The Colombian sun rises for Auxico Resources with a mining permit for its rare earths and PGM project

A pleasant surprise is always a nice thing. These days it seems that any time you see the S&P 500 or the Nasdaq in positive territory on the day it’s considered a pleasant surprise. But that’s not what I’m talking about. What I’m referring to is a situation where you are a junior mining company in hot pursuit of a valuable and globally in-demand commodity, like rare earths, and you come across decent grades of gold, platinum and titanium, at surface no less. I believe that is what you call “having your cake and eating it too”, if you are at all familiar with that expression. If that phrase means nothing to you, then let’s stick with a pleasant surprise.

The company that looks like it’s blessed with an abundance of riches is Auxico Resources Canada Inc. (CSE: AUAG), a Canadian company engaged in the acquisition, exploration and development of mineral properties in Colombia, Brazil, Bolivia, Mexico, and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). They are a combination project generator, miner, processor and marketer all rolled up into one, with a focus on the production of critical minerals and high-value metals, including niobium, tantalum, platinum group metals (such as platinum and iridium), and rare earth elements. Additionally, Auxico is the exclusive trade agent for rare earth concentrates from the DRC. The Company owns directly or through joint ventures, mineral rights in Colombia, Bolivia, and Brazil, with access to close to 4 million tonnes of critical minerals and rare earth elements – the largest deposits outside of China.

But today we are going to focus on their Minastyc Property in Vichada, Colombia, where Auxico recently announced the granting of a mining permit (specifically a Work Plan Authorization) from the National Mining Agency of Colombia. This is a very significant development for the Company because Auxico will now be able to move forward with the formal purchase of the Minastyc Property from its current owner. The approval of the Work Plan was the last condition in the purchase agreement. This leaves one step left, a site visit by representatives of Corporinoquia (the Colombian environmental agency), before the Company will be able to move equipment on site, including heavy machinery for bulk sampling and a processing facility, which will enable Auxico to move towards making a production decision for small-scale mining operations.

In the meantime, Auxico has been busy at the Minastyc Property having previously announced a NI 43-101 Technical Evaluation Report on March 28th of this year with highlights including a 3.2 tonne bulk sample from two locations of the Area 50 pit resulting in a 7.7 kg fine concentrate returning Total Rare Earth Oxides (TREO) grading 68.32% and 65.67% respectively from the two locations. Back in October 2021 the Company reported the discovery of platinum group metals (PGM’s) in samples including Sample 1 with 42.8% titanium, 25.4% niobium, and 8.3% tantalum while Sample 2, found in a different zone on the property, originating from a rock sample containing 30.4% tantalum, 23.3% niobium and 24.5% titanium.

But the fun doesn’t end there. The latest results published by Auxico show gold, platinum, titanium, zirconium and hafnium test results on samples taken from the Area 50, TA Area and two other areas from the Minastyc property. At this point, it’s almost easier to talk about what metal or mineral they don’t have on this property. All joking aside, highlights from the latest fourteen samples, taken from pits in the first metre from surface in these areas, gave an average head grade of 9.5 g/t of gold, and 13.5 g/t of platinum from 8 of the 14 samples that returned grade. Additionally, the Company reported the discovery of 24.5% titanium, 7.8% zirconium, and 2.4 kilograms of hafnium. And if those grades aren’t enough to get your attention, then perhaps the fact that the Company suggests that based on these field observations and from the satellite interpretation, an estimated minimum of 250,000 tonnes of material is represented by this Ferricrete layer in the first metre from surface at Area 50 and the TA area.

All this explains why Auxico is presently coordinating the site visit with Corporinoquia and expects the visit to occur near term. With these kinds of grades literally at surface they could be generating a decent revenue stream in short order to help finance further exploration, a preliminary resource estimate or whatever they determine is the best use of funds.

With a market cap of C$55 million, this isn’t one of those undiscovered companies that provides an almost free option on their exploration. However, with almost every valuable hard rock commodity on the planet concentrated in one spot with pretty impressive grades, any expansion in size could be a boon to shareholders. And I didn’t even touch on the myriad of other interesting opportunities going on at Auxico Resources that you can explore on your own at their website.

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4 responses

  1. Rare Earths Investor Avatar
    Rare Earths Investor

    With my focus on RE any concerns expressed by this company on the growing focus by downstream entities on their feedstock being ESG compliant? RE from the DRC or is it all going to China?

    GLTA – REI

    1. Mopar Avatar

      Their first supply deal went to China. But they’re in talks with numerous western friendly governments now about supply and offtake agreements.

      I think if anyone is going to impose bs esg requirements on these rare earth companies they will miss out. China will gladly take everything.

      1. Rare Earths Investor Avatar
        Rare Earths Investor

        Thanks for the reply.

        I think you are right about China. They are already having problems with lockdowns, Myanmar HRE supply and Greenland Mins’ project development progress. etc. Hence, China has a new move into Peak Res and…?

        I agree that China likely will need to make sure they have enough supply to cover their own future huge consumer market needs. However, for China, ESG compliance by their RE entities outside their own borders may not be a major limitation to any importing.

        Yet, for N. America, EU/UK and AUS, etc, IMHO, whether justified or not, ESG concerns are becoming a major influence on decision making (just peruse RE company releases) both at the governmental and therefore private financing levels.

        Endline manufacturers are going to be expected to check the ESG compliance of their own suppliers (who obviously, therefore, must do their own checks/verifications to gain entry). Brand name integrity is vital for all the majors and could not care less ESG attitudes won’t cut it for activist shareholders or potential product buyers who have choice (ask e.g., Shell).

        RE chains are forming; Chemours, EF and NEO; Vital, REEtec and Schaeffler; MP and GM. Lynas and Japan; ASM, Arafura (?) and S. Korea. All these mentioned companies are acutely aware of ESG and several have been and/or are now involved with local community disputes over projects.

        IMHO, ESG will become (again, right or wrong re., science and or ethics not necessarily the determining factors here – ask Lynas re., politics) an important factor in who enters (or who dominates the upcoming and ongoing offtakes) within the new RE value chains in the regions outlined.

        As a RE investor, these are issues that should be utilized in macro/micro-DD.

        JMO – GLTA – REI

      2. Trevor Reid Avatar
        Trevor Reid

        Great article! I am confident that the secret will be out soon.

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