Australian tin-producer Metals X and Westgold Resources, which has development projects in Western Australia and the Northern Territory, have agreed to merge, forming a company with a market capitalization of A$330 million. Metals X currently holds a 26.98% interest in Westgold and is Westgold’s largest shareholder.

Metals X is 50% owner of the Renison Bell tin mine and concentrator in Tasmania, as well as the Rentails expansion project and the Mt. Bischoff tin deposit. The company is also pursuing development of its Wingellina laterite nickel-cobalt project in Western Australia, near the conjunction of the borders of Western Australia, South Australia and the Northern Territory. Wingellina project planning calls for production of 40,000 mt/y of nickel and 3,000 mt/y of cobalt over a mine life of 39 years.

Westgold’s key assets are its Central Murchison gold project in Western Australia and its Rover 1 copper-gold project in the Northern Territory. The Central Murchison project has a current mineral resource of 2.7 million oz of gold in three deposits. Westgold’s goal is to develop a multi-mine operation with a centralized mill producing 100,000 oz/y of gold over a 10-year period.

At the Rover 1 project, Westgold is preparing to initiate a decline to provide a drill platform for conversion of resources to reserves and to establish detailed definition of the proposed mining blocks.

Westgold Chairman Michael Atkins said, “Westgold’s board has held the view for some time that the company’s projects are not receiving appropriate recognition in the equity market and that significant funds are required to bring both the Central Murchison gold project and the Rover 1 project into development and subsequent production. This is an attractive proposal from Metals X, which brings the financial strength to rapidly progress these assets and expose Westgold shareholders to a diversified range of commodities as part of a larger, well-funded mining house.”