Please Note: Blog posts are not selected, edited or screened by Seeking Alpha editors.

Continental Coal establishes maiden 44Mt JORC thermal coal reserve at De Wittekrans Project

Continental Coal (ASX: CCC) has achieved an initial JORC saleable coal reserve of about 44 million tonnes (Mt) for the De Wittekrans Coal Project in South Africa, with the project poised to become the company’s largest future mine development.

The saleable coal reserves at De Wittekrans comprise 16.2Mt of proven reserves and 27.6Mt of possible coal reserves.

The company's total reserves managed increase by 222% to 64Mt from the Vlakvarkfontein, Ferreira, Penumbra and De Wittekrans Coal Projects. The JORC saleable coal reserves comprise 32.3 Mt of proven reserves and 31.4 Mt of possible coal reserves.

About 27% of the total saleable reserves at De Wittekrans are to be mined from the proposed open cast operation with 73% to be mined from the proposed underground mine development.

The reserves have been prepared as part of the Bankable Feasibility Study (NYSE:BFS) currently being finalised and for the company’s planned listing on the London Stock Exchange’s AIM Market in early September 2011. SRK Consulting are completing a Competent Persons Report.

Don Turvey, CEO, said “with total proven and probable saleable reserves of 43.77 Mt, the De Wittekrans Coal Project is set to become the Company’s largest future mine development.

"With the Bankable Feasibility Study for the De Wittekrans Coal Project nearing completion we anticipate realising further positive news on its findings in the current quarter.”

De Wittekransis located in the Ermelo coalfield, 15 kilometres southeast of the town of Hendrina in Mpumalanga Province.

The project has a New Order Prospecting Right with an application for a New Order Mining Right lodged with the Department of Minerals and Resources that is anticipated to be granted in the second half of 2011.

The company is currently finalising the BFS on the proposed development of the De Wittekrans Coal Project as a conventional opencast and underground mine, targeting production of 3.6 – 4.0Mtpa ROM coal over a 30 year mine life.

Continental Coal is initially proposing opencast mining of the A, B and C seams at a rate of 100,000 tonnes per month. Underground development is proposed to commence in the second production year with access from the highwall.

Underground mining of the B and C seams is proposed with three continuous miner sections operating on each seam. Processing through a 600 tonne per hour Dense Medium Separation Wash Plant producing about 1.0Mtpa of an export thermal coal product and 2.0Mtpa of a domestic thermal coal product is planned.

The Penumbra project is the company's next mine to development, which currently hosts 68.3 million tonnes of JORC Resources. Importantly for the advancement of Penumbra, in June Continential secured bank financing for the mine development.