Horizon Minerals Makes Steady Progress Towards Mine Plan And Gold Processing Plant At Boorara

Horizon Minerals Ltd (ASX:HRZ) continued progressing a consolidated feasibility study in FY2021 with the aim of generating an initial 5-year mine plan to underpin the construction of a stand-alone processing plant at Boorara near Kalgoorlie-Boulder in WA.
As part of this study, trial mining and toll milling of the Boorara deposit was successfully completed providing valuable geological, mining and metallurgical information to de-risk the larger scale development and generated A$3.6 million in cash.
The trial enabled the compilation of a new geological model delivering a 34% uplift in resource grade and provided real-time milling data for plant design including excellent gold recoveries of 94.5% with a high gravity recovery component.
70,000-metre drilling program
Boorara has the potential to provide long life base load feed supported by multiple open pit and underground satellite mines in close proximity to a stand-alone processing plant at Boorara where power, water and support services are at hand with staff travelling 15 minutes to site from the city of Kalgoorlie-Boulder.
Horizon has commenced its largest ever drilling program with 70,000 metres planned across the portfolio.
Of this, 20,000 metres was completed for reserve generation in 2020 at the six core assets making up the initial production profile.
In 2021, the 50,000-metre new discovery and project generation drilling program commenced with up to four rigs on site testing multiple high priority targets with immediate success at the Windanya and Binduli project areas.
Acquisitions and JVs
Horizon also completed a number of acquisitions during the year to further consolidate assets on the major shear zones within a 75 kilometres radius of the proposed Boorara Mill.
The acquisition of the Bulong South, Glandore and Cowarna project areas provides an early production opportunity at the Cannon underground mine and significant exploration upside across the 180 square kilometres of tenure.
Horizon’s 50:50 joint venture with Orminex over the Penny’s Find underground project also presents a near term production opportunity to generate cash during the completion of the feasibility study.
The company’s non-gold joint venture partnerships progressed during the year as did discussions with new potential partners that can provide mutual benefit.
Horizon’s joint venture with RVT covering the world-class 1.8 billion tonnes Richmond Vanadium Project progressed well with the completion of the Lilyvale PFS with the JV partners now moving to complete the DFS in 2022.
Exit from non-core project
In line with Horizon’s strategy of focussed gold development within close proximity to Boorara, the company divested its interest in the Nanadie Well Copper Project in FY2021 for $1.5 million in cash and shares.
Horizon’s listed investments which totalled over A$4.2 million at year end provide shareholders with exposure to other commodities and jurisdictions outside of the Kalgoorlie area.
With continuing concerns around the global economy, COVID-19, trade wars and increased geopolitical tension, the safe haven of gold has seen the US$ gold price maintained around the US$1,800 per ounce mark.
With the Australian dollar gold price holding between A$2,400-A$2,500 and the industry’s focus on organic growth, M&A and reducing costs of production, Australia is now globally competitive and attracting investment both domestically and internationally.
Locally, Western Australia and the goldfields region has had another exceptional year with the mid-tier producers reporting continued record production, cash balances and performance metrics putting them well and truly on the world stage.
Whereas organic growth had been the focus in the past, more corporate activity is now clearly evident with the larger cashed up companies completing major mergers and acquisitions both domestically and overseas.
The recent merger between Northern Star and Saracen has changed the landscape in the local region and put further consolidation at asset and corporate level clearly in the frame.