Metals X Limited has announced a strong second quarter at its Renison Tin Operation, Tasmania, highlighting enhanced ore grades and recovery rates.

For the June 2023 quarter, the operation delivered 2,292 tonnes of tin-in-concentrate, marking a 15% increase from the first quarter. Despite headwinds caused by elevated talc and sulphur grades in the first quarter, interventions were successfully introduced, raising Q2 recovery rates to 76.05% from the previous 74.20%.

Meanwhile, in line with the mine plan, processed ore grades increased. With new high-grade material extracted from Area 5 entering the processing plant, average grades processed reached 1.79% Sn, the highest grades recorded since June last year.

With improvements to operations noted above, costs decreased during the quarter, albeit remaining elevated. Cash costs, All-in Sustaining Costs and All-in Costs were all down roughly 10% on the quarter and aligned with Q2 2022 levels.

Looking forward, Metals X projects production to be bolstered in H2 as access to Area 5 improves. Access to certain areas of Area 5 has been a challenge during the second quarter due to water management issues. With medium and long-term pumping plans either set for implementation or under development, improvements are expected from the third quarter.

Despite delays in equipment delivery and installation, progress on the project remained steady in the second quarter. Completion of a geophysical survey for the proposed processing plant area and geochemical and hydrogeological reviews of the site were highlighted. The company also expects the trials for the Furnace Technology selection of the Renison tailings project to be complete in Q3.

Our view: Renison will be pleased to see interventions to tackle the high talc and sulphur contents recorded earlier in the year are working as anticipated. ITA expects the projected increases in production in the latter half of 2023 to place Renison is on track to hit their target of approximately 9,000 tonnes of production in 2023.