Australia-based mineral exploration company Minemakers has secured the final government approval to mine at the Baobab Phosphate Project located in the Republic of Senegal.

Upon receiving the final approval of the environment impact study and community support and relocation plan, the company’s board of directors will make the decision with regards to going ahead with mining.

"We express our thanks and appreciation to the Senegalese authorities."

As part of the decision, the company plans to invest on key works that need to be made in a bid to ensure that the Baobab Project is on track for commercial production by mid-2016.

Minemakers managing director and CEO Cliff Lawrenson said: "We express our thanks and appreciation to the Senegalese authorities, as well as community leaders who conducted a thorough and professional process in assessing our project."

In May, the project secured a small mine permit (SMP), which covers all future mining activity within the identified 5km² area.

The associated environmental impact statement and a community relocation and compensation plan are well-advanced for the project.

Early last year, Minemakers became involved in exploration at Baobab and carried out a programme of reverse circulation, and air core, drilling at several prospects.

The programme was aimed to either follow up on positive drill results obtained from the 2012 programme or to carry out scout drilling based on recommendations contained within the French Geological Survey (BRGM).