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The Sarytogan GRaphite Project

The Sarytogan deposit is located in the Karaganda region of Central Kazakhstan (Figure 1). It is located in the industrial mining area and is connected by highway to Karaganda city (190 km) and to the capital Nur-Sultan (390 km). The nearest towns are Aksu (55 km) and Kenshoky (6 km), with populations of 5,000 and 1,300 respectively.

Figure 1: Sarytogan Project location.

The exploration licence 1139-R-TPI (1139-Р-ТПИ) was issued to Ushtogan LLP on 14 August 2018 and confirmed by 5406-TPI (5406-ТПИ) contract on 26 October 2018 and renewed in June 2022.  The exploration concession covers 70 km2.

Structurally, the Sarytogan site is confined to the western and southwestern limb of the Shiyozek fold, complicated by the large curved Sarytoganbai syncline which trends in northeast and east directions. The overall structural plan of this fold is additionally complicated by numerous plicative and disjunctive dislocations, which led to the creation smaller in size folds; flexure like folds and overturned structures are often observed.

The west limb of the Sarytoganbai syncline is composed of rhyolite porphyry tuffs and rhyolite porphyry containing interlayers of grit, sandstone and limestone. The east limb of the Sarytoganbai syncline is characterised by sandstone, shale, siltstone, limestone and calcareous sandstones that are exposed to the surface. The axial part of this fold is formed by complexly dislocated carbonaceous black and grey sandstones, siltstones and shales, grit, and conglomerates of lower Carboniferous age.

The southwestern part of the site is composed of dark grey carbonaceous siltstones with interlayers and lenses of dark-grey variously grained sandstones, grey, brownish-grey sandstones, and siltstone. Most of this area is covered with loose Quaternary sediments.

The magmatic formations of the deposit area are represented by the Aleksandrovsky granite dome, exposed in the northeast part of the Sarytogan site. The shape of the dome is ellipsoidal, with dimensions of 1.5 km x 1.8 km. The intrusion cuts through the carbonate-terrigenous sediments in the central part of the anticline structure and cuts through a small segment of carbonaceous aleurolites and schists. The host rocks along the contact of the Aleksandrovsky dome are altered to skarns, intensively opalized and hornfelsed.

The site has a dense network of faults, the largest of which are clearly visible in the aerial photographs. Faults are mainly of northeast, sub meridional directions. Secondary faults of near-latitude and northwest directions further complicate the geology of the site.

In general, the Sarytogan site is a large, over-intrusion contact metamorphism zone. The volcanic and sedimentary rocks have undergone extensive contact metamorphism; volcanogenic and terrigenous rocks are transformed into quartz-biotite, quartz-sericite hornfels; carbonaceous rocks are either altered into hornfels, or underwent significant graphitisation, and along contacts with intrusive granite domes, quartz-tourmaline and tourmaline hydrothermal rocks of the greisen type are developed.  Carbonate rocks are altered to wollastonite rich rocks of varying intensity, or turned into quartz-wollastonite, wollastonite garnet skarns.

Graphite-bearing black carbonaceous shale, black carbonaceous siltstones and sandstone overlain by grey to dark grey weakly carbonaceous siltstones and sandstones form narrow and extensive folds. These folds surround from the north, west and south, a rigidly elevated block of sediments in plan, composing an anticlinal structure with steep dip angles.

As a result of exploration, two large zones of graphitised sediments were identified in the Sarytogan area: Central and North graphite zones (Figure 2).

Figure 2: Two major graphite zones of the Sarytogan deposit.

The Central zone, located in the central part of the Sarytogan deposit, extends from the south-southwest to the northeast for 2,900 m with a width from 45 to 90 m on the northeast flank to 200-450 m in the centre and 70 m in the southeast west flank. This is a narrow syncline fold complicated on the limbs due to the intrusion of the granite massif and tectonic movements.

The graphite rocks of the zone are represented by graphite schists, siltstones and sandstones.

CSA Global Pty Ltd was engaged by Ushtogan LLP to complete a maiden Mineral Resource Estimate (MRE) for the Sarytogan Graphite Deposit.

The MRE is based upon data obtained from 29 diamond core drill holes and 28 trenches which intersected the interpreted mineralisation. The mineralisation wireframes were modelled using a nominal lower cut-off grade of 17% Total Graphitic Carbon (TGC). This cut-off reflects a visually distinct occurrence of graphite reflecting a natural geological cut-off. This cut-off is further supported by statistical analysis of the grade population.

The MRE has been reported in accordance with The JORC Code1\. The MRE has been reported using a cut-off grade of 15% TGC and is shown in Table 1. Refer to the Prospectus dated 23 February 2022 and published at asx.com.au for full details of the MRE.

Table 1: Sarytogan Resource.