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Aluminium News

Union at Alcoa Canada aluminum smelter backs strike mandate

By: Reuters     22nd November 2017 Unionised workers at Alcoa's Canadian aluminium smelter in Becancour, Quebec have rejected the company's contract offer and adopted a strike mandate, the United Steelworkers said on Wednesday. The collective agreement for 1 030 unionised workers expires at 11:59 EST Wednesday, after which... 

Parliament delays passing key mining law

By: Reuters     22nd November 2017 South Africa's Parliament will miss a December target to pass changes to mineral resource laws, seen as key for greater investor certainty, a senior Parliamentary official said on Tuesday. In September, Mines Minister Mosebenzi Zwane told a mining conference in Australia that the new target date... 

Parliament delays passing key mining law
Photo by Duane Daws
Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane

'A good number of investors' considering countries offering better return-on-investment prospects than SA

By: Dylan Slater     17th November 2017 Mining policies imposed by the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) on local industry are creating increased uncertainty for investors, a growing number of whom are considering investing in mining projects and exploration in other countries, with a greater chance of a healthier return on... 

'A good number of investors' considering countries offering better return-on-investment prospects than SA
Photo by Duane Daws
PAUL MILLER A significant volume of additional capital needs to be earmarked for every new mining project to account for risk associated with policy uncertainty

China's Chalco plans to launch Guinea bauxite mine by early 2018

By: Reuters     16th November 2017 A unit of China's biggest state-run aluminium firm, Chinalco, plans to start producing bauxite at its project in the West African nation of Guinea later this year or early in 2018, a company executive said on Thursday. Guinea's mines ministry said in August that Chalco, Chinalco's listed arm,... 

Investor TCI demands UK's LSE answer more questions in board tussle

By: Reuters     16th November 2017 Activist investor TCI has demanded the London Stock Exchange answer a series of questions ahead of a shareholder meeting called by the fund to oust the chairperson over his handling of the planned replacement of its chief executive. Among the questions TCI wants answered by the LSE board before... 

Japan aluminium industry may consider crafting quality assurance guidelines after Kobe Steel scandal

By: Reuters     13th November 2017 Japan's aluminium industry may consider crafting sector-wide quality assurance guidelines if it gets requests from member companies to do so in the wake of the data fabrication scandal that has engulfed Japan's Kobe Steel, the head of Japan's aluminium industry association said on Monday. Mitsuru... 

Mining technology gets boost from new Wits-Sibanye partnership

By: Martin Creamer     9th November 2017 Mining technology is being given a Fourth Industrial Revolution boost through the new partnership struck between precious metals mining company Sibanye-Stillwater and the Wits Mining Institute. Wits Mining Institute director Professor Fred Cawood outlined in a news release on Thursday that... 

BMI forecasts bright spots in global aluminium industry

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     7th November 2017 Global aluminium producers are likely to experience solid financial recoveries in the year ahead, following years of financial austerity, as prices remain elevated, global research firm BMI said on Tuesday. This would result in targeted acquisitions of specific, value-added aluminium producers... 

BMI forecasts bright spots in global aluminium industry

Bristow, Friedland may go head-to-head in on-stage copper-gold debate

By: Martin Creamer     7th November 2017 Dr Mark Bristow of Randgold Resources and Robert Friedland of Ivanhoe Mines may go head-to-head in a live on-stage gold-versus-copper debate at the Investing in African Mining Indaba event at the Cape Town International Convention Centre from February 5 to 8, Mining Indaba MD Alex Grose disclosed... 

Bristow, Friedland may go head-to-head in on-stage copper-gold debate
Photo by Creamer Media
Investing in African Mining Indaba MD Alex Grose (right) and Martin Creamer

Canadian junior mining sector riding renewed wave of confidence

By: Henry Lazenby     7th November 2017 Despite signs of improved investor confidence in Canada's prolific junior mining sector – mainly driven by rising consumer technology demand for resources – analysts are warning that the market recovery is in a delicate phase and will require discipline to survive until more substantial commodity... 

Canadian junior mining sector riding renewed wave of confidence

Argentina seeks new markets for aluminium as US probes imports

By: Reuters     3rd November 2017 Argentina is seeking new markets for its aluminium exports as the US probes the national security implications of imports of the metal, an executive at Aluar Aluminio Argentino, the country's leading producer, told Reuters. Aluar commercial director Miroslavo Puches said the company was planning... 

BHP aims for more copper, oil; steers away from EV minerals

By: Reuters     3rd November 2017 The world's biggest miner BHP's response to the electric vehicle debate is to hunt for new reserves of copper and oil, while seeking a buyer for its assets to produce battery-grade nickel and steering clear of lithium and cobalt. Arnoud Balhuizen, chief commercial officer at BHP, has said 2017... 

Rio Tinto throws its weight behind Africa as mining central

By: Reuters     2nd November 2017 Africa, as the largest untapped source of growth in the mining sector, is pivotal in helping Rio Tinto and other resources companies to supply the changing needs of the huge Asian market, a senior company official said on Wednesday. The comments, delivered at a Bloomberg forum as part of LME... 

Rusal launches green aluminium brand to drive sales

By: Reuters     2nd November 2017 Russian aluminium giant Rusal launched a low-carbon certification programme and new brand on Wednesday in an effort to get more value from the green footprint of its smelters. Some customers are willing to pay $20 to $50 a tonne more for low-carbon metal, although no fixed premium will be... 

Metallica worries about delays at Urquhart

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     2nd November 2017 Bauxite developer Metallica Minerals has warned of a possible delay at its proposed Urquhart bauxite project, in Queensland, as the state prepared for an election on November 25. The company said on Thursday that while it had received advice from the state government that the Urquhart mining... 

Why biggest metals rally of the year may have further to run

By: Bloomberg     1st November 2017 In a stellar year for base metals, aluminum has led the pack. Now, producers say surging raw material costs could drive prices even higher. Alumina, the raw material used to make aluminum, has jumped 56% since August after China shut down some production, triggering a wave of buying by traders... 

US finds China dumped aluminium foil on US market, imposes duties

By: Reuters     28th October 2017 The US Commerce Department said on Friday it made a preliminary finding that China dumped aluminium foil on the US market and imposed duties ranging from 97% to 162%. In 2016, US aluminium foil imports from China were valued at $389-million, it said in a statement. The department will issue its... 

Major Guinea bauxite mine to start producing in 2019 – mines ministry

By: Reuters     27th October 2017 One of Guinea's largest bauxite mines will begin producing five-million tonnes per year in 2019, the mines ministry said on Thursday, boosting the West African country's efforts to treble output by 2020. Guinea has about a third of the world's bauxite reserves, which are refined and smelted to... 

Shared vision needed for mining to boost entire economy – Mgojo

By: Martin Creamer     24th October 2017 A collective national vision, which must be viable, inclusive and transformative, is urgently needed to unleash mining’s latent ability to energise the entire South African economy, Chamber of Mines president Mxolisi Mgojo said on Tuesday. Speaking at a media lunch, Mgojo emphasised the folly of... 

Shared vision needed for mining to boost entire economy – Mgojo
Photo by Duane Daws
Chamber of Mines president Mxolisi Mgojo

Arconic sinks on earnings miss; appoints former GE boss as CEO

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd October 2017 The New York-listed equity of alloy metals specialist Arconic dipped on Monday after the company reported disappointing third-quarter results. The New York-headquartered company revealed a headline profit of $132-million, or $0.25 a share, compared with $137-million in the comparable quarter of... 

Arconic sinks on earnings miss; appoints former GE boss as CEO

Chinese clamp down expected to support alumina, aluminium price strength

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd October 2017 The successful government-led rebalancing of several Chinese industries has supported alumina and aluminium prices globally. However, smelter restarts might undermine prices in 2018, according to a new report by Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML) Global Research. The banking group pointed out... 

General uptick in West Africa mining as commodity prices improve

By: Ilan Solomons     20th October 2017 There have been a number of recent positive developments in West Africa’s mining industry, such as in Mali, where two new mines are scheduled to be commissioned by the end of this year. This is according to engineering and scientific consultancy SRK Consulting Ghana country manager John Kwofie,... 

General uptick in West Africa mining as commodity prices improve
Photo by SRK Consulting
JOHN KWOFIE SRK has been engaged in aspects of iron-ore projects in Cameroon, bauxite in Guinea and diamonds in Sierra Leone and Guinea in recent years

South Africa spending less than its peers on mining research and development

By: Mia Breytenbach     20th October 2017 While South Africa had increased its investment in mining research and development (R&D) since 2014, the country’s investment was still below that of its peers, delegates heard during a panel discussion on ‘Technological Innovation and Advancements in the Mining Industry’ at the Joburg Indaba... 

Remove exploration red tape or mining will die, geologist warns 

By: Martin Creamer     19th October 2017 The excessive red tape around minerals exploration must be removed to prevent the demise of South Africa’s vital mining industry, consulting exploration geologist Allan Saad said on Thursday. Saad, who spent 18 years in geological roles with mining major Rio Tinto and who formerly represented the... 

Remove exploration red tape or mining will die, geologist warns
Consulting exploration geologist Allan Saad outlines current exploration constraints to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Photographs: Christo Greyling. Video and Video Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Alcoa sees global aluminum market balancing on China's curbs

By: Bloomberg     19th October 2017 Alcoa Corp sees Chinese cuts in aluminum production returning the global market to “relative balance” as the Asian nation’s supply-side reforms begin to bite. The largest US aluminum producer reduced its global surplus forecast for the lightweight metal this year as China appears to be holding to... 

South32 bolsters net cash to $1.7bn, reports solid Q1 results

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     19th October 2017 Diversified miner South32 on Thursday reported its financial and operational results for the first quarter of the 2018 financial year, telling shareholders that stronger commodity markets had delivered a $33-million increase in its net cash position. “Our key commodity markets continue to... 

South32 bolsters net cash to $1.7bn, reports solid Q1 results
Photo by Bloomberg
South32 CEO Graham Kerr

Portland back to full capacity

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     13th October 2017 Aluminium major Alcoa’s Portland smelter, in Victoria, has been restored to full production capacity, following a power outage in December last year. “Our interventions have protected this crucial industry, saved local jobs and continue to support communities in Portland and throughout... 

South Africa should consider agromining – US professor 

By: Martin Creamer     11th October 2017 South Africans, who have been mining for metals for more than a century, were this week urged to farm for metals. South African-born Stephen Haggerty, a distinguished research professor of Florida International University in the US who spoke to Mining Weekly Online while in Johannesburg, outlined... 

South Africa should consider agromining – US professor
Florida International University distinguished research professor Stephen E Haggerty talks to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer on the potential to farm for metals. Photographs: Duane Daws. Video and Video Editing: Lionel de Silva.

Gamsberg zinc prestrip close to halfway mark – Vedanta

By: Martin Creamer     10th October 2017 The prestripping of waste rock at the Gamsberg zinc mine project in the Northern Cape is close to the halfway mark, Vedanta Resources reported on Tuesday, when its interim CEO Kuldip Kaura described as “strong” the quarterly production performances of the London-listed, India-rooted mining... 

Gamsberg zinc prestrip close to halfway mark – Vedanta
Photo by Duane Daws
Activity at the Gamsberg zinc mine project.

BofAML updates mined commodity price forecasts as Chinese policies prop up prices

By: Henry Lazenby     4th October 2017 The Global Research team at the Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML) has updated its price forecasts for mined commodities, saying on Wednesday that its prior price outlook had been too bearish for cyclical raw materials, while the near-term outlook for gold and silver looks less bullish than... 

Open Mineral Exchange revolutionises commodity trading through innovative online platform 

By: Henry Lazenby     4th October 2017 A group of former traders at commodity giant Glencore has created an innovative new cloud-based mineral exchange to make it easier for producers and users to trade physical commodities – cutting out the often costly middle man. “We are reinventing the industry,” Open Mineral Exchange (OME) COO... 

Open Mineral Exchange revolutionises commodity trading through innovative online platform
Photo by Open Minera Exchange
Open Mineral Exchange co-founders COO Ilya Chernilovskiy (L) and CEO Boris Eykher (R).jpg

Rip up charter, provide tax incentives, back junior miners – Maimane 

By: Martin Creamer     4th October 2017 Mining Charter Three should be ripped up, proper tax incentives introduced and junior mining enterprises supported to restore investment in the mining industry, which is a stimulator of the South African economy as a whole, Opposition Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane said on Wednesday.... 

Rip up charter, provide tax incentives, back junior miners – Maimane
Opposition Democratic Alliance leader Mmusi Maimane, addressing delegates at the Joburg Indaba conference. Camerawork: Nicholas Boyd. Editing: Lionel da Silva.

ANC will heed Joburg Indaba call for removal of Minerals Minister – Mkhize 

By: Martin Creamer     4th October 2017 The majority call by the Joburg Indaba for the government to replace Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane with a new Minister would be communicated to the African National Congress (ANC), which was committed to facilitating an enabling environment for the South African mining industry, ANC... 

ANC will heed Joburg Indaba call for removal of Minerals Minister – Mkhize
ANC treasurer general Dr Zweli Mkhize addresses delegates at the Joburg Indaba about Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane. Camerawork: Nicholas Boyd. Editing: Lionel da Silva.

Metalworkers to intensify wage strike at South32 smelter in South Africa

By: African News Agency      2nd October 2017 The National Union of Metalworkers of South Africa (Numsa) on Monday vowed to intensify the strike against Australian miner South32 in Richards Bay, KwaZulu-Natal, after a marathon negotiation session to resolve the strike was deadlocked. The global mining company has an aluminium smelter in... 

Interest building in attractive tax incentive for mine owners

By: Martin Creamer     29th September 2017 Interest is building in the Section 12J of the Income Tax Act incentive structure introduced by Treasury to promote venture capital investments and stimulate growth and job creation in the South African economy, Mining Weekly Online can report. The aim of Section 12J is to encourage investment... 

Interest building in attractive tax incentive for mine owners
Photo by Jaltech
Possible structure for Section 12J tax incentive

Gigantic SA-made ore scrubber destined for Sierra Leone mineral sands mine

By: Mia Breytenbach     29th September 2017 Mechanical process equipment and solutions provider MechProTech has completed the manufacturing of one of its largest pieces of mining process equipment – the multimillion-rand, Titan 3596 mineral ore scrubber – which will be delivered to a mineral sands mine in Sierra Leone. MechProTech focuses... 

Gigantic SA-made ore scrubber destined for Sierra Leone mineral sands mine
Photo by Duane Daws
SIZABLE PROCESSING Titan 3596 mineral ore scrubber is used to wash and break up alluvial gravels, clay and sand

Offshore capital equipment markets come in handy amid ‘turmoil’ in domestic mining sector

By: Dylan Slater     29th September 2017 South African capital equipment manufacturers that are exporting, and which have survived the ongoing turmoil in the mining industry and domestic economic environment, have showed resilience and bear testament to the lifeline provided through exporting products and not relying solely on sales... 

Offshore capital equipment markets come in handy  amid ‘turmoil’ in domestic mining sector

No clarity on funding drawdown for mine rehab – Joburg Indaba

By: Martin Creamer     27th September 2017 There is no clarity on the way that mining companies can draw down from their financial provision vehicles to undertake mine rehabilitation, the Joburg Indaba Breakfast heard on Wednesday during a discussion on the implications of the new National Environmental Management Act (Nema). Chaired by... 

No clarity on funding drawdown for mine rehab – Joburg Indaba
Photo by Joburg Indaba
Panellists from left to right are Pan African CEO Cobus Loots, MSA MD Ben Burnand, PwC's Dr Ferdi Linde, ENSafrica's Andries Myburgh, DMR's director of mine closure Reuben Masenya and Cenviro Solutions MD Leentie Smit
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