Wolf Minerals has received increased credit approval of £75m towards the funding of the Hemerdon tungsten and tin mine in Devon. Wolf had previously entered into an agreement with the Hemerdon Mineral Trust and the Olver Trust to acquire the 40 year lease to the project. It is one of the largest tungsten and tin resources in the world, and has planning permission for mining until 2021. The Company plans to develop the Hemerdon project into a low cost, large scale open pit mining operation.
Wolf Minerals Limited is listed on the Australian stock exchange and is a specialty metal exploration and development Company, with a focus on tungsten and tin. The work at Hemerdon will be the company’s flag ship global project. The Company’s strategic objective is to become a world class tungsten producer, through the development of the Hemerdon project. The project has an inferred and indicated global resource of 218.5Mt @ 0.18% tungsten trioxide (WO3) and 0.02% tin (Sn). This equates to an 84% increase in metal and a 3.5% increase in grade on the previous Resource statement from November 2008, which was based on historical drilling by AMAX Ltd.
The Australia business has received the approval of senior debt finance facilities from UniCredit Bank AG (UniCredit Corporate & Investment Banking), ING Bank N.V. and Caterpillar Financial SARL.
The provision of the £75m senior debt facilities is now subject to completion of the project finance but Wolf said the support of the lenders is a "significant milestone" for Wolf and a "strong endorsement" for its confidence in the project.
The funding is to support the planned construction of the project, based on a feasibility study completed in May 2011.
Wolf managing director Humphrey Hale said: "This revised and increased senior debt package demonstrates the strength of the projected future cash flows generated by this world class, low cost tungsten and tin project and we look forward to finalising the funding package to bring this project into production."
The company leading the project to reopen the Hemerdon tungsten and tin mine near Plymouth, has established its UK base at Tamar Science Park (TSP). The dual Australian ASX and London AIM listed company has moved into the Drake building, within Phase 4 of the Park.
Earlier this year Wolf completed the first major infrastructure work on the project, when a 600m link road was completed between Lee Moor Road and West Park Hill in Plympton. Establishing its Plymouth offices marks yet another milestone for Wolf as it continues work towards bringing the mine – the fourth largest tungsten resource in the world – back into production.
It is anticipated that when fully up and running the project – which has planning permission in place - will generate 230 direct jobs, and many more indirect jobs, pumping millions of pounds into the local economy and developing a new skills and technology base.