UK-based tungsten exploration and development company W Resources has secured an environmental permit for its La Parrilla mine in Spain.
Approval from the environmental department of the regional authority of the Junta de Extremadura for the fast-track mine (FTM) will clear ways for development approval for the project.
Development approval from country's mining department is expected in September.
W Resources chairman Michael Masterman said: "This is a major milestone for W Resources that de-risks the project and demonstrates the government's support for the rapid development of the project.
"The development approval for the fast-track mine will be the next key step, paving the way for first mine production in 2016."
Meanwhile, the company is advancing metallurgical and ore sorter test work in Germany, infill drilling and equipment testing and selection.
The findings from the predevelopment work will help in the development study of the project, which will be updated during the fourth quarter of this year for possible revision in resource estimate, mine planning and design.
The company is also talking to partners to finance the project.
La Parrilla project is located in Extremadura region in Caceres-Badajoz province of Spain.
It includes three mining concessions in Adelaide and Victoria, which are spread across an area of 1,000ha.
The project includes a tungsten mine and a tungsten tailings project with an estimated mineral reserve of 46.92 million tonnes at 0.09% WO3 according to estimates conducted by Golder in June 2013.
Image: W Resources is undertaking infill drilling and equipment testing and selection at its La Parrilla tungsten mine. Photo: courtesy of W Resources.