Ovoot Coking Coal

Aspire’s wholly owned Ovoot Project comprises mining licence MV017098 granted in August 2012.

The Ovoot Project area is located in north-western Mongolia and was discovered by the company in 2012 to 2013. In August 2012, the Company was granted a 30 year mining licence over the Resource area with two 20 year extensions possible.


Ovoot Development Plan

On 28 February 2019, Aspire Mining announced the findings for the Ovoot Coking Coal Project (OCCP) Pre-Feasibility Study – analysing the feasibility of a truck and rail mining solution to fast track delivery of Ovoot coal into an emerging ‘fat’ coking coal shortage, using existing spare rail capacity from Erdenet.  

The key findings of the OCCP PFS1 , which were updated on 11 November 2019, were:

  • Outstanding economics with unleveraged NPV10 (pre-tax) of US$878m with an IRR of 49.4% (inclusive of mine, logistics, waste pre-stripping and haul road capex)
  • Attractive average LOM net direct C1 Cost of US$76/t delivered to the China border at Erlian which will position Aspire as a second quartile producer on the global cost curve.
  • Single open pit operation with low LOM strip ratio of 4:6:1 Bcm/t.

Other key findings

  • Potential to extend mine life further through future cutbacks with additional mine planning.
  • Mine and logistics capital of US$63m.
  • US$31m in pre-stripping through to commercial production.
  • US$165m before contingencies to construct a 560 kilometre surface stabilised haul road between Ovoot and the rail terminal at Erdenet.
  • Strong local community incentive to support road and mine with up to 420 jobs to be created at the mine site and more than 300 drivers required for the trucking operation.
  • OCCP Definitive Feasibility Study (DFS) fully funded and underway with completion dependent on receiving key permits and approvals.

1Unless otherwise stated, all financial numbers in this announcement are in US$ and are not subject to inflation or escalation factors. NPV and cashflow numbers quoted exclude contingencies. Mining and process engineering designs for the OEDP PFS were developed to support capital and operating estimates to an accuracy of +\- 25% and +\- 15% respectively. Key assumptions that the PFS is based upon are outlined in the body of the 28 February 2019 announcement. Aspire has concluded it has a reasonable basis for providing the forward looking statements in this announcement


Indicative Product Specification

Indicative Ovoot Washed Coking Coal Specification
Moisture 11%
Ash 10%
Volatiles 25-28%
Sulphur 1.2%
Max Fluidity Log 3.60
Max Dilation +300%
Gray King G11
G Caking Index +95
Y Index mm +26
RoMax 1.2

Ovoot Coal Blending to Upgrade Lower Ranking Coals

Ovoot Coking Coal is classified as a “Fat” Coking coal under the Chinese coking coal classification system. This coal category provides high fluidity coals with good plastic and excess caking properties which are used to blend lower quality coking coals.

1. AME Group “Coking Coal Market Outlook” presentations to Coaltrans Conference in Brisbane dated August 2011.

2. China coking coal market report provided to Aspire by one of China’s leading coal consultancy firms, dated December 2014.

As an example of Ovoot Coking Coal’s blending capabilities Aspire has conducted a number of blending tests with various coals (including non-coking coals from the Tavan Tolgoi Mine) that demonstrated the capacity to blend with Ovoot Coking Coal and upgrade the coking ability of other coals. The test work has shown that blending relatively low proportions of Ovoot Coking Coal (as low as 25% in the blend) resulted in a blended primary coking coal product under the Chinese system. In June 2016 Aspire entered into a Memorandum of Understanding with Erdenes Tavan Tolgoi JSC, a Mongolian Government controlled entity that owns the Tavan Tolgoi Coal Mine, detailing cooperation on further technical and commercial assessments regarding the blending of Aspire’s Ovoot Coking Coal with various coals from the Tavan Tolgoi deposit.

Ovoot Coal Resources

JORC Resource Ovoot Open Pit Ovoot Underground Total (Mt)
Measured 197.0 0.0 197.0
Indicated 46.9 25.4 72.3
Inferred 9.2 2.6 11.8
Total 253.1 27.9 281.0

Ovoot Coal Reserves

JORC Reserves1 Probable (Mt) (Arb, 2% moisture) Total (Mt) Marketable (Mt) (Arb, 9.5% moisture)
Open Pit 247 247 182
Underground 8 6 6
Total 255 255 188

Click here for the full JORC 2012 Compliance Coal Resource and Reserve Statement.
* For the Competent Persons Statement, please scroll to end of page.