EcoGraf paves way for Epanko’s expansion

EcoGraf (ASX:EGR) has paved the way for the Epanko Graphite Project’s expansion from 73,000 to up to 300,000 tonnes per annum (tpa), amid increasing the project’s Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) by 127%. 

Epanko’s updated MRE, carried out by resource consultant ERM Sustainable Mining Services, has increased to 290.8Mt @ 7.2% TGC for 21Mt of contained graphite, a 127% increase from the previous MRE announced on 2 March 2023.

The $84 million market capitalisation company incorporated 2023 drilling and trenching program results, including a ‘record high’ assay results for the project of 43m @ 20.8% TGC — demonstrating the continuous ‘high-grade’ nature. 

EcoGraf reports the updated MRE also resulted in a 39% increase in the measured and indicated categories of tonnes in contrast to the March 2023 MRE. 

These results support the company’s position as a ‘long-life, high-quality’ natural flake graphite project that lies in south-west Tanzania. Extension work has already been undertaken by EcoGrad to establish a development-ready new graphite mine. 

A financing program is currently underway with KfW IPEX-Bank mandated for UFK loan of up to US$150 million for 73,000tpa development of Epanko. 

The completion of a Bankable Feasibility Study (BFS) and pre-development program has demonstrated ‘attractive’ metrics to support the funding program.

The BFS shows pre-tax ungeared NPV10 of US$348 million, an ungeared internal rate of return (IRR) 36%, average annual EBITDA over the initial 10 years of US$79 million.

The extensional mineral resource drilling and trenching has added a further 1,350m strike to the south of the western zone mineralisation of Epanko, in an area named Mount Grafit. 

Drilling and trenching show that the mineralisation remains open along strike and down dip.

EcoGraf is a diversified battery anode materials company focused on producing high purity graphite products for the lithium-ion battery and advanced manufacturing markets. 

As of 31 December 2023, the company had $30.467 million cash and cash equivalents at hand, according to its latest quarterly report. 

Write to Aaliyah Rogan at Mining.com.au   

Images: EcoGraf
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Written By Aaliyah Rogan
Relocated from the East Coast in New Zealand to Queensland Australia, Aaliyah is a fervent journalist who has a passion for storytelling. When Aaliyah isn’t writing stories, she is either spending time with friends and family or down at the beach.