The company was also recently accepted as a member of European Battery Alliance, an organisation launched by the European Commission to support the development and growth of the European battery industry.
AVZ’s strategy to ensure a diverse customer base has been further underpinned by the addition of lithium to the European Union’s critical raw materials list.
Financing negotiations for Manono
AVZ’s negotiations related to the financing options for developing the Manono Lithium and Tin Project in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) with several entities in Europe, the Middle East and South Africa are progressing well.
The company’s data room has been made available to several entities for some months to allow due diligence on the Manono Project to be completed.
Tenders for the process plant as well as the Kabondo Dianda intermodal staging site, mine-site buildings, crew accommodation, diesel supply and camp catering services packages for the Manono project are currently being adjudicated by the company.
These contracts will be awarded once AVZ’s board makes a final investment decision (FID) to mine Manono.
The company has issued a tender for the rehabilitation of the Mpiana Mwanga Hydro Electric Power Plant (HEPP) with proposals due back by the end of October 2020.
Environmental and Social Impact Assessments (ESIA) for the HEPP, access road and power transmission line are complete.
AVZ is also engaged in discussions with the Angola Railway Company (CFB) regarding the potential use of their rail services.
Special Economic Zone
The company will hold an inaugural or stage 1 workshop this month with various government departments to discuss the proposed Manono Special Economic Zone (MSEZ) and it expects to begin stage 2 shortly after completing the first stage.
AVZ’s proposed framework of tax incentives has also been submitted to the DRC Government for its review.
Ten new geological resource holes for 1,700 metres of diamond drilling will be conducted on the Roche Dure pit floor with drilling expected to begin in late September.
This will upgrade some Inferred Resources up to at least an Indicated Resource status.
AVZ expects assay results to be available in November 2020 if it can complete the drilling by the end of October 2020.
In addition to the resource drilling program at Roche Dure, various hydrogeological and geotechnical investigations are currently underway or being planned.
Mine design update
After completing the pit floor drilling, a new mine design optimisation will be undertaken.
This redesign will cater to the expected changes to the near-surface resources along with potential improvements to the operating costs of the Manono Project.
Consequently, a new Ore Reserves Estimate will be generated based on the revised mine design, which is expected to be completed towards the end of December 2020.