Japan Gold Corp.’s leadership team has long recognized Japan’s prospectivity for gold, silver and copper. When Japan’s mining laws were changed in 2012 to re-activate the mining industry, Japan Gold moved quickly to review historical data and identify key exploration targets and was the first foreign exploration company to apply for prospecting licenses.
The Tertiary volcanic arc terrains of Japan host 76 known past producing gold mines, including five one-million-plus-ounce gold deposits. This includes one of the world’s highest-grade gold mines, the Hishikari Mine on Kyushu Island. The Hishikari Mine has produced over 7 million ounces of gold from 1985-2016 and continues to produce at a rate of ~200,000 ounces per year at an average grade of 40 g/t gold.
Despite a history of significant gold production and known mineral occurrences, however, Japan is regarded as largely underexplored.
Project Area Selection
Japan Gold has completed an extensive review of the Metal Mining Agency of Japan database, which includes detailed and relevant information about historical drilling results and mine production. Based on a desktop review of historical gold production and Japan’s extensive geoscientific database, Japan Gold pinpointed areas that are very compelling from a geological perspective.
The company has lodged 148 prospecting rights license applications throughout Hokkaido and northern Honshu, for a combined 49,150 hectares over ten project areas with a focus on targeting high-grade epithermal gold veins analogous to the Hishikari model and lithocap/porphyry targets.
Six of the ten project areas (120 applications in northern Hokkaido) target high-grade epithermal gold deposits.
Four of the ten project areas (28 applications in Hokkaido and northern Honshu) target areas of gold-bearing advanced argillic alteration lithocaps, which could indicate the presence of a porphyry mineral environment.
To date, nine prospecting rights applications have been granted as Prospecting Rights and the remaining 139 applications have been accepted for further government review. This reserves the ground for Japan Gold and allows for low impact forms of exploration such as mapping, surface sampling and geophysics.
Japan Gold Exploration Project Application Areas
From October to December 2016, six geologists and support teams undertook a nine-week field program, completing prospecting, geological mapping, collecting stream sediment BLEG and fine fraction drainage samples and rock float and outcrop sampling over the majority of the Ikutahara Project. The results of the 2016 regional exploration program have been compiled to further define targets for additional detailed prospect mapping and surface geochemical surveys in conjunction with drill testing over priority targets in 2017.
For the latest news on Japan Gold's exploration activities, please see: March 03, 2017 News Release