Genmin, an Australian Securities Exchange (ASX)-listed mining company, has obtained a 20-year mining permit for its wholly owned Baniaka iron ore project in Gabon, West Central Africa.  

The permit was granted through a Presidential Decree signed by Gabon’s president, Général Brice Clotaire Oligui Nguema. 

After securing the mining permit, the company’s immediate goals are to complete a planned capital raise to supply general working capital.  

It is also focused on getting its shares back on the ASX.  

Furthermore, within the next two quarters, it aims to move forward and conclude negotiations with possible project-build financiers. 

Located in the south-eastern part of the country, the Baniaka project encompasses the Baniaka and Baniaka West exploration licences, covering a total area of 881km². 

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Since exploration began in 2013, Genmin has defined a cumulative strike length of 85km of iron mineralisation at Baniaka, which has been subdivided into 12 prospect areas.  

In November 2022, Genmin released a PFS of the Baniaka project. 

The PFS examined the development of a scalable five-million-tonne-per-annum truck and shovel, shallow, free dig contract open pit mine with more than ten years of initial mine life.  

The operation is said to have been designed to produce high-value lump and fines iron ore products with a lower environmental impact.  

The beneficiation process for run-of-mine detrital iron deposits and soft oxide ore involves a simple, low-risk wet ore treatment flowsheet comprising scrubbing, screening and gravity separation. 

Genmin has developed a method that does not require a wet tailings storage facility, in keeping with the company’s dedication to environmental, social and governance goals.  

Genmin managing director and CEO Joe Ariti said: “Today is a momentous occasion for Genmin with the Minister of Mines presenting us with the signed Presidential Decree authorising the production of iron ore from Baniaka for an initial term of 20 years.  

“It enables us to set a target date for the commencement of production of the end of Q2-2025, and in the next six months to finalise project build funding against a backdrop of a new government in Gabon actively promoting, and streamlining time frames for new economic development, and a strong iron ore price environment that has traded in the range of US$105 to US$144 per tonne over the past six months and averaged US$136 per tonne over the past 45 days.”