Canada’s Pancontinental Gold Corporation (TSXV: PUC), a company whose focus is on the Jefferson gold project in South Carolina, wants to expand its presence in the market for key battery metals.
The Toronto-based firm announced today that it has entered into an option agreement with 2522962 Ontario Incorporated to acquire a 100% interest in the Montcalm West Nickel-Copper-Cobalt Project, located 65 kilometers northwest of Timmins, Ontario.
In a press release, the company explained that the Montcalm West Project is comprised of two separate properties, the Montcalm and Nova Properties. The Montcalm Property is contiguous and surrounds the western portion of the former Montcalm Mine, which had historical production of 3,931,610 tonnes of ore grading 1.25% nickel, 0.67% copper, and 0.051% cobalt, and which produced in excess of 4 million pounds of cobalt. The Nova Property, on the other hand, is located approximately 19 kilometers southwest of the mine and consists of four contiguous mining claims.
Pancontinental wants to purchase the Montcalm West Project in its entirety for cash payments of $140,000. The company would also have to issue 1,200,000 common shares in four equal payments over a three-year period.
In the statement, the miner said that the West Project’s potential for cobalt or “blue gold” is what makes it so attractive. “Cobalt prices increased 120% in 2017, and cobalt is forecast to experience up to a 4,500% surge in global demand from now to 2030. Cobalt, primarily mined as a by-product of nickel and copper, is important as a key input for batteries, and thus electric vehicles. A laptop computer contains approximately one ounce of cobalt, while an average electric car battery typically contains more than 30 pounds of cobalt,” the release reads.
Canada is, to date, the world’s No. 3 cobalt producer, after the DRC and China, accounting for about 6% of global supply.
Once it receives the needed permits, Pancontinental intends to fly a VTEM or electromagnetic survey and airborne gravity survey to detect potential targets at depth, as documentation from the Montcalm Mine shows that the deeper lenses in the mine start at 250 meters below surface. Following this work, the company will start drilling.
At the Nova Property, the plan is to conduct preliminary prospecting efforts over key portions of the property to fully evaluate known cobalt mineralization. This work will be conducted with a mobile metal ion geochemical survey, which would evaluate the Nova Property for a potential near-surface bulk tonnage deposit.
Following the announcement of the acquisition, Pancontinental’s shares closed Wednesday’s session with gains of 22.22%.