Uranium news from Saskatchewan and elsewhere for May 17 to 23, 2014
by Greg Klein
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Kivalliq signs LOI with Westham Resources on Saskatchewan Genesis property
Its flagship Angilak project in Nunavut holds Canada’s highest-grade uranium deposit outside the Athabasca Basin. Nevertheless Kivalliq Energy TSXV:KIV was drawn into Saskatchewan with last January’s acquisition of the 198,763-hectare Genesis project. Now the company plans to bring in Westham Resources TSXV:WHR.P as a funding partner.
Under a letter of intent announced May 21, the capital pool company could acquire an 85% interest in return for 20% of its issued and outstanding shares, $1 million in payments and $5 million in spending over four years. The exploration commitment would include $1 million by year-end and another $1.5 million by August 31, 2016. Kivalliq would act as project operator for at least two years. Kivalliq director Dale Wallster would join Westham’s board.
Among other conditions, Westham must raise a private placement of at least $2 million.
The property lies northeast of the Basin in the prospective Western Wollaston Tectonic Domain and “covers basement rocks known to host uranium mineralization,” the companies stated. Previous operators and government surveys “outlined over 30 uranium showings that include several uranium-bearing boulder trains.” Based on that data, Kivalliq has identified eight initial targets for geophysics, sediment sampling, soil sampling, mapping and prospecting to be completed by early autumn. The company hopes to follow with a “major” drill program early next year.
UEC adds one Texas property, “releases” another
Still expanding its southern Texas “hub-and-spoke” projects, Uranium Energy Corp NYSE MKT:UEC announced a new acquisition May 20, this one with a permitting advantage. The Longhorn project’s aquifer exemption “eliminates a major permitting hurdle” for a potential in-situ recovery operation, covering the mining zone of interest and allowing for expansion, the company stated. The project’s historic legacy includes drill maps and over 500 logs of gamma radiation data.
UEC compiled the project leases and data “over the last 18 months at a very low cost.”
The company also announced a decision to “release” its Channen project following evaluation of last summer’s drill results.
In April UEC completed a preliminary economic assessment for its Slick Rock uranium-vanadium deposit in Colorado. A week before that, the company announced its Burke Hollow ISR project in Texas had begun permitting.
UEC’s southern Texas holdings include the Hobson processing plant, the Palangana ISR mine, the Goliad development project and satellite properties. Of its nearly two dozen exploration properties, two are located in Paraguay and the others in the western U.S.
Unity picks up historic Uranium City region property
Twenty-six kilometres southwest of Uranium City, Saskatchewan, the Gulch Mine project comprises Unity Energy’s TSXV:UTY latest acquisition. Announced May 21, the 3,010-hectare property holds an historic, non-43-101 “reserve,” estimated by one source at around 928,796 pounds uranium oxide (U3O8) and by another at 1.65 million pounds. Gulch adjoins properties held by Fission 3.0 TSXV:FUU, Red Rock Energy TSXV:RRK and CanAlaska Uranium TSXV:CVV.
A 100% interest will require $1.2 million in payments over 18 months from Unity, which must drill 3,000 metres within three years. The vendor retains a 2.5% gross overriding royalty. Unity may buy back two-fifths for $1.5 million, less any previous royalty payments.
Earlier this month Unity closed a 100% option on the 14,200-hectare Camsell project in the northwestern Basin. In April the company optioned out 50% of its Mitchell Lake project to Rio Grande Mining TSXV:RGV.
MPVC tests NW Manitoba for uranium, “young” uranium, radon and lead 210
As a rotary air blast drill arrived on site, MPVC Inc TSXV:UNO updated its Northwest Manitoba project on May 22. The RAB drill is intended to quickly test shallow targets found by geophysical, geochemical and prospecting work. Drilling will take place over the lake while ice persists.
Two holes of core drilling have failed to convince a gamma ray spectrometer that they contain significant uranium mineralization, MPVC conceded. But “samples of the core are now being tested for radon, ‘young’ uranium and lead 210 which, if present, could signal the presence of uranium mineralization at greater depths.”
The company also reported receiving a letter of support for its one-year drill permit application from the Northlands Denesuline First Nation.
Contract prices, spending cuts help Ur-Energy withstand uranium’s descent
While uranium sinks to eight-year lows, on May 22 Ur-Energy TSX:URE revised its guidance for this year and next. With mid- and long-term contracts in place, customers have committed to buy approximately 518,000 pounds U3O8 at an average of $51.10 a pound this year, for projected revenues approaching $26.5 million.
As for 2015, the company so far has commitments for 630,000 pounds at an average of $50.10, for projected revenues of $31 million. With spending controls as well as managed production, Ur-Energy expects “to maintain a positive cash position throughout 2014 and 2015.”
Although its processing facility has a nameplate capacity of two million pounds annually, the company plans to keep production tied to contract obligations in 2015 “unless the market demonstrates sustained price improvement.”
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