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Exploring Serbia’s boron wealth: Balkan Gold’s project at Piskanja deposit

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Balkan Gold Ltd. has recently submitted a formal request to the Ministry of Environmental Protection seeking approval for an environmental impact assessment concerning the boron extraction project at the Piskanja deposit. Situated near the village of Korlaće, close to Baljevac on the Ibar River in the Raška district, the Piskanja borate deposit boasts confirmed total reserves of 7,139,808 tons, as detailed in the application.

The proposed operation entails an annual production capacity of 250,000 tons of colemanite concentrate and ulexite concentrate. This output is anticipated for the initial five years, after which an expansion is slated due to the integration of a boron acid facility with a yearly capacity of 25,000 tons, expected to commence in the sixth year.

The project will be confined within the premises of the former Ibar mines area, thus circumventing the necessity for local population displacement. The projected duration of exploitation spans 15 years. Notably, in 2020, Erin Ventures, a Canadian entity, uncovered boron ore reserves in the Piskanja vicinity, underscoring its substantial economic potential.

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Historically, sporadic geological surveys conducted in the 1950s led to the identification of borate deposits in the Piskanja area. However, it was not until 1987, amidst coal exploration endeavors, that systematic surveys commenced, ultimately revealing boron deposits.

Established in 2009 and wholly owned by Boron One Holdings Inc. of Canada, Balkan Gold specializes in mineral exploration and development across Serbia, holding exclusive exploration rights for the Piskanja borate deposit.

The deposit area encompasses two distinct borate deposits: the actively exploited “Pobrđski potok” deposit in the northwest hinterland of Baljevac and the “Piskanja” deposit to the east of Baljevac and the Ibar River, slated for future mining activities.

Cadastral parcels within the Piskanja exploitation field fall within the jurisdiction of the Raška municipality’s spatial plan, with delineated areas designated for both construction and agriculture.

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Spanning the right bank of the Ibar, the deposit comprises twelve individual lens-shaped ore bodies, ranging from shallow depths of 105 meters to deeper reserves plunging approximately 463 meters, as specified in the request.

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