Copper is one of the world’s most important base metals being used in wiring, motoring, coins, medicine and jewellery. Copper is particularly useful because of how well it conducts excess heat and electricity.

There is currently a supply deficit – in 2018 this was estimated to be 247kt. Some analysts are predicting the deficit will get worse and are even calling this the ‘Copper Crunch’. If this ‘Copper Crunch’ eventuates, this will result in copper prices surging.

So far this year, spot copper prices on the London Metals Exchange are up by 7 per cent.

There are dozens of listed asx copper small caps and they have had similar gains this year, up by 5.4 percent on average.

To help you sort through the small cap copper companies on the ASX, here is a list of the explorers, the developers and the producers and where they are seeking their resources.

As the nature of small caps goes, the majority are in the exploration phase with only a handful of copper companies .


The Explorers

Aeris Resources (ASX:AIS)

Aeris’ Tritton Copper Operations are in New South Wales. The company is now undertaking drilling operations to determine the size of its resource. It also owns 70 percent of the Torrens East Copper Project in South Australia.

Activex (ASX:AIV)

Activex is a gold and copper explorer. It has recently completed rock chip sampling at its Cloncurry Copper and Gold and Ravenswood Gold Projects in Queensland– with high gold and copper results from Cloncurry.

Alderan Resources (ASX:AL8)

Alderan is focused on the Frisco copper project in Utah, US. It is a historical mining project. Alderan have determined two areas for its drilling focus in 2019 – the White Mountain Epithermal Gold Project and the Tourmaline Breccias.

AusMex (ASX:AMG)

Ausmex has a license covering a prospective area for gold and copper in the Mount Bryan-Red Banks-World’s End area near Burra in South Australia. It has recently completed audio-magnetotelluric survey at the first of three target areas at Burra and identified large conductive structures 15kms in width.

AusQuest (ASX:AQD)

AusQuest’s flagship copper resource is its Cerro de Fierro Project in southern Peru. It has made a discovery of an iron-oxide copper-gold (IOCG) mineralised system and is undergoing drilling operations. It also has IOCG prospects in Western Australia and in Queensland, where it is completing a drilling program this year, as part of a strategic alliance with South32.

Argonaut Resources (ASX:ARE)

Argonaut owns 30 percent of the Torrens East Copper Project in South Australia with Aeris Resources. It is exploring for Iron Oxide Copper‐Gold (IOCG) systems.

It also holds a 90 percent stake in the Lumwana West project located in the Central African Copperbelt, North-Western Province, Zambia and says the area is prospective for large tonnage, low to medium grade copper/cobalt deposits.

Alara Resources (ASX:AUQ)

Alara has early stage exploration copper-gold projects in Oman and is in the development stages of its zinc-copper resource in Saudi Arabia. It has a completed a bankable feasibility study for the project but has been caught up in a legal battle over the Khnaiguiyah project in relation to a joint venture agreement and mining licence.

Antipa Minerals (ASX:AZY)

Antipa is exploring the Paterson Province of Western Australia. The Province hosts world-class mineral deposits including the Telfer gold-copper-silver mine and the Nifty copper mine. It is now planning its exploration activities at the Citadel Project as part of a $60 million staged farm‐in by Rio Tinto.

Boadicea Resources (ASX:BOA)

Boadicea is exploring for nickel, copper, gold and lithium in Western Australia. Its key exploration project is Symons Hill, 200 kilometres southeast of Kalgoorlie. It has recently completed an electromagnetic survey at the project that identified multiple significant EM conductors – indicating copper mineralisation.

Bryah Resources (ASX:BYH)

Bryah is a copper-gold exploration company. It has identified a potentially significant copper-gold anomaly at its Wongawar Prospect in Western Australia through rock chip and soil sampling.

Castillo Copper (ASX: CCZ) 

CCZ’x flagship project is the Cangai Copper Mine in northeast NSW. The project boasts one of Australia’s highest grade JORC compliant Inferred Resources for copper at 3.2Mt at 3.35 percent. However, the company has been in suspension since December 2018 in relation to suspension notices that have put a halt to its activities. CCZ is now waiting on the ratification of compliance issues with the NSW Resources Regulator to enable it to continue.

Coppermoly (ASX:COY)

Coppermoly is exploring for copper-gold deposits at its sites in Papau New Guinea. It has received a license for its Kori River site and will begin an IP survey in the June quarter.

Caravel Minerals (ASX:CVV)

Its Caravel Copper Project is based in Western Australia and recent drill results have confirmed thick, high-grade copper zones at the Bindi Hinge zone.  The Project’s indicated and inferred resource is for 372 million tonnes grading 0.35 percent copper.

Corazon Mining (ASX:CZN)

Corazon is exploring two projects – the Lynn Lake nickel-copper-cobalt project in Canada and the Mt Gilmore Project in New South Wales that is host to the cobalt ridge deposit.

Frontier Resources (ASX:FNT)

Frontier is focused on discovering copper-gold deposits in the highly mineralised Pacific ‘Rim of Fire’ in Papua New Guinea. It has recently defined new mineralised targets for its field work program.

Great Western Exploration (ASX:GTE)

Great Western has identified the potential for vanadium, copper, cobalt, lead, zinc and nickel at its Yerrida South Project in the Yerrida Basin, Western Australia. It also has its Fairbairn Copper-cobalt-nickel project that it says is a good prospect for base metals.

Havilah Resources (ASX:HAV)

Havilah’s Kalkaroo copper-cobalt-gold project is close to receiving its mining lease that will put it in the development phase. It is also working on determining the copper-cobalt-gold resource at the Mutooroo area in South Australia.

Investigator Resources (ASX:IVR)

Investigator is focused in the southern Gawler Craton in South Australia. Its Peterlumbo Project has indicated copper-gold deposits and has identified an iron-oxide copper-gold anomaly at its Maslins IOCG Project that it recently confirmed to be a valid target.

Kalia Resource (ASX:KLH)

Similar to Bougainville Copper, Kalia is focused on the copper-gold deposits in ‘The Pacific Rim of Fire’ in PNG. It has completed the first airborne geophysical survey and identified targets in the area.

Minotaur Exploration (ASX:MEP)

Minotaur has recently resumed drilling at its Jericho copper project in Queensland. The project is part of its Eloise tenements that are subject to a farm-in joint venture with OZ Minerals.

MOD Resources (ASX:MOD)

MOD’s activities are in the Kalahari Copper Belt of Botswana. Its latest feasibility study results of its T3 copper project showed a copper reserve of 342.5kt of copper. It also holds a stake in the Sams Creek gold project in New Zealand.

Nzuri Copper (ASX:NZC)

Nzuri is exploring high grade copper and cobalt projects in the Katangan Copperbelt of the Democratic Republic of the Congo. It is advancing pre-development activities at its Kalongwe project having completed detailed design work on the mine.

Orion Minerals (ASX:ORN)

Orion is exploring the Prieska Zinc-Copper Project. It has completed a drilling campaign at the site and a scoping study will be used as the basis of a Bankable Feasibility Study (BFS) that it is due complete in Q2 2019.

Peel Mining (ASX:PEX)

Peel’s flagship project is its Wagga Tank/Southern Nights project in New South Wales. Drilling at Southern Nights has returned high-grade zinc-lead-silver-gold-copper intercepts.

PNX Metals (ASX:PNX)

PNX has tenements in the Yorke Peninsula, South Australia in the Burra area and a farm-in with Ausmex. It is also a successful applicant for government funding to test the potential for nickel-copper-cobalt mineralisation at the Kilfoyle Project in the Nortern Territory.

Red Metal (ASX:RDM)

Red Metal has multiple sites across Australia targeting copper, gold, lead, zinc, silver and gold. Recent drill results from its Punt Hill and Pernatty Lagoon Copper-Gold Projects in South Australia have shown intervals of patchy low-grade copper mineralisation.

Riedel Resources (ASX:RIE)

Riedel’s operations are in Spain. It is currently undertaking a drilling program on its Profunda Mine Prospect and assay results have shown high-grade potential copper and nickel.

RTG Mining (ASX:RTG)

RTG is part of a joint venture company – Panguna Minerals, that is amidst a proposal for the redevelopment of the Copper-Gold Panguna Project located in the Central Region of the island of Bougainville, Papua New Guinea.

Rex Minerals (ASX:RXM)

Rex has two studies at its Hillside Project nearing completion. The Hillside project is located on the Yorke Peninsular in South Australia and the company says this location has many benefits over other copper developers.

Silver City Minerals (ASX:SCI)

Contrary to its name, Silver City is exploring projects in copper and gold. An aeromagnetic survey at its Copper Blow project at Broken Hill, NSW has shown a magnetically anomalous zone extending over 4.5 kilometres but drilling has failed to return significant copper and gold grades.

Sipa Resources (ASX:SRI)

Diamond hole drilling completed indicates the presence of a large and complex mineral system at Sipa’s Paterson Copper-Gold North Project in the North West of Western Australia. It also has tenements in Uganda at its Kitgum Pader Nickel-Copper Project and has completed soil sampling and diamond drilling under a JV with Rio Tinto.

Sunstone Metals (ASX:ATM)

Sunstone has begun drilling at its Bramaderos gold-copper project in Ecuador. It is expecting its first assay results in late May – early June 2019.

Southern Hemisphere Mining (ASX:SUH)

SUH has an earn-in agreement with Chilean copper mining company, Hudbay Minerals for the Llahuin Porphyry Copper/Gold Project in Chile where drilling has commenced.

Stavely Minerals (ASX: SVY) 

The Stavely Project is located in western Victoria on the Stavely tablelands. At the Stavely Project the Thursday’s Gossan Prospect has an estimated copper and contained copper resource. Its Mt Ararat project is also in Victoria and hosts a Besshi-style Vocanic Massive Sulphide (VMS) copper-gold-zinc deposit. It Ravenswood Project located in Townsville, Queensland is considered prospective for porphyry molybdenum /copper and/or gold mineralisation.

Taruga Gold (ASX:TAR)

TAR is a cobalt-copper miner focused on exploration in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Targua has two projects, its Mwilu project and Kamilobe project. Both lie within the Kolwezi ‘Klippe’ within the Central African Copper Belt.

Tasman Resources (ASX:TAS)

Tasman has a holding over an area adjacent to BHP Billiton’s Olympic Dam deposit in South Australia. Its most prospective site is Vulcan where its exploration activities for iron-oxide-copper-gold are underway. It is currently in discussions to conclude a joint venture.

Talisman Mining (ASX:TLM)

TLM’s Lachlan copper-gold project is located in the Lachlan Orogen in NSW. It has multiple prospects in the project that are undergoing drilling programs. Its Blind Calf Prospect and Noisy Ned Prospect have each shown mineralisation and anomalies indicating a high-grade copper mineralisation.

Xanadu Mines (ASX:XAM)

Xanadu’s scoping study at its Kharmagtai Open Pit Copper-Gold Project has confirmed its strategy to explore for high-value large copper porphyry systems in Mongolia. It is now progressing additional drilling and advanced mining studies.

The Developers

Aeon Metals (ASX:AML)

Aeon Metals’ primary copper project is Walford Creek, located in Northwest Queensland near the Northern Territory border. Earlier this year it announced an upgrade to its resource and is in the process of completing a feasibility study.

KGL Resources (ASX:KGL)

KGL is focused on its Jervois copper project, located in the Northern Territory. It recently raised funds to accelerate infill drilling to upgrade its copper resource.

Bougainville Copper (ASX:BOC)

Bougainville Copper is primarily focused on trying to reclaim and reopen the Panguna copper mine that it operated from 1971 to 1989. It is now proceeding with judicial review proceedings after the Supreme Court in Papua New Guinea dismissed its application for leave to appeal.

Finders Resources (ASX:FND)

Finders Resources is focused on producing low cost copper. Its primary asset is the Wetar copper project, located in the Maluku province of the Republic of Indonesia that has 196,000 tonnes of contained copper metal.

Redbank Copper (ASX:RCP) 

Redbank is focused on its Redbank Project located in the Northern Territory, and the Millers Creek Project in South Australia. Its Redbank project has a total inferred and indicated resource of 6.24 million tonnes at a grade of 1.5 percent copper for 95,900 tonnes of contained copper metal.


Fe’s Kasombo Copper-Cobalt Project is in the Democratic Republic of Congo. It compromises of three mineralised projects.  It also has interests in a number of projects in the Bryah Basin region of Western Australia with various joint venture partners.

Hot Chilli (ASC:HCH)

Hot Chilli’s assets are in Chile. Its main assets are the Productora copper development that has a completed pre-feasibility study, the Cortadera copper-gold discovery and its El Fuego copper project that has completed a first pass drilling program.

The Producers

Copper Mountain Mining (ASX:C6C)

C6C is a Canadian based mining company with activities at the Copper Mountain mine located in southern British Columbia – that produces 90 million pounds of copper equivalent per year.

Cudeco (ASX:CDU)

Cudeco’s Rocklands Project in Queensland contains high-grade native copper. However, it isn’t mining at the moment as it has suspended its operations while it complete financial restructuring.

Metals X (ASX:MLX)

Metals X is the owner of the Nifty Copper Operations, located in the East Pilbara region of Western Australia – where it is now producing copper concentrate. It is now focused on increasing copper in concentrate production through the development of new mining areas outside of the Central Zone.

Red River Resources (ASX:RVR)

Red River is producing copper, zinc and lead concentrates at its Thalanga site in Queensland. It is also undertaking further exploration activities at the site to expand its resources. In April 2019 it achieved record zinc, copper and lead production at the site.

Complete list of ASX small cap copper stocks

Ticker Name Price (as at 26 April)  Market Cap ( as at 26 April)  Total Return 12 months to 26 April 2019 (%)
AIV ACTIVEX LTD 0.185  $                              32,787,254 -8
AML AEON METALS LTD 0.22  $                           144,709,984 -21
AIS AERIS RESOURCES LTD 0.125  $                              52,406,836 -31
AUQ ALARA RESOURCES LTD 0.028  $                              17,612,492 47
AL8 ALDERAN RESOURCES LTD 0.037  $                                 4,795,530 -74
ATM ANEKA TAMBANG TBK-CDI 1.1  $                      5,286,768,128 22
AZY ANTIPA MINERALS LTD 0.021  $                              43,602,984 0
ARE ARGONAUT RESOURCES NL 0.013  $                              20,206,948 -41
AMG AUSMEX MINING GROUP LTD 0.13  $                              61,164,444 103
AQD AUSQUEST LTD 0.013  $                                 7,134,466 -32
BOA BOADICEA RESOURCES LTD 0.2  $                              10,569,034 11
BOC BOUGAINVILLE COPPER LTD 0.12  $                              52,138,124 -25
BYH BRYAH RESOURCES LTD 0.083  $                                 5,077,535 4
C6C COPPER MOUNTAIN MINING-CDI 1.06  $                           212,557,168 43
COY COPPERMOLY LTD 0.007  $                              12,061,303 0
CZN CORAZON MINING LTD 0.004  $                                 4,142,066 0
FEL FE LTD 0.018  $                                 7,040,304 64
FND FINDERS RESOURCES LTD 0.225  $                           177,472,304 36
FNT FRONTIER RESOURCES LTD 0.009  $                                 4,401,918 -18
GTE GREAT WESTERN EXPLORATION LT 0.005  $                                 3,860,797 -17
HAV HAVILAH RESOURCES LTD 0.15  $                              33,828,604 -14
HCH HOT CHILI LTD 0.033  $                              34,496,984 260
IVR INVESTIGATOR RESOURCES LTD 0.01  $                                 6,659,749 -38
KLH KALIA LTD 0.002  $                                 7,543,042 -33
KGL KGL RESOURCES LTD 0.285  $                              80,360,048 -2
MLX METALS X LTD 0.275  $                           189,491,632 -35
MEP MINOTAUR EXPLORATION LTD 0.049  $                              14,247,905 17
MOD MOD RESOURCES LTD 0.355  $                           106,307,976 44
NZC NZURI COPPER LTD 0.31  $                              93,210,232 29
PEX PEEL MINING LTD 0.41  $                              89,141,704 -13
PNX PNX METALS LTD 0.005  $                                 9,132,330 -29
RDM RED METAL LTD 0.095  $                              20,164,548 -1
RVR RED RIVER RESOURCES LTD 0.21  $                           102,885,720 35
RCP REDBANK COPPER LTD 0.023  $                                 2,690,354 10
RXM REX MINERALS LTD 0.064  $                              18,670,224 -18
RIE RIEDEL RESOURCES LTD 0.009  $                                 4,180,697 -44
RTG RTG MINING INC-CDI 0.1  $                              47,894,088 -17
SCI SILVER CITY MINERALS LTD 0.01  $                                 2,349,682 -29
SRI SIPA RESOURCES LTD 0.007  $                              11,889,719 17
SUH SOUTHERN HEMISPHERE MINING 0.05  $                                 4,423,474 11
SVY STAVELY MINERALS LTD 0.27  $                              46,897,828 35
TLM TALISMAN MINING LTD 0.094  $                              17,084,388 13
TAR TARUGA MINERALS LTD 0.049  $                                 6,917,195 23
TAS TASMAN RESOURCES LTD 0.036  $                              19,001,058 -41
XAM XANADU MINES LTD 0.1  $                              61,564,192 -5
This content does not constitute financial product advice. You should consider obtaining independent advice before making any financial decisions.