Walkabout Resources Ltd (ASX:WKT) spent the September quarter actively engaged in developing the fully permitted, 100%-owned high-grade Lindi Jumbo Graphite Project in South-East Tanzania and has progressed negotiations for debt and equity fundraising to secure the capital required for construction.
The company holds 100% of a Mining Licence and between 70% and 100% of adjacent graphite prospecting licences at the project with an enduring option to acquire the remaining 30% share.
Walkabout aims to take advantage of forecast market conditions for large and jumbo flake graphite products and has delineated a high-grade graphite mineral reserve within the mining licence area.
Securing debt funding
During the quarter, the company launched a process to secure debt funding of US$30 million to US$40 million from international markets.
The debt facility in favour of the Tanzanian project holding company, Lindi Jumbo Limited, is navigating in-house corporate approvals with a large Tanzanian-based commercial bank.
In response to the strict security requirements for the loan, Walkabout sought to secure suitable credit insurance in line with the bank requirements.
After undergoing insurance creditworthiness due diligence, Phoenix Insurance, a Tanzanian insurance provider has provided terms for credit risk insurance for the mining project loan.
The bank is now progressing the loan application through four levels of internal approvals and the company remains confident the approvals process will be finalised shortly.
Amani Hard Rock Gold Project
The company has also applied for exploration rights and an associated tenement package covering more than 800 square kilometres within a highly prospective and underexplored gold region in southwestern Tanzania.
One prospecting licence (PL11469/2000) has been granted by the Mines Department in Tanzania and the applications for a further three contiguous licences have been recommended for granting.
The tenement package will give the company a commanding first-mover advantage for prospective hard-rock gold exploration in the area which was previously the focus of an alluvial gold rush during the late 1990s but has remained largely unknown to the gold exploration industry within Tanzania and has never been exposed to a modern, systematic exploration program for hard-rock gold.
The company considers the project to be a valuable addition to its diverse mineral exploration portfolio in Africa and the UK.
Location of Scottish licences, known mineral occurrences and historic mines.
During the quarter, the company received the reconnaissance exploration results for the Blackcraig Lead, Zinc and Silver Project and Glenhead Gold Project in Scotland.
Blackcraig is a priority target area delineated from the limited historical datasets covering the company’s 746 square kilometre landholding in Scotland.
The area has a pre-eminent history of high-grade lead and zinc mining during the 18th and 19th centuries.
Reconnaissance mapping, historical evidence from maps and the location of old shafts suggest a strike extent of the mineralised system in excess of 4.5 kilometres.
Rock-chip assays from numerous legacy spoil heaps confirm the very high-grade nature of the ore body with best results of up to 30% zinc, 9.1% lead, 7.4% copper and 36.1 g/t silver in individual rock samples.
A maiden drilling program has been planned over this and the legacy mining area.
Glenhead Gold Project
The Glenhead Gold Project is about 15 kilometres to the north of Blackcraig and was originally evaluated during a mineral reconnaissance program by the British Geological Survey during the late 1970s where seven shallow holes primarily targeting the location of the outcropping quartz vein and in-soil anomalies, were drilled.
Best results recorded were estimated at around 1-metre at 5.9 g/t gold, 1-metre at 4.6 g/t and 4.5 metres at 1.5 g/t.
A long-term access agreement with Scotland Lands and Forestry has been finalised for the Glenhead area.
Planning and permitting for a low-cost tenement scale airborne-drone geophysical program is well underway and will cover both the Glenhead and Blackcraig project areas.
The survey is expected to enhance the company’s understanding of the complex structural setting of the area, with the aim of significantly reducing the time and cost to generate robust undercover targets for detailed follow-up fieldwork.