Sheba Exploration (UK) plc

September 01, 2009 10:59 ET

Further Information of the Joint Venture with Stratex International Plc

                                                Sheba Exploration (UK) Plc
                          Further Information of the Joint Venture with Stratex International Plc

At 7.00am today Stratex International Plc ("Stratex") announced their intention to undertake a joint venture
with Sheba Exploration (UK) Plc ("Sheba").

Below is the full transcript of the Stratex announcement.

                     Stratex International Plc / Index: AIM / Epic: STI / Sector: Mining

1 September 2009
                           Stratex International Plc ('Stratex' or 'the Company')
                             Expansion into Ethiopia with Sheba Exploration Plc

Stratex   International  Plc,  the  AIM-quoted  gold  exploration  and  development  ('E&D')   company,   has
expanded   its  activities  into  Ethiopia,  having  acquired,  for  £40,000,  a  5.6%  interest   in   PLUS-
quoted Sheba Exploration (UK) Plc ('Sheba') and signed a Binding Letter of Intent with Sheba to earn-in to an
initial  60%  of  the  prospective Shehagne project and explore new prospective  targets  and  licence  areas
in northern Ethiopia on a 70:30 joint venture basis.


*	Expanding into Ethiopia with the acquisition of a 5.6% interest in Sheba, which explores for gold and 
        base metals in Ethiopia 
*	Stratex to earn-in to an initial 60% of the highly prospective Shehagne project in northern Ethiopia, 
        which contains extensive gold anomalies and drill-intersected mineralisation by expending £350,000
*	70:30 joint venture with Sheba to explore a large area of northern Ethiopia 
*	Ethiopia targeted due to favourable geology, legal/fiscal code and logistics

Stratex  Executive Chairman David Hall said, "This is an exciting new development for Stratex. In Turkey,  we
have  enjoyed  considerable success in developing and adding substantial value to our projects  before  joint
venturing them on to dedicated mining companies and we are keen to repeat this successful formula elsewhere.

"The  Arabian Nubian Shield, which encompasses areas of Egypt, Sudan, Eritrea, Saudi Arabia and Yemen as well
as  Ethiopia, is a region with high discovery potential as shown by Centamin's Sukari gold mine in Egypt, and
Nevsun's    Bisha   gold-rich   volcanogenic   massive   sulphide   deposit   in   Eritrea.     We    believe
that  Ethiopia offers similar exciting opportunities for rapid low cost discovery and is not subject to  many
of the economic and political constraints that neighbouring countries are exposed to, such as product sharing
agreements  and  security  issues.   Ethiopia  is  both  logistically  and  financially  an  easy  and   cost
effective place to explore.  Sheba has already defined excellent gold exploration and development targets  in
northern Ethiopia and we are delighted to be working with them to further explore these projects."

Further Information

Stratex  is  acquiring  5.3 million ordinary shares which represents a 5.6% interest  in  Sheba  for  £40,000
through  a  private placement at 0.75p and is also entitled to 5.3 million matching warrants  exercisable  at
0.75p  for  two  years. Additionally, Stratex and Sheba have signed a Binding Letter of Intent  with  respect
to  Stratex  earning-in  to  an  initial 60% of Sheba's prospective Shehagne  Exclusive  Exploration  Licence
('EEL'),  and  the  formation  of  a  joint venture ('JV') with a view to exploring  and  acquiring  licences
in northern Ethiopia.

The 50 sq km Shehagne EEL is located in a highly prospective area near the town of Adwa in northern Ethiopia.
   Under   the  terms  of  the  agreement,  subject  to  renewal  of  the  concession  for  a  further   year
by  Sheba,  Stratex  can  earn  60%  of  the  Shehagne  EEL  by  expending  £100,000  in  the  initial  three
months  and  a  further  £250,000  over  the  subsequent 18 months.  It  may  also  earn  a  further  20%  by
taking the project to completion of a feasibility study.

The   Shehagne  EEL  has  already  been  explored  by  Sheba  and  extensive  gold  anomalism  in  soil   has
been  identified.   The  main  target to date is the Tsemmetti prospect in  the  south-eastern  part  of  the
EEL    where   Sheba   has   defined   a   large   >100   p.p.b.   gold-in-soil   anomaly   over   a    three
kilometre strike.  Reconnaissance percussion drilling has returned results including:

*	Hole 1 - 0 to 12 metres grading 1.14 g/t Au
*	Hole 3 - 0 to 23 metres grading 0.54 g/t Au
*	Hole 4 - 0 to 19 metres grading 0.62 g/t Au 

These  holes  were  only  drilled  to  vertical depths of 40 - 52  metres,  however  location  of  the  drill
sites were limited by access and funds for drill road construction.

Stratex  intends  to  undertake regional sediment sampling (minus 200 mesh stream) of the  entire  50  sq  km
concession and complete systematic exploration of prospects already defined.

Additionally  Stratex and Sheba have agreed a JV on a respective 70:30 basis, where the  two  companies  will
combine  forces to explore new prospective targets and licence areas in northern Ethiopia. Potential  licence
areas,  which  currently are under review, the Board believe, have excellent potential for gold+/-copper  and
massive  sulphide  occurrences.  Under the terms of the new JV, Sheba may  earn  up  to  50%  of  the  JV  by
reimbursing Stratex a further 20% of the total exploration costs.

The Federal Republic of Ethiopia's mineral resources' potential is high - gold copper zinc and potash are the
major  minerals  mined  in Ethiopia.  Exploration and mining activities in Ethiopia are  governed  by  Mining
Proclamation  No. 182/1994 and subsequent amendments.  The terms and conditions are similar  to  those  in  a
number  of African countries and easy to understand and apply.  The incoming party is entitled to secure  the
rights  to  100% of the mineral rights of a specified area (allowing for the government to have an option  to
take a 2% equity holding).  Surface rights must be negotiated with surface mineral owners, although rights of
access and occupation are written in the law.  The fiscal conditions in Ethiopia are reasonably conducive  to
encouraging investment with a 35% company tax.

The  code  protects  the rights of the larger scale operators to secure mining titles  to  their  exploration
areas,  while  giving  the  rights to locals to carry out artisanal operations. Initial  prospecting  can  be
carried  out under the terms of an Exclusive Prospecting Licence, which gives the holder exclusive rights  to
the  area concerned for a term of one year and thereafter gives the incumbent the right to apply for an  EEL,
using the same modified area.  An EEL is valid for an initial term of three years and may be renewed for  two
terms  of  one year each, providing the commitments to an exploration programme and expenditure are  met  and
regular  reporting is maintained.  Applications for extensions beyond this five year term would be  dependent
upon the amount of work undertaken and the commitment to ongoing work and expenditure commitments.

The Licensee has the right to assign or transfer rights to a third party.  The Licensee also has the right to
apply  for  either a small scale Mining Licence (10 year term renewable for a further 10 years)  or  a  large
scale  Mining Licence (20 year term renewable for a further 5 years).  Whereas exploration and mining  rights
may  be granted to any new applicant for a relinquished prospecting area, the law specifically refers to  the
right of the original permit holder in respect of future applications for higher licences, provided that work
and expenditure commitments have been fulfilled.

In  July  2008  BHP Billiton was granted a potash-prospecting licence for a 17,000 square-kilometre  area  in
northern  Ethiopia.  The country is Africa's biggest coffee producer but is keen to attract  investment  into
its  mining industry to diversify its economy.  Recently, Dwyka Resources Limited took over Minerva Resources
plc  for  its Tulu Kapi gold project and Yubdo platinum project in western Ethiopia.  Additionally, the  only
industrial  scale  gold  mine  in  Ethiopia is Legadembi operated by  MIDROC  Ethiopia  ('MIDROC'),  a  Saudi
controlled company.  This is located 500 km south of the capital, Addis Ababa, and in another block  basement
separated   from   the   north  by  the  East  African  Rift  Valley.   MIDROC   acquired   the   mine   from
the  Ethiopia  government in 1997 for US$172 million.  Since then, according to an article in  Mining  Africa
Review  2006,  it  has spent millions to enhance capacity.  The mine has been producing  on  average  113,000
oz gold per year in the period 2000 to 2005 but no costs for production have been released.

Executive Chairman, David J. Hall, Fellow Society of Economic Geologists, EuroGeol, is a Competent Person  as
defined by various international instruments and takes responsibility for the release of this information.

* * ENDS * *

For further information visit or contact:

David Hall / Bob Foster               Stratex International Plc                Tel: +44 (0)20 7830 9650
Tim Metcalfe/Martin Davison           Hanson Westhouse Limited                 Tel: +44 (0)20 7601 6100
Jason Bahnsen                         Fox Davies Capital                       Tel  +44 (0)20 7936 5230
Isabel Crossley/Felicity Edwards      St Brides Media & Finance Ltd            Tel: +44 (0)20 7236 1177

Notes to editors:

Stratex  International  Plc  is  an AIM-quoted international exploration and  development  company  currently
focusing on gold and base metal opportunities in Turkey and Ethiopia.  Its proven strategy is to discover and
develop  new  projects  by focused low-cost exploration, thus adding maximum value prior  to  optioning/joint
venturing or selling on to a dedicated mining company.

Stratex has joined with NTF, a technically capable and well-financed Turkish company, to rapidly develop  the
542,318 oz oxide gold resources present at the Altýntepe and Inlice projects in Turkey.  The Company has also
signed  an  option/joint venture agreement with Centerra Gold Inc. to explore and develop the Öksüt  project,
a  high-sulphidation  gold discovery located in Central Anatolia in Turkey.  Additionally  it  has  signed  a
Binding  Letter of Intent with Sheba Exploration (UK) plc to earn-in to an initial 60% of the prospective  50
sq km Shehagne project and explore northern Ethiopia on a 70:30 joint venture basis.

Stratex's portfolio covers 11 licence blocks in central and western Turkey totalling approximately  1,690  sq
km  and  the  highly  prospective  Shehagne  project in northern Ethiopia  which  it  is  working  in  tandem
with Sheba to develop.  The Company's latest discovery is the Öksüt high-sulphidation gold deposit with early
drilling reporting best intersections of 270.2 m from surface averaging 1.22 g/t Au and 62.45 m grading  2.16
g/t  Au from 14.75 m down hole.  Additional key projects include Hasançelebi - a multi-zone high-sulphidation
system  extending  over a distance of 700 m, Doðanbey - one of four porphyry gold targets  within  the  Konya
Volcanic  Belt, Muratdere - a porphyry gold-copper-molybdenum occurrence, and Karaaðaç - a partially exposed,
gently dipping gold-bearing zone.  Ongoing drilling and exploration programmes are underway or anticipated on
a  number of these licences, focused on increasing Stratex's total resources, currently standing at  circa  1
million oz of gold and approximately 3.2 million oz of silver.

The  Company  has  a  healthy  project  pipeline portfolio, which it  continues  to  strengthen  through  the
acquisition  of  additional licences.  Additionally, Stratex is actively seeking new opportunities  in  areas
with  good  geological potential, favourable legal/fiscal codes and easy workability where it can  apply  its
successful model as shown by Turkey.

Sheba Exploration (UK) plc

Sheba  is  a  PLUS-quoted company with 90.127 million shares in issue and a market capitalisation  of  around
£675,000.   The company's subsidiary has been exploring in Ethiopia for the past ten years during which  time
it  has discovered or developed a varied portfolio of gold and copper prospects on its Mereto, Shehagne,  Una
Deriam,  Winibo, Finarwa and Dongwar concession areas. The company's strategic aim is to make new discoveries
in  previously  unknown areas based on effective low-cost prospecting techniques, involving a high  level  of
ground coverage and soil/rock sampling.

The Directors of Sheba Exploration (UK) plc accept responsibility for this announcement.

Contact Details:
Sheba Exploration (UK) Plc
Richard Brooker
Tel: 00 353 87699 8401

Corporate Adviser:
St Helen's Capital Plc
Duncan Vasey/Mark Anwyl
Tel: 020 7628 5582

Contact Information

  • Sheba Exploration (UK) plc