Australia’s South32 to acquire 50pc interest in the joint venture company with Canada’s Trilogy Metals to develop Upper Kobuk Mineral Projects (UKMP) in northwest Alaska.
In the partnership, South32 will provide $145mn while Trilogy will contribute all the assets associated with UKMP. The partners will make use of $87.5 million of the $145 million subscription payment to fund exploration plans and the rest will be loaned back to South32, which will be repaid in instalments. The joint venture is expected to occur in February next year.
Through the UKMP joint venture, South32 would expand its portfolio in North America by adding high-quality copper base metals development options.
The UKMP projects have a combined resource of 3.62mn mt of copper, 1.36mn mt of zinc. The proposed mine is expected to produce more than 159mn pounds (71,121mt) of copper, 199mn pounds of zinc and 33mn pounds of lead over a 12-year mine life.