22 October 2021
Beowulf Mining plc
("Beowulf" or the "Company")
Beowulf (AIM: BEM; Spotlight: BEO), the mineral exploration and development company, provides an update on recent developments in Sweden, the completion of a concept Mining Study for Kallak, and the Company's application for an Exploitation Concession for Kallak North.
CEO Visit to Sweden
The CEO visited Sweden between 3-9 October 2021 travelling to Luleå, Boden, Jokkmokk, and Stockholm. Discussions with politicians in Norrbotten and Stockholm indicate that permitting, sustainable and secure supply chains, the transition to a Green Economy and the need for more mines in Sweden are priorities for several political parties right now, especially those parties contesting to be in government after the next election in September 2022.
Mining Study and Transport Infrastructure Developments
With the support of Carci Mining Consultants Limited ("Carci"), the Company has completed a concept Mining Study for Kallak North which shows that the mine could produce approximately 2.7 million tonnes ("Mt") per annum of concentrate based on the existing resource for Kallak North only and modelled over an initial 15 years.
There exists the potential for a longer life mining operation, when considering Kallak South and the Company's exploration ground further south, which have both additional defined iron ore mineralisation and an Exploration Target.
(See RNS Announcement on 25 May 2021 - Kallak Iron Ore Project - Mineral Resource Estimate and Exploration Target Upgrade https://polaris.brighterir.com/public/beowulf_mining_plc/news/rns/story/x8q5k9x)
This production rate is one scenario and given the forecast demand for high quality iron ore being created by projects such as HYBRIT and more specifically H2 Green Steel, there could well be a requirement for a higher production rate. The Company will be using the results of the concept Mining Study as the basis for discussions with The Swedish Transport Agency (Trafikverket), the Inlandsbanan (the Inland Railway) and emerging fossil-free steel producers in Norrbotten.
Dependent on customer locations, domestic and export, the Inlandsbanan and the Malmbanan are the obvious rail routes to market for Kallak, but in the case of Malmbanan there is clearly competition for access.
Recent discussions in Sweden suggest that a rail connection between Jokkmokk and Boden has been discussed, which in the Company's view would be of clear benefit to a variety of users including mining, forestry, hydrogen transport and others, as well as future investors in projects such as Kallak and H2GreenSteel.
More broadly, the Company understands that transport infrastructure in the north of Sweden is in the spotlight, as one enabler to securing future capital investments as part of the transition to a Green Economy/European Green Deal. This renewed impetus is good news and builds on previous EU funded studies between 2011-2013, led by Sweden, the Bothnian Green Logistic Corridor.
On 20 October 2021, Minister Baylan gave his standard response to a question raised by Mr Mattias Karlsson, Member of Parliament for the Moderaterna Party. Minister Baylan is leaving office at the end of the month, so the lack of a more detailed response and any timeline for a decision is unsurprising. He stated that the Government's review of the case is ongoing.
In recent weeks, The Constitutional Committee ("KU"), which has previously reviewed the Swedish Government's handling of the Company's Kallak application and criticised the Government in late 2020, has initiated a new review of minerals permitting which includes the Kallak case. The Ministry of Enterprise gave direct responses to KU's questions which were evidently lacking in detail. The Company is interested to see the conclusions of the KU's latest review.
Kurt Budge, CEO, commented:
"This week, the outgoing Prime Minister Stefan Löfven visited H2 Green Steel in Boden and Luleå Hamn (the regional port), demonstrating his support for two companies creating a fossil-free industrial future, and playing a significant role in supplying Europe.
"Stating the obvious, but you can't make steel without iron ore and steel making in the future will rely on robust supply chains.
"Despite Stefan Löfven's exit from the stage, there's lots happening politically in Norrbotten and Stockholm and the Company has renewed optimism, that with a new Prime Minister and Minister of Enterprise due to take office in the coming weeks, a change in leadership has to be a stimulus for decisions on permit applications and Kallak.
"The Board will be watching closely to see if there are signs of a decision being taken. If not, then we will seek alternative recourse.
"Since the last Company announcement over a month ago, I have spent a week in India visiting Epsilon Carbon, including its production facilities in Karnataka State, and was able to discuss our joint plans to develop an anode materials plant in Finland. I also visited Finland last week for meetings regarding Grafintec's business, and, as mentioned previously, I was in Sweden earlier in the month.
"In Kosovo, we are still waiting for final approval of Vardar's licence applications. The appointment by the Kosovan Government of new members to the Independent Commission on Mines and Minerals ("ICMM") Board, the body that administers mineral licence permitting in Kosovo, renews licences and issues new licences, is still to be completed. The Company is now discussing plans with Vardar for a Winter drilling programme to catch-up on some of the lost time this year.
"It's a busy time for Beowulf, with many plans being worked on, and I look forward to updating shareholders on developments in due course."
Kurt Budge, vd, kommenterar:
"Under den här veckan besökte statsminister Stefan Löfven H2 Green Steel i Boden samt Luleå Hamn (den regionala hamnen) och visade sitt stöd för två bolag som skapar en fossilfri industriell framtid samt har en viktig del som europeiska leverantörer.
"Det kan låta självklart, men man kan inte tillverka stål utan järnmalm, och ståltillverkning i framtiden kommer att förlita sig på robusta leveranskedjor.
"Trots Stefan Löfvens avgång sker det mycket politiskt i Norrbotten och Stockholm. Bolaget har en förnyad optimism om att en ny statsminister och näringsminister som tillträder de kommande veckorna, bidrar till en stimulans för beslut om tillståndsansökningar och Kallak.
"Styrelsen kommer noga följa detta för att se om det finns tecken på att beslut fattas. Om så inte sker, kommer vi söka alternativa lösningar.
"Sedan Bolagets senaste offentliga utlåtande för över en månad sedan har jag tillbringat en vecka i Indien för att besöka Epsilon Carbon och dess produktionsanläggningar i Karnataka-provinsen. Där kunde jag diskutera våra gemensamma planer för att utveckla en anodmaterialfabrik i Finland. Vidare besökte jag Finland förra veckan för möten om Grafintecs verksamhet. Härutöver var jag som tidigare nämnts i Sverige tidigare under månaden.
"I Kosovo väntar vi fortfarande på slutligt godkännande av Vardars licensansökningar. Regeringen i Kosovos arbete med att utse nya ledamöter till den oberoende kommittén för gruvor och mineraler ("ICMM"), vilket är organet som administrerar mineraltillstånd, förnyar licenser samt utfärdar nya licenser, återstår att slutföra. Bolaget diskuterar för närvarande med Vardar kring ett vinterborrningsprogram för att accelerera och ta igen delar av den förlorade tiden från detta år.
Beowulf Mining plc
Kurt Budge, Chief Executive Officer Tel: +44 (0) 20 7583 8304
SP Angel(Nominated Adviser & Broker)
Ewan Leggat / Stuart Gledhill / Adam Cowl Tel: +44 (0) 20 3470 0470
Tim Blythe / Megan Ray Tel: +44 (0) 20 7138 3204
Statements and assumptions made in this document with respect to the Company's current plans, estimates, strategies and beliefs, and other statements that are not historical facts, are forward-looking statements about the future performance of Beowulf. Forward-looking statements include, but are not limited to, those using words such as "may", "might", "seeks", "expects", "anticipates", "estimates", "believes", "projects", "plans", strategy", "forecast" and similar expressions. These statements reflect management's expectations and assumptions in light of currently available information. They are subject to a number of risks and uncertainties, including, but not limited to , (i) changes in the economic, regulatory and political environments in the countries where Beowulf operates; (ii) changes relating to the geological information available in respect of the various projects undertaken; (iii) Beowulf's continued ability to secure enough financing to carry on its operations as a going concern; (iv) the success of its potential joint ventures and alliances, if any; (v) metal prices, particularly as regards iron ore. In the light of the many risks and uncertainties surrounding any mineral project at an early stage of its development, the actual results could differ materially from those presented and forecast in this document. Beowulf assumes no unconditional obligation to immediately update any such statements and/or forecast.
About Beowulf Mining plc
Beowulf Mining plc ("Beowulf" or the "Company") is an exploration and development company, listed on the AIM market of the London Stock Exchange and the Spotlight Exchange in Sweden.
Beowulf's purpose to be a responsible and innovative company that creates value for our shareholders, wider society and the environment, through sustainably producing critical raw materials, which includes iron ore, graphite and base metals, needed for the transition to a Green Economy and to address the Climate Emergency.
The Company's asset portfolio is diversified by commodity, geography and the development stage of its various projects.
The Company's most advanced project is the Kallak iron ore asset in northern Sweden. A potential 389 million tonne resource which can produce a 'market leading' concentrate of 71.5% iron content and is a potential source of supply for fossil-free steel production in Sweden for decades to come.
Grafintec (previously Fennoscandian Resources), a wholly-owned subsidiary, through its Memorandum of Understanding ("MoU") with Epsilon Advance Materials Limited ("EAMPL") is enhancing its position within the Finnish battery ecosystem, collaborating with a strong and innovative technology/processing partner, with plans to develop an anode materials plant in Finland to supply the growing lithium-ion battery sector.
In Kosovo, the Company owns approximately 49.4% of Vardar Minerals ("Vardar"), which is focus on exploration in the Tethyan Belt, a major orogenic metallogenic province for gold and base metals. Vardar is delivering exciting results for its Mitrovica licence which has several exploration targets, including lead, zinc, copper and gold. It also has the Viti licence which is showing potential for copper-gold porphyry mineralisation. With Beowulf's support, Vardar is focused on making a discovery.
Kallak is the foundation asset of the Company, but with Vardar and Grafintec, the Company has many opportunities