Kingston Resources (ASX:KSN) - gold explorer & developer


by Rachael Jones

Kingston Resources Limited (ASX:KSN) CFO, Chris Drew, provides an update on the company's Misima and Livingstone gold projects and drill program.

Rachael Jones: Hello, I'm Rachael Jones for the Finance News Network. Joining me from Kingston Resources (ASX:KSN) is CFO Chris Drew. Chris, welcome to the network.

Chris Drew: Thanks very much, Rachael.

Rachael Jones: Now first up, Chris, could you start by giving us an introduction to the company?

Chris Drew: Kingston Resources, we're an ASX-listed gold exploration and development company. We've got two main assets, the Misima gold project in Papua New Guinea, and we've got a 2.8 million ounce JORC resource there, significant exploration potential, and what's really interesting about Misima is a proven track record there.

Chris Drew: Alongside Misima, we've got the Livingstone gold project in WA. We've made a discovery there at Kingsley, looking like a high grade shallow ore body there, plenty of work for us to follow up on. Haven't tested at depth, haven't drilled out all the strike, so lots of excitement there at Livingstone for us as well.

Rachael Jones: Thanks Chris. Now before we talk some more about your key project there at Misima, can you tell me about the history of gold production on Misima Island?

Chris Drew: So Misima has a long history with gold production, going right back to the initial discoveries in 1889 through the present day where the artisanal activity continues, Pre-World War II, there was a lot of underground mines or a lot of underground activity on Misima, targetting some of the higher grade structures Some of those are our exploration targets today. Things really took off at Misima though in 1989 when Placer commenced its production. Open pit production produced 3.7 million ounces over 15 years at a really low cost, $218 an ounce. They made the decision to leave in the late '90s when the gold price was really weak, under $300 an ounce. Now we're picking up essentially where they left off 20 years ago. Got that 2.8 million ounce resource, significant exploration potential, and hoping to get it back into production.

Rachael Jones: So now let's talk about your flagship project in more detail. What can you tell me about the size of the project and the exploration potential there?

Chris Drew: Yes, Misima is a large-scale project. We're sitting on a 2.8 million ounce resource, Placer mined almost 4 million ounces. That all sits within a three kilometre strike length. That strike's interpreted to extend for another four kilometres to the north, so potentially room to significantly expand our resource base there. There's also a lot of exploration potential on the island. Placer really focused quite close around its mine. We're broadening out that exploration focus, done a lot of great geochem work, a lot of structural work. We've identified a number of targets, seeing some success with those already, and continuing to drill them out now. So plenty of potential there to grow that resource base further.

Rachael Jones: So what did Placer leave behind after its departure?

Chris Drew: Well, the main thing they left behind was the 2.8 million ounces of gold, which is great for us, but we need to understand at the time a $300 gold price, the economics of them continuing wasn't what it is for us today with a $1,500 gold price. But they've also left behind a lot of other things. There's significant infrastructure on the island. There's an airstrip, hosts three commercial flights a week. There's schools, hospital, and ports as well. So that's all Placer legacy. They've left behind a trained workforce. There's around 300 Misimans working FIFO around Papua New Guinea and other mines. They're all keen to come home and work at Misima. They've also left behind a strong, really strong support from the local community. The locals did well out of it when Placer was operating. As a result, they're very keen for us to get the mine back into production as well too. So to have that support is fantastic. And the last thing is, I guess, the data that we have and the knowledge that Placer was a successful operation, also, I think, derisks the project for us as we move it forward and get it back into production.

Rachael Jones: And what can you tell me about the current drilling there?

Chris Drew: So right now we're drilling in two areas, Umuna East, immediately adjacent to the old pit, and Misima North, north of the old pit. Both of these areas have got significant geochem footprints, so gold at surface, which we've identified, lots of historic workings in those areas as well. So we know there's gold in those areas, we think they're the right places to look. So really excited to see how we go with our drilling there and reporting on those results.

Rachael Jones: Thanks Chris. Now let's move closer to home. Can you give me an update on the Livingstone project?

Chris Drew: Yeah, so Livingstone's located around 140 kilometres northwest of Meekatharra, in and around a number of other gold mines. We've got a 50,000 ounce resource there at Homestead. 10 kilometres west of that resource, we've made a discovery at Kingsley. It looks like we've got a high-grade, shallow potential ore body there. Getting some great results with the drilling that we've done. Yet to fully test it at depth though. We've only drilled 800 meters out of two kilometres of strike, so we're going to keep pushing on there and see how much bigger we can make that project.

Rachael Jones: And to the last question now Chris, what do you hope to achieve over the next 12 months?

Chris Drew: Well, sticking with Livingstone. We're going to continue to drill there. Each time we drill it we find more gold. So we're going to continue to drill, hopefully expand the resource there and see where that takes us. Our flagship project, though, Misima, near-term focus is concluding its current exploration program, reporting the results on that. As we move further into next year, hoping to transition to mining studies and approvals as we ultimately look to bring that back into production. So Misima, got that large-scale, long-life project, plenty of exploration potential, proven track record. They're in good shape to bring that back into production. Should have an exciting year ahead of us.

Rachael Jones: It does all sound very exciting. Chris Drew, thanks so much for the introduction.

Chris Drew: Thanks very much, Rachael. Appreciate the opportunity to talk about Kingston.