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Arafura boosts financials for its Nolans rare earths project

The date of: 2020-03-17
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Special Report: The key to any mineral development is in the numbers and Arafura has boosted the projected financials for its Nolans neodymium-praseodymium (NdPr) project even further.

In an update to last week’s announcement that Arafura Resources (ASX:ARU) had increased the mine life of its project in the Northern Territory, the company has now estimated that Nolans could generate a net present value (NPV) of $968m and internal rate of return (IRR) of 17.97 per cent.

This is up from its definitive feasibility study NPV and IRR estimates of $729m and 17.43 per cent respectively, which increases the expected profitability of the proposed mining operation.

And there is a good chance for even further improvement.

Arafura noted that it was currently reviewing the updated ore reserves schedule to optimise the financial outcomes.

The company, which has the only NdPr-focused project in Australia that has secured the complete package of environmental approvals, is also closing in on securing the mining licence for Nolans.

It recently secured in principle agreement for an Indigenous Land Use Agreement with the Native Title holders and will commence the process to secure the mining licence once this is executed.

Ore reserves for Nolans now stands at 29.5 million tonnes grading 2.9 per cent total rare earth oxides ,with NdPr making up 26.4 per cent of the rare earths content.

The project is expected to produce about 4,325 tonnes of NdPr oxide over 39 years at an operating cost of less than $US24 ($37) per kg of NdPr oxide.

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