Copper Fox’s strategy of value creation through acquisition, exploration and development of potentially low cost, large polymetallic porphyry copper projects in Canada and the United States has resulted in the ownership of significant amounts of copper, gold, molybdenum and silver, a portfolio of exploration and development stage projects and a high Net Asset Value per share based on independent National Instrument 43-101 Technical Reports. Copper Fox also holds a 24.4% interest in District Copper Corp, a public company involved in early stage polymetallic porphyry copper exploration in northern British Columbia and gold exploration in Newfoundland.
Our approach is conservative and guided by technical and economic factors that affect both the copper industry and the junior resource market. Our conservative approach has served the company well in the past and we will continue this approach in 2019.
With the potential onset of a positive copper cycle, Copper Fox is increasing its exploration efforts to advance each project while concentrating on the one project that provides maximum asset value to the Company per dollar spent. In 2019, we are working closely with our joint venture partner to enhance the value of the Schaft Creek project.
Our primary and most advanced asset is the 25% carried interest in the Schaft Creek Joint Venture (‘SCJV’). The Schaft Creek project hosts one of the largest undeveloped polymetallic porphyry copper deposits in North America. The sizing and infrastructure study completed in 2018 indicated that a 133ktpa scenario provides the best case for future study. The in-depth study of the 130ktpa scenario targeting potential capital, operating and sustaining cost reductions, a higher-grade initial starter pit and identifying other infrastructure and access opportunities to improve project economics is underway. The SCJV has increased 2019 expenditures at Schaft Creek to $2.1 million to complete the above in-depth study on the 133ktpa scenario, geotechnical and environmental studies and assemble a project team dedicated to the Schaft Creek project.
In late 2018 Copper Fox recognized the potential of a large Laramide age porphyry copper-molybdenum system at Mineral Mountain. The 2018 work has advanced the project from a “raw” mineral prospect to an early stage exploration project with two large areas of porphyry style copper-molybdenum mineralization. The next phase of work to advance this project is an Induced Polarization/Resistivity study estimated to cost $120,000 to test both porphyry targets for sulphide mineralization at depth.
At Van Dyke the initial results of the 2019 work program are encouraging and suggests that the size of the soluble copper envelope for the Van Dyke deposit is significanlty larger than that used in the 2014 maiden resource estimate. The estimated cost to delineate the soluble copper envelope at Van Dyke, gain certainty and confidence in the analytical data and update the geological model is $135,000. This information would be required if Copper Fox decides to complete an updated resource estimate.
With the SCJV funded and managed by Teck, Copper Fox is advancing its other projects. These activities if successful may not yield immediate results but does establish a basis from which to take advantage of the next commodity cycle. Our priority in 2019 is to continue building value.
Elmer B. Stewart, P.Geol. M.Sc.