Tim Carstens
Rainmakers & Potstirrers

Tim Carstens

CEO: Base Resources


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‘We have strategic relevance because of the scale of Toliara in the whole battery minerals suite’

BASE Resources will lose its “cash driver” this year with the planned closure of its sole operating asset, Kwale, a mineral sands mine in Kenya. While Carstens presides over the safe closure of the mine, he will have more than half an eye on events in Madagascar, where the firm has long sought to develop its Toliara project.

As it was originally scoped as a mineral sands mine, the presence of the rare earth monazite in Toliara means it can now be marketed to future financiers as a mineral sands operation with a “battery minerals” sweetener.  First, though, Madagascar must bed down a new government following elections in November.Toliara has been beset by regulatory delays. Ideally it should have provided Base with uninterrupted cash flow instead of the hiatus now created by Kwale’s closure. Unfortunately for Carstens, negotiations with the Malagasy government over new fiscal terms have dragged on for far too long.

What should have taken months to conclude morphed into years, and subsequently back-ended into talks over a new minerals code. That brings us to the recent elections, which have taken months to conclude. It’s meant frustration on a grand scale for Base. But hope springs eternal, as the cliché goes. Thus, Carstens is crossing fingers for a final investment decision on Toliara in May 2025, and first production and shipments taking place between June and August 2027.

Base has also adopted a ‘Vision 2031’ strategy that aims to develop a pipeline of projects that can be developed concurrently, and in different minerals. In this way, Carstens is hoping the firm never again lands shareholders in a cashless limbo.


A chartered accountant by trade, Carstens has been the MD of Base Resources since formation in 2008. Previously, he circulated through a number of executive positions at Australian and offshore junior and midcap mining companies such as Perilya, North Limited and Robe River Iron Associates.

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