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Lynas Corporation has significantly increased its rare earths deposit at the Mount Weld project in WA, and analysts remain confident the miner is performing well.
In a statement to the ASX Lynas said the mineral resource estimate at Mt Weld was now 23.9 million tonnes, up 37 per cent from the previous data in September 2010.
The increase marks some well-needed good news for Lynas, which has been battling bad publicity over its rare earths processing plant in Malaysia.
Lynas plans to send ore from Mt Weld to Malaysia for processing, but the company has faced significant opposition to the development of its overseas facility.
Nevertheless new analysis by Foster Stockbroking released this week said the company looked set to gain approval for the plant.
“We believe there is enough reason for pre-approval to be given quickly and expect [Lynas Corporation] will re-rate significantly on the back of a positive announcement,” said analysts.
Foster Stockbroking said the Malaysia’s Atomic Energy Licensing Board would meet at the end of January to reach a decision on a temporary licence for Lynas and the decision was “expected to be positive”.
Locals in the area fear hazardous wastes, including low-level nuclear waste, from the plant will cause unacceptable damage to the environment and human health.
Lynas has repeatedly attempted to allay fears over the plant but some community members remain unconvinced and are petitioning the Malaysian Government to scrap approval for the company’s development.