SolGold CEO excited by prospects for Ecuadorian copper-gold – by Barbara Lewis (Reuters U.S. – November 22, 2018)

LONDON, Nov 22 (Reuters) – SolGold’s coveted Ecuadorian copper-gold prospect may be 20 percent bigger than the mining group said earlier this week, its chief executive Nick Mather said on Thursday.

SolGold, in which Mather has a near 5 percent stake, said on Tuesday that its Alpala project in Ecuador’s Cascabel region was around double the size and grade quality it was known to be in December 2017.

“We think there’s still 20 percent to go,” Mather said, adding he expected it to be around two years before work would start on building a mine at Alpala.

Over a career of three decades, Mather, a geologist, has been instrumental in founding and running 14 companies of which nine have been taken over, returning 5.7 billion Australian dollars ($4 billion) to shareholders.

Drilling continues to further assess the resource at Alpala, which easily counts as “tier-one”, the mining industry term for large, long-life projects. In what was seen as a huge vote of confidence, the world’s biggest listed miner BHP paid a premium in October to double its stake in SolGold.

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