Chinova’s Current Prospects

As of April 2021, Chinova had the resource authority holdings in the Cloncurry region of northwest Queensland comprising 32 granted Mining Leases (MLs) with an area of 109.8 km, held by its 100% owned subsidiaries Chinova Resources Cloncurry Mines Pty Ltd (24 MLs) and Chinova Resources Osborne Pty Ltd (8 MLs). Chinova’s exploration holdings comprised 26 granted Exploration Permits for Minerals (EPMs) including joint ventures for a total area of 2,865 km².

Chinova currently has no mining or processing activities and the Osborne and Merlin sites are in care and maintenance, however Chinova has an impressive project pipeline.

Apart from Osborne, the main deposits that make up the Chinova Cloncurry Project, Mount Dore, Starra Line, Merlin, Mt Elliott and SWAN are remote and require the development of key infrastructure e.g. sealed access road, grid electricity connection, water supply.

The CopperString project https://copperstring2.com.au proposes to provide an electricity connection for the Mount Dore / Starra / Merlin deposits to the QLD grid power from 2024. Chinova has a connection to a natural gas supply, via the Cannington spur which traverses the Osborne mine site and connects the Carpentaria Gas Pipeline to the Cannington Mine.

Opportunities exist to share infrastructure and develop synergies between these projects to minimise future capital expenditure and project operating costs. 

Osborne Extended Mine Life Project (EML Project) – Starra Line

Rising copper and gold prices since mid-2019 focused Chinova’s attention on the brownfields Starra mines, as the likely successor to the depleted Osborne orebodies, to provide mill feed for the Osborne Processing Plant. Three Starra mines have been identified to provide ore for a project which is now known as the Osborne Extended Mine Life Project, or the EML Project. They are:-

  • Starra 254 Open Pit = 2.34M tonnes @ 0.77%Cu, 1.28g/t Au.
  • Starra 222 Open Pit = 0.35M tonnes @ 0.68%Cu, 1.20g/t Au.
  • Starra 222 Underground = 3.27M tonnes @ 0.79%Cu, 1.88g/t Au.

The EML Project is planning to mine 6 million tonnes from three mines which will extend the Osborne site life by several years. Ore will be hauled by road trains, approximately 50km from the Starra mines to Osborne Processing Plant, along a haul road, privately owned and operated Chinova.

Starra 276 was previously mined by Selwyn Mines Limited SML about 20 years ago. Chinova also mined underground at 276 in 2013-2014 producing 0.85M tonnes @ 1.67%Cu, 0.93g/tAu. There is potential to include additional mill feed into the EML Project from Kulthor, Starra 276 or other previously mined Starra underground mines with improved metallurgical performance and improving metal prices, however that will be the subject of a future studies.