Canadian Mining Journal

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RARE EARTHS: Strange Lake PFS puts capex over $2.5B

QUEBEC – Quest Rare Minerals of Toronto has released the positive results of a positive pre-feasibility study for its Strange Lake B zone deposit in northern Quebec. The high grade heavy rare earth mine will be one of the world's largest,...



QUEBEC – Quest Rare Minerals of Toronto has released the positive results of a positive pre-feasibility study for its Strange Lake B zone deposit in northern Quebec. The high grade heavy rare earth mine will be one of the world’s largest, and along with a processing plant to be build in southern Quebec will carry a pre-production price tag of $2.565 billion.

The PFS call for trucking whole ore from the open pit mine to a port in Labrador, then shipping it by water up the St. Lawrence River to the hydrometallurgical plant. The pre-tax internal rate of return will be 25.6%, and 21.2% after tax. The net present value is $2.9 billion pre-tax with a 10% discount and $1.8 billion after tax. The project will generate average annual revenue of $1.05 billion, 55.8% of which will come from the sales of heavy rare earth (HREE) and yttrium (Y) concentrate, 17.3% from the sale of a zirconium product, 12.9% from the sale of a niobium product and 13.9% from the sale of a light rare earth (LREE) concentrate.

Four products will be produced. A mixed HREE+Y oxide concentrate at a rate of 2,100 tonnes of HREE oxide and 4,250 tonnes of yttrium oxide will be made annually. Output will also include 24,650 tonnes of ZrO2, 3,20 tonnes of high purity niobium oxide, and a mixed LREE double sulphate concentrate containing 7,300 tonnes of LREE oxide equivalent each year.

A detailed look at the PFS is available at QuestRareMinerals.com in the news release dated Oct. 23, 2013.