Australian uranium company Toro Energy will shortly commence operations at its 100%-owned, flagship Wiluna Uranium Project in Western Australia.
Situated 30km from Wiluna, the project is an advanced uranium mine awaiting environmental approval from the Australian Federal Government.
The company expects final approvals this year and estimates 1.8 million lbs of U3O8 output annually over a 14-year life of mine.
Comprising the Centipede and Lake Way deposits, the Wiluna project is projected to sell its first uranium in early 2014.
The project's feasibility study demonstrated viable processing plant design and the detailed engineering design; infrastructure and cost estimates will begin once all approvals are in place.
Meanwhile, Toro released an updated project economic model with information from the study, pilot plant test work and revised mine plan.
As per the model, the project entails a total estimated cost of $269m, which includes $207m direct costs, $31m EPCM and $31m as contingency at operating costs of $37 for each U3O8lb.
Total uranium resources at Wiluna across measured, indicated and inferred categories stands at 54 million lbs in five deposits with potential to develop more tenements.
The project has also attracted interest from potential joint venture partners for investments and offtake arrangement.
With technical and financial review underway, Toro's Board will report on the final investment decision after June 2013, subject to current uranium market conditions and appropriate project financing.
Toro has thus far secured the WA Ministerial environmental approval and an agreement to negotiate mine plans with traditional owners and the local Aboriginal community.
Image: Toro will soon begin construction of the uranium mine at Wiluna. Photo: Toro Energy Limited.