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ASX-listed Papillon Resources has intersected high grade mineralisation zones following its 2013 drilling programme at its flagship Fekola gold project in south western Mali.

The project currently hosts a mineral resource estimate (MRE), which comprises 54.97 Mt averaging 2.38 g/t gold for a contained 4.21 Moz of gold at a lower cut-off grade of 1.0 g/t gold.

The results, representing 102 holes and approximately 17 000 m of drilling, comprise a mix of diamond and reverse circulation drill holes targeting down dip extensions of the deposit, as well as near surface mineralisation along strike to the north and south of the MRE area.

Included in these results are six extension holes, which had previously been drilled and intersected zones of mineralisation but did not intersect the expected high grade shoot. Following reinterpretation, which indicated the potential for a high grade zone marginally deeper than the end point of these previously drilled holes, the decision was taken to re-enter and extend them. This re-drilling campaign was highly successful with broad zones of high grade mineralisation intercepted.

Papillion’s MD and CEO, Mark Connelly, says: “The results are, once again, outstanding in terms of thickness and grade. Perhaps the most important aspect of the extended holes, from a mining perspective, is that the new observed data points of thick high grade intercepts will provide additional information to the resource model in an area that was previously considered to be low grade or barren. The thickness and grade of these intercepts again highlight the significant exploration upside at Fekola and further drilling has the potential to continue to deliver quality ounces for the project.”

In addition, shallow RC drilling along strike to the north of the MRE delivered very encouraging results with zones of high grade mineralisation encountered in the near surface lithology, including 4 m at 12.34 g/t and 7 m at 5.68 g/t.

In January 2013, the company released an updated MRE which included a 34% increase in total gold resource, and a conversion of 83% of the resource into the measured and indicated resource categories. Based on this updated MRE, Papillon completed a pre-feasibility study for the project.

The PFS yielded extremely positive results, with average annual life of mine production in excess of 300 000 oz, and cash operating costs less than US$600/oz. The study re-confirmed the technical viability of the project, and its ability to produce robust cash flows.

Due to the onset of the wet season in Mali, the company’s 2013 drilling campaign has now been concluded. The drilling season was extremely productive, with approximately 72 000 m drilled and new mineralisation encountered external to the MRE. The data is currently being compiled and reviewed, with the aim of completing an updated MRE during the current quarter.

Papillon remains focussed on assessing the development potential of this outstanding project and advancing it towards production, while continuing to fully realise the exceptional exploration prospectivity at Fekola.

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