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Exco Resources Cashed Up, Expanding Copper, Gold Exploration In Northwest Queensland

Exco Resources (ASX: EXS) is focussed on the identification and growth of resources in the company's Northwest Queensland package, expanding exploration activity in the area.

At the company's wholly-owned Hazel Creek Project, copper and gold has been intersected in several prospects in a 2011 drilling program.

The best results came from the Turpentine target, with reverse circulation and diamond drilling returning highlight intersections of:

- 8 metres at 1.73% copper and 0.38 grams per tonne (g/t) gold from 90 metres;
- 17 metres at 1.3% copper and 0.14g/t gold from 249 metres; and
- 10 metres at 1.27% copper and 0.16g/t gold from 138 metres.

The Turpentine Deposit has been defined as containing 1.84 million tonnes at 1.03% copper and 0.2g/t gold.

Hazel Creek covers more than 1000 square kilometres of prospective land that remains relatively unexplored.

Highlights from reverse circulation drilling on three other prospects at Hazel Creek; Eight Mile Creek, Eight Mile Creek East and Turpentine South; include:

- 10 metres at 0.9% copper and 0.13g/t gold from 54 metres;
- 55.8 metres at 0.64% copper and 0.15g/t gold from 128 metres; and
- 30 metres at 0.4% copper and 0.1g/t gold from 136 metres, including 6 metres at 1.05% copper and 0.31g/t gold.

Other exploration at Hazel Creek in 2011 included a large sub audio magnetic survey flown to the south of the Eight Mile Creek prospects and a detailed ground gravity survey completed in the Turpentine/Eight Mile Creek region.

Well Funded

At the end of the December quarter, Exco Resources had $58.6 million cash in the bank, equivalent to about $0.164 per share.

The company recently paid $135 million, or $0.38 per share, back to shareholders, following the sale of its Cloncurry project to Xstrata for $175 million.

Other operations

Exco is nearing the start of mining at the Vertigo Gold Project in Drew Hill, South Australia.

Development of the project has been strengthened by a $1.3 million commitment on exploration by joint venture partner Polymetals Mining (ASX: PLY) in exchange for an increase in interest to 50%.

Importantly, this will allow Exco to continue aggressive exploration in Queensland without impacting the White Dam region in South Australia.