Arafura Resources Limited (ASX:ARU) has reached an in-principle agreement with the Native Title Holders for the Nolans Neodymium-Praseodymium (NdPr) Project site in the Northern Territory.
Following a recent meeting, the prescribed body corporate representing the Native Title Holders has resolved to enter into an Indigenous Land Use Agreement (ILUA) for the project.
The meeting at Aileron in the Northern Territory was attended by about 100 Native Title Holders, senior staff of the Central Land Council (CLC) and members of the company’s executive management.
CLC is the Native Title representative body for this region of the NT.
Result of negotiations
The key ILUA is the result of negotiations between Arafura and the CLC during 2019 and 2020.
It is the culmination of a lengthy period of engagement between Native Title Holders, the CLC and Arafura since the establishment of an agreement in 2003 that covers the conduct of exploration over an area that includes the Nolans Project site.
Details of the ILUA are commercial and in-confidence between the parties.
These details will be presented at the next full Council meeting of the CLC, which is expected to be in early April 2020.
Final stage of separation pilot program
Arafura recently completed the seventh and final stage of its rare earth separation pilot plant program and results confirm the ability to produce separate rare earth products.
This program, which used ore taken from Nolans, had two prime objectives – to produce saleable products to the specification of customers and to acquire data for the design of the eventual separation plant.
The program produced a refined liquor in which NdPr constitutes >99.9% of the total contained rare earth elements (TREE).
It also produced a refined liquor where SEG-HRE (middle and heavy rare earths) comprised >99.5% of the TREE.
The NdPr oxide and SEG-HRE carbonate product samples will be made available for assessment as previously agreed with potential customers.