Mineral exploration and investment company Mundoro Capital is focused on providing value for its shareholders through the exploration work it is undertaking on its copper and gold projects in Serbia and Bulgaria.
Mundoro CEO Teo Dechev highlights that the company’s projects are located on the Western Tethyan belt of south-eastern Europe, which boasts historical discoveries of 67-million ounces of gold and substantial quantities of copper, lead and zinc combined.
The company’s portfolio in Serbia comprises the Timok North and Timok South projects, with Timok North being an optioned joint venture partnership with Japanese State-owned independent administrative institution Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation.
Since March 2016, Jogmec has been investing in the Timok North projects. The terms of the agreement are that, during Phase 1 of the partnership, Jogmec has to invest about C$5.9-million over the course of three years to secure itself an earn-in of 51%, at which point the JV will become formalised.
Jogmec has completed the first year of Phase 1 and will be investing about C$2-million this year (which is Year 2 of Phase 1) for Timok North, which will be used for further exploration drilling.
Mundoro has 100% ownership of Timok North, Timok South and its Bulgaria-based projects. However, Dechev says that Mundoro is open to a JV partnership on its Timok South and Bulgaria projects, should suitable partners and opportunities arise.
The company has been exploring the Serbian and Bulgarian licence areas since 2012 and has been able to establish drill targets from geochemistry, geophysics, ground mapping and sampling.
“We are now at the stage where we have generated drill targets, tested a portion of the targets and have advanced one of the Timok North projects furthest, namely Zeleznik. It is in Zeleznik that we will be doing the most amount of drilling this year to determine if an initial resource can be established in this licence area,” comments Dechev.
She remarks that what the company has ascertained from these drillings to date has been “encouraging”. At Drill Hole ZELDD06, it recorded 52.3 m at 0.31% copper equivalent near to the surface in the east zone, and at Drill Hole ZELDD01, it recorded 25.8 m at 0.43% copper equivalent in the west zone, which Dechev says is “a good illustration of what may be extracted near the surface”.
This is in addition to the fact that Zeleznik neighbours an existing operation, which has a concentrator and rail access to the smelter in Bor, which may potentially add to the project’s viability in the long term.
However, Dechev cautions that it is still early days in the development of Zeleznik and the next step would be to test-drill it further to establish the economics of this discovery.
Another licence within Timok North is Borsko, which Mundoro is currently drilling on and it plans to release the assay results of this drilling by the end of this month. Mundoro says it is encouraged by the alteration and mineralisation it has encountered in these drill holes.
Dechev tells Mining Weekly that Mundoro will be spending about C$2-million on further exploration drilling at Timok South and its Bulgarian projects during the current financial year.
She points out that Mundoro is in the top quartile of exploration, as it has one of the lowest general and administrative spends for the level of exploration among active explorers, with about 75% of each $1 going towards exploration work.
Further, Dechev highlights that the region has a long history of mining, along with good infrastructure, a local experienced workforce and a favourable tax regime for mining companies, making it a “great place” to develop a mining operation.
“These factors, in addition to Mundoro’s cash position of about C$4.9-million as of year-end 2016, a current enterprise value of about C$8-million, a JV partner spending on Timok North, established mining finance professionals and a seasoned exploration team, mean the company has managed to successfully build an enviable project pipeline in one of the most interesting copperbelts worldwide,” she concludes.