Minbos Resources (ASX: MNB) has confirmed phosphate concentrate from its Cacata Project in Angola's Cabinda Province should attract a healthy premium over the Moroccan benchmark after it was proven to convert well into phosphoric acid and DAP fertiliser.
Testwork by leading global fertiliser company Yara showed the Cacata phosphate can be successfully processed using the dihydrate phosphoric acid route as the high grade phosphate rock resulted in excellent process performance in the conversion to phosphoric acid and DAP fertiliser.
"The Yara testwork has shown that the Cacata concentrate performs exceptionally well in the production of phosphoric acid and DAP fertiliser," executive chairman Peter Richards said.
"This result is based largely on the high grade and low deleterious content of the rock phosphate that can be produced from Cacata and further supports the position of research company CRU that the Cacata concentrate should attract a healthy premium over the Moroccan benchmark.
"This is great news as we work towards the development of our two phosphate rock projects in West Africa, to meet a growing global demand for fertiliser."
The high quality of the phosphate rock of about 34.4% on a dry basis with metallic impurities such as aluminium, iron and magnesium present at similar levels to those found in commercial phosphates were responsible for the good performance during testing.
The Cacata phosphate resulted in phosphoric acid slurry with excellent filtration properties and low water soluble losses that enabled total phosphorus pentoxide efficiency in excess of 96% to be achieved, which is at the high end of the normal commercial range.
Concentration of the weak acid to commercial merchant grade 50% phosphorus pentoxide product was achieved while the low magnesium and aluminium levels resulted in a DAP with high values for both nitrogen and phosphorus pentoxide well in excess of internationally accepted standards for DAP 18:46:0.
Cacata phosphate also has levels of cadmium, 10 parts per million, similar to that found in other commercial rocks.
The Cacata Project is located on the eastern boundary of the Cabinda exploration permit held by the joint venture company Mongo Tando Lda, which is owned 50% by Minbos and 50% by Petril Projects Ltd.
The project has a JORC Indicated Resource of 30.4 million tonnes at 17.2% phosphorus including a high grade zone of 22 million tonnes at 21.4% phosphorus.
This was the basis of a detailed scoping study that found that Cacata would rank as one of the lowest cost phosphate producers with operating costs of US$57.23 per tonne free-on-board of phosphate rock.
Cacata is estimated to have a capital cost of US$157 million based on owner operated mining, road haulage and ship loading with opportunities to further reduce capital and operating costs during the Bankable Feasibility Study.
IRR has been calculated at 40.2% pre-tax with pre-tax NPV of US$311 million at a 10% discount rate.
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