Canada’s Avalon Rare Metals (TSX:AVL), until now mostly known for its incursion in the rare earths market, is proceeding with a $1.3 million work program in South-western Nova Scotia to reopen a historic tin-indium mine.
The company, working on completing a Preliminary Economic Assessment (“PEA”) for the project by November this year, is betting on recently approved legislation in Europe, which bans all products containing conflict minerals from war zones in Africa.
Speaking at the 128th Annual Meeting of The Nova Scotia Mining Society late in June, Avalon’s President and CEO Don Bubar said the European Union anti “blood metals” rules, together with the U.S. Dodd-Frank Act, which forces US stock exchange-listed companies to disclose the use of minerals from a conflict zone in their supply chains, gives Avalon’s tin project huge advantages.
The miner was granted a special exploration licence to search 22 claims totalling 356.12 hectares. It also received a $40,000 project grant from the province earlier this year to assist with test drilling.
“We’re hopeful, at this point,” Natural Resources Minister Zach Churchill told MINING.com in an interview mid-June, adding that since market prices for tin have improved, the Nova Scotia government is optimistic about the prospects at the location.
“Any activity on that site is encouraging, but we need to wait and see what the results of the ongoing exploration drilling are before we rise our hopes too much,” Churchill said. He also noted there would have to be an environmental assessment done before any work can resume at the site.
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