UK’s Premier African Minerals buys lithium assets in Zimbabwe

Premier's RHA plant: The company seeks to speed up lithium asset development

UK’s Premier African Minerals Ltd has agreed to acquire a portfolio of assets in Zimbabwe from Australian-listed Lithium Consolidated Mineral Exploration (Li3).

The AIM-listed company already holds the RHA Tungsten and Zulu lithium and tantalum projects, in Fort Rixon.

The miner said Wednesday that it has entered into a conditional sale and purchase agreement to acquire a portfolio of hard-rock lithium assets located in Zimbabwe and Mozambique from Li3, following Li3’s strategic shift to focus on its Australian based projects.

Premier has conditionally agreed to purchase the Li3 projects for US$104 000, which will be settled through the issuance of new shares.

“These properties in Zimbabwe are completely complementary to our existing operations and may have potential for small scale early production, something very important to our company, as much as adding to our lithium inventory. The project in Mozambique has recently been identified as being potentially prospective for other mineralisation including gold,” says Chief Executive George Roach.

Mutare belt

Originally acquired by Li3 in 2018, the 1500 hectares of licences are retained within the Mutare Greenstone Belt, located close to the eastern border with Mozambique. The area was deemed prospective for LCT-type pegmatites based on target generation work completed by geologist Douglas Haynes.

In 2019, Premier started drilling at the Zulu lithium and tantalum project, at a cost of US$400 000. The site, near Fort Rixon in Matabeleland South, has an estimated 20.1 million tonnes resource base grading 1.06 percent lithium oxide.

In January this year, Premier announced the commissioning of Grid Electrical power to RHA Tungsten, where Premier holds a 49% interest in RHA and is the operator. The company raised US$332,000 in an offer from shareholders in December  last year, hoping to get its long-delayed projects in Zimbabwe moving.

Premier is one of a number of small-cap mining companies that have staked out claims in Zimbabwe, which has struggled to raise investment from large miners.