May 09, 2000
Annual Report For The Year Ended March 31, 2000
Trans Hex International Ltd. (TSE-THI) is pleased to announce the results of its operations for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2000.
The first phase of the exploration program in Brazil began with widely spaced reverse circulation drilling along the public road of the Barra Grande peninsula. The initial spacing of 1 km was designed to indicate merely the regional distribution and characteristics of the alluvial gravels. Infill holes were drilled at 500 m spacing on four sections where gravel bodies from 2 to 16 m thick and continuous over widths of 3 to 5 km were intersected and confirmed the continuity of the bodies along the longitudinal section. It can be fairly stated that the preliminary drilling indicates several extensive gravel bodies with combined volumes in the order of several hundred million cubic metres. The second phase of the program included drilling on 500 x 500 m centers on the most extensive of the gravel bodies, a rectangular area of 7,500 m (North-South) by 4,500 m (East-West), which lies between two garimpo workings. A third phase of drilling on 250 m centres is currently in progress to define the best features preparatory to selecting the first boxhole sample site. During the year an environmental impact study aimed at obtaining sample excavation permits was submitted to the relevant authorities, a study to define the average granulometry and other metallurgical characteristics of the gravel bodies was completed and the design, layout and specifications for a pan plant capable of treating 15 tonnes-per-hour, run-of-mine were finalized. The granting of permits for the excavation of samples is expected by the end of May 2000, with commissioning of the treatment plant expected by the end of July 2000. The preliminary results, allowing for an initial estimate of the grade and average value of diamonds, are expected during the last quarter of fiscal 2001. It is estimated that the exploration drilling and sampling program will cost some $2.2 million during fiscal 2001. The Company's expenditure commitment, in order to earn its 50% project interest, of US$2 million is expected to be reached towards the middle of the fiscal year, at which stage the partners are required to fund ongoing expenditure in proportion to their respective interests.
At Northbank, Namibia the Company continues to pursue a hearing of the Minerals Ancillary Rights Commission, a statutory body appointed by the Ministry of Mines and Energy, for arbitration in the dispute with the landowner over surface access and compensation. The Company has on several occasions endeavoured to settle this dispute by direct negotiation with the surface owner, without success. Once work is resumed on the property, which contains a drill indicated gravel resource of 30 million cubic metres within a 450 hectare terrace deposit, an aggressive 12 month excavation and treatment campaign is planned that will provide sufficient data on diamond grade and value to determine the feasibility of further bulk sampling and development of the project.
In October 1999 a contract survey team completed a detailed geophysical survey of the Swallow Breakers embayment on the Skeleton Coast of Namibia using "pinger" seismic and sidescan bathymetric survey techniques to define the best trap structures and paleo strand lines in the 31 square kilometre survey area. The results of the survey recommended 13 high priority sites for sampling. These deeper water embayments, gullies and paleo strand lines will be explored during fiscal 2001 using a contractor sampling vessel and diving team at an expected cost of $220,000.
In addition to the above projects, the Company is active at its Ngami project in Botswana and through joint ventures, at the Rainbow project in Botswana and the Limpopo project in Zimbabwe.
As at March 31, 2000 the Company had working capital of $1.4 million (1999: $3.6 million) and no long-term debt (1999: $3.2 million). In accordance with the terms of a Subscription Agreement, the long-term debt at March 31, 2000 of $2.9 million was applied to the purchase of common shares in the Company at $4.00 per common share. This resulted in the issue of 713,136 common shares and increased the interest of Trans Hex Group Limited from 71.8% to 73.2%. In addition, project finance loan agreements were concluded for the funding of the Barra Grande and Northbank projects for the fiscal year to March 31, 2001. These loans will only be drawn down by the Company as required and are repayable out of up to 75% of the initial surplus cash received from the projects. Repayment will firstly be applied to the outstanding capital and secondly, to the extent that additional surplus cash is available, towards interest calculated at LIBOR.
The loss for the year ended March 31, 2000 amounted to $0.9 million (1999: $2.9 million) or 7 cents per share (1999: 21 cents per share). General and Administration expenses for the year amounted to $0.8 million (1999: $1.0 million).
Trans Hex International is an international diamond exploration company with interests in exploration projects and joint ventures in Brazil, Namibia, Botswana and Zimbabwe. The Principal shareholder of the Company is Trans Hex Group Limited, a South African producer of high quality gem diamonds, with well established independent diamond marketing facilities. The design and conduct of the Company's exploration programs is the responsibility of Mr. Peter Walker, a professional geologist registered with the South African Council for Natural Scientific Professions.
FOR FURTHER INFORMATION PLEASE CONTACT:
D.M. (Niel) Hoogenhout - Chairman and C.E.O. Tel +1.416.363-5440 Fax +1.416.363-6506 E-Mail email@example.com
Peter D. Danchin - Chief Operating Officer Tel +27.21.939-1105 Fax +27.21.939-0711 E-Mail PeterD@transhex.co.za
Peter W.A. Walker - Vice President, Exploration Tel +27.21.939-1105 Fax +27.21.939-0711 E-Mail PeterW@transhex.co.za
Stephen Woodhead - Chief Financial Officer Tel +1.416.363-5440 Fax +1.416.363-6506 E-Mail firstname.lastname@example.org