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Canada miner to begin Batangas drilling

Canadian firm Mindoro Resources Ltd. expects sometime this quarter to begin drilling for copper, gold and silver in Batangas province, south of Manila.

Mindoro Resources “is well positioned to capitalize on the global demand for gold in 2009, with plans underway to drill the Kay Tanda and Lobo gold projects, funded by [our partners] Avocet Mining PLC and Gold Fields,” the company said in a statement.

Gold Fields has advised that it “anticipates the first drill program to commence on the Lobo porphyry copper-gold project prior to the end of the first quarter,” Mindoro Resources added

In September 2008, Mindoro Resources signed a non-binding letter agreement with a member of the Gold Fields group of companies. The agreement established the basic commercial framework where Gold Fields could earn up to 75-percent interest in each of Mindoro Resources’ El Paso, Lobo and Talahib copper-gold projects.

The mineral exploration company also has a memorandum of understanding with Avocet, a London-based gold producer, for its Archangel project.

Under this document, Avocet is allowed to have up to 75-percent interest in the Archangel project, which includes the Kay Tanda gold-silver resource and several other copper-gold prospects.

As of last month, Avocet had contracted Indodrill Philippines Inc. to do an initial, minimum 1,500 meters of diamond drilling at Kay Tanda, Mindoro Resources said said.

Avocet said that the rig to be used in the Kay Tanda operations was “en route to the site, and expected to arrive within the week.”

Mindoro Resources also said it hoped to finalize within the year two additional joint venture arrangements for its copper-gold prospects at Pan de Azucar, off Panay Island, and at the Surigao area in Mindanao.

The company’s interests in Surigao covers 24,000 hectares — the second-largest mineral holdings in the province — with mineral zones of epithermal gold, copper-gold porphyry, and nickel-cobalt laterite.

Mindoro Resources said it was identifying a suitable partner to fund development of its “significant Agata North nickel resource” in Surigao del Norte province.

Estimates on Agata North showed a combined measured and indicated resources of 4.95 million wet metric tons of mineral with grades of 1.18 percent nickel, 0.074 percent cobalt and 28 percent iron, translating to some 92.4 million pounds of nickel.

Mindoro Resources has so far identified 22 copper-gold prospects in the Philippines. With editing by INQUIRER.net

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