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:: Bioheap Signs Heads of Agreement for Copper Project in China
BioHeap Ltd , the majority-owned subsidiary of Titan Resources Limited and developer of the BioHeapTM technology, and the China Western Mining Company Limited, a major Chinese producer of copper, have executed a Heads of Agreement to form a joint venture in respect of the use of the BioHeapTM technology at CWMís Hoegeqi copper mine in Inner Mongolia, a province of the Peopleís Republic of China.
Column leach trials of ore from Hoegeqi were conducted during 2004 and 2005. The results of the tests indicated that the BioHeapTM technology will leach up to 88% of the copper contained in ore from the Hoegeqi mine.
In line with BioHeapís strategy of establishing commercial relationships with partners before embarking on significant site-based testwork, the CWM - BioHeap Joint Venture will be established as the vehicle that will conduct a large scale, field trial at the Hoegeqi mine. Ownership of the joint venture will be 50/50 and the costs of conducting the field trial and constructing the pilot plant will be shared equally.
Upon successful completion of the trial, the parties to the joint venture have agreed to develop a BioHeapTM copper production facility at Hoegeqi with a capacity of 10,000tpa of cathode. The Hoegeqi copper deposit contains 44 million tonnes of ore with an average grade of 1.3% Cu. The near-mine environment has outstanding exploration potential. CWM currently has a conventional operation at the mine producing 10,000 tpa copper in concentrate form that is shipped off site for toll smelting. The short term aim of the joint venture is to double this production by treating the higher grade ores at Hoegeqi in the conventional plant and the lower grade material, between 0.6% and 1% Cu, in the BioHeapTM plant.
Colin Hunter, BioHeapTM Ltdís CEO said, "This is another significant landmark in the development of BioHeap Limited and an important step in the commercialisation of the BioHeapTM process. The adoption of BioHeapTM technology by China Western Mining is an integral part of their overall project strategy and we look forward to successfully completing the field trial and the construction of a fully integrated copper production facility."
BioHeap Limited is already working in China with significant Chinese mining groups and the signing of this Heads of Agreement follows the recent announcement by Fox Resources Ltd of its agreement to purchase a license to use the BioHeapTM technology on its copper-nickel deposits in the Pilbara.
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