African minerals explorer Force Commodities is hoping to make a name for itself as a base and precious metal explorer in the landlocked African nation of Malawi. 


The ASX-listed junior is on the precipice of wrapping up a joint venture deal with a Malawian incorporate company, Galena Mining, to indirectly acquire 51 per cent operating rights to a highly-prospective silver, lead and zinc project.


Galena owns the rights to explore for lead, silver and zinc over three granted exploration licenses and one mining license (currently under application).


A share sale agreement remains the only hurdle left for Force after it announced it had successfully completed technical and legal due diligence over the project. 


Its Malawian legal counsel has also conveyed that Force’s proposed exploration and development activities comply with all local mining and environmental law. 


“It is exceptionally pleasing to successfully complete the due diligence process which significantly de-risks the acquisition process for the Company and allows Force to focus on the development prospects available within Malawi,” Force Commodities Managing Director Jason Brewer said. 


“The Project offers a compelling base and precious metals opportunity and the ability to reward shareholders through a near-term development pathway.”


The licenses – which lie 45km from the capital city of Lilongwe and extend over 1414sqkm – cover areas of known historic and current small-scale galena mining activities and previous areas of exploration and feasibility study work for graphite mineralisation.


The mining lease application (for an initial term of five years) extends over 5sqkm and includes areas of exposed galena mineralisation.


Importantly, recent geological mapping and ground electromagnetic (EM) surveys identified over 25 artisanal areas of workings and a substantial number of anomalous areas considered highly prospective for high grade lead and silver mineralisation.


Recent exploration work around these open pits has further identified multiple interpreted zones of parallel, shallow mineralisation (down to 20m below surface) and with strike lengths of up to 500m.


Trial mining has recently been conducted by Galena with a plus 100 tonne bulk sample from the Grand Canyon, Riverside and Small Canyon prospects trucked to ALS Laboratories in South Africa where it was assayed.


Those assays confirmed a high-grade product grading an average 60.48 per cent lead and over 700 grams per tonne silver without any processing.


While historic exploration has also targeted graphite, Force will continue to focus on the base and precious metals which has remained under-explored until last year, when joint venture target Galena Mining completed detailed exploration.


Force will look to further isolate the source of the base metals sulphides with additional modern exploration activities.


The company is now developing phase-one of a two-part exploration campaign, with further details to be announced. 


Recently, highly-experienced London-based mining engineer Simon Grant-Rennick was appointed to help in talks with global commodity trading groups in London, Switzerland and the United States.


These discussions are focussed on both the purchase and testing of up to a further 300 tonnes of material to be bulk sampled over the next six weeks as part of the Company’s due diligence review and advancement of the project.


He will also assist in developing longer term partnerships and offtake and marketing arrangements.


Force also owns a 70 per cent stake in the Kitotolo-Katamba lithium project and 51 per cent interest in JV over Kanuka lithium project, both located in the Democratic Republic of Congo.