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Aluminium News

Moratorium infers intention to circumvent agreement – Leon

By: Martin Creamer     21st July 2017 The mineral rights moratorium gazette notice of Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane infers an intention to circumvent the underlying purpose of the agreement reached with the Chamber of Mines, Herbert Smith Freehills’ Africa partner and co-chair, Peter Leon, said on Friday. In particular,... 

Fast-growing Chinese aluminium sector attracts increased govt scrutiny

By: Henry Lazenby     21st July 2017 As the Chinese aluminium sector comes under greater pressure to moderate its capacity growth, the government is cracking down on so-called ‘illegal’ smelters, analysis by Wood Mackenzie global aluminium markets senior research analyst Ami Shivkar has found. Shivkar argues that unqualified... 

Fast-growing Chinese aluminium sector attracts increased govt scrutiny

Demand growth for some metals may exceed 1 000% – World Bank

By: Martin Creamer     18th July 2017 A new World Bank report highlights the potential impacts that the expected continuing boom in low-carbon energy technologies will have on demand for many minerals and metals, including Southern Africa's platinum, manganese and chrome. Using wind and solar energy, and energy storage batteries, as... 

Nine recommended improvements should charter renegotiation ensue

By: Martin Creamer     17th July 2017 The agreed suspension of the implementation of the controversial Mining Charter Three may present an opportunity for the parties to negotiate a revised version that reflects terms acceptable to all parties. If so, the renegotiated charter should contain at least nine improvements, say Herbert... 

Nine recommended improvements should charter renegotiation ensue
Photo by Duane Daws
Herbert Smith Freehills Africa partner and co-chair Peter Leon

North American metals and mining sector provides weak covenant protections – Moody’s

By: Henry Lazenby     15th July 2017 High-yield bonds issued in the metals and mining sector provide weak covenant protection, Moody's Investors Service says in a new report issued on Friday. The average covenant quality (CQ) score under the credit rating agency's scoring criteria for the 56 North American metals and mining... 

Chamber wins round one in battle against mining charter

By: Martin Creamer     14th July 2017 In what is a clear first round victory for the Chamber of Mines of South Africa against the errant Department of Mineral Resources (DMR), Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane has agreed to suspend the implementation of the controversial Mining Charter Three until after the High Court has... 

Chamber wins round one in battle against mining charter
Chamber CEO Roger Baxter – chamber wins first round in fight against devastating Mining Charter Three

Guinea to host alumina-bauxite symposium in September

By: Ilan Solomons     14th July 2017 The International Bauxite, Alumina and Aluminium Society (IBAAS), in association with geological services provider Camen Resources, will host the sixth edition of the International Bauxite-Alumina Symposium on September 21 and 22 in Conakry, Guinea. The conference will be held in Africa for the... 

Guinea to host alumina-bauxite symposium in September
Photo by International Bauxite, Alumina and Aluminium Society
AFRICAN FIRST The International Bauxite-Alumina Symposium will be hosted in Guinea, making it the first African country to do so

Rusal resumes Taishet aluminium project, sees deeper global deficit

By: Reuters     13th July 2017 Russia's Rusal has resumed construction of its long-stalled Taishet aluminium smelter project in Siberia in expectation of a widening global aluminium deficit, the company said on Wednesday. The world's second-largest aluminium producer behind China's Hongqiao needs a further $700-million to... 

Alcoa to partially restart Warrick smelter in Indiana

By: Reuters     12th July 2017 Aluminium producer Alcoa Corp said on Tuesday it would partially restart its Warrick smelter in Indiana, more than a year after closing the then largest operating smelter in the US. Alcoa expects the aluminium smelting capacity from the restart to supply its rolling mill at Warrick ahead of an... 

Miners rewarded for improved capital discipline

By: Henry Lazenby     11th July 2017 Increased cash flows, merger and acquisition (M&A) activity and new debt issues have helped many of the world’s top miners strengthen their balance sheets in 2016, reflecting miners’ response to investor messages around capital discipline, according to new analysis from PwC Canada. "As the global... 

Miners rewarded for improved capital discipline

Copper drops as warehouse inflows undermine shortage speculation

By: Bloomberg     6th July 2017 Copper futures posted the biggest loss in two weeks as inventories tracked by the London Metal Exchange climbed the most since early March, dispelling concerns about potential shortages. Stockpiles rose 15% to 315 925 metric tons, bourse data show. Copper also fell as the dollar rose and... 

Nersa calls for comment on special pricing deal to unlock ferrosilicon production 

By: Terence Creamer     4th July 2017 The National Energy Regulator of South Africa (Nersa) is calling for written comments on an application by Eskom to implement a two-year incentive pricing package that will enable the restart of ferrosilicon production in the Limpopo and Mpumalanga provinces. The regulator turned down an earlier... 

Nersa calls for comment on special pricing deal to unlock ferrosilicon production

Paper trail on metal loans ended in fakes as banks lose millions

By: Bloomberg     4th July 2017 For all the high-tech wizardry of modern financial markets, there’s one corner of the commodity world that still depends almost entirely on printed paper – making it an easy target for crooks. Buyers and sellers of base metals like copper, aluminum and nickel use documents known as warehouse... 

Mining Indaba offering new junior zone, boosting interface opportunities 

By: Martin Creamer     4th July 2017 Strong new thrusts are planned for next year’s Investing in African Mining Indaba, which is scheduled to take place at the Cape Town International Convention Centre from February 5 to 8, once again to support investment in mining companies operating in Africa and to provide an effective platform... 

Mining Indaba offering new junior zone, boosting interface opportunities
Investing in African Mining Indaba MD Alex Grose outlines to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer the major new focus on junior miner involvement. Video and Video Editing: Lionel da Silva.

3D printing could improve mining uptime and productivity

By: Mia Breytenbach     30th June 2017 Forward-thinking mining organisations are realising that industrial-scale, three-dimensional (3D) printing of equipment used in mines could make operations more cost effective and reduce the frustrations of equipment downtime, says information technology consultancy and systems integration firm... 

3D printing could improve mining uptime and productivity
Photo by Bloomberg
OPERATIONAL CONTROL By 3D printing the spare parts and replaceable components that complex mine machinery requires, operators can gain greater control over the supply chain

Moz benefiting from mining-sector exports, coal now dominant mineral

By: Keith Campbell     30th June 2017 Montepuez Ruby Mining (Montepuez) has announced that it achieved revenues of $54.8-million from its latest ruby auction, in Singapore. Montepuez mines rubies and corundum in the Montepuez district of Mozambique’s Cabo Delgado province. The company is 75%-owned by UK enterprise Gemfields and 25%-... 

Ghana signs $10bn MoU with China for bauxite project – senior Minister

By: Reuters     29th June 2017 Ghana has signed a $10-billion memorandum of understanding (MoU) with China to develop its bauxite industry, the country's Senior Minister Yaw Osafo-Maafo said on Wednesday. Growth in the West African country slowed sharply in 2014 due to a fiscal crisis and tumbling commodity prices following... 

Few resource-rich countries properly manage their natural resources – report 

By: Reuters     28th June 2017 More than 80% of the world's major mining, oil and gas-producing countries fail to adequately govern the way they extract and manage natural resources, according to an index that tracks accountability and corruption. Eritrea was the worst performer in the annual index released by the New... 

Mining Charter violates shareholder rights – Hogan Lovells

By: Martin Creamer     23rd June 2017 Mining Charter Three’s arbitrary increase of empowerment shareholding to 30% violates the property rights of shareholders, and the new charter’s requirement to pay 1% of yearly turnover is not expected to survive challenges under the Companies Act and the Constitution. Property rights under the... 

Mining Charter violates shareholder rights – Hogan Lovells
Hogan Lovells partner Wessel Badenhorst

Aluminium giants stop short of backing Trump import crackdown

By: Bloomberg     23rd June 2017 As the calls for restrictions on cheap Chinese imports reach a fever pitch in Washington, some of the biggest North American aluminium producers are advocating a softer touch. Alcoa Corp. urged the US to directly engage with China to ensure overproduction no longer spills out to the rest of the... 

South32 awards R158m coal contract to 100% black-owned mining firm 

By: Martin Creamer     22nd June 2017 Diversified mining company South32 has awarded a three-year, R158-million contract at the Wolvekrans Middelburg Complex to 100% black-owned Modi Mining, which aims to source up to 90% of its labour from the nearby communities. The award marks an advance on the ASX- and JSE-listed company’s plans... 

South32 awards R158m coal contract to 100% black-owned mining firm
Photo by Duane Daws
South32 president and COO Africa Mike Fraser

Slow, bumpy market recovery on the cards for most commodities

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd June 2017 The global commodity market is probably in for a slow, drawn-out recovery following the five-year bear market, S&P Global Market Intelligence director for reports on the metals and mining sectors Dr Chris Hinde said during a webcast on Wednesday. According to S&P’s ‘State of the Market’ report,... 

Slow, bumpy market recovery on the cards for most commodities

Mining Charter exposing South African economy to GATT angst  

By: Martin Creamer     21st June 2017 The procurement rules of the new Mining Charter may violate South Africa’s obligations under the General Agreement on Tariffs and Trade (GATT), exposing the country to challenges by other member states of the World Trade Organisation (WTO), Herbert Smith Freehills lawyers Peter Leon and Patrick... 

Mining Charter exposing South African economy to GATT angst
Photo by Duane Daws
Herbert Smith Freehills co-chair Peter Leon

Mining Charter set to worsen stakeholder relations – Bench Marks

By: Martin Creamer     20th June 2017 The new Mining Charter is the flawed outcome of inadequate consultation with communities, the board of the Bench Marks Foundation said on Tuesday, when it warned that the document is poised to worsen stakeholder relations. Bench Marks executive director John Capel condemned the new charter as a... 

Mining Charter set to worsen stakeholder relations – Bench Marks
Photo by Reuters
Rt Rev Dr Jo Seoka, chairperson of the Bench Marks Foundation, which has launched a scathing attack on the new Mining Charter.

Chinese production, capacity cuts needed to rebalance aluminium market

By: Henry Lazenby     17th June 2017 New analysis by Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s (BofAML’s) Global Commodity Research team sees no alternative but for China to cut back production (temporary) and capacity (permanent) to rebalance the global market. While aluminium has been the best performing base metal since the start of the... 

Chamber going to court to halt devastating charter blow to already battered mining sector 

By: Martin Creamer     15th June 2017 The Chamber of Mines of South Africa will be applying at the earliest opportunity for a court date for a declaratory order on continuing empowerment consequences, as well as immediately seeking an interim court interdict to suspend the implementation of Mining Charter Three, the devastating set... 

Chamber going to court to halt devastating charter blow to already battered mining sector
Photo by Creamer Media
Chamber of Mines of South Africa president Mxolisi Mgojo

From Tesla cars to underwear, metal makers seek new markets

By: Bloomberg     15th June 2017 The world’s biggest mining companies would like you to put more zinc in your zucchini and copper in your socks and dental floss. While builders and manufacturers remain the biggest metals users, producers are confronting the end of a Chinese industrial boom that fueled surging global demand and... 

IHS Markit's materials price index registers 3.1% weekly decline

By: Henry Lazenby     9th June 2017 A broad basket of commodities tracked by market research house IHS Markit has declined the most in a single week since mid-April, falling 3.1% last week in a broad retreat. IHS senior economist Ben Orhan said in a news release to Mining Weekly Online on Thursday that the commodity price index... 

Mine tailings recovery can be value generator, says Council for Geoscience

By: Ilan Solomons     9th June 2017 Mine tailings have been identified as a major source of environmental impact for many mining operations and more stringent requirements have been placed on the management of these tailings. An aspect which is often overlooked in the life cycle of sustainable mine residues management is that mine... 

Mine tailings recovery can be value generator, says Council for Geoscience
Photo by Duane Daws
RESIDUAL VALUE Platinum group metals tailings contain a significant portion of aluminium, iron and calcium, which have the potential to serve as a secondary mineral source

Young bull run kickstarts cyclical mining industry into exploration mode

By: Henry Lazenby     2nd June 2017 With the commodity and equity markets in much better shape than a year ago, mining industry players are navigating the early days of a new bull run with renewed interest in exploration and mergers and acquisitions activity to secure future supplies. While the commodity market is perhaps not... 

Young bull run kickstarts cyclical mining industry into exploration mode
Photo by Resource Maven
Resource Maven newsletter writer Gwen Preston on a mining site visit

Rusal's refinancing frees firm to pay dividends when it wants

By: Bloomberg     2nd June 2017 United Co. Rusal, the largest aluminum producer outside China, will be able to pay dividends without the approval of its lenders for the first time in at least seven years after recent refinancing eased debt covenants. The company conducted two eurobond sales this year and tapped the panda bond... 

Trump 'has a point' on China's cheap aluminium, Glencore CEO says

By: Bloomberg     2nd June 2017 Donald Trump “has a point” in criticising China’s trade in aluminium and steel as cheap power has effectively been a subsidy to Chinese producers, said Glencore chief Ivan Glasenberg. Trump should be pragmatic in dealing with China, given that it imports a lot of US goods, said Glasenberg... 

India’s Nalco to open new bauxite deposit at its existing mines

By: Ajoy K Das     31st May 2017 Hit by delays in securing a new mine, integrated aluminium producer, National Aluminium Company Limited (Nalco), has started the process to open a new bauxite deposit near its existing Panchpatmali mines in Odisha. The opening up of the new deposit along the south face of its existing mining... 

Zambezi Protocol to serve as guide for identity-changing chamber 

By: Martin Creamer     29th May 2017 The 128-year-old Chamber of Mines of South Africa provided an important indicator of its intended new direction when it revealed that the Zambezi Protocol would be its guiding light as it embarked on its identity and name-change programme. Under unanimously elected new president of Mxolisi Mgojo,... 

Zambezi Protocol to serve as guide for identity-changing chamber
Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer asks new Chamber of Mines office bearers to spell out the influential institution’s decision to change its 128-year-old name and identity. Photographs and Video: Duane Daws. Video Editing : Lionel d Silva.

New company aims to be ‘unrivalled’ service provider

     26th May 2017 With a focus on safety and supporting its customers, the process of integrating diversified industrial-use products and services provider Komatsu and high-productivity mining solutions provider Joy Global has begun, following the conclusion of a $3.7-billion deal in April. On May 8, executive... 

New company aims to be ‘unrivalled’ service provider
RETAINING FOCUS Newly renamed Komatsu Mining will continue to promote and invest in the Joy Global P&H, Joy and Montabert brands

Vedanta hits production high spot at Black Mountain

By: Martin Creamer     24th May 2017 Diversified mining company Vedanta has achieved its highest quarterly production in four years at Black Mountain in South Africa, where the Gamsberg zinc project is on track to begin production towards the middle of next year. In addition, mobilisation on the Skorpion pit layback, in neighbouring... 

Vedanta hits production high spot at Black Mountain
Photo by Bloomberg
Vedanta chairperson Anil Agarwal

Arconic, Elliott settle proxy contest 

By: Henry Lazenby     24th May 2017 Specialty alloys manufacturer Arconic has reached agreement with activist shareholder Elliott Management and its affiliates, who together hold about 13.2% of the company, to resolve the pending proxy contest regarding the company’s May 25 annual general meeting (AGM). NYSE-listed Arconic has... 

Thos Begbie’s global quality status boosted by on-the-spot Dekra 

By: Martin Creamer     23rd May 2017 The same-site working relationship that Thos Begbie has established with global quality inspectorate Dekra Industrial RSA is giving the prolific exporter of copper castings a commercial edge in its global dealings with mining and smelter-related customers worldwide. Thos Begbie now hosts the... 

Thos Begbie’s global quality status boosted by on-the-spot Dekra
Engineering News Online’s Martin Creamer talks to Thos Begbie’s Edwin Dreyer and Dekra’s Johan Gerber. Photographs: Duane Daws. Video: Nicholas Boyd. Video Editing: Lionel da Silva.
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