Western Australia-based Shaw River Manganese has increased its stake in the Otjozondu manganese project in Namibia, from 84% to 87.2%.

The move comes after Otjozondu minority shareholder Oreport Holdings elected not to fund its share of project costs.

Shaw River, through its subsidiary Otjozondu Holdings, plans to fund all forward expenditure at the Otjo project by equity subscription, through pro rata offers of equity by Otjozondu Mining.

The company noted that it has pre-emptive rights covering Oreport’s minority shareholding in Otjozondu, which was flagged for sale on 28 June 2013, and it will consider the rights should a suitable buyer be found for Oreport’s shareholding.

Shaw River is targeting a low-cost, scalable, start-up development of the Otjozondu project, which has a 17 million tonne resource with significant exploration upside.

The project is located 150km north-east of the Namibian capital of Windhoek and lies in a historical manganese field that has produced in aggregate about 550,000t of high-grade manganese since the 1950s.

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In early December 2012, Shaw River announced a new mineral resource estimate at the Otjo project, totalling 17 million tonnes at 22.5% manganese.

Shaw River holds exploration and mining licences for 1,367km² of the known strike of the Otjozondu manganese field.

Shaw River also owns the Baramine project in the East Pilbara region of Western Australia, and the Butre project in Ghana.

Image: Blast-hole drilling and sampling at Shaw’s Otjozondu manganese project in Namibia. Photo: courtesy of Shaw River Manganese Limited.