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» 10.02.2005 - Economic crisis continues in Eritrea

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Economy - Development

Eritrea copper-zinc deposits attract investment

afrol News, 4 January - The Canada-based company Lundin Mining Corporation has made a US$ 2.2 million investment in the exploration company Sanu Resources Ltd, which heads operations all over the African continent. Lundin however made now secret of its special interest in the "unique opportunity for discoveries" of copper-zinc deposits at Sanu's Eritrea properties.

Lundin yesterday announced that it had "entered into a financing arrangement with Sanu," buying a large part of the exploration companies shares in a US$ 2.2 million transaction. Upon the completion of the private placement, Lundin will hold just under 14 percent of the common shares of Sanu, and approximately 24 percent if it exercises its warrants, making it Sanu's largest shareholder.

Sanu is a mineral exploration company focused on the acquisition, exploration and discovery of world-class base metal and gold deposits in Africa and is currently exploring in Eritrea, Burkina Faso and Morocco, according to a statement released by both companies.

Lundin however made it clear that the Canadian company was after Sanu's activities in Eritrea. Sanu is by now the largest exploration landholder in Eritrea, with current exploration licenses totalling over 2600 square kilometres.

"The geology of Eritrea offers a unique opportunity for discoveries of greenstone volcanic-hosted massive sulphide and shear-hosted gold deposits," the Lundin statement said. The poly-metallic volcanic-hosted massive sulphide occurrences in the highlands around the capital of Asmara include the Emba Derho discovery by Sunridge Gold Corporation, a company in which Lundin holds a 17.3 percent ownership interest."

A recently discovered volcanic-hosted massive sulphide province in the western lowlands of Eritrea is the site of the Bisha and Harena deposits owned by Nevsun Resources Ltd and a new discovery, Hambok, owned by Sanu. "These discoveries support the significant potential of Eritrea," Lundin emphasised.

At the Hambok discovery, massive sulphide mineralisation has now been intersected in 43 completed diamond drill holes. "Indications are that the thicker sections of the massive sulphide system - greater than 50 metres - appear to lie in a zone 500 metres in length that contains higher grades of copper and zinc," Lundin says. "Hambok has the potential to become a significant copper-zinc deposit," the company added.

Lundin's Neil O'Brien commented, "This strategic investment in Sanu allows us to participate in the exploration and advancement of exciting new discoveries located within an emerging premier poly-metallic massive sulphide belt in western Eritrea in addition to properties in Burkina Faso and Morocco that hold excellent upside discovery potential."

Eritrea is known to have many potentially rich mineral deposits, including copper, zinc and lead sulphides and gold and iron deposits. So far, however, there are no mining operations going on in the country. This is partly due to the fact that Eritrea finds it hard to attract foreign capital due to lack of economic reform and an unpredic5table political situation.

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