PERTH (miningweekly.com) – ASX-listed Axiom Mining said on Friday that it would reapply for a prospecting licence over the Kolosori nickel tenement, after the Solomon Islands Court of Appeal in March revoked its current licence for the tenement.
Axiom said that the company was in discussions with key stakeholders in Solomon Islands, as landowner partners committed to continue to support the company.
“I’m pleased that they have decided to continue to stand with us,” Axiom CEO Ryan Mount said.
Japan’s Sumitomo Metal Mining appealed a 2014 ruling from the Solomon Islands High Court, which gave Axiom prospecting rights to the nickel deposit.
In its ruling, the Appeals Court not only revoked Axiom’s licence, but also rejected a portion of Sumitomo’s appeal that the country’s government should not have cancelled its licence to develop the Isabel nickel project.
Axiom said on Friday that the company was also in discussions with the Solomon Islands government, and was awaiting advice on the timing and procedures for the reapplication. Mount said that the company was optimistic about regaining the prospecting licence and planned to continue investing in Solomon Islands.
Following the Court of Appeal ruling, the company would also focus on its San Jorge tenement, which forms part of the greater Isabel nickel project, along with the Kolosori tenement.
The prospecting licence for San Jorge was granted in 2015, with approval from the government and the customary landowners.
Mount pointed out that the San Jorge tenement was in close proximity to Kolosori, and enabled Axiom to rapidly redeploy most existing project infrastructure and resources to progress work on San Jorge.
The company was currently undertaking preliminary exploration activities on the tenement, including community consultation and environmental studies.
Furthermore, Axiom also raised A$5-million through a private share placement, providing the company with funding to undertake the next phase of development of the Isabel project.
The placement was priced at 18c a share, and was aimed at institutional, sophisticated and professional investors.