The Company has entered into an option with Tana Minerals Ltd (Tana) whereby Minbos can acquire 90% of the shares in MRE Mining (Mauritius) Limited (MRE). MRE’s sole asset is a wholly owned subsidiary in Madagascar which holds two exploration permits in central Madagascar covering 440 square kilometres.
Under the agreement Minbos has the exclusive right to acquire 90% of the shares in MRE. Terms of the Exclusivity:
The transaction is conditional upon Minbos obtaining all the required regulatory and shareholder approvals, completing due diligence on the project and the renewal of the exploration permits.
Bastnaesite was first identified at Ambato in 1912 and small tonnages were exploited by artisanal miners for jewellery in the 60’s and 70’s. The tenement area has been subject to a number of studies by the local Bureau of Geological Research Ministry (BGRM), the French, German and Soviet agencies. The work has consistently returned high grade REE mineralisation at surface but Ambato has never been drilled.
Twenty-eight rockchip samples collected by Tana on the Ankazohambo prospect in 2010 returned TREO grades of between 0.14% and 40.8% with a median grade of 3.95%. The results confirm earlier sampling conducted by the Kiev National University in 2008 and the German Federal Institute of Geology and Raw Materials (BGR) in the 1980’s.
Coarse Bastnaesite mineralisation is clearly visible in outcrops at Ambato. Bastnaesite is one of only three Rare Earth Minerals that has been commercially exploited.
Mineralogical tests on grab samples show Bastnaesite comprises more than 90% of the contained REE and gangue mineral is predominantly quartz.
QEMSCAN results show more than 75% of the Bastnaesite is contained in grains that have a high degree of liberation (80-100%).
The mineralogical characterisation indicates the grab samples are favourable for beneficiation.
Intermittent sampling at Ankazohambo identified bastnaesite mineralisation over a strike length of 2.4km. Historical trenching at Ankazohambo across strike has returned up to 50m of elevated REE mineralisation. A total of seven REE prospects have been identified to date in the license package including Ankazohambo.
Ambato is located 200km south of the capital Antananarivo along the Route Nationale 7 and approximately 60km south the nearest railhead at Antsirabe which connects to the main cargo port of Toamasina.
The transport infrastructure is in fair but useable condition and considered adequate for the export of the relatively small tonnages of REE concentrates after beneficiation.