West Africa-focused iron ore explorer and developer Genmin has announced completion of reclassifying the resource to indicated status at the Bandjougoy prospect of its Detrital Iron Deposit (DID) in Gabon following an infill drilling program.
In addition, the resource has been increased by 1.5 million tonnes to 19.9Mt. DID is part of the company’s overall Baniaka project. Surface accumulations of DID mineral resources at Bandjougoy will form the starter mining area at Baniaka.
Previous pilot-scale metallurgical test work on the Bandjougoy DID produced high-grade (64.8%) lump and 65.2% fines. All DID assays have now been received and the company says updates for the Flouflou and Bingamba North prospects will follow. Surface occurrences will reduce pre-stripping work. Managing director and chief executive officer Joe Ariti said Bandjougoy is central to Genmin’s plan to achieving 100% indicated classification. This will pave the way for an ore reserves estimation.
“Bandjougoy has surface accumulations of DID mineralisation over broad extents, providing immediate mining access without the burden of pre-stripping large volumes of waste,” he added.
The Bandjougoy DID update followed augur and diamond drilling. Baniaka is divided into 12 major prospects at different levels of maturity. The Baniaka pre-feasibility study includes soft oxide mineral resources from the Bandjougoy and Tsengue prospects and DID mineral resources from Bingamba North, Tsengue, Bandjougoy and Flouflor prospects.
Genmin targeting China’s iron ore demand
After listing in March 2021, Genmin set out to target the China market and published a company presentation noting that China is aiming at controlling 45% of iron ore imports, and Beijing has been focusing on Africa, particularly Guinea and the Republic of Congo (Congo-Brazzaville).
The company has been working with China’s Central South University, where its Baniaka lump and fines products are being assessed. Later in 2021, the executive team was broadened to handle in-house marketing, adding sales expertise enabling direct engagement with Chinese steelmakers.