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Japan backs Panoro Peru project

Japan’s state natural resources agency has agreed to invest up to US$8 million in Panoro Minerals’ Humamantata exploration project in southern Peru, the company has said.
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Hudbay Minerals’ Constancia copper plant in Peru

Tom Azzopardi in Santiago

In exchange for financing exploration work, Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC) will gain an option to acquire a 60% stake in the property.

"Panoro is pleased to complete this agreement with JOGMEC whereby the company has financed another of its attractive early stage projects," said Panoro's president and CEO Luquman Shaheen.

JOGMEC will contribute US$1 million during each of the first three years to earn a 49% stake and can then lift its stake to 60% by providing another US$5 million.

Humamantata is 10km south-west of Hudbay Minerals' Constancia copper mine and Kusiorcco project which Panoro sold to Hudbay at the start of the year.

During 2014 and 2015, Panoro carried out geological mapping, a geochemical survey and an airborne analytic and magnetic survey over the 3,600-hectare property, identifying skarn/porphyry type mineralisation in the northern part of the property, copper hypogene mineralisation of chalcopyrite and bornite, and extensive silicification and argillic alternation with anomalies of copper, molybdenum, gold and silver.

Panoro and JOGMEC are now planning an exploration drill program to test the continuity of the mineralized porphyry along the contact with the Ferrobamba limestone formation and below the supergene alteration of the southern area.

In addition to Humamantata and Kusiorcco projects, Panoro is also working on the Cotabambas and Antilla advanced copper projects.

Last month, Panoro said that it had received a seventh early instalment of US$750,000, out of a total of up to $14 million, under a $150 million precious metals purchase agreement signed with Wheaton Precious Metals International to buy 25% of the payable gold production and 100% of the payable silver production from Cotabambas project.