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Zinc market to reach ‘pinch point’ in 2016/17 as mine closures outweigh new output

By: Henry Lazenby     Updated 3 hours ago Profit margins for zinc miners would probably rise strongly over the next five years, boosted by expected price increases on the back of a widening supply deficit. According to advisory firm Wood Mackenzie (Woodmac) analyst Jonathan Leng, the next two years, 2016 and 2017, represented the “pinch... 

Imperial Mines starts trucking concentrate from Red Chris

By: Henry Lazenby British Columbia-focused base metals producer Imperial Metals has started trucking copper concentrate from the $500-million Red Chris mine, south of Dease Lake in the traditional territory of the Tahltan First Nation. The TSX-listed miner, which also operated the ill-fated Mount Polley mine, said... 

Zambia finmin says kwacha will recover this year

By: Reuters Zambia's kwacha currency will recover this year due to an increase in the price of the copper and steps by the central bank to preserve foreign exchange reserves, the finance minister said on Tuesday. "The hard currency earnings will improve as the fiscal year progresses, especially from the... 

BNC closes $20m bond, progresses smelter restart plans

Aim-listed Mwana Africa’s 74.73%-owned subsidiary Bindura Nickel Corporation (BNC) has successfully closed a $20-million bond to buy new equipment for its smelter, in Zimbabwe. BNC was planning to reopen the smelter by December.  

Glencore transitioning into deficit in most commodities – Glasenberg

By: Martin Creamer Diversified major Glencore was transitioning into deficit in most of the commodities it produced, CEO Ivan Glasenberg said on Tuesday. Glasenberg, who has presided over returning $9.3-billion to shareholders in dividends and buybacks since 2011, told analysts and media in teleconferences in which... 

Glencore transitioning into deficit in most commodities – Glasenberg
Photo by Duane Daws
Ivan Glasenberg

Marketing hoists Glencore over low commodity price hurdle

By: Martin Creamer Diversified major Glencore has managed to scale the low commodity price hurdle with significant help from its marketing arm. The London- Hong Kong- and Johannesburg-listed company, which produces and markets 93 commodities, went against the grain with its surging agricultural business yielding... 

Marketing hoists Glencore over low commodity price hurdle
Ivan Glasenberg

Admiral Bay talks continue - PLD

By: Esmarie Swanepoel ASX-listed PLD Corporation on Tuesday told shareholders that discussions with potential investors and partners into the Admiral Bay zinc project, in Western Australia, were continuing. PLD said that in its discussions with potential partners, consensus existed regarding the upcoming zinc supply... 

Five years on, Quebec’s Plan Nord 2.0 aims for coherence in low-price environment

By: Henry Lazenby When the Quebec government’s Plan Nord to develop the parts of the province located north of the 49th parallel was launched under Jean Charest’s Quebec Liberal Party in May 2011, it was heralded as a timely and necessary act in the mining industry’s favourable economic context at the time. But a... 

Five years on, Quebec’s Plan Nord 2.0 aims for coherence in low-price environment
Photo by Reuters
Former Quebec Premier Jean Charest unveiled the Plan Nord on May 9, 2011.

Eagle-eyed investors urged to seek out rich pickings among juniors

By: Simon Rees The worst of the mining industry’s declines are over, although it now faces a trough of uncertain length, the head of Kaiser Research Online John Kaiser told an audience at the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada 2015 convention. “But now it’s time to get serious – to get out there and... 

Indonesia gives Newmont three weeks to strike smelter deal

By: Reuters Newmont Mining's Indonesian copper export permit will not be renewed beyond March 19, unless it strikes a deal with Freeport-McMoRan to invest in the latter's planned smelter, a mines ministry official said on Monday. Southeast Asia's largest economy is in talks with miners over their plans to... 

Mitsui cuts zinc premiums for first time in 6 years as China exports rise

By: Reuters Japan's biggest zinc smelter, Mitsui Mining and Smelting, has slashed its annual premiums to overseas buyers for 2015 by around 10%, marking the first cut in six years as rising exports by top user China spill into the region. Premiums are a surcharge paid to producers on top of futures prices to... 

Metallum raises cash to fund Chile operations

unior copper developer Metallum on Monday announced a A$560 000 capital raising to fund its activities in Chile. The company reported that it had received firm commitments to subscribe for 56-million ordinary shares at A$0.01 a share.  

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Sirius agrees supply deal with BHP’s Nickel West

By: Mariaan Webb ASX-listed Sirius Resources has signed a three-year deal with BHP Billiton to sell about half of its planned nickel sulphide concentrate production from the Nova mine, in Western Australia, to the major’s Nickel West operation. The mine, which is currently under development, will produce about 26... 

 Sirius agrees supply deal with BHP’s Nickel West
BHP Billiton's Nickel West business unit (pictured here) will buy nickel concentrate from Sirius' new Nova mine, in Western Australia.

Canadian fed and Ontario govts unveil supports for mining industry

By: Henry Lazenby Several federal departments of the Canadian government, as well as the Ontario provincial government, unveiled new measures and investments on Sunday to increase support and drive growth in the country's besieged mining industry. In a speech to the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada,... 

Canadian fed and Ontario govts unveil supports for mining industry
Photo by Reuters
Canadian Finance Minister Joe Oliver

Nevsun hikes FY14 earnings

By: Natasha Odendaal TSX- and NYSE-listed Nevsun Resources posted earnings a share of $0.47 for the 2014 financial year, a rise on the $0.06 reported in the prior period. As the Vancouver-based mining company reported a substantial rise in revenue from $155-million in the 2013 financial year to $555-million in the... 

Colombian mining tax regime counterproductive to investment, profit

By: Henry Lazenby The Colombian mining tax regime has imposed a significantly high tax burden on marginal investments in mining, discriminated across minerals and was counterproductive to project profitability, pointing to a need to improve the country's mining tax regime. This was according to a report released... 

Aus explorer exercises option to acquire two US projects

By: Henry Lazenby Australian explorer Carnavale Resources has exercised an option to acquire private firm Tojo Minerals, which has the rights to the Red Hills project, in Nevada, and the Little Butte project, in Arizona. Perth, Australia-based Carnavale said in a statement that it would move to immediately ramp-up... 

Vale reports increased production in Mozambique while Tata Steel decides to leave

By: Keith Campbell Brazilian mining major Vale has reported its Moatize coal mine in Mozambique set a new production record last year. This was revealed in the group’s recently published 2014 and 4Q14 Production Report. It also set a new record for quarterly production during the fourth quarter (4Q). It further... 

Vale shares down after Q4 loss, missing analyst forecasts

By: Henry Lazenby The NYSE-listed stock of the world’s largest iron-ore producer, Brazil’s Vale, on Thursday trended lower after the diversified miner reported a significant fourth-quarter net loss, as the collapse of the steelmaking commodity’s price weighed on its bottom line.  Despite narrowing the net loss for... 

Vale shares down after Q4 loss, missing analyst forecasts

Zambian ex-mines minister found guilty of corruption

By: Reuters Zambia's former mines minister was convicted of corruption on Monday for his role in the award of prospecting licences to a Chinese mining company in 2009. Delivering judgment in the matter, magistrate Lameck Mwale said the prosecution had proved that Maxwell Mwale interfered in the award of... 

Sandfire profit dips on lower copper prices

By: Esmarie Swanepoel Copper/gold miner Sandfire Resources’ after-tax profit declined by 9% to A$30.6-million in the six months to the end of December, on the back of lower prevailing copper prices. The interim profit compared with A$33.5-million reported in the previous corresponding period, despite sales revenue... 

Hillgrove reports strong financials depsite shorter year

By: Esmarie Swanepoel ASX-listed copper miner Hillgrove Resources has reported a 7.5% increase in underlying profit for the full-year ended December, despite only reporting an 11-month year, as the company aligned its financial and calendar years. Underlying profit for the period ended December reached... 

Gippsland makes a new plan in Egypt

By: Esmarie Swanepoel ASX-listed Gippsland could start production at its Abu Dabbab tantalum/tin/feldspar project, in Egypt, by 2016, the company reported on Thursday. Gippsland said that it had signed a conditional financing agreement with Taiwan-based Foxxtel and Egyptian businessman Ashraf Henin for a $7-million... 

Specialised refractory materials for Orbite Aluminae plant arrive in Montreal

By: Henry Lazenby TSX-listed Orbite Aluminae, which is currently converting its high-purity alumina (HPA) production plant, at Cap-Chat, in Quebec, into a full-scale, 1 t/d facility, has confirmed that the Europe-sourced components of the new castable material for the plant’s refractory system have arrived in the... 

Drought in Chile curbs copper production, to trim global surplus

By: Reuters A drought in Chile is hampering copper production, a water-intensive business, in the world's biggest producer of the metal, one more factor that could trim an expected surplus this year. Both Anglo American and BHP Billiton have said the extremely dry conditions have hit production due to... 

Palabora’s R9.3bn life-of-mine extension project gets shareholder nod

By: Megan van Wyngaardt Shareholders of Palabora Copper, a subsidiary of Palabora Mining Company, have given their approval for the R9.3-billion Lift II project that would extend the life of the Palabora mine to 2033. Lift II would involve a block-cave mine development. 

Anglo's zinc loss now Vedanta's sweet gain

By: Martin Creamer London-listed diversified mining company Vedanta Resources has found itself in a sweet spot as the owner of the zinc assets that Anglo American saw fit to sell off four years ago, when China seemed in perpetual over supply mode and small operations abounded. But China is no longer supplying as it... 

Anglo's zinc loss now Vedanta's sweet gain
Photo by Duane Daws
Deshnee Naidoo

Late sales widens Straits losses

By: Esmarie Swanepoel The timing of concentrate sale has resulted in copper miner Straits Resources reporting an 11% decline in revenue for the half-year ended December, compared with the previous corresponding period. The miner reported on Wednesday that revenue for the interim period reached A$88.6-million,... 

South32 catalyst for next wave of productivity gains – BHP Billiton

By: Martin Creamer Mining giant BHP Billiton, which pulled a free cash flow rabbit out of the thrashed commodity price hat in the six months to December 31, intends the spinoff of South32 to be the catalyst for the new wave of productivity gains in the period ahead “because if you keep doing the same thing, you... 

South32 catalyst for next wave of productivity gains – BHP Billiton
Photo by Duane Daws
Peter Beaven

Workers end strike at Zambia's Barrick Gold copper mine

By: Reuters Workers at Barrick Gold's Lumwana Copper Mine in Zambia called off their strike on Tuesday after the government said they would not lose their jobs, a government official said. More than 2 000 workers went on strike on Monday at the mine to protest against the company's plans to suspend... 

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