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Antilles building significant copper-gold portfolio in Cuba

Updated: Mar 11

The La Cristina concession in Cuba appears highly-prospective for copper-gold-molybdenum porphyry systems. Credit: File

Antilles Gold looks set to add three copper-gold-molybdenum concessions to its portfolio after a successful prospecting program across the Sierra Maestra copper belt in south-east Cuba.

The company has registered for two reconnaissance permits across the 49,000-hectare Vega Grande and 1100ha Buey Cabón concessions in addition to a geological investigation concession at the 3600ha La Cristina site.

Antilles has been advised by the Cuban Government’s mining company GeoMinera SA that its subsidiary, Gold Caribbean Mining SA, has applied for the registration of concessions over the three areas and once accepted, they will be included in the company’s exploration agreement in that country.

Then once the three concessions are incorporated in the exploration agreement, the explorer plans to fund a modest exploration program before nominating which concessions should be transferred to a joint venture (JV) for additional exploration and possible future development.

A new JV company will be established to focus on copper projects, expected to initially include the concession covering the large El Pilar copper-gold porphyry system in central Cuba, in addition to any Sierra Maestra concessions that demonstrate commercial potential. The JV will be obliged to reimburse Antilles for the cost of its preliminary exploration and review.

The company believes the highly-prospective Sierra Maestra copper concessions, together with the El Pilar copper-gold porphyry concession held in the current exploration agreement with GeoMinera, present a host of exciting copper targets.

The El Pilar project covers 1700ha and is one of three exploration concessions currently held by Antilles in its agreement with GeoMinera.

Recently-released assays from drilling at the El Pilar oxide zone highlighted 134.5m grading 1.13 per cent copper from 49.85m, including 18.5m at 4.85 per cent copper. It was in addition to 30.5m at 0.51 per cent copper from 49.5m, including 14m going 38.31 grams per tonne gold.

The Sierra Maestra concessions include several small historic mines that produced high-grade copper and gold up until 1947. The area is also within an underexplored belt that hosts the significant El Cobre deposit. Antilles says El Cobre has been mined for copper, gold and base metals since 1540, making it the oldest copper mine in the Americas.

The company says it is investigating whether funding for the 2024 and 2025 exploration program of the El Pilar porphyry system and the Sierra Maestra concessions, might be provided by a major mining group rather than further share issues.

A proposal will be put to parties interested in participating in the exploration of potentially large copper targets following receipt of results from the up-coming El Pilar porphyry drilling program, and any funds raised would be advanced by Antilles Gold as equity contributions, or loans, to the joint venture that will be established with GeoMinera to explore, and possibly develop major copper deposits. Antilles Gold executive chairman Brian Johnson

Once registered, the Sierra Maestra concessions will be held in the Los Llanos International Economic Agreement between subsidiaries of Antilles and GeoMinera. Under Cuban mining regulations, the three concessions must be registered within 45 days of the applications that were made on April 11.

Once the registration is complete and added to Antilles’ substantial El Pilar copper-gold porphyry system, where drilling is scheduled to start within a fortnight, management will have a serious copper exploration portfolio at its disposal.

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