Mr. Craig Taylor reports
DEFENSE METALS APPLAUDS PLANNED ADVANCEMENT OF NORTH AMERICAN REE SUPPLY CHAIN WITH FORTRESS-MP MATERIALS MERGER
On Friday, Nov. 13, 2020, Fortress Value Acquisition Corp. (FVAC) held a special meeting to consider the previously announced business combination with MP Materials. MP Materials is the owner and operator of Mountain Pass, the only rare earth element mining and processing site of scale in North America.
The FVAC/MP Materials special meeting represents a significant milestone in the establishment of a North American critical magnet metals supply chain. If approved, the combined company created by the FVAC/MP Materials merger would have an estimated posttransaction equity value of approximately $1.5-billion. Completion of the FVAC/MP Materials merger would signal a sea change in continuing joint Canadian-U.S. government efforts toward the establishment of a North American critical metals supply chain.
Defense Metals Corp. anticipates the merger would have a positive impact on the advancement of Canadian critical metals deposits, which includes Defense Metals' Wicheeda rare earth element (REE) property.
The Wicheeda REE project has indicated mineral resources of 4.89 million tonnes averaging 3.02 per cent LREO (light rare earth elements) and inferred mineral resources of 12.1 million tonnes averaging 2.90 per cent LREO. Flotation pilot-plant processing of a 26-tonne bulk sample of Wicheeda REE material yielded a mineral
concentrate averaging 7.4 per cent NdPr (neodymium praseodymium) oxide (critical magnet metals).
Craig Taylor, chief executive officer of Defense Metals, stated: "The potential completion of the Fortress/MP Materials merger signals the beginning of what Defense Metals believes will be the inevitable establishment of a North American critical metals supply chain. This merger has the potential to unlock significant value in other North American REE deposits like Wicheeda, further buoyed by recent announcements by the State of California, [the] Province of Quebec, China and [the United Kingdom] targeting year 2035 to ban or significantly reduce sales of internal combustion engine vehicles. The critical magnet metals, principally NdPr, that occur at high concentration within the Wicheeda REE deposit will position Defense Metals to capitalize on the significant growth potential of the rapidly emerging green energy electric vehicle sector."
About the Wicheeda REE property
The 1,708-hectare Wicheeda REE property, located approximately 80 kilometres northeast of the city of Prince George, B.C., is readily accessible by all-weather gravel roads and is nearby to infrastructure, including power transmission lines, the CN railway and major highways.
Geologically, the property is situated in the Foreland belt and within the Rocky Mountain trench, a major continental geologic feature. The Foreland belt contains part of a large alkaline igneous province, stretching from the Canadian Cordillera to the southwestern United States, which includes several carbonatite and alkaline intrusive complexes hosting the Aley (niobium), Rock Canyon (REE) and Wicheeda (REE) deposits.
The scientific and technical information contained in this news release as it relates to the Wicheeda REE property has been reviewed and approved by Kristopher J. Raffle, PGeo (British Columbia) principal and consultant of Apex Geoscience Ltd. of Edmonton, Alta., a director of Defense Metals and a qualified person as defined in National Instrument 43-101, Standards of Disclosure
for Mineral Projects. Mr. Raffle verified the data disclosed, which include a review of the analytical and test data underlying the information and opinions contained therein.
Defense Metals Corp.
Defense Metals is a mineral exploration company focused on the acquisition of mineral deposits containing metals and elements commonly used in the electric power market, military, national security and the production of green energy technologies, such as high-strength alloys and rare earth magnets. Defense Metals has an option to acquire 100 per cent of the 1,708-hectare Wicheeda rare earth element property located near Prince George, B.C., Canada. Defense Metals trades in Canada under the symbol DEFN on the TSX Venture Exchange, in the United States under DFMTF on the OTCQB and in Germany on the Frankfurt Stock Exchange under 35D.
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