ASX-listed Kasbah Resources has announced an updated DFS for its Achmmach tin project in Morocco with higher average grades and a drastically reduced project Capex based on a multi-stage “Small Start Option” (SSO) development plan.

The new DFS imagines a ten year underground mine operation utilising a long-hole open stoping and crushed rock fill method. A revised ore reserve of 6.56 Mt at 0.85% Sn has been defined at the site, amounting to 55,500 tonnes of contained tin which would be exploited over two stages of mining. During the first 42 month stage 1.89 Mt of ore at 0.96% Sn would be extracted, producing an annual average of 3,500 t of tin-in-concentrate. The larger second stage would take place over 80 months, extracting 4.67 Mt of ore at 0.80% Sn for increased annual production of 4,210 t of tin-in-concentrate.

The main improvement in the redesign of the operation is a 53% reduction in Capex to US$61.7 M. Meanwhile, a competitive C1 cash cost of US$ 9,001/t and C3 full cost of US$13,811/t have been calculated. Subject to final approvals, Kasbah will seek the equity needed to finance a decision to mine within the next 6-9 months. The company’s project partners, Toyota Tshusho and Nittetsu, will be required to fund 20% and 5% of the total project costs respectively, mirroring their current ownership stake. With a decision to mine this year, first production could be possible by early 2018.

ITRI View: With a DFS first published at the end of 2014 and all permits and approvals in place, the Achmmach tin project has been at an advanced stage for some time. The updated DFS represents an adaption of the project’s development plant to account for lower tin prices, with the reduced Capex likely to be more attractive to risk-conscious investors under current market conditions.