Exploration sometimes yields a lot of brown bread, but even brown bread is nutritious in the end. That's one way to look at the latest three drill results from Sitka Gold Corp. (CSE:SIG; FRA: 1RF) from the Eiger Zone at its RC Gold project in the Yukon. In total, Sitka has drilled 15 holes this year totaling 5,000 meters. Including the results now presented, 9 drill results are available. Results from an additional six drill holes are therefore still pending. The results presented relate to holes DDRCCC-21-013, DDRCCC-21-014 and DDRCCC-21-015, all drilled in the Eiger zone. Eiger is located at the eastern end of the 2,000 meter Saddle - Eiger target (Figure 1).

It certainly looks like Barrick Gold (TSX: ABX) may finally shake off its traumatic past in Tanzania, including years of lost production and threats of expropriation, and instead join forces with the Tanzanian government to write a new success story in the East African country.

Just a few days ago, on October 10, Barrick's President and Chief Executive Mark Bristow took stock of his renewed commitment in Tanzania. https://www.barrick.com/English/news/news-details/2021/tanzanian-mines-on-track-for-production-guidance-well-placed-to-extend-lives/default.aspx The quintessence of his statement could be put like this: Mining pays off for both sides. Since Barrick entered into a groundbreaking partnership with the government in 2020 under the so-called Twiga partnership, the company has paid $118 million in salaries, $496 million in taxes, royalties and license fees, and $609 million for locally procured goods and services. It also paid an initial cash dividend of $250 million. 97% of the workforce is Tanzanian, 40% of whom were recruited from the mines' surrounding communities.

Barrick mines in Tanzania achieve set targets

Speaking to local media, Bristow explained that Barrick Gold Corporation's Tanzanian mines, North Mara and Bulyanhulu, are both on track to meet their 2021 production targets. In line with its long-term commitment to Tanzania, Barrick has also secured exploration targets elsewhere within the Bulyanhulu mining license, Bristow said.

Barrick's recent investments are already bearing fruit, with production growth at Bulyanhulu gaining momentum, according to Bristow. The 11% increase in tonnage is partly due to the investment in three new fully automated loaders and three additional drills. For the first time, a world-class analytical photon assay laboratory has been commissioned at Bulyanhulu - the first of its kind in Africa and in Barrick's global operations. This new technology enables faster, safer and more accurate analysis of gold, silver and complementary elements. This system is an environmentally friendly, chemical-free and more sustainable replacement for traditional fire assay methods, significantly reducing CO2 emissions and hazardous waste. A new crusher has also been commissioned and is being optimized to support increasing production.

At North Mara, a brine treatment plant is scheduled for commissioning in the fourth quarter of this year as part of Barrick's successful efforts to address the mine's historic environmental issues. This also includes a new water treatment plant and an upgraded tailings facility. Last quarter, the Gokona mine's underground operations were connected to the national power grid, reducing diesel consumption by 43%. North Mara's two open pits were redesigned and integrated into the underground mine.

Bristow said Barrick would continue to improve the quality of life in the villages surrounding North Mara in collaboration with the mine's community development committee. Key projects include the construction of a paved road, classrooms, children's wards and laboratories, and support for the agricultural industry.

Changing investment climate in Tanzania also benefits Juniors

We have recently reported on the odyssey of Canadian gold explorer Tembo Gold (TSXV: TEM; FRA: T23A), which has naturally been hit much harder by the political capers in Tanzania than its larger neighbor Barrick. Tembo is also returning to Tanzania and has announced its first exploration campaign in more than six years for its license in the immediate vicinity of the world-class Bulyanhulu mine this fall. Tembo recently raised CAD2 million in fresh capital through a capital increase and is currently valued at just CAD17 million at CAD0.18. We are staying on Tembo.

 

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Make do, not spill, was unmistakably the motto for Desert Gold (TSXV: DAU; FRA: QXR2) in this year's exploration program at its 440 km² SMSZ gold project in gold belt of western Mali. The company spent US$3.5 million on exploration this year alone: A total of 18,200 meters of RC, air core and diamond drilling was completed, as well as 23,000 meters of short auger drilling into the bedrock with the objective of the auger to test for gold under covered areas of the property. In addition, 90 line kilometers of induced polarization surveys and more than 8,000 soil geochemical samples were completed.

P2 Gold Inc. (TSXV:PGLD;FRA:4Z) is working hard to advance the historic Gabbs gold-copper project it acquired from a financial investor's portfolio in May of this year. After extensive geophysical studies and diamond and reverse circulation drilling programs, it is now in a position to advance a preliminary economic assessment of Gabbs, said Joe Ovsenek, P2's president and CEO. Process specialists Kappes Cassiday & Associates, contracted by P2 Gold, have concluded that "‎heap leaching or milling the oxide ores with cyanide has the greatest economic potential" for the project.

Advanced copper explorer Brixton Metals (TSXV:BBB;FRA;8BX1) is well on its way to cracking the code on the extensive copper porphyry system at its 2,600 sq km Thorn project in British Columbia's Golden Triangle. The Company has successfully drilled a series of deep holes on the Camp Creek porphyry target targeting the enriched core of the porphyry. The most recent drill hole, THN21-184, was 1,198.25 meters deep, almost as deep as the adjacent previous hole THN21-183 (1,336m deep) and has returned even better results. Drill hole THN21-184 returned 821m at 0.40% CuEq, including 318m at 0.69% CuEq and 14m at 1.04% CuEq. The bottom of hole 184 is 286m from hole 183. Both drill holes have porphyry mineralization open at depth and in all lateral directions.

Element 29 Resources Inc. (TSX-V: ECU; FRA: 2IK) reports long, well-mineralized intercepts with attractive copper grades from surface bedrock from the first two drill holes at its Elida copper project in Peru. Hole ELID019 intersected 383.75 meters ("m") of 0.54% copper ("Cu"), 0.035% molybdenum ("Mo") and 4.2 g/t silver ("Ag") for 0.71% copper equivalent1 ("CuEq"). (see Figures 1 and 2). Hole ELID020 intersected 308 m at 0.43% Cu, 0.028% Mo, 3.9 g/t Ag (0.56% CuEq1). (See Figure 3). In total, this year's program includes six holes with a planned total length of 4,000-meters. The final two holes are currently in progress.

EcoGraf Limited's (ASX: EGR; FRA: FMK) sustainably produced battery anode material outperforms in quality the reference material from existing manufacturers that use highly toxic hydrofluoric acid (HF) to produce battery graphite from natural graphite. This is the result of an extensive product qualification program conducted by Ecograf in conjunction with a major anode manufacturer. The program for the potential customer was to evaluate the performance of the HF-free product that EcoGraf will produce at its new battery anode material facility in Western Australia.