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Released 07:00 11-March-2015

Number 0973H

Stratex International Plc / Index: AIM / Epic: STI / Sector: Mining


Stratex International Plc 

('Stratex' or 'the Company')

Completion of Feasibility Study on Muratdere Project, Turkey


Stratex International Plc, the AIM-quoted exploration and development company, is pleased to provide details of the feasibility study which was recently completed on its Muratdere copper-molybdenum-gold project (‘Muratdere’ or the 'Project’) in Turkey.

The feasibility study has been funded by the Company’s joint-venture partner Lodos Maden Yatırım Sanayii ve Ticaret A.Ş. (‘Lodos’) as the final part of its commitment to earn up to 70% of the Project.



·         16-year mine life – comprised of 16 million tonnes of resource of which 59% is supergene enriched and 41% is hypogene - to process 1.0 million tonnes of mineralised material per annum;

·         Total metals production in concentrate – 68,139 tonnes copper (150 million pounds), 32,300 oz gold, and 954,677 oz silver; no allowance for recovery of molybdenum;

·         Revised three-pit mining plan with only limited drill and blast anticipated, resulting in savings in mining costs;

·         Average head grade of 0.52% copper using a cut-off of 0.3% copper;

·         Project economics indicate life of mine net income after tax of US$57 million, IRR of 16%, with NPV(7.6) of US$ 17.6 million - using metal prices of US$5,580/tonne copper, US$1,290/oz gold, and US$18.0/oz silver;

·         No allowance made at this stage for bulk of the much larger underlying hypogene resource which has a lower copper grade; and

·         The study has enabled the Environmental Impact Assessment (‘EIA’) permitting process to be initiated with Environment Ministry.


Bob Foster, Stratex Chief Executive, said, “Lodos have delivered a very comprehensive feasibility study with the support of a number of leading international and Turkish consultants.  The revised mine plan, comprising exploitation of the supergene enriched copper sulphide material first and then hypogene material, provides considerable flexibility in managing grade control and cash flow. The project economics are encouraging and any increase in the depressed copper price would have a very positive impact. Lodos have initiated the EIA process, based on this smaller scale, lower capex scheme, to avoid any delays in future project implementation and in the meantime we are reviewing the technical and financial options for the Project with them.

“Stratex’s total investment of US$1.2 million in the early exploration and evaluation of the Project has already seen a cash return of US$2.2 million plus a sound feasibility study as our partners vest at 70% of the Project.”    


Further details:

Prior to completion of the feasibility study, Lodos paid a total of US$2.2 million to Stratex and completed slightly more than 3,000 m of drilling to earn up to 61% of the Project. Successful completion of the feasibility study, fully funded by Lodos, permits Lodos’ shareholding in the operating company Muratdere Madencilik to be increased to 70%. Lodos undertook a further 11,787 m of diamond drilling  and determined an optimised resource, based on two pits and using a 0.3% Cu cut-off, to yield initial resource of 15 million tonnes averaging 0.54% Cu (80,000 t) and 0.10 g/t Au (48,000 oz) - 66% Indicated Resource, remainder Inferred Resource (Announcement dated 7 March 2014). This resource included mostly supergene enriched material in a near-surface environment, Stratex having previously reported an initial JORC-compliant Inferred Resource of 51 million tonnes (comprising 186,000 tonnes copper, 204,296 oz gold, 3.9 million oz silver, 6,390 tonnes molybdenum and 17,594 kg rhenium) and open along strike and at depth (Announcement dated 15 June 2011).

Subsequent mine-design studies have now assumed three open pits to develop only the near-surface material in the first instance - Eastern, Middle and Western. Based on the revised mine plan, the three pits will operate consecutively and will merge in later years of the Project, forming a single open pit. Annual mining rate will be approximately 1 million tonnes per annum and life of mine will be 16 years. Observations of core samples and results of metallurgical testwork and from a geotechnical survey indicate that the ore, especially within the supergene enrichment zone, is easy to dig. Consequently, only limited use of blasting is expected, which represents a considerable cost-saving.

Over the 16-year mine life the operation will produce approximately 15,967,000 tonnes of copper ore - 59% from supergene enriched material and 41% from hypogene material - and approximately 26 million tonnes of waste material. The stripping ratio ranges from 1.1 down to 0.5 during the mine life. The average head grade will be 0.52% for copper, 0.11 g/t for gold, 2.43 g/t for silver and 125 ppm for molybdenum. The ore will be treated through a conventional concentrator plant consisting of crushing, grinding, flotation, de-watering and filtration sections. The plant will produce copper concentrate and the tailings will be disposed as cake to be dry-stacked in a tailings storage facility.

Flotation testwork of supergene material averaged 80% recovery of sulphide-copper, with concentrates averaging 33.6% copper (results previously announced 15 October 2014).

The open‐pit mining operation will be run by a mine contractor and Muratdere Madencilik will provide mine management and control. The mine operation will rely on diesel-powered mobile equipment, and mine water pumping systems if required. 

The Project is very close to a major industrial region of Turkey and access to the property is easy. The property is located 1 km south of the Bursa‐Eskişehir main road, which is open all year. The port of Gemlik, which is 120 km distant by road, is an export terminal for sea freight. The closest suitable connection point to the medium- voltage national grid is 15 km east of the project location.


Project economics were determined using the following parameters:

·         Capital cost US$44.3 million (including US$6.6 million VAT);

·         Operating cost US$15.9 per tonne of ore processed - includes mining, plant, G&A, state rentals and royalties;

·         Metal prices of US$5,580/tonne copper, US$1,290/oz gold, and US$18/oz silver; and

·         Discount rate 7.6%.


Annual copper production during the first 10 years is estimated at between 4,000 tonnes per annum and 6,000, tonnes per annum, decreasing slightly thereafter to an average of approximately 3,600 tonnes per annum over the remainder of the life of mine. Net profit, after tax and depreciation, projected at US$8 million decreasing to US$4.5 million by year 4, thereafter decreasing to US$1-2 million for two years before returning to US$2-4 million in the subsequent four years.

Total net income after tax of US$57 million, IRR of 16%, with NPV of US$17.6 million over the projected 16-year life of mine – please see metals sensitivity analysis table below.




Copper price (US$ / t)




Equity Value (US$ M)




Equity IRR




Gold price (US$ / oz)




Equity Value (US$ M)




Equity IRR




At this stage, allowance has only been made for exploitation of approximately 6.5 million tons of the much larger underlying low-grade hypogene chalcopyrite-dominated copper-molybdenum-gold material for which previously reported metallurgical test work indicated that a saleable copper concentrate grades (>24% Cu) could be produced from all but the unoxidised sulphide material, which returned slightly less than 22% Cu at a recovery of just below 84% (Announcement dated 12 December 2011).

The EIA permitting process for the Project has now commenced.

For more information on Muratdere, please click the following link  


* * ENDS * *


For further information please visit, email [email protected], or contact:


Stratex International Plc

Tel: +44 (0)20 7830 9650

Bob Foster / Christopher Hall / Claire Bay


Grant Thornton UK LLP

Tel: +44 (0)20 7383 5100

Philip Secrett / Melanie Frean / Jen Clarke


Northland Capital Partners Limited

Tel: +44 (0)20 7382 1100

Gerry Beaney / David Hignell/

Alice Lane /John Howes


SP Angel Corporate Finance LLP

Tel: +44 (0)20 3470 0500

Ewan Leggat / Tercel Moore


Yellow Jersey PR Limited

Tel: +44 (0)7747 788 221

Dominic Barretto / Philip Ranger / Anna Legge

Notes to Editors:

Focused on the exploration and development of gold and high-value base metals, Stratex International is active in Turkey and Senegal and has strategic interests in East Africa and Ghana. Since listing on AIM in 2006, Stratex has had an impressive track record of successful exploration supported by joint-venture partnerships, both with major international mining companies and local companies to maximise the potential of its discoveries.

To date Stratex has discovered more than 2.2 million ounces of gold and 7.9 million ounces of silver, as well as 186,000 tonnes of copper. The Company is looking to completion of construction of its 45%-owned Altintepe gold project in Turkey in Q2-2015 and anticipates gold production soon thereafter. Additionally a 1% production royalty capped at US$20 million will be due from the Öksüt project, also in Turkey, with first production provisionally targeted for late-2016 by owners Centerra Gold. With its current cash position and projected cash returns, the Company is well-placed to advance its existing exploration programmes and is also actively seeking to acquire advanced projects that are at the drill-ready stage or even have identified resources.

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