Toronto-listed Angkor Resources Corp last week announced that it has begun exploring and developing the 100sq km Andong Bor copper-gold porphyry licence, which straddles the districts of Banteay Ampil and Chong Kal in Oddar Meanchey province’s southwest as well as Phnom Srok in northeastern Banteay Meanchey.

This comes 175 days after Angkor Resources’ September 6 statement in which it revealed that its application for Andong Bor had been “approved and issued” by the Ministry of Mines and Energy, and that private Canadian firm CANbodia Copper Corp (CCC) had “aligned” with it to fund, explore and develop the then-newly-acquired northwestern Cambodian licence.

“Previously, [Angkor Resources] confirmed a copper gold porphyry system on the Thmei North prospect with similar results on the Thmei South prospect,” the company recapped in a February 28 statement.

CCC interim CEO Terry Lyon remarked in the latest statement that “copper and gold remain key minerals of global demand, and we are very excited to work with Angkor and advance this project towards what we believe may be a precedent-setting discovery for copper gold in Cambodia”.

Angkor Resources vice-president of exploration Dennis Ouellette added that “this continuing exploration is to follow-up on the previously announced high-grade copper drill intervals and leads us to build solid value, define a resource, and prove a world-class projects in Cambodia”.

The statement noted that the programme, “initiated in February following the Environmental Impact Assessment [EIA], started with expanding the existing soil sampling programme to the southern boundary of the property. This will consist of approximately 340 auger soil samples and is expected to take about six weeks to complete.

“The previous wide spaced soil sampling programme produced the sizeable Thmei North and Thmei South soil copper and gold anomalies, approximately 500m by 500m each. The Thmei South anomaly is open to the south which is where this season’s soil sampling programme is starting.

“The samples will be analysed by [Angkor Resources’] portable XRF [X-ray fluorescence devices] at its facility in Banlung [town], Ratanakkiri province. Selected samples will be forwarded for verification and further gold analysis to ALS laboratory.

“As well, the samples will be analysed for clay alteration using the company’s TerraSpec mineral spectrometer to identify pathfinder minerals related to copper porphyry alteration.

“When the regional soil survey is completed, it is anticipated that a tighter in-fill soil survey will be undertaken over selected targets on the Thmei North and Thmei South prospects to provide additional data within the wide spaced soil anomalies,” it said.

The September 6 statement noted that the Andong Bor licence “had preliminary drilling completed several years ago under a different licensee, with strong copper and gold results”.

Regarding the project partnership with CCC, Angkor Resources CEO Delayne Weeks commented in that statement: “Having an alliance with global expertise in the copper markets brings depth and strength not only to the Andong Bor licence and companies involved, but to Cambodia’s entire mineral sector.

“The country has developed solid mining laws and production processes and is attractive to foreign investment because it is secure, has a healthy GDP [gross domestic product], and a keen young workforce.

“Western expertise in the extractive sector can help expedite modern innovative practices that have evolved over decades elsewhere but can be implemented immediately in Cambodia,” he added.