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Finland takes top spot for mining-friendly investment

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd February 2018 Finland has ousted Saskatchewan as the top international jurisdiction for mining investment, Canada's Fraser Institute announced on Thursday. Canada's leading independent think-tank, the Fraser Institute, administers its Annual Survey of Mining Companies and ranks jurisdictions around the world... 

Barrick guides for lower output for longer as it works to bolster production profile

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd February 2018 Major miner Barrick Gold has outlined a lower production profile in the coming years as it focuses on developing four major new projects that are expected to lift output by about one-million ounces from 2021 onwards. The Toronto-based company expects to produce between 4.2-million and 4.6-million... 

Preferred hydraulic mining contractors selected for Century tailings

By: Creamer Media Reporter      22nd February 2018 ASX-listed New Century Resources has selected Australia-based National Pump and Energy (NPE) and South Africa-based Paragon Tailings as the preferred contractors for hydraulic mining service works for the Century tailings deposit, in north-west Queensland. NPE and Paragon have proposed a... 

Gold, silver miner Hochschild eyes move into copper and zinc

By: Reuters     21st February 2018 Gold and silver miner Hochschild Mining, which has been scouting for early-stage mining projects, is interested in moving into other metals including copper and zinc, the company's chief executive said on Wednesday. Miners around the world have been looking to take advantage of demand for... 

World refined copper deficit widens to 195 000 t – ICSG

By: Henry Lazenby     21st February 2018 The global refined copper balance for the first eleven months of 2017 indicates a deficit of about 195 000 t, some 27% wider than at the same time a year earlier, the latest data from the Lisbon-based International Copper Study Group (ICSG) shows. The think tank attributed the widening deficit to... 

Southern Copper wins tender for Peru's mine

By: Reuters     20th February 2018 Southern Copper won a tender to develop Peru's estimated $2-billion Michiquillay copper mine in an auction that attracted just two bidders, the government's Proinversion investment agency said on Tuesday. Southern, controlled by Grupo Mexico , won with a proposal to transfer $400-million to the... 

BHP rewards shareholders, profit jumps 25% on commodity prices

By: Mariaan Webb     20th February 2018 Higher commodity prices have helped the world’s largest diversified mining group to report a 25% increase in its underlying attributable profit and to reward shareholders with higher interim dividends. Melbourne-headquartered BHP grew its underlying attributable profit from $3.24-billion in the... 

Mitsui to raise stake in Chile's Collahuasi copper mine

By: Reuters     16th February 2018 Japanese trading house Mitsui & Co said on Friday it will reshuffle its copper assets in Chile, increasing its stake in the Collahuasi mine and selling a small stake in the Los Pelambres mine, boosting its overall copper volumes. Mitsui said it would buy a 3.6% stake in Collahuasi from JX Nippon... 

Sweden hunts for cobalt as electrical vehicle race boosts demand

By: Bloomberg     16th February 2018 Sweden will step up efforts to find precious minerals such as cobalt and lithium, key battery components that are increasingly in demand among makers of electric vehicles. The government will invest 10-million kronor ($1.26-million) over the next two years to map the existence of minerals... 

Chile's Antofagasta receives approval for Los Pelambres upgrade

By: Reuters     15th February 2018 Chilean mining company Antofagasta received environmental approval for a major $1.1-billion revamp of its Los Pelambres copper mine, the regional government of Coquimbo said on Wednesday. The three-stage infrastructure upgrade, unveiled in 2016, seeks to maintain the mine's copper output at... 

Bar one exception, Canadian gold majors' Q4 headline earnings tread water on lower output

By: Henry Lazenby     15th February 2018 Canada's gold majors reported fourth-quarter and full-year 2017 financial results on Wednesday following market close, with headline earnings coming in flat or lower year-on-year, as companies work with smaller, more streamlined production portfolios. The exception was Goldcorp, which put in a... 

Despite reporting a Q4 earnings miss, Teck equity rises on record revenue, cash flow

By: Henry Lazenby     14th February 2018 Canadian diversified miner Teck Resources has reported fourth-quarter headline earnings slightly below analyst expectations, as lower metallurgical coal sales and prices offset metal price improvements in the three-month period to December 31. Adjusted profit attributable to shareholders in the... 

Gold giant Barrick faces grilling after fall to bottom of pack

By: Bloomberg     12th February 2018 Barrick Gold executives will have some explaining to do when the company releases full-year results Wednesday. Even with rising gold prices and a strengthened balance sheet, the world’s largest gold producer left shareholders with the worst returns among its top North American peers last year... 

bauma CONEXPO AFRICA supporting program offers a glimpse into topics of the future

By: Creamer Media Reporter      9th February 2018 The supporting program for bauma CONEXPO AFRICA gives both exhibitors and visitors a comprehensive overview of the technologies of the future. The focus will be on networking and communication between specialists from various fields. The African and international construction and mining... 

On-The-Air (09/02/2018) 

By: Martin Creamer     9th February 2018 Every Friday morning, SAfm's AMLive's radio anchor Sakina Kamwendo speaks to Martin Creamer, publishing editor of Engineering News and Mining Weekly.  Reported here is this Friday's At the Coalface transcript: Kamwendo: China's colossal Clean Air Revolution is poised to give massive support to... 

Cougar secures cobalt project in Chile

By: Creamer Media Reporter      7th February 2018 ASX-listed Cougar Metals has secured a cobalt exploration project in Chile, which executive chairperson Randal Swick said on Wednesday was considered a complementary opportunity to its lithium prospect in Brazil. Cougar has signed a letter of intent (LOI) with Antasitua Chile to acquire a 100%... 

Nutrien closing in on selling stakes in SQM, Arab Potash Co – CEO

By: Reuters     7th February 2018 Canadian fertiliser and farm supply dealer Nutrien is actively dealing with prospective buyers of its stakes in lithium producer SQM and Arab Potash Co, its chief executive said on Tuesday. Nutrien is selling minority stakes in those companies as part of pledges to regulators who approved this... 

Barrick to book $429-million Q4 charge on mired Pascua-Lama

By: Henry Lazenby     7th February 2018 Major miner Barrick Gold expects to book a pre-tax impairment in the fourth quarter ended December 31 of about $429-million at its stalled Pascua-Lama copper/gold project, which straddles the border between Chile and Argentina. The NYSE- and TSX-listed company advised that it is reclassifying... 

Investment poised to increase in Chile – central bank survey

By: Reuters     6th February 2018 Chile's economy is poised to improve by mid-year as rebounding copper prices and President-elect Sebastian Pinera's promise of business-friendly policies increase optimism among investors, according to a central bank survey released on Tuesday. The study, which surveyed the perceptions of more... 

Mining essential to human progress – Rio Tinto

By: Martin Creamer     5th February 2018 The images of large yellow mine trucks flashed across the big screen at this year’s Mining Indaba looked pretty ordinary. But that misperception was quickly cut short when Rio Tinto CE Energy and Minerals Bold Baatar told the full-house audience: "What you're watching are robots on wheels.... 

Chile miner CAP doubles earnings in 2017, shares rise

By: Reuters     1st February 2018 Chile iron-ore and steel producer CAP more than doubled its earnings in 2017 over the previous year, the company said in a year-end earnings report on Thursday, boosted by rising iron prices even as its total exports of the metal dropped. CAP reported profits of $130.3-million in 2017, more than... 

Komatsu celebrates 10th anniversary of commercial deployment of Autonomous Haulage System (AHS):100-AHS-trucks-in-operation milestone inspires plans to accelerate pace of mining automation

     1st February 2018 Komatsu Ltd (President and CEO: Tetsuji Ohashi) (hereafter “Komatsu”) today announced the company is celebrating the tenth anniversary of the commercial deployment of its Autonomous Haulage System (hereafter “AHS”). Today, more than 100 AHS trucks operate in Australia, North and South America.... 

Rio Tinto accused of $700m tax dodge on Mongolian mine

By: Bloomberg     31st January 2018 Rio Tinto Group has been accused by a Dutch non-profit group of avoiding about $700-million in taxes related to its Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in Mongolia. The company denied the allegations. Rio and its Canadian subsidiary Turquoise Hill Resources used so-called mailbox companies in Luxembourg and... 

Brazil, Peru to lead LatAm mineral project development to 2020

By: Henry Lazenby     30th January 2018 Boosted by higher commodity prices in general, miners are increasingly focusing on project development as healthier balance sheets allow them the opportunity to return to their long-term growth strategies. According to data supplied by Fitch-affiliated research firm BMI, two countries are... 

Chile open to increasing SQM lithium quota to satisfy Tesla – Corfo

By: Reuters     29th January 2018 Chile is open to negotiating an additional quota of lithium for local miner SQM to meet potential demand from US electric car-maker Tesla, Eduardo Bitran, head of Chilean development agency Corfo, told Reuters on Monday. Bitran said Tesla and SQM were "exploring" opportunities after Tesla... 

Copper deals off to best start in 12 yrs as prices surge

By: Bloomberg     27th January 2018 Copper mining deals are off to the best start in at least 12 years – and more money could be pouring into the sector this year. More than $500-million in transactions are pending or were completed so far this month, the most recorded for January in Bloomberg data going back 12 years. Merger... 

Maptek launches new Master program in geostatistical modelling

     26th January 2018 As part of an ongoing commitment to the transfer of specialised knowledge, Maptek™ South America will present a new dedicated training course, Master in Geostatistical Modelling of Mineral Deposits, starting in 2018.The comprehensive course is under the direction of Professor Clayton V.  Deutsch... 

Consultancy to partner with black entrants as they acquire Tier 1 coal assets

By: Martin Creamer     26th January 2018 Project delivery and engineering consultancy WorleyParsons RSA is once again answering the call for transformation and broader economic participation of previously disadvantaged South Africans. The company’s latest initiative is black entrepreneur development in coal, which will be its key focus... 

Plymouth to become Infinity Lithium, puts Gabon potash assets on the block

By: Mariaan Webb     25th January 2018 ASX-listed Plymouth Minerals, which is earning in to the San Jose lithium/tin project in Spain, has announced that it will sell its potash assets and change its name to reflect its sole focus. In an emailed newsletter, CEO and MD Adrian Byass said on Thursday that the name change to Infinity... 

Anglo American delivers increased output of most products in 2017

By: Natasha Odendaal     25th January 2018 Despite removing higher-cost platinum and metallurgical coal volumes, LSE- and JSE-listed Anglo American has reported a 5% rise in total production on a copper equivalent basis in 2017. “We have delivered another strong operating performance in 2017. The 5% increase for the full year reflects our... 

Benchmark downplays investor fears of looming lithium oversupply, subsequent price crash

By: Henry Lazenby     25th January 2018 London-based Benchmark Mineral Intelligence has downplayed top-level investor fears this week regarding the potential for lithium market oversupply and an inevitable price crash to follow. The energy metals-focused research company pointed out that rumours about up to 180 000 t/y of added lithium... 

Japan's record exports, manufacturing, point to powerhouse economy

By: Reuters     24th January 2018 Japan’s exports to China and Asia hit record levels as shipments rose for a thirteenth straight month in December and manufacturing growth hit a four-year high in January, pointing to an economy that powered through the fourth quarter and into 2018. The Ministry of Finance (MOF) said on Wednesday... 

Chilean president-elect names Larrain as finance minister again

By: Reuters     23rd January 2018 Chile's conservative President-elect Sebastian Pinera on Tuesday named a former finance minister in the top copper exporter, Felipe Larrain, to fill the same spot again in his new cabinet. Pinera, a billionaire businessman who won the presidency last month, governed the country from 2010 to 2014,... 

Copper production declined in first ten months of 2017 – ICSG

By: Schalk Burger     23rd January 2018 Worldwide copper mine production declined 2.6% in the ten months to October 2017, while concentrate production declined by 2.2% and production through solvent extraction-electrowinning declined by 4.3% in the same period, according to the intergovernmental copper body The International Copper... 

Agarwal plans to keep his Anglo American stake for a long time

By: Bloomberg     23rd January 2018 Anil Agarwal, the Indian commodities billionaire, said the rally in Anglo American vindicated his personal bet in the mining group, adding that he plans to own the shares for a long time. Agarwal surprised Anglo’s management last year when he took a 21% stake in the company, becoming its top... 

Revamped Barrick harkens back to founding principles as 'new generation' of discovery, partnerships beckon

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd January 2018 The world's largest gold producer by output Barrick Gold is looking towards a more sustainable future based on a leaner, more tightly owned portfolio, with future growth increasingly hinging on forming synergistic partnerships with former mining rivals. With the gold price off to a strong start... 

Protect the Amazon from big business and greed, Pope Francis urges

By: Reuters     22nd January 2018 Pope Francis issued a ringing defense of the people and the environment of the Amazon on Friday, saying big business and "consumerist greed" could not be allowed to destroy a natural habitat vital for the entire planet. Francis, who has made the environment and climate change a focus of his... 

Environment watchdog orders Barrick to close Chilean side of giant Pascua-Lama project

By: Henry Lazenby     19th January 2018 Chile's superintendent of the environment has ordered mining major Barrick Gold to close the Chilean side of the massive, but stalled Pascua-Lama gold/silver project straddling the border between Argentina and Chile. The Superintendencia del Medio Ambiente (SMA) announced a revised sanction on... 

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