Investors in Northcliff Resources Ltd. (TSX:NCF) were rewarded with a 37.5 percent lift in the stock price after the company was granted approval to build a tungsten-molybdenum mine in the Eastern Canadian province of New Brunswick. The $11-million small-cap picked up 3 cents Friday to finish the day at 11 cents a share, still a ways from its $0.23 a share 52-week high reached in February.
The New Brunswick government last Thursday approved the Sisson Brook Mine, subject to 40 conditions aimed at protecting the local environment, including preservation of water quality, fish habitat, wetlands and archeological resources.
“This important milestone is another step on the path to creating a significant new tungsten producer,” said Northcliff president & CEO Chris Zahovskis, in a press release. “The rigorous environmental assessment process has resulted in a strong project that will deliver significant benefits to New Brunswick while protecting the environment.”
The approval followed an environmental assessment process that started in 2013. A feasibility study completed the same year envisioned an open-pit facility with the capacity to process 30,000 tonnes of molybdenum and tungsten ore per day. The project is a partnership between Northcliff, which owns 88.5 percent, and Todd Corporation of New Zealand, which has an 11.5 percent interest.
If it passes a federal review, the mine would be built just north of Fredericton near the small community of Stanley. Local media reports the project would create 500 jobs during construction and 300 permanent positions, with an expected lifespan of 27 years.
The Sisson deposit was discovered in 1978 and up to 2009, 213 drill holes delineated the majority of the mineralization. Northcliff completed an additional 66 drill holes in 2010 and 2011 to gather evidence for a feasibility study and EIA report.