Galantas Gold closer to production after blasting deal

Omagh gold mine is Northern Ireland’s only producing operation. (Image courtesy of Galantas Gold.)

Shares in Galantas Gold (TSX, LON:GAL) jumped as much as 16% on Thursday in London, building on yesterday’s rally that saw took climb 67% as the company announced a “materially improved” deal to expand blasting at its Omagh gold mine in Northern Ireland.

The formal agreement with the local police (PSNI) would help the company pick up pace towards achieving commercial production underground.

Since the end of nationalism-fuelled violence in Northern Ireland in the late nineties, all blasting in the area must be overseen by police. Availability, however, has not been sufficient for Galantas’ desired level of operations.

The Canada-headquartered junior said the new agreement followed a comprehensive review by the PSNI and regulators.

President and chief executive Roland Phelps said the previous arrangements, under which the company had made about 2km of underground development, had constrained its ability to expand underground.

Galantas is currently working with third parties on financing required to recommence and expand blasting underground.

Omagh’s underground development was paused in 2017 until PSNI was able to increase its availability of anti-terrorism cover.

Blasting activities were halted again in the late 2019 mainly because of limitations imposed by the PSNI. Ore production was then suspended in 2020 due to insufficient funds and the impact of the global pandemic.

Galantas is not the only Canadian miner in Ireland. Toronto-based Dalradian Resources (TSX: DNA) has been working on its proposed gold project in Tyrone since early 2010.

Northern Ireland holds the world’s seventh richest resource of gold, but political violence kept most investors away for decades.

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