.

The feasibility of the rail project is strongly underpinned by its status as a government plan across three nations.

This puts Aspire in an enviable position to realise an ambitious infrastructure project capable of allowing for the exploitation of a massive resource which would otherwise be considered stranded by most junior developers.


Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Fri, 18 Dec 2015 12:00:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149185/aspire-mining-demonstrates-marketability-of-nuurstei-coal-66267.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining cleared to build rail for shipping Mongolian coal ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149184/-aspire-mining-cleared-to-build-rail-for-shipping-mongolian-coal-65923.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has received a key railway construction licence in Mongolia, setting up advancement of a critical and ambitious infrastructure plan to support the company’s prized Ovoot coal project.

The company’s rail infrastructure subsidiary, Northern Railways, has received its government construction clearance for the Erdenet to Ovoot railway, a project that spans 547 kilometres and forms part of a national policy aimed at connecting the northern provinces with Russia.

At full operation, the project will have capacity to move 30 million tonnes per annum of bulk commodities, agricultural, general and passenger freight including transit freight between Russia and China.

Grant of the licence to Aspire follows the signing of a concession agreement with Northern Railways in September and satisfies a precondition for the start of long-term land use negotiations.

It also allows for the establishment of a commission comprising Northern Railways, the government and Mongolia’s national railway operator to agree on traffic management protocols and the point at which the proposed railway connects to the existing network.

In late August, Aspire secured financing from its rail and financial adviser Signum Resources Corporation to carry out the first stage of the feasibility study for the rail project.

Signum will provide a US$600,000 loan and invest US$200,000 in Aspire equity as part of the effort.


Recent progress

Aspire’s new construction licence for the rail project builds on a string of recent milestones, including a Scoping Study what indicated there were no technical obstacles to building a rail connection from Ovoot to the Russian city of Kyzyl.

This connection, also known as the Steppe Railway, was projected to require capital costs to construct base infrastructure ranging from US$2 million to US$2.6 million per kilometre.

Capital costs for an alignment from Ovoot to Arts Suuri on the Russian border was estimated at US$450 million to US$550 million for the 230-250 kilometre line, while the 300-330 kilometre Arts Suuri-Kyzyl could cost from US$675 million to US$775 million.

The rail will not only service Aspire’s 281-million-tonne Ovoot coking coal project, but is also likely to connect with the company’s secondary Nuurstei property, where the latest exploration work has returned a 5.6-metre intersection of coal from 34.7 metres and 6.94 metres of coal from 61.2 metres.

A maiden coal resource at Nuurstei is expected to be established by the end of 2015.

An exploration target for the project has contemplated a resource of up to 25 million tonnes of coal down to 160 metres depth.


An international vision

Aspire’s investment in the construction of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway is secured by the fact that the project is of significant importance to national interests, not only in Mongolia but in Russia and China as well.

The railway will play an important part in the establishment of an “economic corridor” through Mongolia, the subject of a trilateral agreement signed by the presidents of China, Russia and Mongolia

This economic corridor plan is intended to closely link with Chinese policies to establish a “New Silk Road” to improve Euro-Asian trade, as well as Russia’s policy of establishing a Euro-Asian economic zone.

Encouragingly, the Mongolian government adopted a rail gauge earlier this year which is compatible with Chinese gauges, symbolising a more cooperative relationship regarding rail infrastructure between the two countries.


Analysis

The provision of a rail construction licence to Aspire represents the important continued support of the Mongolian government to progress the development of the Erdenet to Ovoot corridor.

The feasibility of the project is further underpinned by its status as a government plan across three nations.

This puts Aspire in an enviable position to realise an ambitious infrastructure project capable of allowing for the exploitation of a massive resource which would otherwise be considered stranded by most junior developers.

Over the last three months since the concession was signed, substantial progress has been made in satisfying agreement conditions while Aspire hosted senior executives from a large Chinese banking institution during a visit to Mongolia.

Also, Northern Railways has been actively pursuing funding options to complete the other conditions precedent for the rail concession, including environmental permitting and the completion of a Bankable Feasibility Study.

The systematic achievement of these milestones could provide share price catalysts for Aspire.

Market recognition of Ovoot’s long-term potential is coinciding with global coking coal mine closures which are tipped to cause coal prices to improve from 2016 onwards.


Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Tue, 01 Dec 2015 15:29:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149184/-aspire-mining-cleared-to-build-rail-for-shipping-mongolian-coal-65923.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining finds more coal at Nuurstei, sets up early production prospects ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149183/aspire-mining-finds-more-coal-at-nuurstei-sets-up-early-production-prospects-64970.html Mongolian metallurgical coal explorer, Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has improved the profile of its Nuurstei project as a possible early-production operation as the medium to longer term mining and rail plan continue to unfold.

More positive exploration results at Aspire’s secondary Nuurstei property have improved the site’s prospects of providing small-scale, road-based coal delivery as the larger Erdenet-Ovoot railway and Ovoot mining projects come into focus.  

The latest exploration update from Nuurstei included a 5.6-metre intersection of coal from 34.7 metres and 6.94 metres of coal from 61.2 metres.

Twelve other seams identified in the first of these holes provided a total of 26.39 metres of coal from surface down to 108 metres, illustrating the existence of multiple, albeit relatively thin stacked seams.

Strike length of the correlated seams at the site increased by 0.4 kilometres from to 1.6 kilometres.

A maiden coal resource at Nuurstei is expected to be established by the end of 2015. An exploration target for the project has contemplated a resource of up to 25 million tonnes (at 0.1 metres coal thickness cutoff, rounded), down to 160 metres depth.

By comparison, Ovoot has a total coal resource of 281 million tonnes that will initially drive a production rate of 5 million tonnes per annum, increasing to 10mtpa over 21 years of saleable high-quality coking coal.


Growing Nuurstei

The latest drilling at Nuurstei – which lies east of Ovoot along a planned rail connection – helps underscore the project’s potential to be developed as a road based operation, trucking coal to Erdenet, a city en route to the capital of Ulaanbaatar.

This would represent a gradual start-up for the operation before becoming one of the first users of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway once the first section is completed by Northern Railways LLC who was awarded the exclusive concession to build and operate the railway in August 2015.

Other recent progress at Nuurstei has included drilling by Aspire and Noble Group (SGX:N21) which intersected near-surface coal was intersected in multiple banded coal seam packages, with the best results being 15.3 metres of coal from 51.4 metres and 9.5 metres of coal from 71.6 metres.

The thick coal packages are suspected to be structurally thickened by reverse faults that have repeated the coal seams.

Drilling has been aimed at collecting coal samples to be sent to laboratories for coal quality analysis. This will provide a representation of coal quality across the deposit.

Aspire is exploring at Nuurstei via its 50:50 Ekhgoviin Chuluu joint venture with Noble, which owns 90% of Nuurstei.


The Erdenet to Ovoot railway

Nuurstei will also have access to the Erdenet to Ovoot railway within approximately two years of commencement of its construction and thereby become one of the first users of this railway.

This infrastructure represents a section of the Mongolian government planned “Steppe Railway”, which extends the national rail network from Erdenet to Ovoot and onto the Russian border at Arts Suuri.

There are further plans to then link the rail from Arts Suuri to the Trans-Siberian railway at Kyzyl, thereby creating an international rail link connecting Siberia and northern Mongolia with China.

Last month, Aspire received preliminary results from a scoping study indicating there were no technical obstacles to building a rail connection from Ovoot to the Russian city of Kyzyl.

This rail connection provides the remaining link to create the new Steppe Railway trade connection between China and Russia through Mongolia.

This followed immediately on the execution of a concession agreement allowing Aspire subsidiary Northern Railways 18 months to complete a number of conditions precedent required to commence construction of its 547-kilometre link.

This work will include a feasibility study, contracting and licencing for the project.

The concession will allow up to five years to construct the railway followed by 30 years of operation after which 100% of the base railway infrastructure will be transferred to the government of Mongolia.

In late August, Aspire secured financing from its rail and financial adviser Signum Resources Corporation to carry out the first stage of the feasibility study for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

Signum will provide a US$600,000 (A$835,800) loan and invest UA$200,000 in AKM equity in the effort.


Analysis

Further development of Nuurstei is a good sign for Aspire’s strategy of gradually developing its suite of Mongolian assets, with a small-scale operation allowing for initial production before the major projects take shape.

More upside at Nuurstei is indicated by the fact that basement rock has not been intersected in any of the holes and historical drilling has noted that coal in multiple thin seams continue to be intersected well below the current depth of drilling.

Nuurstei is located only 10 kilometres from the existing Moron town, the capital of the Khusvgul province and sits along the path of the planned Erdenet-Ovoot railway.

While still at an early stage, the planned rail connection between Ovoot to Kyzyl is of strategic value to Aspire Mining given its role as part of the new Steppe Railway trade connection between China and Russia through Mongolia.

Adding value, the Steppe Railway is consistent with Chinese policy to build the Silk Rail Road.

With global coking coal mine closures industry analysts expect coal prices to improve from 2016 onwards.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Wed, 07 Oct 2015 15:40:00 +1100 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149183/aspire-mining-finds-more-coal-at-nuurstei-sets-up-early-production-prospects-64970.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining study finds no obstacles for Ovoot to Russia rail ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149182/aspire-mining-study-finds-no-obstacles-for-ovoot-to-russia-rail-64397.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has received preliminary results from a Scoping Study indicating there are no technical obstacles to building a rail connection from Ovoot to the Russian city of Kyzyl.

This rail connection provides the remaining link to create the new Steppe Railway trade connection between China and Russia through Mongolia.

In August 2015, Aspire subsidiary Northern Railways was granted a 30 year concession by the Mongolian Government to build and operate the 547 kilometre railway to extend Mongolia’s national rail network from Erdenet to its Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

Notably, the geography is suitable for efficient high capacity bulk commodity rail with capital costs to construct base infrastructure ranging from US$2 million to US$2.6 million per kilometre.

Capital costs for the Ovoot-Arts Suuri alignment is estimated at US$450 million to US$550 million for the 230 kilometre to 250 kilometre line while the 300 kilometre to 330 kilometre Arts Suuri-Kyzyl could cost from US$675 million to US$775 million.

The Scoping Study is prepared by Aspire’s wholly-owned rail infrastructure subsidiary Northern Railways and follows on the recent execution of the Concession Agreement to build and operate the Erdenet to Ovoot railway in Mongolia.

It is aimed at providing preliminary capital cost assessments, alignment paths and lengths and the early identification of any engineering, construction or operational challenges to develop rail infrastructure through this terrain.

David Paull, managing director, commented:

“Being able to identify an efficient path connecting Ovoot to Kyzyl is important in demonstrating the strategic value of the Steppe Railway from Erdenet through to Kyzyl.

“The Erdenet to Ovoot section of this railway, which Northern Railways has recently received a
Concession for, reflects the first half of the Steppe Railway.”


Ovoot-Arts Suuri-Kyzyl Rail Alignments Study

The Ovoot-Arts Suuri-Kyzyl rail connection provides the remaining link to create a new trade connection between China and Russia through Mongolia

This is not only consistent with Chinese driven policy to build the Silk Rail Road but will also unlock the development potential of Russia’s Elegest Coking Coal Basin located near Kyzyl.

It used data sets and parameters established in the completion of the Pre-Feasibility Study for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

These were then applied specifically to the region between Ovoot and Kyzyl.

Northern Railways engaged Trimble Planning Solutions Pty Ltd, based in Melbourne, Australia, to assist with running alignment simulations.

Additional analysis is required to understand the capital cost and operating cost trade-offs in order to identify the optimal alignments.

The terrain between Ovoot to Arts Suuri is relatively flat and similar to the Erdenet to Ovoot terrain which presents excellent conditions for building and operating efficient bulk commodity rail.

While the Arts Suuri to Kyzyl alignment is also generally flat and suitable for rail development, there is about 30 to 40 kilometres that needs to traverse a mountain range.

The most suitable alignment appears to traverse through a relatively narrow pass. This requires further investigation into alignment and geometric parameters to balance capital construction costs and operational factors to achieve optimal outcomes in both directions.


Analysis

While still at an early stage, the planned rail connection between Ovoot to Kyzyl is of strategic value to Aspire Mining given its role as part of the new Steppe Railway trade connection between China and Russia through Mongolia.

Preliminary results from the Scoping Study follows execution of the Concession Agreement to build and operate the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Adding value, the Steppe Railway is consistent with Chinese policy to build the Silk Rail Road.

Aspire had $4 million in cash and term deposits as at 30th June 2015.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong.

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Mon, 07 Sep 2015 13:09:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149182/aspire-mining-study-finds-no-obstacles-for-ovoot-to-russia-rail-64397.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining company executes Concession for Erdenet to Ovoot railway ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149181/aspire-mining-company-executes-concession-for-erdenet-to-ovoot-railway-64352.html Aspire Mining’s (ASX:AKM) Northern Railways has reached a key milestone with the execution of the Concession Agreement to build and operate the Erdenet to Ovoot railway in Mongolia.

This follows the company securing earlier this week funding from its rail and financial adviser Signum Resources Corporation to carry out the first stage of the Bankable Feasibility Study.

Northern Railways, Aspire’s wholly-owned rail infrastructure subsidiary, now has 18 months to complete a number of conditions precedent required to commence construction of the 547 kilometre rail project.

These include the completion of a bankable feasibility study, EPC contract, connection agreement to existing railway at Erdenet, financing, licences and permits necessary to construct and operate the Rail Project.

The Concession will allow up to 5 years to construct the railway followed by 30 years of operation after which 100% of the base railway infrastructure will be transferred to the Government of Mongolia.

Northern Railways’ Erdenet-Ovoot railway represents the first stage of a new rail connection linking Mongolia to Russia that provides Aspire with a defined path to market for its Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

It is exclusively engaged with China Railway 20 Bureau Group Corporation (CR20G) and China Railway First Survey & Design Institute (FSDI) in relation to EPC contract negotiations and completion of the bankable feasibility study respectively.

Both CR20G and FSDI are subsidiaries of Fortune 500 company China Railway Construction Corporation (HKG:1186, SHG:601186).

David Paull, Aspire managing director, commented:

“The company has entered an exciting phase in progressing the development of our Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

“The Erdenet to Ovoot railway provides not only a transport solution for Ovoot coking coal but its planned connection with Russia creates an international rail transport route running directly through northern Mongolia where the majority of our assets are located”.

“Having the support of China Railway subsidiaries CR20G and FSDI is significant to the development of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway as they bring extensive international experience in the design and construction of railway, as well as connections with Chinese financiers keen to participate in infrastructure projects along the Silk Road.”

Concession Agreement

The execution of the Concession Agreement to build and operate the Erdenet to Ovoot railway was has been completed during signing ceremonies in Mongolia and China with authorised representatives of the Government of Mongolia Investment Agency, Aspire, Northern Railways, CR20G and FSDI.

This follows three months of negotiations between the Mongolian Government and Northern Railways.

On 10th August 2015, the Cabinet of the Mongolian Government passed a resolution authorising its Investment Agency to execute the Concession Agreement.


Bankable Feasibility Study

In late August, the company secured financing from its rail and financial adviser Signum Resources Corporation to carry out the first stage of the Bankable Feasibility Study for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

Signum will provide a US$600,000 loan and invest US$200,000 through a placement of 13.89 million shares at $0.02.

The remaining US$200,000 of the required US$1 million required by CR20G to complete the first stage of the BFS will be provided by Aspire.
   
This funding will allow CR20G to mobilise and conduct the first stage Feasibility Study fieldwork before the Mongolian winter in order to maintain the development schedule for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

Mongolian-based Signum was founded to establish large scale projects in Mongolia and structuring optimal financing solutions and attracting international capital.

It will also assist Northern Railways in sourcing the funding for the balance (US$5.5 million) of the Feasibility Study costs and to identify strategic partners and new funding sources for Northern Railways.   


Erdenet-Ovoot rail line

The 547 kilometre rail project forms part of Mongolia’s Rail Policy to provide rail access to its northern provinces through the extension of its existing rail network from Erdenet to the Russian/Mongolian border at Arts Suuri with a Russian connection planned to Kyzyl.

At full operation the rail project will have capacity to move 30 million tonnes per annum (Mtpa) of bulk commodities, agricultural, general and passenger freight including transit freight between Russia and China.

This is key to unlocking the value of Aspire’s Ovoot Coking Coal Project, which has a JORC Resource of 255 million tonnes and initial production of 5Mtpa scaling up to 10Mtpa.

It can also provide other Mongolian resource projects in the area with a path to market.


Analysis

Execution of the Concession Agreement to build and operate the Erdenet to Ovoot railway takes the company a step closer towards developing the Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

In addition to providing transport for Ovoot coking coal, it could also move bulk commodities, agricultural, general and passenger freight between Mongolia and Russia.

Aspire had $4 million in cash and term deposits as at 30th June 2015.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Thu, 03 Sep 2015 11:39:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149181/aspire-mining-company-executes-concession-for-erdenet-to-ovoot-railway-64352.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining company gains funding for Erdenet to Ovoot Rail study ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149180/aspire-mining-company-gains-funding-for-erdenet-to-ovoot-rail-study-64283.html Aspire Mining’s (ASX: AKM) Northern Railways has secured financing from its rail and financial adviser Signum Resources Corporation to carry out the first stage of the Bankable Feasibility Study for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

Northern Railways’ Erdenet-Ovoot railway represents the first stage of a new rail connection linking Mongolia to Russia that provides Aspire with a defined path to market for its Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

Northern Railways is the wholly owned rail infrastructure subsidiary of Aspire Mining in charge of the advancement of a multi-user rail line to be constructed between the town of Erdenet through to Aspire’s Ovoot Coal Project.

The Northern Rail Line will connect the north Mongolian Khuvsgul, Bulgan, and Zavkhan provinces to the existing Trans-Mongolian rail network, which currently ends at Erdenet.

Signum will provide a US$600,000 loan and invest US$200,000 through a placement of 13.89 million shares at $0.02.

The remaining US$200,000 of the required US$1 million required by China Railway 20 Bureau Group Corporation (CR20G) to complete the first stage of the BFS will be provided by Aspire.

This funding will allow CR20G to mobilise and conduct the first stage Feasibility Study fieldwork before the Mongolian winter in order to maintain the development schedule for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway.

Mongolian-based Signum was founded to establish large scale projects in Mongolia and structuring optimal financing solutions and attracting international capital.

It will also assist Northern Railways in sourcing the funding for the balance (US$5.5 million) of the Feasibility Study costs and to identify strategic partners and new funding sources for Northern Railways.   

The recently granted 30 year Rail Concession for the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway provides for an 18 month period to complete a number of condition precedents including the completion of a Bankable Feasibility Study.

CR20G is a subsidiary of Fortune 500 company China Railway Construction Corporation (HKG:1186, SHG:601186).


Signum Financing

The US$600,000 loan by Signum will have a period of the earlier of two years or the date of receipt of further development funding for a minimum of US$15 million to be provided to Northern Railways.

Interest payable on the loan, totalling US$100,000, will be capitalised until the facility is repaid.   

Aspire will also place 13.89 million shares priced at $0.02 each to Signum to raise US$200,000.


Erdenet-Ovoot rail line

The 547 kilometre Erdenet-Ovoot rail line represents the first stage of a new rail connection linking Mongolia to Russia that is key to establishment of an Economic Corridor through Mongolia.

The total Rail Project construction capital cost is currently estimated at US$1.2 billion.

The recently awarded Rail Concession Agreement provides Northern Railways up to 5 years to construct the railway followed by 30 years of operation after which 100% of the base railway infrastructure will be transferred to the Government of Mongolia.

Erdenet-Ovoot is key to unlocking the value of the Ovoot Project and future earnings from mining and production from the project for Aspire.

Ovoot has a JORC Resource of 255 million tonnes and is the country’s second largest coking coal reserve behind the government-owned Tavan Tolgoi project.

Initial production is estimated to commence in 2018, producing 5 million tonnes per annum of saleable coking coal and increasing in subsequent years to achieve full scale production of up to 10Mtpa from both the open pit and underground operations.

The open access railway could provide other Mongolian resource projects in the area with a path to market.

It could also be used by local agricultural and manufacturing industries and passenger freight, and in time potentially Russian and/or Chinese transit freight.


Analysis

Aspire has entered a new stage in the development of the Erdenet to Ovoot Railway with Signum Resources’ funding allowing it to kick of the first stage of the Bankable Feasibility Study.

In addition, Signum will also assist Northern Railways in sourcing funding for the rest of the study and identify strategic partners and new funding sources.

The company previously advised that the BFS would take about 9 months to complete while the concession enables Northern Railways to progress financing negotiations with Chinese financial institutions with assistance from CR20G.



Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Mon, 31 Aug 2015 15:47:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149180/aspire-mining-company-gains-funding-for-erdenet-to-ovoot-rail-study-64283.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining, Noble Group intersect multiple coal seams at Nuurstei ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149179/aspire-mining-noble-group-intersect-multiple-coal-seams-at-nuurstei-64124.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) and Noble Group (SGX:N21) have intersected many coal seams in the first ten holes of the 2015 drilling program at their Nuurstei Coking Coal Project in Mongolia.

Near surface coal was intersected in multiple banded coal seam packages with the best being 15.3 metres of coal from 51.4 metres and 9.5 metres of coal from 71.6 metres in hole NURH1023.

Approximately 40 non-core and PQ diamond drill holes are planned to be completed during the drilling program which is expected to be completed during the September 2015 Quarter.

This is targeted at increasing confidence levels in coal seam correlation and establishing a maiden JORC 2012 resource.

Samples collected from core holes will be sent to laboratories to undertake coking coal quality analyses.


Nuurstei Drilling

In July, Aspire and Noble mobilised two drill rigs to site and have since then drilled nine non-core drill holes and one diamond core hole.

Intersected coal seams are consistently steeply dipping and banded.

The thick coal packages in NURH1023 are suspected to be structurally thickened by reverse faults that have repeated the coal seams in the drill hole. The exact fault geometry is unknown at this stage.   

All proposed diamond drill holes will be drilled to collect coal samples to be sent to laboratories for coal quality analysis. This will provide a representation of coal quality across the deposit.

The results of the core NUDH012 sampled in 2014 suggested the presence of coking coal at Nuurstei.

Nuurstei has an Exploration Target of between 15 million and 25 million tonnes.

The Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) between Aspire and Noble plan to complete a Scoping Study pending favourable results of the current exploration program.

It considers Nuurstei to have near term development potential given its location just 10 kilometres from the Khuvsgul provincial capital of Moron and within trucking distance to the existing rail head at Erdenet.

The project will also have access to the Erdenet to Ovoot railway within approximately two years of commencement of its construction and thereby become one of the first users of this railway.


Analysis

Results from the first 10 holes at Nuurstei are certainly exciting for Aspire Mining given that multiple coal seams were intersected.

There is substantial news flow ahead for the project with further drilling underway and core samples from diamond holes to be sent to the laboratory to confirm if coal coking is present across the deposit.

In addition, the ECJV plans to carry out resource calculations following completion of the 40 hole program before potentially carrying out a Scoping Study.

The study will assess the economics of a mining operation, initially by road and potentially access to the first section of the Erdenet-Ovoot railway.

Aspire continues to retain an option to buy out Noble’s 50% stake in the ECJV through to March next year.

The company had $4 million in cash and term deposits as at 30th June 2015.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Fri, 21 Aug 2015 13:05:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149179/aspire-mining-noble-group-intersect-multiple-coal-seams-at-nuurstei-64124.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining: Northern Railways wins nod for Erdenet to Ovoot Rail ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149178/aspire-mining-northern-railways-wins-nod-for-erdenet-to-ovoot-rail-63975.html Aspire Mining’s (ASX:AKM) Northern Railways has been given a momentous green light to build and operate the 547 kilometre railway to extend Mongolia’s national rail network from Erdenet to its Ovoot Coking Coal Project.

This first stage of a new rail connection linking Mongolia to Russia could be operational in 2017/18, providing Ovoot with a defined path to market by rail.

Northern Railways worked with Fortune 500 company China Railway Construction Corporation (HKG:1186, SHG:601186) – a 236.15 billion yuan (A$50 billion) market cap - and its subsidiaries to land the concession.

Northern Railways will have the exclusive right to build and operate for 30 years the 547 kilometre Erdenet-Ovoot railway.

The Concession will allow up to 5 years to construct the railway followed by 30 years of operation after which 100% of the base railway infrastructure will be transferred to the Government of Mongolia.

Northern Railways’ Erdenet-Ovoot railway represents the first stage of a new rail connection linking Mongolia to Russia.

A Pre-Feasibility Study has been completed on the Rail Project with an estimated capital cost to construct of US$1.2 billion.

The company is currently working exclusively with China Railway subsidiaries, China Railway 20 Bureau Group Corporation (CR20G) and China Railway First Survey & Design Institute (FSDI) to complete the Bankable Feasibility Study and negotiate the terms of the Engineering Procurement contract to be awarded to CR20G.

This will fulfil two of conditions that Northern Railways will need to satisfy over the next 18 months upon execution of the Concession Agreement. It will also be required to arrange financing.


Analysis

This has been a journey for Aspire Mining and today's granted concession provides a path to potential "black" gold for the company.

Partnering with China Railway, a Fortune 500 listed company, and China’s largest rail construction organisation provides a balance sheet with the financial clout to make it happen.

The BFS is expected to take about 9 months to complete while the concession enables Northern Railways to progress financing negotiations with Chinese financial institutions with assistance from CR20G.

It is worth noting that are numerous funds, some recently established such as the AIIB and Silk Road Fund, established specifically to support infrastructure build out in Asia in support of China’s new silk road strategy.


Next Steps

Following the execution of the Concession Agreement, Northern Railways will work with the CR20G and FSDI to raise funding for construction of the base rail structure.

They will also negotiate other key agreements and permits that are conditions precedent to commencing construction under the Concession Agreement.

Granting of this concession is also further evidence that the Government of Mongolia is working vigorously to address falling Foreign Direct Investment (FDI).

It follows the agreement with Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO) and Turquoise Hill Resources (TSX:TRQ) to progress the second stage of the Oyu Tolgoi Copper Gold Mine in May 2015, and the recent granting of a Concession to build CHPP5, a new US$1.3 billion heating and power Plant.


Erdenet-Ovoot rail line

The 547 kilometre Erdenet-Ovoot rail line represents the first stage of a new rail connection linking Mongolia to Russia that is key to establishment of an Economic Corridor through Mongolia.

This Economic Corridor, which is the subject of a trilateral agreement between China, Russia and Mongolia, seeks to improve trade by reducing regulation, improving capacity at borders and improve road and rail infrastructure to meet increased demand for transport services.

Erdenet-Ovoot Rail is also central to unlocking the value of the Ovoot Project and future earnings from mining and production from the project for Aspire.

Ovoot has a JORC Resource of 255 million tonnes and is the country’s second largest coking coal reserve behind the government-owned Tavan Tolgoi project.

Initial production is estimated to commence in 2018, producing 5 million tonnes per annum of saleable coking coal and increasing in subsequent years to achieve full scale production of up to 10Mtpa from both the open pit and underground operations.

Once built, there are multiple other Mongolian resource projects in the area that would also be provided with a path to market.

The open access railway could also be used by local agricultural and manufacturing industries and passenger freight, and in time potentially Russian and/or Chinese transit freight.

Notably, China Railways is involved through its various subsidiary companies in the development of a number of rail projects along the planned Economic Corridor spanning between Russia, Mongolia and China.

This includes construction of the Kuragino to Kyzyl railway which will eventually connect with the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

Northern Railways is on track to complete in the September 2015 Quarter, a Scoping Study over the planned railway extending from Ovoot to the Russian border approximately 180 kilometres north of Ovoot and further to the Russian town of Kyzyl to complete this connection.



Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Thu, 13 Aug 2015 09:40:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149178/aspire-mining-northern-railways-wins-nod-for-erdenet-to-ovoot-rail-63975.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining to reveal update on Erdenet to Ovoot railway concession ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149177/aspire-mining-to-reveal-update-on-erdenet-to-ovoot-railway-concession-63939.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) has been granted a trading halt by the ASX, with its shares placed in pre-open.

Aspire requested the halt pending the resolution by the Cabinet of the Mongolian Government to enter into a concession agreement with Northern Railways LLC, an Aspire subsidiary, in respect of the Erdenet to Ovoot railway.

The company is the largest coal tenement holder in the vastly spanning Orkhon-Selenge Coal Basin in northern Mongolia.

Aspire currently wholly owns the large scale, world class Ovoot Coking Coal Project, the Jilchigbulag Coal Project and the Myangan Exploration Licence.

The halt will remain in place until the opening of trade on Thursday 13th August 2015, or earlier if an announcement is made to the market.

 

Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Tue, 11 Aug 2015 14:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149177/aspire-mining-to-reveal-update-on-erdenet-to-ovoot-railway-concession-63939.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining, Noble Group start coal resource drilling at Nuurstei ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149176/aspire-mining-noble-group-start-coal-resource-drilling-at-nuurstei-63712.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) and Noble Group (SGX:N21) have commenced the 2015 exploration program at their Nuurstei Coking Coal Project in Mongolia to establish a maiden resource.

The Ekhgoviin Chuluu Joint Venture (ECJV) between the two companies has budgeted a US$1.5 million spend this year on the program, which includes about 40 core and PQ diamond holes.

Additional testwork will also be carried out with the aim of confirming coal quality across the deposit.

Mobilisation of staff, contractors, equipment and a drill rig to site has occurred.

A Scoping Study is also planned to be carried out, pending positive results from the program. This could in turn lead to a development decision for Nuurstei as early as next year.

The ECJV considers Nuurstei, which has an Exploration Target of between 15 million and 25 million tonnes, to have near term development potential given its location just 10 kilometres from the Khuvsgul provincial capital of Moron and within trucking distance to the existing rail head at Erdenet.

Aspire has an option to purchase Noble’s 50% interest in the ECJV, exercisable by March 2016.   


Nuurstei Coking Coal Project

In May, the ECJV increased its stake in Nuurstei to 90% from 60% for US$201,500.

Besides its potential to be developed as a road based operation thanks to its proximity to the existing rail head at Erdenet, the project could also be one of the first users of the Erdenet-Ovoot railway which is being progressed by Aspire’s subsidiary, Northern Railways LLC.

Northern Railways are well into negotiations with the Government of Mongolia for a concession to allow the construction and operation of the railway.

The project could access the railway prior to its full commissioning, as the first section of rail could be completed and available for use within two years from commencement of rail construction.


Analysis

Aspire Mining’s drilling program at Nuurstei is likely to be closely watched given that previous work returned extremely positive results, indicating the presence of high quality coking coals.

The 40 hole program is expected to be completed in October with resource calculations being undertaken thereafter.

Besides the news flow from Nuurstei, the company could also have news flow relating to progress on the rail project including:

- Securing a Rail Concession Agreement from the Mongolian Government for the Erdenet-Ovoot railway;
- Commencement and progress of subsequent definitive financing discussions;
- Completion of the rail bankable feasibility study;
- Receipt of permits and other licences; and
- EPC contract finalisation.



Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Wed, 29 Jul 2015 12:00:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149176/aspire-mining-noble-group-start-coal-resource-drilling-at-nuurstei-63712.html
<![CDATA[News - Aspire Mining gives back to Mongolia with medical equipment shipment ]]> http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149175/aspire-mining-gives-back-to-mongolia-with-medical-equipment-shipment-63636.html Aspire Mining (ASX:AKM) is giving back to the local community with its funding the cost of shipping of medical equipment and supplies to a number of Mongolian hospitals and clinics.

This is being carried out in association with The Rotary Club of Osborne Park (Rotary) and the Mongolian Red Cross Society.

The medical equipment are in excellent condition but were no longer required as the donating Western Australian hospitals have undergone upgrades.

These include x-ray machines, dialysis machines, ultra sound machines, infant incubators, defibrillators, hospital beds, wheelchairs and more.

With the assistance of the Red Cross, the equipment will be donated to an Ulaanbaatar based gynaecological clinic, the Tsetserleg Hospital and Mogoin Gol Health Clinic, both hospitals being located nearby Aspire’s coal and rail projects in the Khuvsgul province.

Aspire had previously worked with Rotary to raise funds to support a team of burn surgeons from Interplast to travel to Mongolia and provide training to local Mongolian medical practitioners in April 2015.

David Paull, managing director, said:

“This recent collaboration with Rotary and the Mongolian Red Cross fits neatly into Aspire’s community initiatives to improve health and wellbeing in our local communities and follows previous investments including assisting in the completion of construction of the Tsetserleg Hospital in 2012.

“We are again pleased to be involved and being able to facilitate the donation of this medical equipment to Tsetserleg Hospital and other Mongolian healthcare providers where we know it will be put to good use.”

Aspire's world class coal assets could become a production reality with increasing developments in Mongolia’s infrastructure space including construction of rail to service its planned mine sites.

It has partnered with major commodity trader, Noble Group, with the view to see near term production at the smaller Nuurstei Project.

The company also wholly-owns the Ovoot Project, which boasts the country's second largest coking coal Reserve with long mine life, and on top of that, displays excellent blend carrying characteristics and coking coal properties including a high rank, mid-volatiles and low ash.

Paull recently spoke exclusively to Proactive Investors. Click here for the Q&A session.



Proactive Investors Australia is the market leader in producing news, articles and research reports on ASX emerging companies with distribution in Australia, UK, North America and Hong Kong / China.

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Fri, 24 Jul 2015 13:30:00 +1000 http://www.proactiveinvestors.com.au/companies/news/149175/aspire-mining-gives-back-to-mongolia-with-medical-equipment-shipment-63636.html