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Exco Resources reports Ivanhoe Australia completes JV tenements acquisition

Exco Resources (ASX: EXS) has reported that Ivanhoe Australia (ASX/TSX: IVA) has finalised its acquisition of an 80% interest in 13 Exco tenements in the highly mineralised Cloncurry region of north-west Queensland.

In May 2007, Ivanhoe Australia entered into a joint venture arrangement with Exco in which Ivanhoe would earn an 80% interest in these prospective tenements as well as investing directly in Exco.  Ivanhoe currently holds an interest of 22.6% in Exco.

Under the terms of the JV Ivanhoe Australia was required to spend $5.5 million on exploration work on the JV tenements by 31 October 2011.  This amount has been spent and the 80% has been acquired.

Peter Reeve, chief executive officer of Ivanhoe Australia, said “the Exco Joint Venture has provided an additional exposure to this excellent mineral field.

"With substantial base exploration completed as part of the Joint Venture we are excited by the prospectivity of these tenements and will be progressing exploration on them in parallel with the other drilling programs on our own tenements.”

Exploration work on the JV Tenements has so far included a series of drilling campaigns and, more recently, has focussed on analysing existing and new geophysical data using improved processing and interpretation techniques.

The geophysical analysis will assist Ivanhoe in the design of drilling programs to be conducted over the next 12 months.

Twelve Exploration Permits for Minerals (EPMs) with a total area of 540 square kilometres and one Mining Lease with an area of 0.04 square kilometres are included in the JV tenements.

Meanwhile Exco is continuing to progress the Mt Colin copper-gold deposit, increasing the resource by 29% to 1.92 million tonnes at 2.59% copper on September 13. The upgrade included an increase in overall grade at Mt Colin, with the high grade zone still open at depth.

An earlier Scoping Study on the previous resource indicated robust economic potential for Mt Colin and work is now in progress on the underground mining design.