Talisman Mining Ltd (ASX:TLM) continues to focus on gold as well as base metals exploration of advanced exploration and development projects within Australia in 2020 as outlined in the 2019 chairman’s address.
In November 2019 at the annual general meeting chairman Jeremy Kirkwood stated that while the highlight of the year was completing the return of about $41 million to shareholders following the sale of the Springfield Joint Venture to Sandfire Resources NL (ASX:SFR), from a business perspective the company had a clear framework for considering new opportunities.
He said, “Our primary focus remains on gold and base metal exploration, advanced exploration and development projects in Australia – a style of asset from which we have delivered shareholder value previously and where we believe opportunities to exist.”
This year the company is planning further exploration, including drilling, at the Lachlan Copper-Gold Project as well as at the Lucknow Gold Project, both in Central West New South Wales
In 2019 the company focused predominantly on the Lachlan project having secured access to more than 3,000 square kilometres of tenements which are prospective for copper-gold, gold and base metals deposits.
Through a three-stage process of reconnaissance, target development and targeted drilling chairman Kirkwood said the company had been progressively testing the most prospective areas across this land position.
“Our most recent drilling, completed towards the end of the financial year, enhanced the prospectivity of this region through the identification of five new, untested electromagnetic conductors that warrant follow-up drilling and will be tested as part of RC and diamond drill programs in early 2020 and beyond.”
Regionally, geochemical and geophysical surveying continues to be successful in identifying new targets for the company.
Kirkwood added, “These reconnaissance activities over the last year have focused largely on the Southern and Central regions of the Lachlan project where a number of new targets identified during the calendar year are currently being tested.
“We look forward to reporting further results later this year.”
Plans for Lucknow
Kirkwood said elsewhere in NSW, Talisman entered into a farm-in for the high-grade Lucknow Gold Project, near Orange, just after the end of the financial year.
"The Lucknow Goldfield was one of the earliest goldfields to be mined commercially in Australia and has some of the highest mined grades reported globally.
"While historic production records are incomplete, our best estimate is approximately 400,000 ounces at a grade in excess of 100 g/t was produced from the field.
"The opportunity to apply modern exploration techniques and test potential extensions to the high-grade ore shoots at Lucknow for the first time was compelling and we are working hard to have our first round of diamond drilling commence early in 2020," he said.
During the 12-month period, Talisman received a number of approaches in relation to the Sinclair Nickel Project which was a catalyst for the company undertaking a review of strategic options for the asset.
The chairman said: "By applying our consistent, value-based decision-making framework, the Board ultimately determined the best interests of Talisman shareholders was served by agreeing to divest the asset to Saracen Mineral Holdings Limited (ASX:SAR).
"Consideration for the divestment was $10 million cash and a 2% Net Smelter Return (NSR) royalty over any metal production from the Sinclair tenements, plus a 2% NSR royalty over any future non-precious metal production from Saracen’s Waterloo Nickel Project, which is on care and maintenance.
"The Sinclair and Waterloo NSR royalties further increase our portfolio of royalties. In addition to these assets, Talisman also holds a 1% NSR royalty over any copper and gold mined and processed from the Springfield JV beyond the mine plan for the Monty deposit when the asset was sold, plus a 1% gross revenue royalty over the Wonmunna and Uaroo iron ore projects which were sold in 2011."
He added: "The completion of the Springfield and Sinclair divestments has left the business well capitalised to continue our exploration and business development activities throughout 2020."