Churchill Mining Plc is pleased to announce its global resource at the East Kutai Coal Project has more than doubled to 3.18 billion tonnes of thermal coal. Included in this global resource is the previously reported JORC compliant resource of 1.4 billion tonnes. The balance is expected to be upgraded into JORC compliant categories within a month, once final digital survey data has been processed. A further announcement will be made at this time.
Churchill owns 75% of EKCP, which is one of the largest, development stage coal resources in Indonesia.
Churchill Mining also confirms it has recently obtained its approvals and mining licenses for the EKCP from the Indonesian Government.
This new global resource figure has exceeded the Company’s initial 500 million tonne target by more than 600%.
Churchill has so far defined a coal system 18 kilometres long and approximately 3 kilometres wide. To date only 30% of the EKCP area has been drilled and the existing resource remains open along strike.
The latest resource update was derived from a total cumulative drilling of 40,900 metres, including 14,200 metres of open hole and 26,700 metres coring in 287 drill hole locations. The drilling focused in the north-eastern areas of the Investama Resources block and the north-western areas of the Ridlatama Tambang Mineral block.
Coal quality in the latest round of drilling is similar to previous drill samples with the coal defined as medium calorific, with low sulphur and low ash content.
Churchill believes, given the potential world-class size of the EKCP resource, that the project now has the scale to be of strategic value to major Asian power groups – particularly those in Indonesia, India and China.
Due to the large size of the deposit, Churchill has focused its mine and infrastructure planning to create a bulk mining operation producing up to 20 million tonnes of coal per annum. The Company has also set a new JORC reserve target of 500 million tonnes to support this production level; the original target was 150 million tonnes.
To date the Company has completed many of the preliminary technical and Indonesian statutory procedural requirements to ensure mining can go ahead. This technical build-up will continue for the balance of 2009 so that the EKCP is ready for project development financing and/or joint venture partnership next year.
Paul Mazak, Managing Director of Churchill Mining Plc commented:
“The new EKCP global resource catapults Churchill Mining to a new level in the coal mining industry in Indonesia. This result confirms our first impression since we started drilling in Kalimantan, that Churchill has discovered a huge new coal system which ultimately will have a significant strategic value to power providers who require big volumes of coal supply. The Company continues to actively engage energy groups with large balance sheets to progress our plans to mine this large resource.”