NexGen achieves key milestone at uranium project

NexGen achieves key milestone at uranium project
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VANCOUVER – NexGen Energy Ltd. [NXE-TSX, NYSE] has hit a major milestone in the advancement of regulatory approval for its 100%-owned Rook 1 uranium project in Saskatchewan. The company has announced the completion of the Provincial Environmental Assessment Technical Review and submission of the final Environmental Impact Statemen (EIS).

NexGen shares were active on the news, rising 2.58% or 17 cents to $6.76 on volume of 1.9 million. The shares are currently trading in a 52-week range of $5.11 and $3.40.

The next step in the Environmental Assessment (EA) process is a 30-day provincial public review, after which Saskatchewan Environment Ministry staff will compile the requisite EA materials and prepare a recommendation for the Saskatchewan Minister of Environment, who will then render a Ministerial decision regarding the advancement of the project.

NexGen is developing one of the world’s largest uranium deposits on its Rook 1 property, which hosts the Arrow Deposit. The company is backed by one of Asia’s wealthiest investors Li-Ka-shing. In June, 2016, CEF Capital Markets Ltd., an affiliate of the Hong Kong based conglomerate CK Hutchison Group, which is chaired by Li Ka-shing, subscribed for US$60 million worth of convertible debentures in NexGen.

The proposed new underground mine and mill development is located in the uranium-rich district of the southern area of the Athabasca Basin.

A 2021 feasibility study is based on NexGen processing 4,575 kt of uranium grading 2.37% U308 (probable reserve) at the Arrow Deposit. Processing will take place over an 11-year mine life, producing 233.3 million pounds of recovered yellowcake with an average metallurgical recovery of 97.5%.

The feasibility study envisages a total capital cost of $1.57 billion, including $1.14 billion in pre-production capital costs, $362.4 million of sustaining capital costs, and $78.6 million of closure/reclamation costs, less $9.1 million in salvage.

“The submission of the Final Provincial EIS to the Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment is a significant step in the regulatory advancement of the Rook 1 Project,’’ said NexGen CEO Leigh Curyer. “It marks the completion of a robust and thorough provincial technical review process, and incorporates the diverse perspectives of multiple Provincial agencies and stakeholders with deep experience in uranium mining,’’ he said.

In parallel to the ongoing Provincial EA process, NexGen is in the final stages of completing responses to the Federal technical and public review comments received on the Draft EIS through the Federal EA review process completed in the fourth quarter of 2022.

The company said it has conducted an integrated approach to the Federal EA and licensing processes for the project whereby information to support the Federal license application has been submitted to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) in a staged manner since 2019, to ensure alignment between the EA and licensing documentation.

During the second quarter of 2023, NexGen completed the submission of all the final components of the complete license application package to the CNSC.

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