In late May 2014 the group entered into agreements giving it the right to acquire a majority interest in the Grangesberg iron ore mine situated in the mineral-rich Bergslagen district of central Sweden about 200 kilometres north-west of Stockholm. Until its closure in 1989 due to prevailing market conditions Grangesberg had mined in excess of 150 million tonnes of iron ore. GIAB holds a 25 year exploitation permit covering the previously mined Grangesberg underground mining operations granted by the Swedish Mining Inspectorate in May 2013.
In a series of agreements the group purchased for US$145,000 a direct 6% interest in GIAB, a private Swedish company founded in 2007 which had recently completed a financial and capital restructuring with assistance from the group. At the same time the group obtained an option to acquire 51% of the enlarged share capital of GIAB for the issue of new ordinary shares of Anglesey to the value of US$1.75 million priced at a minimum of 3.375 pence per share. The group also entered into shareholder and cooperation agreements such that during the term of the option Anglesey holds operatorship of GIAB subject to certain conditions and appointed three out of five directors to the board of GIAB. Given the continuing difficulties with the iron ore price this option was not exercised however a right of first refusal in the case of another offer has been secured, until June 2018. This right has been granted in exchange for the group continuing to co-manage GIAB on a cost recovery basis.
In September 2014 an NI 43-101Technical Report was prepared by Roscoe Postle Associates Inc (“RPA”) showing a compliant resource estimate for the Grangesberg Mine of 115.2 million tonnes at 40.2% Fe in the indicated category and 33.1 million tonnes at 45.2% Fe in the inferred category. RPA concluded that the Grängesberg iron ore deposit hosts a significant iron resource that has excellent potential for expansion at depth.
A programme to look closely at geo-mechanical and hydro-geological aspects of the site which will be critical components of the permitting regime required for the dewatering and reopening of the mine has been completed and a final report is in the course of preparation.
During the coming year, under Anglesey’s direction, and subject to suitable economic conditions prevailing, GIAB will review and update its previous pre-feasibility study on the project incorporating inputs from the compliant resource estimate and from the geo-technical investigations.