Quarterly Activities Report
Aspire is focused on developing its world-class 100%-owned Ovoot Coking Coal Project ("Ovoot Project") in northern Mongolia and advancing the region's infrastructure to bring Ovoot Project coking coal to world markets. The Ovoot Project is a new discovery of a large coking coal deposit and the Company has so far spent AU$21 M on its discovery and development.
Aspire's other Mongolian projects include the Nuramt Coal Project (100%), Jilchigbulag Coal Project (100%) and the Zavkhan Iron Ore Project (earning 70%).
- Positive Pre-Feasibility Study for the Ovoot Project completed;
- Initial Probable Reserve of 178 Mt of coking coal, 82% yield and Life of Mine average operating costs of US$118/t;
- Mine Plan has ROM tonnes of 185 Mt and saleable coking coal production of 153 Mt over 15 years;
- Mr James Benson appointed as the Mongolian based Ovoot Project Director. Jim has significant experience in design and construction of large coal, iron ore and associated rail projects in former CIS countries;
- Basin Evolution Study at Ovoot Project by SRK identifies additional exploration targets;
- 23 holes for 4,974 metres of drilling completed at the Ovoot Project in the Quarter;
- Review of Rail Pre-Feasibility Study identifies potential cost savings;
- Ministerial approval received for the alignment of a sealed road from Ovoot to the regional capital of Moron to support initial coal haulage, project development and construction; and
- Non Binding MOU entered into with the Mongolian subsidiary of JSC Russian Railways to discuss a joint development of the Erdenet - Moron - Ovoot rail line.
A Comment From The Managing Director
The June 2012 Quarter was a period with significant developments for the Company. We received new Coal Resources and Coal Reserves statements and a completed a Pre-Feasibility Study in relation to our flagship Ovoot Coking Coal Project ("Ovoot Project"). These statements and study show that the Ovoot Project is a very large and valuable coking coal asset in a global context.
The spotlight was also placed on the role of foreign investment in Mongolia with the Government implementing new legislation that presents a layered approval process for future foreign investment into key industries such as resources. This new law, along with the 28 June national elections, caused a significant amount of uncertainty with respect to the value of resource companies operating in Mongolia.
Aspire looks forward to working with the new Government of Mongolia to see the development of the Ovoot Project and the further development of rail in northern Mongolia.
During the Quarter and through to the date of this report, Aspire continues to push ahead with the development of the Ovoot Project. We have appointed James Benson, a high calibre engineer uniquely qualified to handle the mine and rail construction going forward. Aspire has received Ministerial approval for the alignment and construction of the Ovoot to Moron road as well as an executed Memorandum of Understanding from the Ministry for Roads, Rail and Urban Development supporting Aspire/Northern Railway's potential association with JSC Russian Rail and the joint application with Russian Railways for a concession to Build, Own, and Operate the Erdenet - Moron - Ovoot rail line in northern Mongolia. These latter approvals and MOU's indicate growing support from the Mongolian authorities for Aspire's efforts to develop the Ovoot Project and bring significant economic development benefits to northern Mongolia.
While there is poor equity market sentiment at present, the Company is continuing to add materially to the value of the Ovoot Project and this Quarterly Report details the significant progress made during the period.
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About Aspire Mining Limited
Aspire Mining Limited (ASX:AKM) owns 100% of the Ovoot Coking Coal Project in northern Mongolia. Aspire completed a Pre-Feasibility Study for the Ovoot Project in May 2012, targeting a large scale open pit mining operation, with production of 10-12 Mtpa of saleable coking coal at full capacity. Aspire is targeting first production at Ovoot in early 2016 subject to approvals and licenses. Ovoot ranks as the second largest coking coal Reserve, by project in Mongolia, with a JORC Code compliant Coal Resource at Ovoot of 252 Mt (156 Mt Measured, 70 Mt Indicated, 26 Mt Inferred) and Probable Coal Reserves of 178 Mt. Aspire is continuing to progress its application for a mining license, and access to rail infrastructure and other regulatory approvals.
Aspire Mining Limited