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Copper Co. Partners With Major on Colombia Project's Design

Source: Streetwise Reports

May 11, 2023 (Investorideas.com Newswire) Libero Copper and Gold Corp. is partnering with Anglo Asian Mining Plc on the initial design, engineering, and financial modeling work on its Mocoa project in Putumayo, Colombia.


Libero Copper and Gold Corp. (LBC:TSX.V; LBCMF:OTCQB) is partnering with its largest shareholder, Anglo Asian Mining Plc (AAZ:LON), on the initial design, engineering, and financial modeling work on its Mocoa project in Putumayo, Colombia.

Anglo Asian is an experienced project developer, mine builder, mine operator, and explorer, Libero said.

Studies will be focused on low-impact underground bulk tonnage mining methods and using other innovations to minimize the project's environmental footprint.

Libero President and Chief Executive Officer Ian Harris called the partnership an "important milestone."

"A key objective of the design is maximizing production chain development in Putumayo through a secure, long-term supply of copper for national green industries, in line with the Colombian government's commitment to industrialization, tackling climate change, and transitioning toward sustainable industries," Harris said.

A pit-constrained inferred resource at Mocoa contains 636 million tonnes of 0.45% copper equivalent (Cu eq) containing 4.6 billion pounds Cu and 511 million pounds molybdenum (Mo).

The deposit appears to be open in both directions, along and at depth. The company also has identified additional porphyry targets, including a possible expansion of the known mineralization.

The project could be "larger than currently defined as suggested by previous alteration and geophysical studies," Red Cloud Securities Inc. analyst Taylor Combaluzier wrote in a February research note.

"Additional discoveries and resource expansion at Mocoa are two factors we believe are key to a potential re-rating of Libero's stock price," wrote Combaluzier, who rated the stock a Buy with a target of CA$0.95 per share.

Technical analyst Clive Maund of CliveMaund.com rated the stock an immediate strong speculative Buy in February.

"This looks like an excellent point to pick up Libero Copper on its reaction back to support following a powerful high-volume breakout from a Head-and-Shoulders bottom late last month," he wrote. "It looks like we have a perfect entry point here."

The Catalyst: Minimizing Impact on the Environment

Mocoa, discovered in 1973, is the largest copper resource in Colombia, according to the company.

Surface work was conducted in the 1970s and early 1980s, and some drilling was done in 2008 and 2012. Libero drilled at the project in 2022 and intercepted 840 meters of 0.72% Cu eq.

A soil geochemical anomaly also extends north and south of the area previously drill tested, and elevated copper was in soil samples for an additional 2 kilometers south of the main copper-molybdenum anomaly.

Libero previously identified nine new porphyry targets near the existing deposit at the site. The ongoing field program is now collecting soil samples from these additional targets.

A large part of the design of the site will involve minimizing the mining's impact on the local environment as the company aims to meet the surging demand for copper in the renewable energy and electric vehicle (EV) industries, Libero said.

"Anglo Asian Mining already has a strong track record of protecting the earth while having a positive impact on the living standards where we operate," said Reza Vaziri, president and chief executive officer of Anglo Asian. "As the mining industry continues to evolve, we are committed to embracing changes that will help create a sustainable and mutually beneficial future for all."

Colombia at the Forefront

Mining companies had been worried when leftist Gustavo Petro was elected last summer, promising a halt to new gas and oil and development. But he's proven to be more supportive of green metals like copper. He wants Colombia to be at the forefront of the world's energy transition.

"We believe Petro would have to acknowledge copper's fundamental role in achieving this goal, which should benefit Libero Copper," Combaluzier of Red Cloud Securities has written.

EVs, as they are now, would not exist without the red metal. They use three times the amount of copper as cars with internal combustion engines.

One out of five vehicles sold worldwide could be an EV in less than two years, and Ford and General Motors have set a goal of achieving 40-50% of their sales from EVs in the U.S. by 2030. This is expected to cause demand for copper to rise 16% and outstrip supply by more than 6 million tonnes by the end of the decade, according to independent energy research company Rystad Energy.

The transition to clean energy is expected to bring 10.3 million new jobs globally by 2030, the World Economic Forum noted in March. That increase will offset the 2.7 million jobs expected to be cut in fossil fuels.

"It's a done deal," Harris has said of the economic shift. "It's something that's going to be happening in some form."

Ownership and Share Structure

About 5.2% of the company is held by management and insiders, 28.5% is held by institutional investors, about 29.3% is held by strategic and high-net-worth investors, including 19.6% owned by Anglo Asian, the largest shareholder. The rest is retail.

Among insiders, Executive Chairman Ian Slater owns 3.96%, and Director Robert Pease owns 0.43%, according to Reuters. Palos Management Inc. owns 0.46%.

The company is covered by Taylor Combaluzier of Red Cloud Securities and newsletter writers Clive Maund of Clivemaund.com, Bob Moriarty of 321gold.com, David Forest of International Speculator, Brien Lundin of the Gold Newsletter (Jefferson Financial), and Gwen Preston of Resource Maven. Click in the data box above to view more of what they are saying.

Its market cap is CA$13.4 million, and it has 108.19 million shares outstanding, 84.24 million floating. It trades in a 52-week range of CA$0.65 and CA$0.115.

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