Uranium Resources has provided a positive update on Mtonya, its Tanzanian uranium project development and acquisition strategy.Mineralogical studies have identified uraninite and coffinite as main uranium minerals and have unequivocally validated the Uranium Resources’ uranium roll-front exploration model at Mtonya. The host rock contains less than 5% of carbonate minerals, signifying that the Mtonya mineralisation may be amenable to the least expensive methods of in-situ recovery (ISR). Uranium Resources, the AIM-listed uranium exploration and development company, is planning a reconnaissance programme on its licenses in the highly prospective Ruhuhu basin in south western Tanzania. An exhaustive data compilation and plans a limited reconnaissance programme for the focus area is being completed. The results of pump tests at Mkuju River project, 60 km north of Mtonya, are also supporting Uranium Resources’ ISR amenability assumptions for Mtonya, including hydraulic conductivity, transmissivity, carbonate mineralisation (CO2), recovery, borehole yield and native water mineralisation. Uranium Resources is also currently designing a staged step-out and infill reverse-circulation (RC) and diamond drilling campaign at Mtonya and its satellite targets along the 36 km long Mtonya Redox Corridor – Lukimwa and Nyoka. The envisioned programme includes pump and metallurgical testwork on the Mtonya material.
A number of initiatives have been introduced to reduce overhead costs due to ongoing volatility in financial markets and uncertainty in the uranium sector. The reduction in executive compensation, services, and Tanzanian office expenditures has led to a 30% decrease in its overhead costs.“The present state of the nuclear fuel market strongly underscores the need for resources that can be extracted with maximum economic efficiency,” says Alex Gostevskikh, Uranium Resources managing director. “According to the International Atomic Energy Agency, despite the substantial investment into uranium exploration, reasonably assured resources recoverable at costs below US$80 per pound U3O8 have fallen by 20% between 2009 and 2011. As the market continues to remain soft, low-cost resources deplete at an even faster pace. “These conditions further justify the Company’s chosen focus on resources amenable to ISR. Meanwhile significant value upside is being built-in for the time when the uranium market recovers, especially as we continue to anticipate the ultimate exploration target to be on a par or larger than the Mkuju River project resource.”