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Sylvania Platinum releases updated resource estimates for Volspruit

(Sharecast News) - Sylvania Platinum released updated mineral resource estimates for its Volspruit Project in South Africa on Friday, situated on the Northern Limb of the Bushveld Complex. The AIM-traded firm said the revised estimates encompassed both the Volspruit North and Volspruit South ore bodies, now including assays for rhodium and ruthenium, previously unassayed.

In the Volspruit North area, the JORC-compliant mineral resource estimate (MRE) for indicated resources revealed 16.42 million tonnes at a 4E (platinum, palladium, rhodium and gold) grade of 2.52 grams per tonne.

That translated to 1.33 million 4E ounces, along with significant quantities of copper at 21.94 million pounds, and nickel at 61.50 million pounds.

Sylvania said that represented a 10% increase in indicated tonnage compared to the previous MRE from October 2022, attributed to refined geological modelling, also yielding a 4% improvement in 4E grade.

The addition of rhodium estimates bolstered the overall grade by approximately 7%.

Moving to Volspruit South, the inferred JORC MRE indicateed 10.60 million tonnes at a 4E grade of 2.11 grams per tonne, accompanied by notable quantities of copper at 14.83 million pounds, and nickel at 46.96 million pounds.

The updated estimate followed a redefinition of mineralised zones, reporting around one-third of the tonnages at almost double the grades previously reported by Integrated Geological Solutions in 2012.

Looking ahead, Sylvania said it was undertaking a preliminary economic assessment of the Volspruit project to evaluate the value added by the Volspruit South resources, as well as the rhodium and ruthenium resources, to the overall project.

Metallurgical test work was ongoing on fresh core drilled during the 2023 calendar year.

Based on the outcomes of the scoping study and metallurgical test work expected in the fourth quarter of the 2024 financial year, it said a decision would be made on advancing the project to a pre-feasibility study phase during the 2025 period.

"I am pleased to announce the successful completion of the mineral resource estimate update at our Volspruit project, facilitated by Earthlab Technical Division, a South African geological consulting company," said chief executive officer Jaco Prinsloo.

"The exploration results align with our strategic goals, emphasising the importance of exploration assets as a key driver for Sylvania Platinum's growth strategy.

"The updated geological model reveals a notable 10% increase in the Volspruit North MRE compared to the October 2022 publication, accompanied by improved overall grades."

Prinsloo said the enhancements resulted from a more constrained geological model based on interpreted mineralised zones.

"Our commitment to meeting investment and workstream requirements for existing mining rights remains steadfast, with specialist teams actively working on authorisations, including the water use licence, environmental impact assessment update, and finalisation of the amended social and labour plan.

"The previously declared measured resources for Volspruit North were downgraded to the Indicated category as a result of the short-range variability between closely spaced boreholes being highlighted during the reef redefining exercise.

"This serves to demonstrate that while our understanding of the resource is improving, we are also able to identify where future efforts will need to be focussed."

Resources for Volspruit South were currently categorised as inferred, Jaco Prinsloo explained, due to structural complexity and sparse drilling data.

"In conclusion, the updated mineral resource estimates demonstrate the positive impact of our optimisation efforts at the Volspruit Project.

"We are optimistic about the future value these results will bring to our stakeholders and are committed to further exploration activities in 2024 to unlock additional value from our existing mining rights.

"We anticipate sharing further updates in the near future."

At 1239 GMT, shares in Sylvania Platinum were up 0.37% at 54.2p.

Reporting by Josh White for Sharecast.com.

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