Friday 30th September 2016

Resource Clips


Athabasca Basin updated

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MillenMin lays claim to eastside properties

Staking continues, with MillenMin Ventures TSXV:MVM grabbing six properties totalling nearly 19,000 hectares mostly on the Basin’s east side. One property lies about 40 kilometres beyond the rim, the May 6 announcement stated. The company plans to review data prior to a 2013 exploration program. In a change of focus from its Windpass gold project in British Columbia, MillenMin has its eyes open for additional uranium acquisitions in the Athabasca region.

Expert advisers join Lakeland

Lakeland Resources TSXV:LK brought aboard new uranium expertise with the first two members of an advisory board announced May 2. Uranium geoscientist Richard Kusmirski’s resume includes service as exploration manager for Cameco and VP of exploration for JNR Resources, later moving up to the company’s president/CEO. JNR was taken over by Denison last February.

Uranium industry specialist Thomas Drolet spent 26 years with Ontario Hydro, led the Canadian Fusion Fuels Technology Project, was managing director of American Electric Power Canada and president of Canadian Energy Opportunities. He now heads Drolet & Associates Energy Services, a consultancy company.

Lakeland has staked five Basin properties totalling about 100,000 hectares. The company also announced the extension of a letter of intent for eight other Basin properties, totalling about 190,000 hectares, from April 30 to June 15.

Azincourt to fund Fission for 50% of PLN

Immediately north of Fission/Alpha’s Patterson Lake South project sits 27,408 hectares called, predictably, Patterson Lake North. On April 29 Fission optioned half of PLN to Azincourt Resources TSXV:AAZ. The latter may earn its share by paying $4.75 million in cash or shares (Azincourt’s choice), granting a 2% NSR and spending $12 million by April 29, 2017. The deal requires Azincourt to close a $1.5-million private placement to fund the coming year of exploration, including 2,500 metres of drilling.

PLN features several EM anomalies “including what may be interpreted to be the southern extension of the Saskatoon Lake EM conductor, which itself is associated with the Shea Creek deposit to the north.” UEX Corp TSX:UEX calls Shea Creek the Basin’s third-largest uranium resource.

Fission, following success at PLS and the 60% Waterbury Lake interest acquired by Denison, will act as project operator. Fission has already spent about $4.7 million exploring PLN.

Denison increases exploration, offers $13-million private placement

Q1 results released May 8 show Denison’s net loss from continuing operations reached $5.47 million, a penny a share, for the quarter ending March 31. Among other expenses are Denison’s share of keeping the McClean Lake mill on standby. A JV held 22.5% by Denison, 7.5% by OURD Canada and 70% by operator AREVA Resources Canada, the mill is expected to resume operations with feed from the Cigar Lake mine (itself a JV held 50% by Cameco, 37% by AREVA Resources Canada, 8% by Idemitsu Canada Resources and 5% by TEPCO Resources), anticipated to begin production about mid-year.

Denison also reported spending $4.71 million on exploration in Q1, compared with $3.02 million during the same period last year, most of it in Canada.

One day following the quarterly, Denison announced a $13-million offering of 10 million flow-through shares at $1.30 each, with options on an additional 1.5 million flow-through shares granted to the underwriters at the same price. The company expects to close the offering by May 28, with proceeds used to advance its Athabasca projects. On May 10 the company announced its board of directors had been re-elected.

Cameco posts reduced profit, reflects on supply and demand

As a major producer, Cameco’s quarterly showed net earnings of $9 million ($0.02 per share) for the three months ending March 31, compared to $129 million ($0.33 per share) for the same period last year.

Reflecting on uranium demand, Cameco’s May 1 report found “near to medium-term uncertainty continues to impede a recovery.” But the company stated, “We believe the long-term picture for nuclear continues to be strong” with annual growth of 3% to 2022.

Meanwhile supply “faces challenges both from primary and secondary sources.” Last year saw a number of projects delayed or cancelled due to post-Fukushima prices. Secondary sources continue to diminish, most notably the Highly Enriched Uranium (or megatons-to-megawatts) project, which ends this year. “The end of this agreement will remove more pounds from the market than our total annual production, and there is no secondary source of similar scale expected,” the company warned.

AREVA Resources rolls out its roadshow

An annual event with AREVA Resources Canada, the company’s visiting a dozen northern communities during May and June to discuss its work and recruit trainees for its mill operator program. Click here for more info and the schedule.

Read previous coverage of Athabasca Basin uranium activity here and here.

Read more about uranium supply, demand and prices here.

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