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Markets // Market Analysis

Renison expansions progress as Q1 output remains flat.

Monday, 08 May 2017

In its latest quarterly report, Metals X reported Q1 tin-in-concentrate production from the Renison Mine in Tasmania remained broadly flat at 1,783 tonnes, up just 1% from the previous quarter. While production is currently steady, progress was reported on both the ore sorting and tailing reprocessing projects during the quarter.

Mined ore grades remain stable at 1.28%, while tin recoveries continue to improve, rising to 75.7% in Q1 from 72.3% in Q4. All-in Costs rose by 2.7% to A$18,992 (~US$14,022), mainly due to an increase in sustaining capital following commencement of construction of a new tailings dam in February 2017.

While the tonnage of ore mined fell 5.8% to 186,230 tonnes compared to the previous quarter, this was a deliberate action to meet the capacity bottleneck of the current processing plant. A new A$13 M (US$9.6 M) ore sorting installation is currently in development which would increase the ore processing capacity by 50,000 tonnes each quarter by adding a pre-concentration stage to the existing processing flowsheet. This could increase tin production capacity by 15-20%, or up to 8,500 tonnes per year. The project is currently being tendered with construction completion targeted by early 2018. The underground mine continues to be developed and significant ore stockpiles exist at the surface to provide the additional feed to meet this new design capacity.

The Rentails tin tailing reprocessing project is also being actively explored, with an update to the 2009 feasibility completed during Q1 to update the capital and operating cost projections. It is expected that the full results of the update will be published in May. Final costings and financing options will be considered during the June quarter, with an investment decision possible in the coming months.

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