On July 26, 2013 Arena Minerals entered into an Option Agreement (the “Option Agreement”) with Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile S.A. (“SQM”) to earn an 80% interest in the Atacama Copper Property (“Property”) over a period of four years. The Property consists of approximately 920 square kilometres (300,000 hectares) in Chile’s Antofagasta Region II, home to some of the world’s largest mining operations, and covering a large undrilled portion of the highly prospective Jurassic and Paleocene-Early Miocene copper porphyry belts.
A large portion of these properties have been held by SQM for several decades and have been strategically held by SQM for their potential nitrate and iodine extraction. Given SQM's focus, the majority of the property has not been explored for metallic deposits by SQM or other companies.
The Property is located approximately 40 km north east from the city of Antofagasta, and is traversed by major highways, railways, desalination pipelines and high-tension power lines, some of which service existing operating copper mines in the region. The claim block follows the Antofagasta Calama Lineament covering roughly 120 km of the north south striking Chilean Copper Belt and is surrounded by several major producing copper mines. Operating mines within a 15 km radius of the Property boundary include Spence (BHP Billiton), Lomas Bayas (Glencore Xstrata), Mantos Blancos (Anglo American), Tesoro (Antofagasta Minerals/Marubeni) and Esperanza (Antofagasta Minerals/Marubeni). These mines currently account for over 600,000 tonnes of estimated annual copper production.
The property is at low altitudes, within producing mining camps in infrastructure rich areas. The Company’s flagship asset is the Atacama Copper Property, consisting of 73,000 hectares, following a contractual land reduction on July 2016, of essentially undrilled ground in the heart of Chile's premier copper mining district