Chatham Rock Phosphate welcomes new neighbour

8 February 2012 

Chatham Rock Phosphate today welcomed news that another company has been recently granted an exploration permit to explore rock phosphate reserves on the Chatham Rise.

The L&M Group, which has a wide range of petroleum exploration and onshore mining interests, has been granted a permit by New Zealand Petroleum and Minerals to explore seafloor phosphate deposits over a wide area to the west, south and east of the marine phosphate permit held by CRP (see diagram below).

L&M holds 90 per cent of Chatham Phosphate Ltd, with the balance held by veteran geoscientist Roger Gregg.

CRP managing director Chris Castle said he was delighted another company recognised the potential of the area. 

“It reinforces the enormous potential value we see in the area, which is being constantly confirmed as we gather new technical data. Chatham holds a large area which has more unknowns but which could have real prospectivity for both rock phosphate and glauconite. ”

Mr Castle noted Chatham chairman Geoff Loudon has had a distinguished career in the mining industry and is widely recognised as an astute investor.

“CRP has done a huge amount of work over the past couple of years that would be of benefit to Chatham.  There are many potential synergies that can be achieved, particularly relating to environmental monitoring and scientific research.”

CRP is a New Zealand owned and operated company established to explore and extract this country’s only significant rock phosphate resource, located on the seabed in sandy silt 400 metres below the surface and 450 km east of Christchurch on the Chatham Rise and expects to apply for a mining licence during 2012.

Chatham Rise rock phosphate can offer benefits that include a reduced carbon footprint through much lower transport costs, fewer run-off effects on farmland when using it as a direct-application product and low cadmium content.

“We would like to welcome Chatham to what is an exclusive neighbourhood, and one we believe will achieve a growing value.  We look forward to talking with them to explore ways we can cooperate and share knowledge.”

Chris Castle     

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