Fortune Minerals Limited (TSX: FT) (OTCQX: FTMDF) is pleased to announce that it has entered into a Socio-Economic Agreement with the Government of the Northwest Territories for the proposed NICO Cobalt-Gold-Bismuth-Copper Project in Canada. The agreement formalizes GNWT and Fortune objectives to maximize northern and Indigenous employment, training, business opportunities, and education to benefit residents of the Northwest Territories. The agreement also establishes measures to identify and mitigate socio-economic impacts arising from development of the mine and related facilities in Tlicho Territory, located approximately 160-kilometres northwest of the city of Yellowknife. The NICO Project is a primary cobalt asset that also contains more than a million ounces of gold and approximately 12 per cent of global bismuth reserves. It is one of the few deposits situated outside of the Congo that can be developed to support near-term accelerating demand for cobalt in lithium-ion batteries needed to power electric vehicles, portable electronic devices, and stationary cells to store energy during periods of lower demand to make electricity use more efficient.
The Socio-Economic Agreement was signed at AME Cordilleran Roundup — a leading global exploration and mining conference in Vancouver Canada — by Robin Goad, president and CEO of Fortune, the Honourable Wally Schumann, Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment, and the Honourable Glen Abernethy, Minister of Health. With the signing of the Socio-Economic Agreement for the NICO Project, there are now five active Socio-Economic Agreements in the NWT: Ekati Diamond Mine (Dominion Diamonds); Diavik Diamond Mine (Rio Tinto); Gahcho Kue (De Beers/Mountain Province); NICO Project (Fortune Minerals); Snap Lake (De Beers – on care and maintenance since December 2015).
Robin Goad, president and CEO of Fortune said, “Formalizing our contribution to the livelihoods and quality of life of residents of the communities in which we operate is a key objective of our Company. The NICO Project will contribute energy- and eco-metals to support the growing green economy and enable the Northwest Territories to further capitalize on its significant mineral resource endowment.”
The Honourable Wally Schumann, Minister of Industry, Tourism and Investment for the Northwest Territories commented, “The Government of the Northwest Territories continues to work hard to improve the investment climate and support the responsible development of the NWT’s natural resources. The NICO Project is important for our territory’s future and I am happy to see this milestone reached with Fortune Minerals.”