- Sheffield Resources has secured an additional binding off-take agreement with Chinese mineral sands processor, Hainan Wensheng High-Tech Materials Company, for the future sale of zircon concentrate from its Thunderbird Mineral Sands Project
- This agreement brings the total contracted volume to 52,000 tonnes
- Thunderbird is one of the largest and highest-grade mineral sands discoveries in 30 years
- Sheffield signed an off-take with Bengbu Zhongheng New Materials recently for the annual supply of 650,000 tonnes of primary ilmenite for seven years – will benefit upcoming BFS
Sheffield Resources has secured an additional binding off-take agreement with Hainan Wensheng High-Tech Materials Company.
The agreement is for the future sale of zircon concentrate from its Thunderbird Mineral Sands Project.
This off-take marks the second between the two companies. This agreement with Wensheng is for the annual supply of 25,000 tonnes of zircon concentrate in addition to the annual supply of 27,000 tonnes agreed upon on December 12 2017. This additional off-take brings the total contracted volume to 52,000 tonnes.
Wensheng is the largest mineral sands processor in China and Sheffield is delighted to be strengthening the relationship.
“We’ve spent a lot of time fostering relationships with international off-take partners, so it’s very encouraging to see one of the largest mineral sands processors in the world sign up for additional volume,” Managing Director Bruce McFadzean said.
Thunderbird is located on the Dampier Peninsula, approximately 75 kilometres southwest of Derby, Western Australia. It is one of the largest and highest-grade mineral sands discoveries in the last three decades.
Sheffield’s Bankable Feasibility Study (BFS) shows Thunderbird is a low risk, modest capex project which will generate strong revenue and high production levels over a 42-year mine life.
The project will generate high quality mineral sands products including premium zircon suitable for ceramics, zircon concentrate and titanium-dioxide feedstocks.
Earlier this month, Sheffield signed an off-take agreement with Bengbu Zhongheng New Materials, for the sale of un-roasted primary ilmenite (black iron-titanium oxide). Bengbu will receive an annual supply of 650,000 tonnes of primary ilmenite for seven years. This represents all of the estimated volumes of primary ilmenite to be produced during stage one.
The agreement is set to enhance Thunderbird’s finances by generating additional revenue from primary ilmenite sales and complementing its BFS.
“With this agreement finalised, our marketing team has now secured off-take for 100% of all Stage 1 zircon and ilmenite production volumes at Thunderbird, significantly reducing market and revenue risk,” Bruce said on the Wensheng deal.
“The BFS update we are seeking to conclude in the coming weeks will target the deferral of our planned LTR ilmenite circuit to focus on increased zircon production,” he said.
An increased zircon production is likely to deliver lower capital and operating costs, lower construction risk and a financially stronger project.