Galaxy stockpiles reduced

LITHIUM miner Galaxy Resources is trying to project a sea of calm amid the collapse of many of its rivals, and the ongoing COVID-19 virus crisis, saying its Mount Cattlin operation has been humming since its planned summer outage, and it has been able to reduce its stockpiles by around half due to shipments resuming.
Galaxy stockpiles reduced Galaxy stockpiles reduced Galaxy stockpiles reduced Galaxy stockpiles reduced Galaxy stockpiles reduced

Haydn Black

Reporter

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Galaxy, like many lithium miners, was struggling with depressed commodity prices and an oversupplied market before the virus tore through China, the world's largest market for lithium concentrate, earlier this year.
 
Some 33,000 tonnes of concentrate shipped from the Esperance Port on March 11.
 
Galaxy said it was in regular contact with its customers who report processing facilities in China are slowly resuming now the worst of COVID-19 has passed in that country.
 
Galaxy also has 15,000t that was sold on a pre-paid basis last quarter that should be shipped next quarter.
 
Last year the company announced a strategy to prioritise value over volume to preserve resource life and control unit costs.
 
It expects to produce between 14,000-17,000t of concentrate this quarter, with the plant now fitted with optical ore sorters to upgrade low-grade ‘contaminated' stockpiled ore.
 
Its mill modifications are expected to improve recoveries while maintaining a final product grade of 6% Li2O.
 
Stockpiled ore will contribute around 40% of throughput this year, while 60% will come from the open pit, where a new mining contractor has started work. 
 
The company expects to produce 90,000-105,000t in 2020, down from 191,600t last year, but said it was ready to ramp up if demand recovered.
 
Last week the Western Australian miner also completed its annual review, with Mt Cattlin now holding an estimated 14.6Mt at 1.29% lithium and 157 parts per million tantalum in resources and reserves of 8.2Mt at 1.29% lithium and 155ppm tantalum after depletion of 2.1Mt. 
 
In contained metal terms reserves are 107,000t and resources are 131,000t.
 
It also recast its modifying factors, with the yield optimisation project allowing it to eliminate a 17% dilution factor, while overall grade increased from 1.15% to 1.29%. 
 
Morgan Stanley said the grade bump was positive, but it would require the yield optimisation project to perform as expected - and that is yet to prove its mettle. 
 
Galaxy shares were off 1.9% to A78c today, valuing the company at $319 million, with cash holdings of around $231 million.