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EQ Resources has reported bonanza-grade tungsten ore intercepts in the final assays from a 16-hole resource drilling program at the historical Mount Carbine mine.

The company described the results as potential game-changers for the proposed near-term re-opening of the old mine, 120km north-west of Cairns by sealed road.

Selected high-grade intercepts are in a zone less than 40m below the floor of the existing Andy White open pit.

The final assay results suggested an extension to the current open pit may be a
superior development option in the near term in comparison to underground mining, EQ Resources said.

Open pit or fresh additional ore would supplement the planned treatment of the bulk-tonnage low-grade stockpiles at the site through an upgraded gravity and XRT Sorting plant.

“These high-grade results would feed into initial ore reserve calculations as part of the current bankable feasibility study,” chief executive officer Kevin MacNeill said.

“Mount Carbine was a major tungsten producer in the 1970s and 80s before closure due to low global metal prices.

“With the recent drilling the company is looking to drive toward once again being a major participant in the global tungsten market.

“I am very pleased with the success of the drill campaign and would like to give special thanks to the effort and care of our geology team, DDH1 Drilling and ALS through this process to help us in achieving this fantastic result.”

Mr MacNeill said hole EQ015 was the best drill hole seen out of the 80 holes drilled at Mount Carbine to date and, given the location just beneath the existing pit, argued well for an open pit extension.

Results included 4.45m grading at 5.09 per cent tungsten trioxide (WO3) from 156.35m including 1.06m at 13.9 per cent WO3 (38m below the pit floor).

“The updated ore reserve is the first stage of the feasibility study, and it is planned to release this data ahead of the publication of the full BFS report,”Mr MacNeill said.