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Rupice met tests boost recovery rates for copper, precious metals

Adriatic Metals has released early results from its phase two metallurgical test work at the Rupice polymetallic project in Bosnia and Herzegovina. The results, published Tuesday, broadly confirm earlier test work and show improved recovery rates for copper and precious metals, but slightly slower for lead and zinc.
Rupice met tests boost recovery rates for copper, precious metals Rupice met tests boost recovery rates for copper, precious metals Rupice met tests boost recovery rates for copper, precious metals Rupice met tests boost recovery rates for copper, precious metals Rupice met tests boost recovery rates for copper, precious metals

Adriatic Metals' Vares project in Bosnia & Herzegovina

Staff reporter

Recovery rates were 89.7% for copper, 69.3% for gold, 92.1% for silver, 75.8% for zinc and 84.9% for lead - compared with the company's preliminary metallurgical results released in September 2019, which put recovery rates at 82.7% for copper, 66.7% for gold, 92.6% for silver, 81.7% for zinc and 90.4% for lead.

Adriatic said the zinc recovery "was slightly lower than attained with the average grade sample due to the higher zinc concentrate grade produced. Optimisation work is expected to improve that recovery to 80-85% as obtained in the previous average grade test work".

Adriatic's CEO Paul Cronin said in a statement: "Although this program of test work has only just begun, and I am hopeful of further progress that can be incorporated into our feasibility work recently commenced by Ausenco."

Adriatic plans to release its pre-feasibility study in Q2, "somewhere around May", with a bankable feasibility study to follow towards the end of 2020.

The test work comes on the back of positive drilling results released by the company last week, and a buzz appears to be building around the Balkan hopeful.

London listed equity capital market firm Tamesis Partners published a detailed research note on Adriatic on Monday, calling Rupice "one of the highest grade-assets in the world".

"The grade of 12.5% equivalent zinc for the whole project and 18.3% for Rupice alone (equivalent to 9g/t in gold terms) means the mine is going to be one of the highest margin assets in the world," said an extract from the note.

"Cash costs in zinc equivalent are -151c/lb. Looking at the universe of producing operations, we calculate Rupice as the 7th highest margin globally based on the first three years of production, and the highest base metals project. On a life of mine basis Adriatic would be the 16th highest margin project and the 6th highest base metals project."

Tamesis gave a share price target for Adriatic of 177p. The company was trading at 100p on Tuesday morning. Its market capitalisation is £175.14 million.