by Greg Klein | March 16, 2017
Contiguous to a potash mine in development and within the world’s largest potash-importing region, Vatic Ventures NEX:VCV.H has begun Phase I exploration on its Saksrithai project in Thailand. Up to 40 line-kilometres of 2D seismic surveying will test the continuity of the geological structure and thickness of a potash-bearing layer. Operator Geocon has wide experience in potash exploration in the Khorat evaporate basin, where Saksrithai’s located.
In January Vatic acquired an 80% interest in Saksrithai Development, which holds prospecting licences for the 3,200-hectare project. The Khorat Basin hosts the world’s largest undeveloped potash deposit and the only commercially viable potash deposits known in Asia, according to Vatic. Contiguous to Saksrithai, construction began last year on the Dan Khun Thot project, a carnallite-sylvinite deposit grading 21.5% potassium chloride. A mining licence is pending for another Basin project, Udon Thani, with a grade of 40% KCl.
Vatic CEO Gerry Wright led Asia Pacific Resources for 12 years, where he was directly responsible for the company’s acquisition, financing and development of Udon Thani.
According to figures cited by Vatic, Asia consumes over 40% of global potash production, while Southeast Asia is expected to show the highest growth rate in demand. Thailand, Indonesia, Malaysia and Vietnam now consume over five million tonnes of potassium chloride a year, an amount growing about 6% annually.
The company’s next steps would include a 10-hole drill program, baseline environmental studies and community programs.