Kenadyr Mining Creates a Surprise Next Door to a Super Major
By Kevin Silva
The mining industry is populated by companies that move slower than expectations.
Kenadyr Mining Corp. (TSX.V: KEN) set that industry stereotype on its head with the announcement that the company has commenced drilling on its’s high grade gold target, known as the South Zone, which is within its 100% owned Bourbai License in the Kyrgyz Republic. This was well ahead of schedule and is indicative of the company’s belief that the high-grade historical results provide a great indicator of gold potential.
The early start to drilling has industry observes buzzing as not only is the target very large and very high-grade, but also because the South Zone has connecting mineralization with a mine that has just been put into production by a mining Super-Major, Zijin Mining of China.
Dr. Alex Becker, Chief Executive Officer of Kenadyr, is a mining industry legend in Kyrgyz and has a 20-year track record of operating success in country. When reflecting on Kenadyr’s start of drilling, Dr. Becker states, “The commencement of drilling represents the start of an exciting period of time for Kenadyr. The drill testing is targeting to test and confirm previously reported high-grade historical results. This drilling is in the South Zone, not the only area of gold mineralization on the property, but an extremely important zone as it is a large and high-grade target, and of course is immediately adjacent to Zijin’s TBL Mine.”
While mining experts around the world are talking about Kenadyr as a potential takeover target by Zijin, the Kenadyr technical team is focusing on what is in their control, and that is the execution of a drill program designed to provide a statistical correlation between historical drill results and modern assays. Kenadyr believes there is good potential to not only replicate historical results but also improve upon them.
Kenadyr President, Bryan Slusarchuk, explains, “The Soviet era historical results are high-grade. However, it should be noted that these historical results may under report gold grade due to assaying methodology and also due to the fact that core recoveries were very poor. And, the core recoveries were preferentially poor in softer areas of the zone, which are believed to be associated with higher gold grades.”
Zijin, the majority owner of the TBL mine, which Kenadyr completely encircles, is one of China’s largest gold producers, second-largest copper and zinc producer, as well as a major producer of tungsten and iron ore. In 2015, Zijin’s sales revenue and net profit attributable to the parent company reached $11.44-billion (U.S.) and $255-million (U.S.), respectively, ranking first and second, respectively, among 14 major global public gold miners.
According to a news release published by Zijin, the national resources table of Kyrgyz Republic stated that the TBL field contains (C1 plus C2) 8,906,100 tonnes of gold ore (the average grade is 7.23 grams per tonne) and the gold metal volume is 64,420.5 kilograms, among which the C1 grade (initial mining reserve) is 4,949,754 tonnes of gold ore (the average grade is 7.02 grams per tonne) and the gold metal volume is 34,754.6 kilograms.
The Kenadyr team, led by Dr. Becker, has a well-known group of mining industry professionals who are no stranger to both technical success and takeover activity. Doug Kirwin, Kenadyr Director, was credited with leading the discovery team at the massive Oyu Tolgoi project. Tookie Angus, Kenadyr Chairman, was a founding Director of Ventana Gold, a founding Director of Bema Gold and is also the current Chairman of Nevsun. Mark Eaton, Kenadyr Advisor is the former Head of Global Mining Sales, CIBC. This is clearly a team with the bench strength to see the project through into production or into M&A activity depending on how things unfold onsite.
The property also meets one of Heard’s basic principles for mineral exploration and mine development: the best place to find gold is where it has been mined before.
There are exciting times ahead and starting ahead of schedule is a great start.