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Asia News

India silver imports seen extending rebound from four-year low

By: Bloomberg     15th December 2017 Silver imports by India, one of the world’s top buyers, may keep rising next year after bouncing back this year from a four-year low in 2016, boosted by weak prices. Overseas purchases are estimated at as high as 5 500 metric tons in 2017 and may rise to about 6 000 t next year, surging from 3... 

Bacanora signs deal to develop Sonora project

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     15th December 2017 Dual-listed lithium miner Bacanora Minerals and Chinese institutional fund management group NextView Capital have signed an agreement which would see the latter acquire a 19.89% equity interest in Bacanora through the placement of 32.97-million common shares at a price of 94.53p apiece. The... 

Odisha rules out extension of deadline for payment of illegal mining penalty

By: Ajoy K Das     15th December 2017 With the Supreme Court set deadline of December 31, to recover dues and penalties for illegal mining in eastern province of Odisha fast approaching, the government has ruled out any extension of the deadline or recalculation of the penalties recoverable from liable miners. Officials in Odisha... 

India faces surge in coal imports over next three months

By: Ajoy K Das     15th December 2017 Indian coal imports is likely to gain further momentum during the next three months, reversing a falling trend seen early in the financial year as more user industries are planning to up inward shipments to feed their fuel-starved captive power plants. Several companies in the chemicals, medium... 

Australia cobalt rush accelerates on electric vehicle demand, DRC troubles

By: Reuters     15th December 2017 Australia, home to the world's second-biggest cobalt reserves, is seeing a rush of interest in projects still years from production as makers of batteries used in electric vehicles (EVs) seek supplies of the metal from a more costly but less risky source than top miner, the Democratic Republic of... 

Rio Tinto not expected to relinquish interest in Freeport Indonesia until 2022 – govt official

By: Reuters     15th December 2017 Rio Tinto is not expected until 2022 to relinquish its interest in the giant Grasberg copper mine in Indonesia operated by the local unit of Freeport McMoRan, a government official said on Friday. "In 2022 it will automatically convert to a shareholding," the official said, referring to Rio's... 

Space mining is getting close to reality

By: Rebecca Campbell     15th December 2017 Space mining – the mining of bodies and other worlds in outer space for minerals and other natural resources – remains within the realm of science fiction. For now. But, during the younger years of most of the world’s current senior mining executives, personal communication devices (cellphones)... 

Space mining is getting close to reality

IHS Materials Price Index buoyant on strong commodity rally

By: Henry Lazenby     15th December 2017 The materials price index (MPI) from Global Insight by IHS Markit has gained a strong 1.3% last week, hitting its highest level since late 2014 the company reported on Thursday. Three categories led gains, including ferrous metals, rubber and freight, all of which posted large jumps, according to... 

India’s national oil, gas firms likely to get higher prices for gas from ‘difficult’ projects

By: Ajoy K Das     14th December 2017 India’s Petroleum and Natural Gas Ministry has forwarded a proposal for approval of the Union Cabinet that will more than double the price of natural gas produced by national oil, gas exploration and production (E&Ps) companies from fields categorised as “difficult”. However, contrary to demands... 

Electronic waste at new high, squandering gold, other metals – study

By: Reuters     14th December 2017 Electronic waste rose to a record 45-million tonnes worldwide in 2016, squandering valuable metals such as gold and copper since few trashed televisions, cellphones or other products get recycled, a UN-backed study showed on Wednesday. Rising incomes and falling prices for everything from solar... 

Chinese cobalt chemicals giant backs Nzuri’s DRC copper/cobalt mine

By: Mariaan Webb     14th December 2017 The world’s largest cobalt chemical producer, Huayou Cobalt, has made a A$10-million strategic investment in Australia-listed Nzuri Copper to advance that company's copper and cobalt projects in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). China’s Huayou, which also has established operations in the... 

Duterte coal tax will make costly Philippines power even pricier

By: Bloomberg     14th December 2017 Electricity prices in the Philippines, already among the highest in Southeast Asia, will probably rise after President Rodrigo Duterte signs legislation next week boosting taxes on coal, the nation’s main fuel for power plants. Semirara Mining and Power, a power generator that’s also the... 

Finders says shareholders are rejecting Eastern Field offer

By: Mariaan Webb     14th December 2017 Takeover target Finders Resources said on Thursday that Eastern Field Developments has not yet received a single acceptance of its A$0.23-a-share offer for the company, despite the bid having been open for 22 days. “The overwhelming support from shareholders is an emphatic rejection of Eastern... 

Fed spells relief for gold traders worried over rate-hike pace

By: Bloomberg     14th December 2017 Spot gold headed for the biggest gain in three weeks after Federal Reserve officials stuck with a projection for three interest-rate increases in the coming year, easing concerns that quickening economic growth would spur an even faster pace of monetary tightening. By a 7-2 vote, the Fed on... 

Indian policy body stresses need to widen mineral exploration

By: Ajoy K Das     13th December 2017 The National Institute for Transformation of India (NITI Aayog), government’s policy advisory body, has called for the proposed National Mineral Policy (NMP) to stimulate more mineral exploration, noting that only 10% of the country’s obvious geological potential (OGP) has been explored. Making... 

Indonesian consortium wants Finders to clarify ‘misleading’ target statement

By: Mariaan Webb     13th December 2017 The Indonesian consortium bidding for Australian miner Finders has extended its offer period to January 19, to allow the takeover target to clarify a number of “misleading” statements in the target statement. The target statement, which Finders sent to shareholders on December 5, is used to... 

Moody’s sees stable year ahead for base metals, but also expects some risk factors

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     13th December 2017 Ratings agency Moody’s believes 2018 will be a year of relative stability for the global base metals industry after some recovery was experienced this year. In a 2018 outlook analysis, released on Wednesday, the agency noted that these improved supply/demand fundamentals would hold on the back of... 

Moody’s sees stable year ahead for base metals, but also expects some risk factors

Macron's climate summit draws pledges to make coal a risky bet

By: Bloomberg     13th December 2017 Some of the world’s biggest investors turned their backs on US President Donald Trump’s plan to revive the coal industry, pledging to divest from fossil fuels at a conference organised by French President Emmanuel Macron. The One Planet Summit in Paris was designed to galvanise support for the... 

Macron's climate summit draws pledges to make coal a risky bet

Glencore guiding soaring 2018 earnings

By: Martin Creamer     12th December 2017 Diversified mining and marketing company Glencore sees itself as being best placed for the electric vehicle revolution through its ‘tier 1’ copper, cobalt, nickel, zinc and thermal coal assets. The company said in an investor day update on Tuesday that sustainably low-cost and long-life first... 

Glencore guiding soaring 2018 earnings
Photo by Duane Daws
Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg

India’s NLC aborts overseas coal acquisition plans

By: Ajoy K Das     12th December 2017 Indian miner and power utility NLC (formerly Neyveli Lignite Corporation) is seeking a global mine developer and operator to operationalise two of its coal blocks in Odisha. The group is expecting at least 20-million tons a year from these two assets, which have a combined reserve of 550-million... 

Seasonal battery demand, tight supply to buoy lead prices

By: Reuters     12th December 2017 Seasonally strong demand from battery makers, tight supplies caused by mine shutdowns and dwindling inventories in London Metal Exchange warehouses are expected to sustain lead prices, which recently hit six-year highs. Benchmark lead on the London Metal Exchange at around $2 500/t is up about... 

India’s GAIL earmarks $940m for pipeline expansion

By: Ajoy K Das     12th December 2017 Indian oil and gas infrastructure major GAIL India has announced a three-year capital investment of $940-million to add 2 500 km to its existing gas pipeline network across the country. On Monday, government owned GAIL announced that contracts had been awarded for construction of a 520 km... 

Finders says Eastern Field offer acceptances low

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th December 2017 Shareholders representing 33.19% of ASX-listed Finders Resources have indicated that they do not intend to accept a takeover offer from Eastern Field Developments, the takeover target reported on Tuesday. The company said that Taurus Funds Management, which represent 11.31% of Finders shares on... 

Queensland Premier vetoes NAIF funding for Carmichael project

By: Mariaan Webb     12th December 2017 Queensland Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk has followed through on her election promise to exercise the state’s veto over funding from the North Australian Infrastructure Facility (NAIF) for a rail link associated with the Carmichael coal mine. Palaszczuk, whose government was sworn in on... 

Queensland Premier vetoes NAIF funding for Carmichael project

Cameco, Kazatomprom restructure JV Inkai

By: Henry Lazenby     11th December 2017 Canadian uranium producer Cameco and the National Atomic Company of the Republic of Kazakhstan (Kazatomprom) have agreed to restructure their joint venture over the Inkai in situ recovery uranium mine, in south Kazakhstan. Kazatomprom CEO Galymzhan Pirmatov and Cameco president and CEO Tim Gitzel... 

Crucial for commodity countries to build economic resilience – Unctad 

By: Martin Creamer     11th December 2017 Without policy change, commodity-dependent developing countries risk falling short of achieving their sustainable development goals (SDGs) by 2030, United Nations Conference on Trade and Development (Unctad) economic affairs officer Stefan Csordas warned on Monday. Unctad and the Food and... 

Crucial for commodity countries to build economic resilience – Unctad
Unctad’s Stefan Csordas discusses commodities report with Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Video: Nicholas Boyd. Video Editing: Lionel de Silva.

Cyril Ramaphosa calls for mining sector action

By: Martin Creamer     11th December 2017 South Africa must urgently break the ongoing deadlock on the regulation and transformation of the mining sector to ensure the proper use of this country’s world-class mineral resources, says Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa. In an article on the CR17 Siyavuma campaign website, ahead of this... 

Cyril Ramaphosa calls for mining sector action
Photo by Duane Daws
Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa

India’s Mines Ministry seeks to make it easier to do business

By: Ajoy K Das     11th December 2017 India’s Mines Ministry is considering administrative changes to improve the “ease of doing business” in the resources industry. One of the changes under consideration is to put each mineral block to be auctioned under a special purpose vehicle (SPV) of the government, which will secure all... 

Coal India faces fresh wage bill hike

By: Ajoy K Das     11th December 2017 Close on heels of finalising salaries and wage increases for employees and workers on its payroll, Coal India Limited (CIL) will face another jump in its wage bill as the miner starts negotiating wage agreements for its 200 000 to 300 000 contract workers. A high-power committee has been... 

India gov't favours petcoke import ban, US would be biggest loser

By: Reuters     11th December 2017 India's government is in favour of banning imports of petroleum coke to curb air pollution, according to a government affidavit filed with its top court, which could be a big blow to US refiners who export heavily to the country. The Supreme Court, which in October banned the use of petroleum... 

Southern Gold in advanced talks for Cannon underground

By: Natasha Odendaal     11th December 2017 ASX-listed Southern Gold has advanced discussions with multiple parties over the financing and commercial arrangements for the development of the underground mine at the Cannon project, in Western Australia. The gold explorer and producer expected to conclude the talks and align the arrangements... 

Mineral Resources trumps Chinese bid for Australian gas producer AWE

By: Reuters     11th December 2017 Australia's Mineral Resources has offered A$484-million for domestic gas producer AWE, topping a sweetened bid from State-owned China Energy Reserve and Chemicals Group (CERCG). The two suitors are targeting AWE's stake in a gas project in Western Australia, Waitsia, which the company has called... 

Mineral Resources trumps Chinese bid for Australian gas producer AWE

Underground mining revival triggers equipment manufacturing investments

By: Ajoy K Das     8th December 2017 With green shoots emerging in the underground mining sector, a slew of Indian companies are looking to tap into opportunities by building new domestic underground equipment manufacturing capacity. For one, an Indian consortium of companies is resurrecting Mining and Allied Machinery Corporation... 

Owner’s engineer role by ‘Proudly South African’ Erudite pleasing Perth 

By: Martin Creamer     8th December 2017 New ‘Proudly South African’ start-up Erudite Strategies has hit a rich vein of acceptance in Australia, where investors in junior mining projects in Africa are showing alacrity in taking up its unique client representative and owner’s engineer offering. Each of Erudite’s three leading lights has... 

Owner’s engineer role by ‘Proudly South African’ Erudite pleasing Perth
Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer interviews Johann de Bruin, the founding director of the new project engineering company Erudite. Video: Nicholas Boyd. Video Editing: Nicholas Boyd and Lionel da Silva.

AWE shares rise on fresh offer from Chinese group

By: Mariaan Webb     8th December 2017 Shares in Australian oil and gas company AWE rose 10% on Friday after State-owned China Energy Reserve and Chemical Group made a fresh offer of $0.73 a share in cash. The offer is A$0.02 higher than the proposal two weeks ago, which the AWE board has brushed off as too low. 

AWE shares rise on fresh offer from Chinese group
AWE owns the Waitsa project in the Perth basin in a joint venture with Origin Energy.

New polishing facility a boost to Dubai’s status as a diamond trading centre

By: Dylan Slater     8th December 2017 The global diamond industry is either growing in affluent regions or remaining steady in less affluent ones, thereby reflecting a degree of positivity, as well as signs of growth. This also points to untapped potential that is ready to be unlocked through increased investment upstream and... 

New polishing facility a boost to Dubai’s status as a diamond trading centre

Platinum's discount to palladium hits 16-year-high

By: Reuters     8th December 2017 Platinum's discount to fellow precious metal palladium reached its highest level since 2001 on Thursday, as the latter soared on heightened vehicle demand and an ongoing supply deficit. Palladium hit a high of $1 022.70 on Thursday, just off a 16-year high from last week, while platinum hit a... 

Vale sells last two Valemax vessels

By: Henry Lazenby     8th December 2017 Global iron-ore leader Vale has sold the last two of its former fleet of 19 Valemax vessels of 400 000 t capacity. The transaction with the nominees of the Bank of Communications Finance Leasing, netted Vale about $178-million. 

Vale sells last two Valemax vessels
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