TinOne Resources (TSX-V: TORC)(OTCQB: TORCF) Executive Chairman Chris Donaldson on Advancing a New Lithium Discovery at Aberfoyle Project, Tasmania, Australia


Gerardo Del Real: This is Gerardo Del Real with Resource Stock Digest. Joining me today is the executive chairman of TinOne Resources, with a lot of lithium, Mr. Chris Donaldson. Chris, how are you today?

Chris Donaldson: Hey Gerardo. I'm doing great, thanks.

Gerardo Del Real: Listen, I know you've been busy, you have a lot going on on multiple fronts. I actually want to start with an update on the tin side of things 'cause things are starting to get interesting again after what appears to be a pretty good bottom that was put in. So how are things coming along on that part of the portfolio and then I want to get into the exciting news that you had this morning in regards to your lithium project in Tasmania, Australia.

Chris Donaldson: Yeah. For sure. Tin market is always interesting and there's some things that are happening right now that could really affect the tin price. If you remember last year, we hit the all time high of $50,000 a tonne in March and then China flooded the market and it crushed the price of tin down to about 17,000 a tonne. It's now rebound and we're at about 28,000 a tonne, which is kind of the incentive price for projects and about where it becomes interesting again. What people should be keeping an eye on a little bit on the demand side, demand has been kind of weak. Like copper, China controls the tin market and we're seeing some kind of weak data out of China on that. But then on the other side, you're seeing Elon Musk I think just said he would take every bit of NVIDIA semiconductors or AI that he can have and of course that'll have an implication on tin as well.

But the maybe short-term demand problems are way outmatched I'll say by what is happening on the supply side. So Myanmar, which exports 95% of their tin to China, mine high grade alluvial tin, they have said that they are shutting down exports and exploration in Wa state, W-A state, at the end of July and they represent almost 10% of world supply. So that would be quite a shock. We saw in January, February that the Minsur mine shut down. That's also about 10% of world production and the price shot from 17,000 a tonne back to say 25. So that's coming into effect at the end of this month. And also what to look for is Indonesia's decision to curb exports of tin. Indonesia's 20 to 25% of the supply of tin. And what they're trying to do is similar to what they did with nickel a few years ago is to curb exports and hopefully try to attract investments so that they get a vertical market there, they get smelters in-house.

So potentially there's a disruption of 35% of the tin market and that is unbelievably significant. You imagine what would happen in the copper market if 35% went down. Well it's no different on the tin side. The only difference is to the end user in that if you've got a cell phone, you might have 40 cents of tin in your cell phone. If it goes to $1.20, you probably don't care. But that has a huge effect to developers and explorers and producers in the tin space as well. So it should be interesting times here for the balance of the year.

Gerardo Del Real: I like the supply demand fundamentals in the mid to long-term. The short-term is always going to be up and down as we know in the commodity space. It's just the nature of the beast, right. Again, I want to emphasize the tier one jurisdiction of the projects that you have on the tin side, which brings me to the lithium side. We talked before, Chris, and I mentioned to you that you were going to need to do three things on the lithium project. You were going to have to prove scale, you were going to have to prove continuity, and then of course we're going to have to get into some drilling and prove up grade and see if it all checks the boxes that need to be checked, but you took a pretty good size step today with the new zone of anomalous lithium in soils that the anomaly measures 2.6 by 1.2 kilometers. I've said in the past that anomalies are like Pokemons. They're all over the place, but I'd rather have them than not when it comes to a district scale lithium project. Can you describe this new zone of lithium in soil anomalism?

Chris Donaldson: Yeah. To go back, how did we stumble into the lithium side? We have this project called Aberfoyle, which is about 20 minutes up the road from our tin project, which is Great Pyramid. Both are located in northeast Tasmania, a fantastic area and an area that is zoned for future commercial production. Aberfoyle itself was a pass producing tin and tungsten district. Produced over two million tonnes of tin up until the mid '80s. And we went up there and started doing what you call modern exploration and did some sampling and mapping. And in the process of that, did some multi-element testing and discovered some lithium. And now everybody and their dog is trying to get into the lithium game. So we were a little cautious with that, but engaged in Mineral Resources Tasmania and the University of Codes down there and had them come out, do some re-assays and additional sampling to try to understand the structure of what we had.

Just rock samples and soils for our first area, which was called Dead Pig and Guinea Pig of all things. And we had some pretty good grades there. We got over 1% rock samples in the area and it's lithium in micas and that was an area of about one by three kilometers. So fairly sizable. And then that kind of said, "Okay. Well this is more than something that's just a little distraction for us." I've been in the process of sampling the entire area, to your point, is to try to see if we have scale to this. So we blanketed the property, which is about 100 square kilometers and have now found an additional area nine kilometers away and it's called Dalrymple and it's showing lithium anomalies as well. So we're not quite at the point to call it a new zone just 'cause of the spacing.  

So our next steps will be to do infill on that, but it's good to see that we're now seeing these lithium occurrences cross the property. And I can't stress enough what a good area this would be if we can eventually get to the point where this find, we can declare it as a discovery. We're in the number one lithium producing country in the world. We're on a past producing mining district that's zoned for future commercial production. All the infrastructure is there. It's absolutely accessible through various forestry roads and so forth. So it's quite interesting to us. So this latest sample just helps us on the quest to show scale. We're going to continue to sample that in other areas to see if we blanket it and then ultimately get to the point where we have some targets and can start drilling and we're not too far away from having targets.

One other thing that's going on now is we haven't drilled, but we were able to find some old core from the Aberfoyle mine, which the Mineral Resources Tasmania had. We're assaying that. They were looking for tin and tungsten, but it will give us an idea if we can find lithium in the granites and see if the lithium is built out into the sediments as well and that would be right under the old Aberfoyle mines. So we'll get those results in the next couple of weeks as well. And while it's not a true targeted drill hole, it will give us some pretty good knowledge on that. Yeah. So we'll continue to do our efforts here and hopefully build out the story this summer.

Gerardo Del Real: You just raised a bit of money. The share price has pulled back a bit. It's the summertime. People are outside, as they should be. Volume is low. Share prices generally are drifting sideways or downwards. True summer doldrums stuff, right? So I think it's a heck of an opportunity because if you do indeed, aside from the excellent, excellent tin projects, are onto a significant lithium discovery here. Your market cap is going to be many, many multiples of where it is now. And just as a reminder, Chris, where is it now?

Chris Donaldson: Yeah. So two months ago, and here's the opportunity, right? Two months ago we were at 20 cents and then the market went sideways on us. We were able to do a little raise. Raised about $800 grand. So we're in good shape here for the short-term. And then hopefully we can start getting the story out and on the back of some news and see a little life through the summer and into the fall. But how do I look at our projects? So we have this kind of two-pronged approach here, which is sometimes difficult for people to understand, but the way I look at it is we've got our great pyramid, which we drilled out last year and are in the process of updating the resource on.

That updated resource should come by the end of August. That to me is really just building value. We were very successful in everything we drilled. We're just growing that and setting it up for when the market's right to put it into a study phase or do additional drilling or advance that project. So that's one that just grows the value. And then we've got this lithium find, which is kind of a lottery ticket. If we're able to prove out a district, who knows where it can go. There's many other companies out there with similar discoveries in areas that are in the middle of nowhere that are many times the market cap that we are today. For us, it just gives us options. We may look to partner on one side of the business to help fund the other or partner on the other side of the business to fund the lithium side. But it's a good position to be in to have those options going forward.

Gerardo Del Real: Always good to have options. I like the commodity exposure. I like the tiny market cap. It should be a fun second half of the year, Chris. Thank you for that update. We were overdue for a catch-up. I appreciate it.

Chris Donaldson: Great. Thanks so much, Gerardo.