The Quebec government will give BlackRock Metals C$185 million, and will direct an additional C$63 million to the Saguenay Port Authority for energy infrastructure.
Privately owned BlackRock Metals got a cash injection this week when the Quebec government announced it will provide the company with a C$248-million funding package.
The money will be put toward the company’s vanadium and titanium-bearing magnetite (VTM) and ilmenite deposit near Chibougamau in the province’s Nord-du-Quebec region.
The funds will also be used for the construction of a secondary processing plant in the Grande-Anse sector of the industrial port area of Saguenay.
According to a Tuesday (August 21) press release, the money directed at BlackRock will come from three different sources, including an equity investment of C$85 million in the capital of BlackRock via Capital Mines Hydrocarbures.
In addition, Investissement Quebec, acting as agent for the government, will provide a C$50-million loan to the company, and Ressources Quebec will give BlackRock a C$50-million loan from its own funds.
The government will also give C$63 million to a subsidiary of the Saguenay Port Authority in order to ensure that the energy infrastructure needed to support the mine is constructed.
Founded in 2008, BlackRock says that it will eventually be the world’s lowest-cost producer of high-purity pig iron, ferrovanadium steel additives and high-quality titanium feedstocks. The company says a number of factors, including superior grades and world-class tonnages, will allow it to reach that goal.
The company’s mineral claims cover over 74 square kilometers and are fully permitted for mineral extraction. Since 2008 it has defined two zones that cover a cumulative strike length of about 7 kilometres, or about 40 percent of the mineralization controlled by BlackRock.
BlackRock’s project has an estimated mine life of over 80 years at an initial processing rate of 3.1 million tonnes annually and a cut-off grade of 10-percent magnetite.
According to Tuesday’s press release, the company’s project represents an investment valued at nearly C$1.3 billion, and will create over 800 jobs during mine and mill construction. An additional 200 jobs will be created during mine operation , with operation of the processing plant creating around 300 jobs.
“Our Government is proud to promote the success of this major BlackRock Metals investment project, which will enhance the mining potential of the Nord-du-Québec region and strengthen Québec’s expertise in second-stage ore processing in the region,” said Dominique Anglade, deputy prime minister, minister of the economy, science and innovation and minister responsible for the digital agenda.
VTM deposits are the world’s main source of vanadium, and Quebec is known for holding this type of deposit. VanadiumCorp Resource (TSX:VRB), whose Lac Dore vanadium asset is adjacent to BlackRock’s project, put out a press release applauding the government’s investment in BlackRock.
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Securities Disclosure: I, Charlotte McLeod, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
Editorial Disclosure: VanadiumCorp Resource is a client of the Investing News Network. This article is not paid-for content.