Minerals explorer Solomon Gold and its partner Newmont Mining are making progress on the Guadalcanal JV Tenements on the Solomon Islands and exploration plans for 2011 have been finalized.

AIM-quoted Solomon Gold is focused on gold exploration in the Solomon Islands and Australia.

Significant copper and gold rock chip samples have been collected from the Mbetilonga project area. Last month, Newmont started drilling the first hole on the Mbetilonga project at the Vuanimaho prospect. The hole has reached 400m below the surface.

The Chikora mineralized system appears to be geologically different to what was first thought.

The 2011 work programme on the Guadalcanal JV Tenements will focus on drill testing porphyry/epithermal targets at Mbetilonga, and porphyry/skarn targets at Sutakiki.

The whole programme will cost US$6.03m and includes 5,600m of drilling.