Exploitation licence for Mauritania uranium project

18 December 2018

Australian company Aura Energy has been granted an exploitation licence for its Tiris uranium project in Mauritania. The licence is a precursor to full development of the north-west African project.

Mining bulk samples at Tiris (Image: Aura)

Production at Tiris is expected to begin in 2020, and Aura said the licence has been finalised in line with its target schedule for the project. The grant of the licence follows a process including a comprehensive environmental and social impact assessment, and ministerial and public consultations on the impact of the development.

Peter Reeve, Aura Energy's executive chairman, said the grant "provides more confidence that Aura will soon be a producer". He thanked the Mauritanian government for its "strong support" for the project.

"Aura continues to pursue production offtake and project financing arrangements and expects the project to be well positioned to take advantage of the rising uranium price," he said.

Aura describes Tiris as a near-term development project, with a production target of 1 million pounds U3O8 (385 tU) per year. The company is conducting a definitive feasibility study on the project, which has 17 million pounds U3O8 of measured and indicated resources, and overall mineral resources of 52 million pounds U3O8. Technical investigations during the DFS have indicated the potential for the recovery of vanadium, which occurs with uranium in the carnotite host material.

Aura expects to receive the executed presidential decree approving the exploitation licence by the end of the year.

Researched and written by World Nuclear News