HTX Minerals and Nunavut Resources Corp. seal deal for exploration
"An exciting and important initiative for the people of the Kitikmeot"
HTX Minerals Corp. and the Nunavut Resources Corp. announced March 5 that they’re signed “a strategic alliance agreement” for mineral project development and exploration in Nunavut’s Kitikmeot region.
As part of this five-year deal, the NRC, the first Inuit-owned mining development company, will seek a minimum of $18 million to be invested in exploration within the region.
“This is an exciting and important initiative for the people of the Kitikmeot, and will further allow us to actively participate in the economic development of the region.” said Charlie Evalik, president of the Kitikmeot Inuit Association and chairman of the NRC.
With HTX, the NRC hopes hope to speed up discovery of deposits that could lead to more infrastructure, such as roads, ports, power and other facilities, which are required to support mining activities.
“As well, the alliance will result in millions of dollars being spent locally for a wide range of exploration-related services, and generate new employment and business opportunities,” Evalik said in a March 5 news release.
Scott McLean, president and chief executive officer of HTX, called the alliance is “a significant catalyst for company growth,” which will provide access to a large region of “highly prospective and comparatively under-explored land, and the funding necessary to ensure success.”
Capacity building is an important part of the agreement, the news release said.
HTX will work closely with the NRC so it gains practical knowledge hands-on experience in the early stages of the mineral exploration process.
Under the terms of the agreement, the two companies will identify properties of interest, and form joint venture partnerships for exploration.
This may lead to the discovery of new ore deposits, and potentially to the development of mines and infrastructure in the region, the news release stated.
Much of the initial focus will be on unstaked portions of the 11,509 square-kilometres of Inuit Owned Land (surface and mineral rights) in the Kitikmeot region, and on Article 41 Lands in the Northwest Territories, 360 km northwest of Yellowknife.
The Article 41 Lands, a 572-km-sq. area in the NWT, were granted to the KIA as part of the boundary reconciliation between the NWT and Nunvaut.
Just to the south of the Article 41 Lands are the Ekati and Diavik diamond mines, while to the north, lie the Lupin gold mine and the base metal deposits at Gondor and Izok Lake.