Tigers Realm CoalLtd. said April 12 that reserves at the Project F deposit within theAmaam project inRussia's Far East jumped 140% to 16.1 million tonnes, following a new reserves estimateby consultants SRK.
The upgrade follows a boostto the same project's resources last year, and should help ASX-listed Tigers Realmattract funding to develop the site and start production by 2017 as originally planned.
The sharp fall in the price of coal hit the company as it wrappedup exploration of the two sites last year, but the momentous fall in value of theRussian ruble has helped it cut costs and stay competitive in the cutthroat NorthAsian seaborne coal market.
According to the report, Project F will have FOB operating costsof about US$41 per tonne against the current price of US$76.70 for hard coking coalFOB Australian east coast. Life of mine capital costs were estimated at approximatelyUS$132 million, excluding closure costs, with plenty of future opportunities forreserves growth, according to a company investor presentation published in January.
If built, the mine's initial production will total approximately1 million tonnes of coal per annum, with an expected mine life of 11 years.
The majority of coal produced over the mine's lifespan is expectedto be semi-hard coking coal with "very low sulfur and phosphorous" content,according to the company.
Tigers Realm, which is also looking to eventually develop a mineat the Amaam project's southern-most deposit, controls the Beringovsky coal port,located 35 kilometers from Project F.
The Beringovsky terminal, which historically shipped about 700,000tonnes of coal from the Nagornayamine per annum, could be upgraded to handle 3 million tonnes of coal annually, accordingto Tigers Realm.
Meanwhile, the company's southern-most Amaam deposit has totalcoal resources of 521 million tonnes; while at an earlier stage than Project F inthe north, Tigers Realm is planning to begin converting resources, and may alsobuild a dedicated terminal at Arinay Lagoon, 25 kilometers to the east.
Interim CEO Peter Balka did not return phone calls seeking furtherdetails on the project by deadline.