A Perth-based junior explorer Strategic Elements Ltd (ASX: SOR) has had observers of gold exploration on New Zealand’s South Island awaiting an update on its activity.
The company is an unique junior on the Australian bourse, registered under the Pooled Development Programme run by the Australian Federal Government to encourage investment into SME's.
It originally targeted the South Island for various metals, including rare earths but honed this to gold and then placed its main focus on the Golden Blocks region where work was undertaken on the historic Aorangi mine – a small but high grade producer.
However, the information flow on Golden Blocks in the past 18 months has been minimal, with one recent statement saying the company was awaiting some procedural issues from NZ Government authorities.
In the past two years Strategic Elements altered its focus to take in nanocube memory research and development with an university in New South Wales and taking up gold targets in northern Australia – one area for greenfields exploration and another on targets for high grade alluvial nugget gold in the Pilbara.
Two weeks ago the company announced it was a contender for two areas near Marble Bar in the Pilbara, as part of a ballot process, including the Canadian company Novo Resources Corporation which started a rush for nugget gold deposits in the Pilbara.
Strategic Elements’ website said the Aorangi permit covers 25 square kilometres and work by its team has shown it has been virtually untouched for 100 years with records “lost from public knowledge.”
The records showed Aorangi was in a 2.5 kilometre “gold corridor of mineralisation and when the mine closed in 1914 it reputedly produced 26,000 ounces of gold at a recovered grade of 66 grams/tonne gold.
Whether Strategic Elements has the interest or will to give Golden Blocks a greater priority, it is an area that has attracted the attention of experienced NZ gold buffs.
It was recently the subject of a presentation by well known gold buff and historian John Taylor at the AusIMM Nelson Discussion Group. Later this month there will be a presentation on Golden Blocks, taking in the Aorangi mine by veteran gold geologist Paul Angus at the AusIMM NZ Mining Conference in Tauranga.