IGO has inked a $7 million agreement with ASX-listed explorer Matsa Resources for the Symons Hill nickel project in the Fraser Range, Western Australia.
IGO can spend a minimum of $3.5 million to earn a 70 per cent interest in Symon Hills over the next three years.
The agreement does not require Matsa to incur any costs until IGO completes a feasibility study or decides to develop and mine.
The Symons Hill project is six kilometres south-southwest of IGO’s Nova nickel operations, with the Nova haul road running directly through the project.
It covers around 70 square kilometres in area and contains anomalous nickel mineralisation that Matsa has discovered.
“The Symons Hill nickel project has been on the backburner for some time with Matsa’s focus on the Lake Carey gold project, but we always maintained it held considerable value,” Matsa chairman Paul Poli said.
“To partner with someone of IGO’s calibre demonstrates that value.”
Matsa shareholders will still retain a 30 per cent joint venture (JV) interest in Symons Hill.
IGO will pay Matsa $625,000 for a 24-month period in which $1.5 million on exploration expenditure must be incurred.
It can withdraw within 12 months after spending at least $500,000, with the project being returned to Matsa.
The explorer controls a 170 square kilometre area in the Fraser Range in its own right.
This is the latest in JV agreements struck by IGO, which also formed a $32 million JV with Metals X at the Paterson base metals project in Western Australia earlier this month.
IGO has also commenced its exploration activities with Encounter Resources at the Yeneena copper-cobalt JV project; with Rumble Resources at the Thunderdome JV project in the Fraser Range; and with Orion Minerals in the same region of Fraser Range, Western Australia.