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Base Metals News

Dugald River zinc project likely to come in 8% under budget – MMG

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     19th October 2017 Metals miner MMG on Thursday reported that its Dugald River zinc project, in Queensland, was likely to come in under budget. The company told shareholders that total capital costs to completion was now expected to be between $550-million to $570-million, compared with a previous guidance of... 

South32 bolsters net cash to $1.7bn, reports solid Q1 results

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     19th October 2017 Diversified miner South32 on Thursday reported its financial and operational results for the first quarter of the 2018 financial year, telling shareholders that stronger commodity markets had delivered a $33-million increase in its net cash position. “Our key commodity markets continue to... 

South32 bolsters net cash to $1.7bn, reports solid Q1 results
Photo by Bloomberg
South32 CEO Graham Kerr

BHP told bending to activists poses risks for debt investors

By: Bloomberg     19th October 2017 BHP Billiton’s new chairman Ken MacKenzie is grappling with a simmering campaign by activist shareholders -- moving too far to appease them could risk unsettling debt investors who own the world’s biggest miner’s $24-billion of bonds. The campaign by funds including billionaire Paul Singer’s... 

BHP told bending to activists poses risks for debt investors
BHP new chairperson Ken Mackenzie

Altus secures new exploration licence in Ethiopia

By: Creamer Media Reporter      18th October 2017 Aim-listed Altus Strategies has been granted an exploration licence for the Daro copper/gold project, in northern Ethiopia. The licence covers an area of about 412 km2 and is valid for three years. 

Trevali stock trades lower on production miss

By: Henry Lazenby     18th October 2017 The value of the recent acquisition of two African zinc assets from mining major Glencore is evident in zinc-focused miner Trevali Mining latest operating results, which it published on Monday, accounting for about 65% of output. However, the company’s TSX-listed equity on Tuesday fell as much as... 

BHP on track for 7% volume growth in FY18; guidance intact

By: Henry Lazenby     18th October 2017 The world’s largest mining house BHP Billiton said on Wednesday it remained on track for a 7% volume growth in the 2018 financial year, leaving its full-year 2018 guidance unaltered. The Melbourne, Australia-based miner reported its operating results for the three months ended September 30,... 

BHP on track for 7% volume growth in FY18; guidance intact

KGHM plays down recent breakdown impact

By: Reuters     17th October 2017 Polish copper producer KGHM Polska Miedz said on Tuesday it expects no big negative impact on sales or core earnings from the recent breakdown of a smelter in the city of Glogow. "We hope that we will be able to recoup some losses," CEO Radoslaw Domagalski-Labedzki told reporters. 

Explorer Ferrum Crescent adopts revised strategy

By: Creamer Media Reporter      17th October 2017 Exploration firm Ferrum Crescent has announced a revised exploration strategy for the Toral base metals project, in Spain, including the appointment of expert geological advisers to better understand the project economics. The revised strategy will be led by newly appointed executive director... 

Metals X revisits Wingellina on higher cobalt price

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     17th October 2017 An increase in the cobalt price has prompted ASX-listed Metals X to revisit its Wingellina nickel/cobalt/scandium project, in Western Australia. A previous feasibility study into the Wingellina project estimated that the project could deliver about 40 000 t/y of nickel and 3 000 t/y of cobalt... 

WA govt to clear red tape for miners

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     17th October 2017 The Western Australian government has committed to a number of reforms to support the state’s nickel industry. Speaking at the Paydirt nickel conference, in Perth, Mines and Petroleum Minister Bill Johnston said that the government was committed to reducing red tape and regulatory duplications... 

BHP’s entry into nickel sulphate ‘well timed’, cobalt sulphate may be next

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     17th October 2017 Mining major BHP is reviewing the timing of its Stage 2 nickel sulphate plant at the Kwinana refinery, in Western Australia, on the back of high demand. BHP Nickel West asset president Eduard Haegel said on Tuesday that potential customer visits had confirmed that the company’s entry into the... 

Rio Tinto produces more iron-ore and coal, but cuts copper guidance

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     17th October 2017 Diversified major Rio Tinto has reported increased production across its iron-ore and coal assets, but has adjusted its copper output expectations for the full year on the back of delays at the Escondida operation. “The business performed very well in the September quarter, with a strong... 

Rio Tinto produces more iron-ore and coal, but cuts copper guidance
Photo by Bloomberg
Rio Tinto CEO Jean-Sebastian Jacques

Exploration, junior culture needed to save mining – Bristow 

By: Martin Creamer     16th October 2017 Unless South Africa starts exploring again and finds new ore deposits, the country will continue to turn out the lights of the mining sector. With poor policy added, disinvestment and lack of interest will ultimately stop South Africa’s mining industry in its tracks, which will deal a colossal... 

Exploration, junior culture needed to save mining – Bristow
Top resources consultant Dr John Bristow outlines the urgent need for exploration to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Video and Video Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Vast Resources reports higher output

By: Creamer Media Reporter      16th October 2017 UK-headquartered Vast Resources on Monday reported stronger operational results from its mines in Romania and Zimbabwe, with third-quarter tonnes mined, milled and copper and gold production outperforming the previous quarter. The Manaila polymetallic mine, in Romania, delivered an “exceptional... 

Italy grants Energia exploration licence for historic Salafossa mine

By: Creamer Media Reporter      16th October 2017 ASX-listed Energia has been awarded an exploration licence covering the historic Salafossa mine area, in northern Italy near the border of Austria, the company reported on Monday. Salafossa, which was operational between 1964 and 1986, comprised a single sub-horizontal Mississippi Valley Style... 

Prominent Hill openpit closure brought forward

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     16th October 2017 Copper/gold miner Oz Minerals will bring forward the closure of its openpit operations at the Prominent Hill mine, in South Australia, from the mid-2018 to the first quarter of the year. About A$10-million will be saved through the accelerated plan, the company reported on Monday, as it released... 

Nzuri publishes feasibility study for DRC copper/cobalt project

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     16th October 2017 A feasibility study (FS) into the Stage 1 development of the Kalongwe oxide copper-cobalt project, in the Democratic Republic of Congo, has estimated that the project would require a capital investment of $53.12-million. The Stage 1 operation will comprise an openpit mine and a one-million tonne... 

As race for energy metals heats up, nickel expected to benefit most from EV revolution

By: Henry Lazenby     13th October 2017 Nickel prices stand to gain most from the advent of electric vehicles (EVs), Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML) said on Friday in its latest ‘Global Metals Weekly’ report. According to the research team, despite China remaining an important driver of market demand, following on from being the... 

As race for energy metals heats up, nickel expected to benefit most from EV revolution
Photo by Thakadu Battery Materials
A lack of investment in mining capacity may mean that the battery industry could face an extended period of nickel sulphate supply shortfalls

Anglo Asian lifts Q3 gold output as new mine starts producing

By: Mariaan Webb     13th October 2017 Gold/copper/silver miner Anglo Asian on Friday reported a 2 300-oz quarter-on-quarter production increase as the benefits of a strategic review are starting to show and its newest mine – Ugur – starts contributing to output. The new Ugur openpit started production in September and already has... 

Anglo Asian lifts Q3 gold output as new mine starts producing

Portland back to full capacity

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     13th October 2017 Aluminium major Alcoa’s Portland smelter, in Victoria, has been restored to full production capacity, following a power outage in December last year. “Our interventions have protected this crucial industry, saved local jobs and continue to support communities in Portland and throughout... 

Hybrid solar systems punted as the way forward for sub-Saharan Africa mines

By: Dylan Slater     13th October 2017 Factors such as limited and unreliable energy transmission and distribution grids, across many countries in sub-Saharan Africa, have created a dependency among large industrial and mining houses on diesel and heavy fuel oil (HFO) to provide a reliable energy supply, says renewable-energy... 

Hybrid solar systems punted  as the way forward for  sub-Saharan Africa mines
DEGRUSSA PLANT The off-grid hybrid power plant at the DeGrussa copper/gold mine, in western Australia features a solar PV plant, lithium-ion battery facility and a diesel power station

Atalaya fine tunes copper guidance on record Q3 output

By: Mariaan Webb     12th October 2017 Record third-quarter production from the Proyecto Riotinto mine, in Andalucía, Spain, has prompted Atalaya Mining to fine tune its copper production guidance for 2017. The mine boosted its September-quarter production by 18% to a record 10 679 t of copper in concentrate, as copper head grade and... 

Atalaya fine tunes copper guidance on record Q3 output

Nifty reserves increase by 55%

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     12th October 2017 Ore reserves at the Nifty copper mine, in Western Australia, have increased by 55%, representing an additional 84 000 t of copper, ASX-listed Metals X reported on Thursday. The total ore reserve at Nifty is reported at 13.9-million tonnes, grading 1.71% copper for 237 500 t of contained copper,... 

Zinc deficit grows 30% in first eight months of 2017; lead narrows gap – ILZSG

By: Henry Lazenby     11th October 2017 The zinc supply gap has widened by 30% year-on-year for the first eight months of this year, new data published by the International Lead and Zinc Study Group (ILZSG) shows. The Lisbon, Portugal-based organisation on Wednesday said the zinc deficit had grown from 221 000 t over the same... 

Zinc deficit grows 30% in first eight months of 2017; lead narrows gap – ILZSG

South Africa should consider agromining – US professor 

By: Martin Creamer     11th October 2017 South Africans, who have been mining for metals for more than a century, were this week urged to farm for metals. South African-born Stephen Haggerty, a distinguished research professor of Florida International University in the US who spoke to Mining Weekly Online while in Johannesburg, outlined... 

South Africa should consider agromining – US professor
Florida International University distinguished research professor Stephen E Haggerty talks to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer on the potential to farm for metals. Photographs: Duane Daws. Video and Video Editing: Lionel de Silva.

ARM appoints two nonexecutive directors

By: Martin Creamer     11th October 2017 Diversified mining company African Rainbow Minerals (ARM) on Wednesday announced the appointment of two new nonexecutive directors. They are David Noko, who has been appointed as an independent nonexecutive director, and Jan Steenkamp, who has been appointed as a nonexecutive director. 

ARM appoints two nonexecutive directors
David Noko

New Century secures $45m to reopen Qld zinc mine

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     11th October 2017 Base metals developer New Century Resources has secured a $45-million debt facility to fund the restart of its Century zinc mine, in Queensland. The debt facility, secured from global resources fund Sprott Resource Lending, will have a 10% a year interest on a three-year fixed term. 

Thalanga delivers first concentrates

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     11th October 2017 The Thalanga zinc project, in Queensland, has delivered its first zinc concentrate one month after the start of processing. ASX-listed Red River Resources on Wednesday told shareholders that the first two loads of zinc concentrates, amounting to some 150 t, left site on Tuesday for delivery to a... 

Gamsberg zinc prestrip close to halfway mark – Vedanta

By: Martin Creamer     10th October 2017 The prestripping of waste rock at the Gamsberg zinc mine project in the Northern Cape is close to the halfway mark, Vedanta Resources reported on Tuesday, when its interim CEO Kuldip Kaura described as “strong” the quarterly production performances of the London-listed, India-rooted mining... 

Gamsberg zinc prestrip close to halfway mark – Vedanta
Photo by Duane Daws
Activity at the Gamsberg zinc mine project.

Gold, zinc explorers spearhead reversal of five-year global exploration downturn

By: Samantha Herbst     10th October 2017 Boosted by increased exploration efforts in the gold and zinc sectors, the global nonferrous exploration budget is up in 2017 – for the first time since 2012 – by more than 14%, year-on-year, to $7.95-billion, according to new analysis by S&P Global Market Intelligence. The twenty-eighth edition... 

Gold, zinc explorers spearhead reversal of five-year global exploration downturn

Bluejay increases land position in Greenland

By: Creamer Media Reporter      10th October 2017 Aim- and FSE-listed Bluejay Mining has increased its landholding in south-west Greenland, where it sees potential for mineralisation similar to that of the Norilsk-Talnakh nickel/copper sulphide mine, located in northern Russia. Bluejay increased its land package for the Disko-Nuussauq magmatic... 

Admiral Bay's PFS proves positive

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     10th October 2017 A prefeasibility study (PFS) into the Admiral Bay zinc project, in Western Australia, has confirmed that the project could support both a direct shipping ore (DSO) operation and a combined DSO and concentrate project. “The PFS Stage 1 has delivered outstanding results for Admiral Bay and has... 

Congo halts Sicomines' copper exports, orders local refining

By: Bloomberg     9th October 2017 The Democratic Republic of Congo ordered Sinohydro Corp. and China Railway Construction Corp.’s local mining venture to stop exporting unprocessed copper and cobalt and refine all its metals within the country. Sicomines must ship “only high-value products” as the government looks to “ensure the... 

Seabridge finds more high-grade mineralisation at Iron Cap

By: Henry Lazenby     6th October 2017 Precious metals explorer Seabridge Gold continues to expand the mineral resources at the Iron Cap deposit, at the company’s Kerr-Sulphurets-Mitchell (KSM) project, in north-western British Columbia. The Toronto-headquartered company said on Tuesday that the long and strong intersections support a... 

South African mining industry still not spending enough on R&D

By: Mia Breytenbach     6th October 2017 While South Africa has increased its investment in mining research and development (R&D) since 2014, the country’s investment is still below that of its peers, delegates heard during a panel discussion on ‘Technological Innovation and Advancements in the Mining Industry’ at the Joburg Indaba, on... 

South African mining industry still not spending enough on R&D
Photo by Duane Daws
DRA Group CEO Wray Carvelas

Zinc prices have rallied so much even miners are complaining

By: Bloomberg     6th October 2017 Zinc’s dramatic surge to the highest in a decade might boost profits in the short term but isn’t all good news for producers, according to Vedanta Resources. Buyers are struggling to make money at current levels after prices more than doubled since the start of 2016, Deshnee Naidoo, the CEO of... 

Indonesian consortium bids for copper miner Finders

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     6th October 2017 Copper miner Finders Resources on Friday flagged a possible A$178-million takeover offer from a consortium consisting of Indonesia-listed companies. The consortium, known as Eastern Field Developments, is jointly owned by Procap Partners, PT Saratoga Investama Sedaya and PT Merdeka Copper Gold. 

Vereeniging operation offers new milling, crushing solutions  

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     6th October 2017 In line with global industrial equipment company Metsos commitment to innovation, its Vereeniging operation is offering two solutions that are new to the African crushing and milling industries. 

Vereeniging operation offers new milling, crushing solutions
Metso Southern Africa sales and service VP Qasim Abrahams details Metso’s Megaliner, outlines operations at the company’s Vereeniging facility and expounds on the company’s international case studies. Camerawork: Nicholas Boyd. Editing: Tracy Hancock.

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