Gold heavyweight Newmont has withdrawn from the Mt Isa joint venture (JV) with ASX-listed Hammer Resources, leaving the junior company open to negotiations to bring new partners on board to advance exploration.
Hammer executive director Alex Hewlett said that the negotiated conclusion of the JV would leave the company with unfettered rights to pursue several untested exploration opportunities in the former farm-in areas.
In the two-and-a-half years of the JV with Newmont, the companies have conducted an active exploration programme, culminating in the drilling of two large iron-oxide/copper/gold (IOCG) targets at Overlander North and Dronfield, intercepting highly encouraging IOCG alternation and low-grade copper mineralisation in both areas.
Hammer said that it would take the opportunity to test several targets that did not meet Newmont’s target-size criteria, including Overlander North, the Overlander cobalt potential and the copper/gold potential of the Tourist zone.
The company believed that further copper/gold drilling targets generated at Even Steven and Dronfield also warranted drill testing.