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Base Metals News

Altiplano earns half of Comet JV; starts bulk sample

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd November 2017 Exploration junior Altiplano Minerals has earned a 50% stake in the Comet Joint Venture (CJV) with Comet Exploration, which is conducting exploration on the Farellon and Maria Luisa copper/gold development projects, in Chile. Headed by John Williamson, co-founder of Kaminak Gold, which discovered... 

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... 

Brazil lower house okays higher mining royalties, new regulator

By: Reuters     22nd November 2017 Brazil's lower house of Congress on Wednesday passed a bill that would boost royalty rates on iron ore by 75% - instead of doubling the rates as had been proposed - and later voted to approve the creation of a new mining regulator. Under the revised plan, gold mining royalties would rise 50%,... 

Metals billionaire to win whether electric cars boom or bust

By: Bloomberg     22nd November 2017 There are two major reasons mining billionaire Vladimir Potanin is within a hair’s breadth of regaining his ranking as Russia’s richest tycoon this year. One is higher prices for nickel used in batteries as metals traders bet electric vehicles are the future of transportation. The other is a... 

Metals billionaire to win whether electric cars boom or bust
Mining billionaire Vladimir Potanin

Indonesia's Antam eyes 162% jump in 2018 nickel ore sales

By: Reuters     22nd November 2017 Indonesia's state-owned diversified miner PT Aneka Tambang Tbk (Antam) is targetting a 162% jump in nickel ore sales next year to 11-million tonnes from an estimated 4.2-million tonnes this year, its CEO said on Wednesday. Of that amount approximately 3.9-million tonnes will be exported while... 

Nevsun loses bid to stop Canadian lawsuit over forced labour claims in Africa mine

By: Reuters     22nd November 2017 Nevsun Resources lost its bid to have a Canadian court throw out a lawsuit by Eritreans workers who say they were forced to work at its mine in East Africa, according to an appeals court judgment released on Tuesday. A lower Canadian court ruled last October that the lawsuit against Nevsun can... 

Toral exploration licence renewed

By: Creamer Media Reporter      22nd November 2017 ASX- and Aim-listed Ferrum Crescent has been granted a renewed, three-year exploration licence for its Toral project, in Spain, effectively resetting the “exploration clock” for the lead/zinc assets. Ferrum Crescent subsidiary GoldQuest Iberica, which is the holder of the Toral exploration... 

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

Havilah teams up with CMC to develop North Portia

By: Creamer Media Reporter      22nd November 2017 South Australia copper-focused junior Havilah Resources and mining partner Consolidated Mining and Civil (CMC) have agreed to jointly advance the North Portia copper/gold deposit, which is a key element of miner’s copper growth strategy. The parties have signed a binding memorandum of... 

Ivanhoe marks first blast at Kakula

By: Natasha Odendaal     21st November 2017 TSX-listed Ivanhoe Mines has marked the start of work on the twin declines at the ultrahigh-grade Kakula copper discovery, at the Kamoa-Kakula copper project, in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), with the first blast. The Kakula boxcut was successfully completed on October 26, followed by... 

Glencore sees nickel in best shape in decade before EVs take off

By: Bloomberg     21st November 2017 Glencore is seeing the best market conditions for nickel in at least a decade, and electric cars are barely playing a part yet. The miner and trading giant expects nickel’s 2017 deficit at 170 000 metric tons -- one of the biggest in years and more than most market estimates – to be driven by a... 

Underground ore reserves extend Prominent Hill life to 2029

By: Mia Breytenbach     21st November 2017 An 18% increase in the underground ore reserve at Prominent Hill could extend the mine’s life to 2029, copper/gold miner Oz Minerals reported on Tuesday. The increase in underground ore reserves to 39-million tonnes at 1.7% copper equivalent has enabled an expected underground production rate of... 

Mining contributes A$55bn to Qld economy in 2016/17

By: Mia Breytenbach     21st November 2017 The resources sector continues to drive employment and investment in Queensland, having contributed A$55.1-billion to the state’s economy in 2016/17 and supported the equivalent of 282 633 full-time jobs. This is according to the Queensland Resources Council’s (QRC’s) eighth yearly economic... 

Copper's big meh shows Chile's commodity crown is slipping

By: Bloomberg     21st November 2017 There was a time when a sneeze in Santiago would cause the global copper market to catch a cold. Not any more. The first round of Chilean presidential elections Sunday delivered a surprisingly weak result to frontrunner Sebastian Pinera, a conservative billionaire running on a fiscal... 

Rio Tinto's US copper smelter restarts, force majeure remains

By: Reuters     21st November 2017 Global miner Rio Tinto restarted the smelter at its large Kennecott mine in the United States last Friday after a nearly six-week outage but force majeure on refined copper has not yet been lifted, a company spokesman said on Monday. There was no timeline for when the force majeure would be... 

Nornickel sees capex rising by 2019-2020

By: Reuters     20th November 2017 Russia's Norilsk Nickel plans to increase capital expenditure to an average of $2.3-billion to $2.5-billion a year in 2019 and 2020 from about $2-billion in 2018 due to an environmental project and infrastructure modernisation, it said on Monday. Nornickel, part-owned by Russian businessman... 

Copper Mountain to acquire Altona in A$93m deal

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     20th November 2017 TSX-listed Copper Mountain Mining Corporation (CMMC) on Monday announced that it would buy ASX-listed Altona Mining for A$93-million, giving the company access to the undeveloped Cloncurry copper project, in Queensland. The project holds a measured and indicated mineral resource containing more... 

Copper Mountain to acquire Altona in A$93m deal

Queensland’s Capricorn copper mine reopens

By: Creamer Media Reporter      20th November 2017 he Capricorn copper mine, in near Mount Isa, in Queensland, has produced its first copper concentrate and has officially been declared open. The mine, jointly owned by private equity fund EMR Capital and mining group Lighthouse Minerals, will produce about 30 000 t/y of copper in concentrate over... 

Brazil's Vale denies postponing sale of New Caledonia mine stake

By: Reuters     20th November 2017 Brazil's Vale SA in a securities exchange filing on Monday denied that it had decided to postpone the sale of a stake in the New Caledonia nickel mine, saying it is continuing to look for a partner. Reuters reported on Friday, citing sources, that the mining major would postpone the sale for up... 

Tesla truck supercharges hopes for boom in battery metals demand

By: Bloomberg     19th November 2017 Tesla’s plans to roll out an all-electric big rig have given a fresh jolt to the outlook for battery metals that will go into powering the truck founder Elon Musk is calling “The Beast.” Banks including Goldman Sachs Group, UBS Group and Bank of America are already forecasting a surge in demand... 

Finders expects lower Dec quarter copper output, higher costs

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     17th November 2017 Copper miner Finders Resources reported on Friday that a delay at its Wetar copper project, in Indonesia, would see quarterly production remain below par. The company lowered its copper cathode production for the December quarter to be between 4 000 t and 5 000 t, from a previous estimate of... 

Finders expects lower Dec quarter copper output, higher costs

Fire hits Freeport Indonesia port facility in Papua

By: Reuters     17th November 2017 A fire broke out at the main port used by copper miner Freeport-McMoRan Inc in Papua, Indonesia, on Thursday night, the company said. The fire occurred at the Amamapare port in a plant where copper concentrate from the giant Grasberg copper mine is processed before loading onto vessels for... 

Cobalt hedging not mining the route for VW in EV drive

By: Reuters     17th November 2017 Volkswagen is not looking to secure long-term supplies of cobalt, a key ingredient of electric-car batteries, by investing in mines, a senior official at the automaker said. Demand for cobalt is expected to soar as carmakers rush to embrace electric vehicles (EVs) in response to governments... 

Need for collaboration in CSR initiatives emphasised

By: Mia Breytenbach     17th November 2017 With the mining industry now recovering from the downturn in commodity prices, and a new balance emerging in the global demand and supply of minerals, now is the time to reflect, innovate and plan for a more resilient industry in the future, says Mineral Resources Deputy Minister Godfrey... 

Zambian mining sector edging closer to ‘zero harm’

By: Nadine James     17th November 2017 The atmosphere at the Zambian mining industry’s third annual Health and Safety Conference, held in Ndola on November 2 and 3, was particularly positive as, at the time, the industry was firmly on course for a fatality-free year, the Zambia Chamber of Mines (ZCM) reports. This was significant, as... 

Zambian mining sector edging closer to ‘zero harm’
KANSANSHI MINE A woman truck driver from Kansanshi mine sustained fatal injuries when the heavy-duty truck she was driving collided with another truck in the sole fatality in Zambia’s mining industry so far, this year

'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

Orion initiates hitech regional exploration in Northern Cape

By: Martin Creamer     16th November 2017 Sydney- and Johannesburg-listed company Orion Minerals will from November 26 initiate an airborne survey across a large area of South Africa’s Northern Cape as part of a regional exploration programme that will make use of the latest available technology in an area last explored in the 1980s.... 

Orion initiates hitech regional exploration in Northern Cape
A SkyTEM survey operation.

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... 

Orion’s shares rise on Prieska metallurgical testwork update, loan facility extension

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     15th November 2017 Dual-listed base metals miner Orion Minerals’s share price on the JSE was trading 6.15% higher on Wednesday after the company announced the positive results from initial metallurgical test work at its Prieska zinc/copper project and the extension of a loan facility. Orion and mining-focused,... 

Savannah secures enviro permits for Oman copper projects

By: Creamer Media Reporter      15th November 2017 Aim-quoted Savannah Resources has been granted environmental operating permits for the first two of a series of planned copper mine developments in Oman, marking a “major breakthrough” for its development plans, CEO David Archer announced on Wednesday. The Ministry of Environment and Climate... 

Myanmar raises A$7m for Bawdwin

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     15th November 2017 Base metals explorer Myanmar Metals will raise A$7-million through a share placement to help fund work at its Bawdwin zinc/lead/silver/copper project, in Myanmar. The company on Wednesday announced that it had received binding commitments for 100-million new fully paid shares, at a price of 7c... 

Glencore is said close to creating mining royalty company

By: Bloomberg     15th November 2017 Glencore is close to finalising a $700-million deal with the Ontario Teachers’ Pension Plan to create a new base-metals royalty company, according to people familiar with the matter. The Swiss commodity giant will bring royalty agreements from about 10 mines, while Ontario Teachers’ will... 

Glencore is said close to creating mining royalty company
Photo by Duane Daws
Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg

Trevali stock takes a dip on surprise Q3 loss

By: Henry Lazenby     15th November 2017 Zinc producer Trevali Mining has had a tough day on the TSX, seeing its stock dive as deep as 7.3% during intraday trading after the company reported a net loss of $7.8-million, or $0.01 a share for the three months ended September. The Vancouver-based zinc producer attributed the net loss mainly... 

Afritin targets Africa tin champion title, Namibia project upscaled to commercial production 

By: Mia Breytenbach     14th November 2017 Following the demerger of Afritin Mining from Aim-listed Bushveld Minerals – and its subsequent listing as the only pure - play tin platform on the Aim last week – the company, which has assets in Namibia and South Africa, will focus on becoming “The Africa tin champion” by bringing its flagship... 

Afritin targets Africa tin champion title, Namibia project upscaled to commercial production
Afritin Mining CEO Anthony Viljoen discusses newly- Aim-listed Afritin Mining and its strategies. Video and Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Winmar withdraws from Spain JV, reduces salaries by 50%

By: Mariaan Webb     14th November 2017 Australia’s Winmar Resources has slashed its staff salaries and directors fees by half to minimise cash outflows until it has secured a new lead project. The announcement on Tuesday comes a day after the company said that it had withdrawn from the Lomero joint venture project with Kimberly... 

Consolidated Zinc rethinks strategy for Mexican project

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     14th November 2017 ASX-listed Consolidated Zinc has revealed plans to more than double planned production at its Plomosas zinc mine, in Mexico, following increasingly positive exploration results. Rather than starting small-scale mining as an initial step in 2018, Consolidated Zinc said on Tuesday that it was... 

Scoping study confirms West Musgrave potential – Oz Minerals

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     14th November 2017 ASX-listed Oz Minerals has committed A$19-million to proceed to the next stage of earn-in at the West Musgrave nickel/copper project, in Western Australia. To earn a 51% interest from fellow-listed Cassini Resources, Oz Minerals will proceed to a prefeasibility study (PFS) following a positive... 

Namibia Rare Earths expands metals portfolio

By: Henry Lazenby     10th November 2017 TSX-V-listed project developer Namibia Rare Earths has signed an agreement with private firm Gecko Namibia to acquire a controlling interest in a portfolio of seven metals properties, thereby expanding its focus from heavy rare earths to include cobalt, copper, zinc, lithium, graphite, tantalum,... 

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