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Base Metals News

Freeport investors in DRC limbo as Tenke mine sale drags on

By: Bloomberg     24th September 2016 Freeport-McMoran investors have been learning the difficulties of doing business in the Democratic Republic of Congo, where even trying to leave can be an exercise in frustration. On May 9, the world’s largest publicly traded copper producer announced it would sell its 56% stake in the Tenke... 

Skeena completes acquisition of Mount Rainey Silver

By: Henry Lazenby     24th September 2016 Junior explorer Skeena Resources has closed the acquisition of Mount Rainey Silver, giving it access to mineral claims covering the past-producing, underground Prosperity–Porter Idaho–Silverado silver property, in north-west British Columbia’s ‘Golden Triangle’. Mount Rainey Silver's primary... 

Gecamines says Lundin withdrawal from Congo would be problematic

By: Bloomberg     23rd September 2016 Gecamines, the Democratic Republic of Congo’s state-owned miner, warned that any decision by Lundin Mining to withdraw from the Tenke Fungurume copper mine could scupper Freeport McMoRan Inc.’s proposed sale of its stake in the project. By exiting at the same time as Freeport and transferring... 

Five Rio Tinto workers arrested for fraud at Canadian smelter

By: Bloomberg     22nd September 2016 Five former workers at a Rio Tinto Group aluminum smelter in Quebec were arrested following a fraud investigation initiated by the company almost two years ago. The alleged fraud involved fake invoices from a former subcontractor of the company, according to a statement Wednesday from Surete du... 

Rambler ramps up output, meets or exceeds most 2016 targets

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd September 2016 Rambler Metals and Mining has met or exceeded most of its production targets for the 2016 fiscal year ended July 31 at its flagship Ming mine, in Newfoundland and Labrador. While copper concentrate grades at 26.9% fell just short of the lower end of its targeted 27% to 29% guidance, gold and... 

Trevali expands high-grade Santander deposits, makes new hanging wall discovery

By: Henry Lazenby     21st September 2016 The TSX-listed stock of base metals producer Trevali Mining has risen to a new 52-week high after the company reported positive exploration results from its Santander mine, in Peru. Vancouver-based Trevali reported results from twelve new drill holes of the ongoing 2016 underground exploration... 

Glencore sees nickel price rising on global supply shortage

By: Bloomberg     21st September 2016 Glencore, the commodities trader and miner, expects nickel prices to climb through 2018 as demand outstrips supply, assuming Indonesia continues its policy of curbing ore exports and encouraging local processing. “We believe we’ve seen the bottom, both in terms of the actual spot prices... 

Barrick sees ‘perfect storm’ brewing around cost-effective renewables

By: Creamer Media Reporter      20th September 2016 Renewable-energy sources have reached the stage where they can reduce energy costs as well as emissions, Barrick Gold’s senior manager of energy and greenhouse gases (GHGs), Russell Blades, tells Energy and Mines. “We are seeing a ‘perfect storm’ brewing around renewables. Solar and energy... 

Barrick sees ‘perfect storm’ brewing around cost-effective renewables
Photo by Energy & Mines
Barrick's 20 MW Punta Colorada wind farm, Chile

Taseko in hot pursuit of Gibraltar’s high-grade copper core

By: Henry Lazenby     20th September 2016 The TSX-listed stock of copper producer Taseko Mines spiked up to 13.33% on Tuesday morning on news that the company has discovered a new high-grade copper deposit at its Gibraltar mine, in British Columbia. Vancouver-based Taseko has intersected more than 341.4 m of varying copper grades at its... 

Taseko in hot pursuit of Gibraltar’s high-grade copper core

South African ‘Mining Hall of Fame’ on way – Swanepoel

By: Martin Creamer     20th September 2016 A South African ‘Mining Hall of Fame’ is on the way. Revealing this at a pre-Joburg Indaba presentation on Tuesday, chairperson Bernard Swanepoel noted that South Africa was odd mining jurisdiction out in not having a mining hall of fame. 

South African ‘Mining Hall of Fame’ on way – Swanepoel
Photo by Duane Daws
Joburg Indaba chairperson Bernard Swanepoel

South African gold and diamond miners shine, base metals face slow recovery

By: African News Agency      20th September 2016 Moody’s Investors Service on Tuesday said South African gold and diamond miners’ credit quality had good prospects to continue strengthening. Moody’s assistant VP Douglas Rowlings said the gold and diamond miners that the agency rated in South Africa had already re-set their operations to... 

Cost-conscious major miners look to agility of junior explorers

By: Reuters     20th September 2016 Tight budgets and nervous investors have convinced major miners that a cheap, timely way to ensure a strong pipeline of quality assets is to team up with junior, more nimble exploration firms. Miners have slashed costs by delaying projects, sold assets and cut exploration budgets to free up cash... 

Updated PFS shows Seabridge’s KSM profitable at current prices

By: Henry Lazenby     20th September 2016 British Columbia-focused Seabridge Gold has published an updated preliminary feasibility study (PFS) on its Kerr-Sulphurets-Mitchell (KSM) project, updating the project capital and operating costs to the 2016 economic environment. The company said on Monday that, building on a similar treatise... 

Zinc demand set to outpace production

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     19th September 2016 Global zinc demand growth is set to marginally outpace production growth between now and 2020, averaging 1.7% and 1.3%, respectively, advisory firm BMI Research said on Monday. Refined zinc production is slowing as weak prices and an ore shortage force major producers to curb output. 

Zinc demand set to outpace production

Nautilus pushes Solwara 1 production out by 12 months, revises work programme

By: Henry Lazenby     16th September 2016 Cash-strapped marine mining pioneer Nautilus Minerals has pushed out the start of production from the offshore Papua New Guinea (PNG) Solwara 1 project by about 12 months from the original schedule, citing a cash crunch. In providing an update on company activities Friday, CEO Mike Johnston... 

Nautilus pushes Solwara 1 production out by 12 months, revises work programme

Ravensthorpe could be expanded - EPA

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     16th September 2016 Members of the public would have until September 20 to comment on Canadian firm First Quantum’s plans to expand its Ravensthorpe operations, in Western Australia. The Western Australian Environmental Protection Authority this week released documents in which First Quantum applied to expand its... 

Years-long copper glut can still flush out deals for Antofagasta

By: Bloomberg     16th September 2016 As metals from silver to zinc rally, copper is stuck in a glut that will probably last another two or three years, and that may flush out bargains, according to Antofagasta. Until now, the copper miner controlled by Chile’s wealthiest family hasn’t seen opportunities that are attractive enough... 

Years-long copper glut can still flush out deals for Antofagasta

Foundry and engineering company clinches several contracts

By: David Oliveira     16th September 2016 Foundry and engineering company Thos Begbie & Co received a number of orders recently to refurbish and manufacture furnace and smelting equipment, after orders from Southern Africa furnace operators dropped significantly from November last year to July this year. Thos Begbie & Co outgoing CEO... 

US mining industry in flux as policy, economic and enviro challenges force change

By: Henry Lazenby     16th September 2016 The outcome of the November 2016 US presidential election will not reverse the decline in the US mining industry value, as the beleaguered coal industry continues to face market headwinds. Rather, the results will determine the trajectory of environmental regulations and, therefore, raise or... 

US mining industry in flux as policy, economic and enviro challenges force change

Miners find investment boost in crowdfunding for venture capital

By: Creamer Media Reporter      15th September 2016 Crowdfunding is an innovation that is slowly catching up with the mining industry. Some old investors may think it's odd for the sector; some might typically associate it with young people raising funds online for worthy causes or to realise and sell inventions. 

Lundin gets another extension on right of first refusal to Freeport’s Tenke Fungurume

By: Henry Lazenby     15th September 2016 Diversified Canadian base metals miner Lundin Mining got a two-week extension to its right of first refusal on US diversified miner Freeport McMoRan’s (FCX’s) 70% indirect interest in TF Holdings, which holds 80% of the world-class Tenke Fungurume copper/cobalt mine, in the Democratic Republic of... 

Policy environment failing South African mining – professor

By: Martin Creamer     15th September 2016 South Africa’s policy environment is failing its mining industry, which is suffering an inability to attract investment. In terms of the weighted average cost of capital (WACC), South Africa is trailing many other mining jurisdictions owing to its unstable political economy. 

Policy environment failing South African mining – professor
Photo by Duane Daws
Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy mineral economics division chairperson Professor Michael Solomon

Philippines delays release of mining audit outcome

By: Reuters     15th September 2016 The Philippine government will release the results of a review of the operations of the country's 40 metallic mines on September 22 instead of this week, the Mining Minister said on Thursday. The world's top nickel ore supplier has so far suspended operations of 10 mines, eight of them nickel,... 

Finders cuts back on debts

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     15th September 2016 Copper miner Finders Resources has realised $42.5-million in debt reduction following the restructure of its copper hedge. The miner told shareholders on Thursday that it had completed a restructure of its current copper hedge book of 38 126 t, closing a total of 21 650.5 t, and adjusting a... 

Finders cuts back on debts

Fortune welcomes mining veteran Koropchuk to board

By: Henry Lazenby     15th September 2016 Cobalt project developer Fortune Minerals has appointed mining veteran Glen Koropchuk to its board. Koropchuk, with more than 30 years of mining experience, most recently served as COO of Anglo American affiliate De Beers Canada and was responsible for operations at the Snap Lake and Victor... 

Ford sees 'substantial headwinds' from 2017 commodity costs

By: Reuters     14th September 2016 Ford Motor Co CFO Bob Shanks said that the company sees "substantial headwinds" in 2017 on North American commodity costs. Shanks was not specific on those costs, which may include higher prices for aluminium and steel that goes into its vehicles. Ford on Wednesday said its pre-tax profit in... 

Volvo places self-driving truck in operation at underground mine 

By: Irma Venter     14th September 2016 The Volvo Group has put a fully autonomous truck to the test at underground operations at the Kristineberg mine, 100 km from Arvidsjaur, in northern Sweden. The mine was opened in 1940 and is the oldest in operation in the Boliden area. A polymetallic ore containing zinc, copper, lead, gold and... 

Volvo places self-driving truck in operation at underground mine
The Volvo FMX self-driving truck enters operations at the Kristineberg mine

Alacer studies second mine in Turkey

By: Mariaan Webb     14th September 2016 TSX- and ASX-listed Alacer Gold is advancing a second project in Turkey to detailed study phase, following the completion of a prefeasibility study (PFS), which demonstrates the Gediktepe project’s technical and financial feasibility. The PFS established a maiden resource and reserve for the... 

First global rankings of renewables use by mining companies to be released

By: Creamer Media Reporter      14th September 2016 Renewable energy information provider to the mining industry Energy and Mines has released the initial results of the first global rankings of renewables used by mining companies, identifying that the top 21 mining companies use wind and solar energy to power their operations. The ‘Energy and... 

Ivanhoe starts supplying power from first of three DRC hydropower plant upgrades

By: Henry Lazenby     14th September 2016 Ivanhoe Mines has started supplying electricity to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) national grid from the first of three hydropower plants it has agreed to upgrade in collaboration with its joint venture (JV) partners. Ongoing upgrading work at the Mwadingusha hydropower plant, financed by... 

Icahn endorses Freeport's efforts to reduce debt, explore options

By: Reuters     13th September 2016 Activist investor Carl Icahn, the third-largest shareholder in Freeport McMoran, said on Tuesday that he endorsed the US miner's efforts to reduce debt and explore strategic alternatives. Icahn's comments come a day after Freeport said it would sell its deepwater Gulf of Mexico oil and natural... 

Alcoa to delist from ASX in October

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     13th September 2016 Aluminium major Alcoa has applied to have its listing on the ASX removed. Alcoa, which has been trading on the ASX since 2000, said on Tuesday that the number of the company’s chess depository interests quoted on the ASX now represented less than 1% of the group’s total issued share capital. 

Alcoa to delist from ASX in October

Anadarko to buy Freeport’s deepwater Gulf of Mexico assets for $2bn

By: Henry Lazenby     13th September 2016 Anadarko Petroleum said Monday after market close that it would buy deepwater Gulf of Mexico assets from Freeport McMoRan for $2-billion. It will pay for the acquisition through a new stock offering of 40.54-million shares, including an overallotment option, which is valued at $2.34-billion at... 

Anadarko to buy Freeport’s deepwater Gulf of Mexico assets for $2bn

Mining needs disruptive digital change, Electra Mining conference hears

By: Martin Creamer     12th September 2016 The mining industry, which has a past of intervening with key technologies at critical times, is currently at an important leverage point that requires disruptive change. Envisaged is that disruptive change will be supported by the interaction of people, process and technology and definitely not... 

Mining needs disruptive digital change, Electra Mining conference hears
Photo by Duane Daws
Telstra Mining Services head Jeanette McGill

Poland may ease KGHM's mining tax in 2017 – Minister

By: Reuters     12th September 2016 Poland may provide the country's sole copper producer KGHM relief next year on a 2012 tax that eats into the miner's profits, Treasury Minister Dawid Jackiewicz told Wprost weekly in an interview published on Monday. The ruling Law and Justice (PiS) party moved to power in last year's elections,... 

Avanco starts development at second Brazil mine

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     12th September 2016 ASX-listed Avanco Resources has started underground development activities at its second Brazilian copper/gold mine, after a scoping study demonstrated the project’s feasibility. The scoping study into a large underground mine at the Pedra Branca East project, estimates that a... 

Avanco starts development at second Brazil mine

Energia shakes the tin for Italian zinc project

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     12th September 2016 Minerals developer Energia Minerals is hoping to raise A$6.1-million through a fully underwritten two-for-seven renounceable pro-rata rights issue. The rights issue will be priced at 3.5c a share, and funds raised will be used primarily to enhance and accelerate the Gorno zinc project, in Italy,... 

Energia shakes the tin for Italian zinc project

Red River starts zinc plant refurbishing

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     12th September 2016 Early stage refurbishment work has started at the Thalanga zinc processing plant, in Queensland, as part of efforts to restart the project. Owner Red River Resources previously reported that it would need to invest some A$17.2-million to restart production at Thalanga, which has been on care... 

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