The Market Online - At The Bell

Join our daily newsletter At The Bell to receive exclusive market insights

  • In another step towards initial rare earth production, Vital Metals (VML) has started mining operations at its Nechalacho Project in Canada
  • Mining contractor Det’on Cho Nahanni Construction is expected to mobilise its fleet this week, with mining activities to begin in the days thereafter
  • The North T Zone will be mined as a small open-pit operation, with the material then transported to Vital’s on-site ore sorter
  • This product will then be sent for further processing at a rare earth extraction plant to be built in Saskatoon
  • Vital Metals is up 1.47 per cent to 6.9 cents per share

In another step towards initial rare earth production, Vital Metals (VML) has started mining operations at its Nechalacho Project in Canada.

Mining contractor Det’on Cho Nahanni Construction is expected to mobilise its fleet this week, with mining activities to begin at the Nechalacho Project’s North T Zone in the days thereafter.

All the necessary equipment, including an ore sorter, is scheduled to arrive on site by the end of March.

Development of the project, located 100 kilometres southeast of Yellowknife in the Northwest Territories, will be carried out in two phases. The first will focus on the North T Zone while the second will involve the development of the much larger Tardiff resource.

The North T Zone will be mined as a small open-pit operation, with material then transported to Vital’s on-site ore sorter. This product will then be sent for further processing at a rare earth extraction plant — to be built in Saskatoon — which will produce a mixed rare earth carbonate product for sale to separation facilities.

Under the direction of Vital’s subsidiary, Cheetah Resources, Det’on Cho Nahanni Construction will complete a single campaign of mining and crushing from March until September this year.

This ore will be stockpiled for use in sorting operations by Cheetah personnel, which will take place during the summer periods from 2021 to 2023. It’s likely that a second mining campaign will be carried out in 2024 to replenish stockpiles.

“We have been progressively achieving all the steps necessary to commence mining and rare earths production at Nechalacho over the past 12 months, and mobilisation of the mining fleet is another important milestone,” said Geoff Atkins, Managing Director of Vital Metals.

“We are excited to be commencing operations at Nechalacho rare earth project and following our recent $43 million raising, proud to be fully funded to become Canada’s first rare earth producer,” he added.

Vital Metals is up 1.47 per cent to 6.9 cents per share at 11:21 am AEDT.

VML by the numbers
More From The Market Online

What can we expect from the North American mining sector in 2024?

You may be surprised to learn the USA's nonfuel mining industry contributed US$3.64 trillion towards the…

Shaping Australia’s tech-infused mining industry

According to the Minerals Council of Australia, the nation's mining sector has invested $30 billion in…