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Asia News

Miner Vale says fire to halt operations at Malaysia distribution center

By: Reuters     15th February 2019 Brazilian miner Vale SA said a fire broke out on Friday in its distribution center in Malaysia, temporarily affecting shipments, according to a securities filing. Vale added that the fire caused "only material damages" and that operations are likely to resume in 10 to 15 days. 

Nevada like Witwatersrand of 1970s – Bristow 

By: Martin Creamer     15th February 2019 Nevada is like the Witwatersrand of the 1970s, says new Barrick Gold president and CEO Dr Mark Bristow, whose Randgold Resources is now merged into Barrick to form the world’s biggest gold mining company, which is also an extractor of copper, a metal that Bristow sees as “another gold”. The brand... 

Nevada like Witwatersrand of 1970s – Bristow
Barrick Gold CEO Dr Mark Bristow

Petropavlovsk says IRC facility refinanced

By: Simone Liedtke     15th February 2019 Russian miner Petropavlovsk announced on Friday that it had reached an important step in concluding the refinancing of a $240-million facility that Hong Kong-based IRC, in which it is a large shareholder, has with the Industrial and Commercial Bank of China (ICBC). Petropavlovsk is the guarantor... 

Weaker prices hit Silvercorp Q3 performance

By: Nadine James     15th February 2019 TSX-listed Silvercorp Metals, which owns and operates mines in China, on Thursday reported a net income of $8.7-million for the third quarter ended December 31 – representing a 31% year-on-year decline with the company achieving a net income of  $12.7-million in the third quarter of 2018. The... 

Tin use in batteries may rise to 60 000 t by 2030 – industry group

By: Reuters     15th February 2019 Tin could see a surge of new demand from lithium-ion batteries for electric vehicles and energy storage of up to 60 000 t a year by 2030, the International Tin Association (ITA) said on Thursday. Investors have been excited about the prospects for increased consumption of other metals, such as... 

China won't come to the rescue in global iron-ore supply crisis

By: Bloomberg     15th February 2019 China’s strict environmental regime means domestic iron ore mines won’t boost output to meet any supply shortfall after Vale’s dam disaster, according to the head of a major Chinese mining group. The global iron-ore market is in the grip of a supply shock after the deadly dam burst last month in... 

India hands over national oil company assets to private investors

By: Ajoy K Das     14th February 2019 Finally overruling strident opposition, the Indian government has approved taking away smaller discovered oil and natural gas blocks of its national oil exploration and production (E&P) majors and allocating them to private investors through auctions. The move, criticised by a section in... 

South32 finalising preferred list of coal mine bidders 

By: Martin Creamer     14th February 2019 The complete preferred list of bidders for South32’s energy coal interests is still being finalised, South32 CEO Graham Kerr told Mining Weekly Online on Thursday, when he also provided three reasons why the company’s Australian manganese operations are doing better than its South African... 

South32 finalising preferred list of coal mine bidders
Photo by Creamer Media
South32 CEO Graham Kerr

Barrick advancing autonomous gold production – Bristow 

By: Martin Creamer     14th February 2019 Autonomous production systems and projects are being advanced across Barrick Gold as the group focuses on boosting mining efficiency, new Barrick president and CEO Dr Mark Bristow tells Mining Weekly Online. This is part of an all-out drive by Bristow to ensure that Barrick, into which Randgold... 

Barrick advancing autonomous gold production – Bristow
Barrick Gold CEO Dr Mark Bristow

Newcrest profits soar in first half

By: Esmarie Iannucci     14th February 2019 Gold miner Newcrest Mining has reported a 142% surge in profits for the first half of 2019, while underlying profits increased by 104% on the previous corresponding period. Newcrest on Thursday reported a statutory profit of $237-million and an underlying profit of $237-million, while cash flow... 

Bristow snaps into fast action wearing Barrick crown 

By: Martin Creamer     13th February 2019 Dr Mark Bristow has snapped into fast action wearing the Barrick crown. His Randgold Resources, which now falls under the Barrick Gold umbrella, on Wednesday bowed out with panache when it declared a 35% dividend increase to $2.69 a share, buoyed by record production of 807 000 oz of gold at the... 

Bristow snaps into fast action wearing Barrick crown
Barrick CEO Mark Bristow in the field.

Palladium supply shortfall will worsen this year – Johnson Matthey

By: Reuters     13th February 2019 A deficit in the palladium market that has driven prices of the autocatalyst metal to record highs will widen dramatically this year, specialist materials company Johnson Matthey said in a report on Wednesday. The company, a leading autocatalyst manufacturer, said the shortfall in the roughly... 

Harmony exploring Target North, Kalgold 

By: Martin Creamer     12th February 2019 Harmony Gold is currently adjudicating a tender for the drilling of the Target North greenfield exploration project in the Free State and is engaged in near mine brownfield exploration at Kalgold in the North West. Harmony Gold CEO Peter Steenkamp on Tuesday described the Target North prospect as... 

Harmony exploring Target North, Kalgold
Harmony Gold outlines exploration plans to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Video and Video Editing: Creamer Media’s Darlene Creamer

Harmony cuts energy consumption, ushering in solar, mulling biofuels  

By: Martin Creamer     12th February 2019 Gold mining and exploration company Harmony Gold is intensifying its efforts to cut electricity consumption to a minimum while also looking at introducing solar power and biofuel energy. CEO Peter Steenkamp said on Tuesday when the company issued its half-year results that Eskom’s problems could... 

Harmony cuts energy consumption, ushering in solar, mulling biofuels
Harmony Gold executives talk to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Video and Video Editing: Creamer Media’s Darlene Creamer

Vale disaster could see Brazil’s iron-ore competitive edge slip away

By: Mariaan Webb     12th February 2019 The January 25 Brumadinho dam disaster is expected to knock Brazil’s competitiveness in the global iron-ore market and will elicit a supply response from mines in China, as well as new projects that could be brought on line in the next few years. This is according to analysts at London-based... 

Vale disaster could see Brazil’s iron-ore competitive edge slip away

Accenture seeks to improve mining sector data analytics 

By: Simone Liedtke     12th February 2019 Global professional services company Accenture is investing in a new Applied Intelligence Studio for Mining, in Johannesburg, which will combine the latest in data science and artificial intelligence technologies with deep industry knowledge for the development of new intelligent digital... 

Accenture seeks to improve mining sector data analytics
Accenture Applied Intelligence and Data Science lead for Africa Dr Caroline Belrose discusses Accenture's new Applied Intelligence Studio for Mining with Engineering News Online. Video & Editing: Creamer Media's Nicholas Boyd.

Bezant outlines mining options for Mankayan project

By: Simone Liedtke     12th February 2019 Aim-listed Bezant Resources on Tuesday said that an independent study had found that the Mankayan copper/gold porphyry supported different robust routes for the future development of its Philippines-based project. This included, for the first time, a sub-level caving (SLC) ‘stepping stone’... 

Alrosa’s January sales down 44% y/y

By: Simone Liedtke     12th February 2019 Following a strong performance in December, Russian miner Alrosa’s rough and polished diamond sales fell to $281.5-million in January – a 44% decrease on the same month in 2018. January’s rough diamond sales amounted to $278.2-million and polished diamond sales were $3.4-million, the company... 

Alrosa’s January sales down 44% y/y

CIL lines up capex for renewed thrust on developing CBM assets

By: Ajoy K Das     12th February 2019 Seizing an opportunity offered by recently relaxed rules, State-run miner Coal India Limited (CIL) has lined up a corpus of around $422-million to kick-start its sputtering coalbed methane (CBM) projects. The renewed thrust of getting the CBM projects off the ground would be initiated by Bharat... 

Harmony Gold net profit plunges, operational cash soars

By: Martin Creamer     12th February 2019 The net profit of Harmony Gold plunged in the six months to December 31, dropping from R897-million for the corresponding period of last year to R75-million. However, production soared by 34% and operations generated R1.1-billion in free cash flow on the inclusion of the acquired Moab Khotsong... 

Harmony Gold net profit plunges, operational cash soars
Photo by Creamer Media Chief Photographer Dylan Slater
Harmony Gold CEO Peter Steenkamp

Indian Power Ministry directs priority coal supplies to pithead plants ahead of summer

By: Ajoy K Das     11th February 2019 The Indian Power Ministry has issued directives to its counterparts in the Coal Ministry and Indian Railways (IR) to give the highest priority to dry fuel supplies to pithead thermal power plants, in light of a trend of lower coal dispatching from Coal India Limited (CIL) and an expected summer... 

Xolobeni judgment continues to confound 

By: Martin Creamer     11th February 2019 Mining must take place with a strong focus on the interests of those who live in mining areas, says Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe, a standpoint that supports the notion that a mining right and a land right can co-exist, without pleasing one party at the expense of the other.  But the... 

Xolobeni judgment continues to confound
Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe

China iron-ore rises to record on concerns over Brazilian supply

By: Reuters     11th February 2019 China iron-ore futures rose to a record on Monday, the first session after a week-long national holiday, on concerns that supply from Brazil, the country's second-largest ore supplier, may decline after a fatal dam accident at a Vale mine. The most-active iron ore futures for May delivery on the... 

Learners represent South Africa at Taiwan International Science Fair

By: Simone Liedtke     8th February 2019 Pretoria-based Hoërskool Waterkloof learner Christiaan Bauman won the fourth prize in the engineering category at the 2019 Taiwan International Science Fair, which was held from January 26 to February 1. Bauman’s project, titled ‘Mine Safety – The Robotic Way’, addresses the problem of miners and... 

Learners represent South Africa at Taiwan International Science Fair
Hoërskool Waterkloof learner Christiaan Bauman

Fourteen NGOs oppose LME plans to ban tainted cobalt

By: Reuters     7th February 2019 Fourteen nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) including Amnesty and Global Witness have opposed plans by the London Metal Exchange to ban cobalt tainted by human rights abuses, a letter seen by Reuters showed. Cobalt is a key ingredient in the batteries that power electric vehicles, a... 

Barminco wins zinc mining contract in India

By: Esmarie Iannucci     7th February 2019 Underground mining services provider Barminco has been awarded a A$100-mllion contract from Hindustan Zinc at its Rampura Agucha mine, in India. Barminco has operated at Rampura Agucha since late 2016. 

Bluebird eyes start to South Korean mines

By: Esmarie Iannucci     7th February 2019 LSE-listed Bluebird Merchant Ventures was still targeting its first gold pour in South Korea before the end of 2019, joint venture (JV) partner Southern Gold reported. The JV is hoping to bring the Gubong and Kochang mines back to operation, with Bluebird expecting cash flow from the operations... 

Precious metal refiners face new LBMA environmental standard  

By: Martin Creamer     7th February 2019 The London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) has launched a new standard that addresses environmental as well as sustainability issues in gold and silver markets. To do that in a credible way, LBMA has been actively engaging with mining companies and producer nations. 

Precious metal refiners face new LBMA environmental standard
LBMA CE Ruth Crowell tells Mining Weekly's Martin Creamer about the association's efforts to improve environmental and sustainability within the gold and silver mining and refining sectors. Video and editing: Nicholas Boyd.

India’s Mines Ministry mulls bundled approvals ahead of new mine auctions

By: Ajoy K Das     6th February 2019 India’s Mines Ministry is working on a proposal to bundle mandatory approvals, like forest, environment and pollution, for bidders of 288 mining leases slated to expire in March next year. According to a government official, putting together mandatory approvals prior to holding auctions would... 

Centrica, Tokyo Gas sign deal to buy LNG from Mozambique

By: Reuters     5th February 2019 British energy supplier Centrica and Tokyo Gas have agreed to jointly buy 2.6-million tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) a year from Mozambique LNG Company, the firms said on Tuesday. Centrica LNG Company, a subsidiary of Centrica, and the Japanese energy company said the LNG would be... 

Ford engages the mining sector on the road to more EVs

By: Kim Cloete     5th February 2019 Ford is quickening its pace towards the mass production of electric vehicles (EVs) and researching how the mining industry can help it to achieve its goals. “There are tremendous investments taking place at every level to achieve this radical revolution in the automotive industry,” Ford energy... 

Global demand for coal rises despite uncertainty

By: Kim Cloete     4th February 2019 Despite a move to renewable energy, particularly in Europe, demand for coal globally soared in 2018, led by low calorific value (CV) coal demand. The strongest import markets were China and India, while Indonesia performed extremely strongly on the supply side. China’s demand for coal... 

HCL starts work on reopening copper mine, developing greenfield reserve

By: Ajoy K Das     4th February 2019 Indian State-run Hindustan Copper Limited (HCL), the country’s sole integrated copper producer, on Saturday started construction of a concentrator at its Rakha mines, marking efforts to restart the mines in the eastern state of Jharkhand. The ground-breaking ceremony at Rakha for construction of... 

India's Vedanta says Anglo American stake buy meets governance requirements

By: Reuters     4th February 2019 Indian miner Vedanta said on Monday that its foreign unit Cairn India Holdings Limited's investment in Anglo American met all governance requirements. Vedanta's statement comes days after its shares plunged on Friday, as investors were skeptical of the merits of the investment and questioned the... 

Japan's Mitsui trims FY profit outlook, to keep stake in Vale

By: Reuters     1st February 2019 Mitsui & Co on Friday cut full-year profit forecast by 2% due to the absence of a dividend from Vale, but the Japanese trading house does not plan to change its holding in the Brazilian miner, a company executive said. With 110 people confirmed dead and another 238 missing, according to... 

India's Vedanta sinks 20% to 2-1/2-year low

By: Reuters     1st February 2019 Shares of India’s Vedanta slumped to a two-and-a-half-year low on Friday after analysts expressed concerns over an investment by the parent company of the conglomerate in African miner Anglo American. Vedanta said on Thursday its foreign unit Cairn India Holdings had paid $200-million to buy a... 

India receives 145 bids for 25 small oil, natural gas fields at auction

By: Ajoy K Das     31st January 2019 The second round of auction of 25 discovered small fields (DSF) in the Indian oil and natural gas sector has received 145 bids from 39 investors, including six foreign companies, the sector regulator has reported. The Directorate General for Hydrocarbons (DGH) states that domestic oil and natural... 

PGM-using patents abound – CPM  

By: Martin Creamer     31st January 2019 Viable patents that involve the use of platinum group metals (PGMs) should be commercialised so that PGMs become less dependent on the automotive market, says CPM Group MD and founder Jeffrey Christian. CPM’s current projections, which are similar to those in the automotive and electricity supply... 

PGM-using patents abound – CPM
CPM Group MD Jeffrey Christian talks to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Video: Nicholas Boyd. Video Editing: Christo Greyling.
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