Tournigan Energy is acquiring uranium assets in Sweden and Finland, has forged an alliance to advance work on its Slovakian interests and announced a name change.
Tournigan's European portfolio features the Kursikova deposit in eastern Slovakia, which it proposes to develop. It will now add seven Swedish and Finnish projects through the acquisition of Mawson Sweden, agreed yesterday by letter of intent. The uranium projects changing hands are: Hotagen, Duobblon, Kapell and Aronsjö in Sweden and Riutta, Asento and Nuottijärvi in Finland.
There is currently no uranium mining in Finland, but Talvivaara Mining Company is planning to recover 350 tU per year as a by-product of nickel and zinc production from sulphidic black shales using bacterial heap leaching at Sotkamo in northeastern Finland. It signed an agreement with Cameco early in 2011 to build a €45 million ($60 million) plant for uranium recovery, to operate from 2013. Areva Resources Finland has also applied for a uranium mining claim at Ranua, just south of Rovaniemi in Lapland.
Prospecting at Hotagen, Sweden (Image: Mawson)
The Hotagen claims include the Klappibacken project, with indicated resources of 3.3 million pounds U3O8 (1269 tU) at 0.08% U3O8 announced in July 2008. Duobblon contains inferred resources of 8.8 million pounds (3385 tU) at 0.03% U3O8.
Of the Finnish claims, resource figures have only been reported for Nuottivjärvi, which contains inferred resources of 3.27 million pounds U3O8 (1258 tU).
Kursikova has indicated resources of 10,965 tU at an ore grade of 0.555% U3O8 and inferred resources of 4885 tU at 0.185% U3O8.
All the resource figures are compliant with NI 43-101 standard.
Bacterial heap leaching is also being investigated as a possible route to exploiting Aura Energy's 243,000 tU of inferred resources in black shales at Haggan near Storasen and Vasterasen in central Sweden, although that deposit is also amenable to acid heap leaching.
Alliance for Slovakia
At the same time as announcing the Mawson acquisition, Tournigan announced an alliance with Areva that will see Tournigan raise $1 million through an exclusive private placement of 14,285,714 'units' with Areva. Each unit will comprise one common share and one warrant entitling Areva to purchase an additional common share for $0.20 over a period of three years. An Areva nominee will also be appointed to the company's board.
The two companies are also entering into a technical services agreement through which Areva will perform metallurgical and environmental test work as part of a feasibility study at Kuriskova. The feasibility is expected to begin shortly after an ongoing prefeasibility study is completed early in 2012, according to Tournigan.
Finally, Tournigan said, it plans to change its name to European Uranium Resources Ltd and and complete a consolidation of its shares on the basis of one new share for five old.
Tournigan's president and CEO Dorian Nicol said that European Uranium Resources would be "the key uranium exploration company focused in Europe." As the region with the world's largest per capita consumption of uranium, he said, Europe had an "urgent need" to develop sustainable uranium production.
Mawson president and CEO Michael Hudson said the company had decided to exchange its non-core uranium interests for shareholding in the restructured Tournigan because its own efforts would be focused on its 100%-ownd Rompas gold discovery in Finland "for the foreseeable future." On distribution of the shares, Mawson shareholders would own approximately 20.5% of European Uranium Resources Ltd. Areva became a major shareholder in Mawson in 2010 when the Canadian company acquired Areva's Finnish uranium exploration portfolio.
Researched and written
by World Nuclear News