Vancouver-based Commerce Resources (TSXV: CCE; US-OTC: CMRZF) is trying to confirm feasibility of what could be the first rare earth element (REE) mine in Canada and one of the most significant outside of China.
The company is currently raising money to further develop its 100% owned Ashram property, 130 km south of the town of Kuujjuaq in the Nunavik area of northern Quebec. The property has a measured resource of 1.6 million tonnes at 1.77% total rare earth oxide (TREO), an indicated resource of 28 million tonnes at 1.90% TREO and an inferred resource of 220 million tonnes at 1.88% TREO.
Prior to 2005, Commerce had little interest in REEs and was focused on tantalum and niobium. Only after talking to a friend did company president Chris Grove considered looking for REE deposits.
“That’s when I got this phone call from this Texas-based magnet manufacturer who then said, ‘You should go and re-assay your drill core at your project in B.C.,’ and I said, ‘Why would I want to do that?’ and he goes, ‘Rare earth elements,’ and I said, ‘I still don’t get it.’”
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