JOURDAN RESOURCES INC. (“Jourdan” or the “Company“) is pleased to announce that it and its partner, North American Lithium Inc. (“NAL”), a majority owned subsidiary of Sayona Mining Ltd. (“Sayona”), have agreed to embark on an aggressive exploration and development program with the objective of expanding and defining sufficient mineral resources to supply increased tonnages to the NAL concentrator.
The establishment of a mineral resource base at the Vallee property would support NAL’s current open pit mine operation that holds the NAL concentrator located approximately 60 km north of Val D’Or, Quebec. NAL’s concentrator commenced processing operations on February 27, 2023, and spodumene concentrate production is anticipated by Sayona to begin in March 2023 (for more information, please refer to Sayona’s press release dated February, 27 2023).
To define mineral resources at the Vallee property, over 50,000 m of drilling is planned this year on both NAL’s properties and the 28 claims that comprise that portion of Jourdan’s adjacent Vallée lithium project (the “Earn-in Claims”) that are the subject of an earn-in and joint venture agreement entered into between NAL and the Company in November 2022 (the “JV Agreement”). For more information about the JV Agreement and the Earn-in Claims, please see the Company’s press release dated November 14, 2022, which is available under the Company’s SEDAR profile at www.sedar.com.
Over 24,000 m of drilling was jointly approved by NAL and Jourdan for the Earn-in Claims, which Jourdan ancitipates will be funded in part by the C$4 million previously deposited in escrow by NAL pursuant to the terms of the JV Agreement. Jourdan and Sayona believe that the upcoming drilling program will be one of the largest lithium drill programs in Quebec in 2023. The tender for drilling contractors has been launched and exploration permit applications needed to commence the first phase of the drill program that have not already been obtained are being prepared for submission. Both companies are planning to aggressively move forward to define and develop a mineral resource in the area to feed the NAL concentrator. Based on information provided by Sayona, management understands that the NAL concentrator remains on track to produce its first saleable lithium concentrate in late March 2023; both NAL and Jourdan aim to produce lithium concentrate through the NAL plant moving forward.
Sayona’s Managing Director, Brett Lynch added: “Sayona is excited to be partnering with Jourdan as we undertake a large scale and extensive drill program at NAL and the Earn-in Claims. The combined drilling program will be undertaken in consultation with our local community stakeholders, to pursue a bigger mineral resource base and better grades in the Abitibi Hub capable of delivering increased ore tonnages to the NAL concentrator and a longer life-of-mine. With the production of saleable lithium concentrate at NAL only days away, this is an exciting time for Sayona and Quebec as we work to build what we believe to be the leading lithium production centre in North America.”
Jourdan CEO and President, Rene Bharti commented: “This is a historic moment which truly showcases the strong partnership between Jourdan, NAL, and Sayona. With Jourdan having over 13,000 hectares of land surrounding NAL’s project, the opportunity to partner with NAL and Sayona to accelerate Jourdan towards production is clear. Given that the NAL concentrator has commenced operations, Jourdan is in a very rare position to benefit from having access to what we expect will become Canada’s leading lithium producing mine and concentrator. We are truly proud and honored at what we see as significant upside potential for both companies, in such a strong lithium environment.”
Roger Lemaitre, VP Mining for Jourdan said: “We are extremely fortunate that NAL has restarted processing operations at its neighboring mine. Based on information provided by Sayona, together with our own results, we see that lithium mineralization has already been defined over an impressive 3.7 km of strike length, extending from the NAL pit and onto the Earn-in Claims. We believe that only additional definition drilling is necessary on the mineralized sections east of the current pit boundary to define a mineral resource on the Earn-in Claims. Given that we have 3,200 m of the approved program already permitted, we anticipate that this aggressive drill program will begin in the next few weeks.”