Montero Mining and Exploration Ltd., a junior exploration company focused on discovering, exploring and developing globally significant gold deposits in Latin America, is consolidating its property holdings at the Avispa copper-molybdenum project in northern Chile’s Atacama Desert.
The company has completed the regulatory process for 200.8 km2 of exploration concessions, including the original Avispa and the recently awarded Abeja concessions, both of which were registered in 2021.
In addition, the company is finalizing the regulatory process for another 270.5 km2 of Abeja concessions. The remaining regulatory processes are expected to be completed in Q2, 2022. Once completed, the company will own 100% of a total of 473.3 km2 of exploration concessions in northern Chile’s well-defined late Paleocene to early Eocene Cu–Mo porphyry belt.
The Avispa property is about 40 km north of BHP’s Spence Cu–Mo mine, KGHM’s Sierra Gorda Cu–Mo mine, and the lately announced discovery at the Sociedad Contractual Minera Búfalo (SCMB) Cerro Búfalo project in the Sierra Gorda district south of Avispa.
Major mining companies with mining and exploration concessions surround the consolidated Avispa and Abeja concession, including Glencor, Codelco Freeport, Antofagasta and SQM. Avispa is also 50 km west of Codelco’s Chuquicamata supergiant porphyry copper mine, which is located in a younger late Eocene–early Oligocene porphyry belt.
With advancement of the regulatory process Montero will control a significant land package in this world class porphyry copper district. The presence of major companies such as Glencore, Freeport and Antofagasta actively exploring in the district makes Montero’s land package very prospective. The Company continues its mapping and sampling program and will provide updates.
Dr. Tony Harwood, President and Chief Executive Officer, Montero Mining and Exploration Ltd.
Planned Exploration Program
Montero has completed a thorough review of historical data on exploration in this highly promising region. Intending to define drill targets, the Company has planned an exploration program that includes detailed surface sampling, geological mapping and ground and airborne geophysical surveys.
At the southern edge of the Avispa and Abeja Property, the Company has completed geological mapping and geochemical sampling transects along the San Salvador River. This research will aid in the formation of a stratigraphic and structural framework that will guide future exploration.
Avispa was explored earlier by various companies, including BHP, that carried out limited drilling on the property at 2–3 km spacing against the background of a regional exploration program. Montero believes that there is a huge potential for buried porphyry and porphyry-related deposits with lesser footprints than those favored by major companies.
Marcial Vergara, Montero’s Chief Geologist, has assessed publicly available data on Avispa and conducted a field visit. Marcial has worked for Codelco and Anglo American, two of Chile’s largest copper mining companies.
At Avispa, Montero is using a prospect generator model to de-risk the project and conduct limited exploration while looking for a partner to advance the project to the drill phase. Montero shareholders will gain exposure to the copper market, while the company remains focused on the gold-silver potential of southern Chile.