In an update on its work plans for the coming year, the AIM-listed miner said exploration at Clogau, a gold project in Wales, will continue to assess and refine a plan to reopen the historic Clogau-St David’s gold mine for commercial production, while results from a diamond drilling campaign at the site are expected by the end of January.
Alba added that a trenching programme is also planned across 10 new gold targets that were identified at a recent soil sampling programme at Clogau.
Meanwhile, at the Amitsoq graphite project in Greenland, the company is planning its 2020 field season which is expected to include 1,100 metres of diamond drilling designed to declare a maiden mineral resource for the project.
Alba also said it will formulate plans for other mining projects such as the Thule Black Sands, Inglefield and Melville Bay projects in Greenland and the Limerick project in Ireland once its has completed priority work at Clogau and Amitsoq.
Alba's executive chairman, George Frangeskides, added that the company will “continue to engage in discussions with interested parties” with a view to unlocking the value of its assets either through joint ventures or disposals.
“While no such transaction has yet been consummated, we will provide an update as and when there are any material developments on that front and will update shareholders on the progress of our various work activities in the coming weeks and months", the CEO said.
Alba’s shares were 3.3% lower at 0.14p in early trading on Thursday.
Broker predicts “abundance” of news going forward
In a note, analysts at First Equity said as a result of the plans described they expected “an abundance of Alba news-flow from both Clogau and Amitsoq in 2020” and reiterated their ‘buy rating on the stock.
“This could give us an early indication of the benefits of modern exploration methods and techniques being utilised on this former mine that previously produced around 80,000 ounces of gold, closing in 1998, when gold traded at US$300 per ounce, compared to today’s much higher price of around US$1,550 per ounce”, the broker said.
They added that they believed the market “understates the potential for Clogau to return to production” and the case for a restart was “very strong” given the opportunity for “selling premium priced ‘Welsh’ gold with a royal heritage”.
First Equity also saw a strong economic case for Amitsoq as, in addition to being a “high-grade graphite deposit” the project was also “near to existing infrastructure in Greenland and located in a favourable southerly latitude in ice-free waters”.