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GROW OR MOW:

By: Martin Creamer     13th July 2018 It is not only the South African mining industry that is faced with the dilemma of growing or mowing. Other mining jurisdictions with memories of past ups and downs are faced with a similar dilemma, but not the same dilemma. In South Africa the main worries – legislation and corruption – are... 

GROW OR MOW:

EROSION OF AN INDUSTRY:

By: Martin Creamer     6th July 2018 Bit by bit, South Africa’s mining industry has been eroded over the last two decades. From the dawn of our new democracy, Treasury, for reasons best known to itself, set out to ensure that mining played a lesser part in the overall economy. Legislators followed with consistent repression and... 

EROSION OF AN INDUSTRY:

PGM BALANCE:

By: Martin Creamer     29th June 2018 Platinum-mining companies mine a group of metals and not only platinum, which in the current period of platinum price downturn is a blessing. If current platinum mining did not have the support of record-priced palladium and rhodium, a word stronger than crisis would need to be used to describe... 

PGM BALANCE:

VALUABLE REEF THAT'S NOT ALWAYS THAT FLAT

By: Martin Creamer     22nd June 2018 Some have referred to it as the ‘platreef’, playing on the Afrikaans word ‘plat’, which means flat, but more recently the rich, extremely thick orebody on the northern limb of South Africa’s platinum-endowed Igneous Bushveld Complex has come to be consistently called the flatreef. But in truth,... 

VALUABLE REEF THAT'S NOT ALWAYS THAT FLAT

ONE SIZE DOES NOT FIT ALL:

By: Martin Creamer     15th June 2018 The Junior Indaba has highlighted that South Africa’s one-size-fits-all approach to minerals legislation is ill-conceived. What the legislation purports to suggest is that the mining majors are on all fours with the junior exploration start-ups, which is by no means the case. The huge difference... 

ONE SIZE DOES NOT FIT ALL:

USE CLEAN COAL, SAVE YOUR SOUL:

By: Martin Creamer     8th June 2018 By all accounts, burning coal cleanly is now possible. The technology to do so is available. To make it effective in a coal-fired furnace like the Mpumalanga province, new technology will also have to be installed in old coal-fired power stations. At last week’s Fossil Fuel workshop on air... 

USE CLEAN COAL, SAVE YOUR SOUL:

PALATIAL PLATINUM:

1st June 2018 Prince Harry’s choice of a platinum wedding ring is a wonderful boost for South Africa’s struggling platinum mineworkers, who currently need every bit of help they can get. As Platinum Guild International (PGI) has noted, platinum jewellery is outperforming gold in some areas. The bridal markets... 

PALATIAL PLATINUM:

GOOD FIT:

By: Martin Creamer     25th May 2018 Platinum-mining companies Lonmin and Sibanye-Stillwater make a good fit at asset level, where the abutting of their mines can unlock synergies of R1.5-billion a year and preserve 20 000 jobs. Lonmin currently employs 32 500, which will go down to by 12 600 in 2020, leaving close to 20 000, the... 

GOOD FIT:

INVESTMENT 'BESTIE'

By: Martin Creamer     18th May 2018 Indian mining billionaire Anil Agarwal’s association with South Africa began eight years ago when Vedanta Resources, the London-listed, India-rooted diversified mining company he founded and heads, bought Anglo American’s zinc assets, achieved payback in a couple of years and went ahead with... 

INVESTMENT 'BESTIE'

MINING'S BURNING BRIDGE:

By: Martin Creamer     11th May 2018 Deep precious metals mining is being heated by the flames of extinction, made up of increasing mine depth, lengthening travel time to the rock face, higher electricity tariffs, rising labour costs, the fluctuating rand:dollar exchange rate and relatively weak commodity prices. Without greater... 

MINING'S BURNING BRIDGE:

WHEN CRISIS COMES KNOCKING:

By: Martin Creamer     4th May 2018 While there is a bit of palladium relief here and rhodium and chrome price relief there, South Africans need to face up to the harsh reality that its important platinum-mining industry is in crisis because that is what happens when the price for your main product is below economic levels. An... 

WHEN CRISIS COMES KNOCKING:

REVIVE AND MODERNISE:

By: Martin Creamer     27th April 2018 REVIVE AND MODERNISE: The Mandela Mining Precinct is the name chosen for the exciting new research thrust that promises to provide a revitalising and modernising platform for South Africa’s struggling mining industry. The research banner is flying high above Carlow Road, Johannesburg, where a... 

REVIVE AND MODERNISE:

CRISIS NOT?

By: Martin Creamer     20th April 2018 Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe last week described the mining industry as one that is in self-doubt, believing that it is about to die, with suspicion and mistrust at a high level. "I fail to understand why platinum is in a crisis," he said, adding that mining stakeholders needed to... 

CRISIS NOT?

DEATH AND DESTRUCTION:

By: Martin Creamer     13th April 2018 On the evening of Monday, April 2, a bus transporting 50 mineworkers from the Ga-Maroga village, in Mpumalanga, to the Modikwa Platinum Mine, 15 km northwest of Burgersfort, was set alight, killing six and injuring 44.  One of five suspects arrested appeared in the Mecklenburg Magistrate's Court... 

DEATH AND DESTRUCTION:

CHARTER CHATTER:

By: Martin Creamer     6th April 2018 At top corporate level, African Rainbow Minerals executive chairperson Patrice Motsepe expressed absolute confidence that the issues surrounding the Mining Charter III debacle would be nullified and that the new charter would ensure South Africa’s return to being a competitive mining investment... 

CHARTER CHATTER:

POOF GOES SOUTH AFRICA DISCOUNT:

By: Martin Creamer     30th March 2018 The South Africa discount that the shareholders in local mining companies have had to endure for decades, is going up in a puff of smoke. Goldman Sachs analysts say in a multi-page report that the risks around South African operations are dissipating against the backdrop of the winds of political... 

POOF GOES SOUTH AFRICA DISCOUNT:

'I'LL DESTROY THIS AND IN THREE MONTHS REBUILD IT':

By: Martin Creamer     23rd March 2018 New Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe, who many recall playing a major role in the creation of the first widely accepted mining charter, has been advised not to be over hasty in creating a replacement charter for Mining Charter 111, which he has vowed to replace with a new charter in... 

'I'LL DESTROY THIS AND IN THREE MONTHS REBUILD IT':

WHEN 'NUM' TURNS INTO DUMB:

By: Martin Creamer     16th March 2018 Just when the world economy was showing signs of positive stability, up popped Donald Trump with import tariffs on aluminium and steel. Given that the North Americans refuse to keep the second 'i' in aluminium, and insist on alumi'num', one is in good company in describing the entire thing as... 

WHEN 'NUM' TURNS INTO DUMB:

THE STRONG HAND OF THE RAND:

By: Martin Creamer     9th March 2018 Commodity prices in rands are, in the main, no dripping roast. Particularly when it comes to deep-level mining, the local currency is presenting challenges. Mining Weekly reports in this edition of mining companies with deep assets going this way and that way to get rid of unprofitable outcomes.... 

THE STRONG HAND OF THE RAND:

HOLDING BACK THE WRECKING BALL:

By: Martin Creamer     2nd March 2018 Spirits are sky high following the strong hand new President Cyril Ramaphosa is playing to prevent the Mining Charter III wrecking ball from destroying the mining industry. True to his negotiation style, government, labour and business are back at the negotiating table. The hope now is that the... 

HOLDING BACK THE WRECKING BALL:

TRASHING THE CHARTER:

By: Martin Creamer     23rd February 2018 The prolonged uncertainty created by the introduction of Mining Charter III has left South Africa's mining industry in limbo, CDH mining law head Allan Reid stated in a recent article, in which he added that an unintended consequence of Mining Charter III is its role in solidifying what... 

TRASHING THE CHARTER:

CLEAN AIR REVOLUTION

By: Martin Creamer     16th February 2018 China's clean air revolution is poised to stand South Africa in good stead. When China chooses, scale results, and scale is just what fuel cells need to lower costs. Fuel cell electric vehicles use compressed hydrogen gas that, when combined with oxygen and drawn through an electrolyte, creates... 

CLEAN AIR REVOLUTION

THE LONG WAIT IS OVER:

By: Martin Creamer     9th February 2018 The long wait is over. De Beers Consolidated Mines (DBCM) have at last been awarded prospecting licences to conduct modern diamond exploration. At the time of going to press, the first 16 of 54 applications had been received by a delighted DBCM CEO Phillip Barton. All 16 target highly prospective... 

THE LONG WAIT IS OVER:

WINDS OF CHANGE:

By: Martin Creamer     2nd February 2018 The countenances of South Africans are turning towards the winds of change that they see building up positively, and hope is beginning to show in their expressions as changes are made at the embattled electricity utility Eskom and long-awaited enforcement is implemented against blatant... 

WINDS OF CHANGE:

THE NEW DEAL:

By: Martin Creamer     26th January 2018 THE NEW DEAL: South Africa’s New Deal under new African National Congress president and South African Deputy President Cyril Ramaphosa is founded on an unrelenting commitment to the implementation of policies that restore investor confidence. Ramaphosa has called on South Africans to put an... 

THE NEW DEAL:

KNOT AGAIN

By: Martin Creamer     19th January 2018 Investment-starved but well-endowed South African mining can be healed by the introduction of good new government policy. Local mining’s failure to keep pace with mining jurisdictions elsewhere relates to pernicious policy rather than palpable potential. As the Chamber of Mines of South Africa... 

KNOT AGAIN

CHANGE OR SHRINK:

By: Martin Creamer     15th December 2017 If it does not remove its damaging policy framework, the South African mining industry stands to lose another 100 000 jobs. That is the view of Anglo American CEO Mark Cutifani, who accurately predicted the 100 000 job loss suffered over the last six years. “I'll say it again, absent of change,... 

CHANGE OR SHRINK:

ABERRANT LEGISLATION

By: Martin Creamer     8th December 2017 The long process of reconsidering the aberrant Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) Amendment Bill has reportedly generated so many additional procedural missteps that turfing it into the bin is only one good thing left to do with it. According to Herbert Smith Freehills Africa... 

ABERRANT LEGISLATION

LEGISLATIVE PLAYGROUND:

By: Martin Creamer     1st December 2017 In September, Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane told a mining conference in Australia that the changes to the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) would be made in December. But a senior Parliamentary official has since made it clear that Parliament will miss Zwane’s... 

LEGISLATIVE PLAYGROUND:

CRY THE BELOVED COUNTRY:

By: Martin Creamer     24th November 2017 In today’s litigious South Africa, the Ministry of Mineral Resources and its Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) are coming in for legal stick over big picture legal issues. But this might not be the end of the legal story. The DMR’s irrational refused to grant prospecting licences could also... 

CRY THE BELOVED COUNTRY:

CAUGHT IN COURT:

By: Martin Creamer     17th November 2017 The errant Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) and the litigious Chamber of Mines of South Africa spent a day or two in the High Court in mid-2016. The both spent another two days in the High Court on Thursday and Friday of last week. They are due to spend another two days in the High Court on... 

CAUGHT IN COURT:

CRIPPLE AND CAPTURE:

By: Martin Creamer     10th November 2017 Current interests in South Africa’s mining industry are being crippled to make its assets cheaply available to connected companies, South African Institute of International Affairs' Governance of Africa’s Resources Programmes researcher Ross Harvey suggests in a recent opinion article in Business... 

CRIPPLE AND CAPTURE:

CRAZY CHARTER CROQUET:

By: Martin Creamer     3rd November 2017 Even mining communities are up in arms with the way Minerals Minister Mosebenzi Zwane and his Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) have unilaterally gazetted Mining Charter III, an unworkable document. Given the 0.7% growth rate to which the South African economy has slumped, Chamber of Mines... 

CRAZY CHARTER CROQUET:

SELF-INFLICTED DESTRUCTION:

By: Martin Creamer     27th October 2017 Unless South Africa starts exploring again and finds new ore deposits, the South African mining industry will ultimately grind to a halt and the big holes that have been dug could well become the preserve of illegal miners. But this does not need to be the case. This country remains highly... 

SELF-INFLICTED DESTRUCTION:

ECONOMIC ARSON:

By: Martin Creamer     20th October 2017 The South African mining industry catalyses a myriad of value-adding economic linkages in engineering, banking, law, energy, entrepreneurship and the list could go on. When mining is damaged, so are all those linkages. The knock-on effect is immense. Yet Minerals Resources Minister Mosebenzi... 

ECONOMIC ARSON:

STRENGTHEN MINING, STRENGTHEN SOUTH AFRICA:

By: Martin Creamer     13th October 2017 Proper leadership will set South Africa back on an upward course under the growing realisation that if the country strengthens its mining sector, it strengthens the economy as a whole. Chamber of Mines president Mxolisi Mgojo has promised to ensure better outcomes for sector and country,... 

STRENGTHEN MINING, STRENGTHEN SOUTH AFRICA:

PLATINUM STRUGGLING TO FLATTEN 'EM:

By: Martin Creamer     6th October 2017 Palladium prices last week topped platinum for the first time since 2001, underscoring the diverging outlooks for the metals. Bloomberg reports that supplies are expected to tighten in palladium, owing to demand from petrol-fuelled vehicles and a snubbing of platinum in the wake of the VW diesel... 

PLATINUM STRUGGLING TO FLATTEN 'EM:

IRREFUTABLE INFRINGEMENT:

By: Martin Creamer     29th September 2017 It appears that the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR), as the aberrant creator of Mining Charter III, is the only organisation that likes Mining Charter III. Influential labour unions dislike it, community organisations condemn it, the African National Congress has called on the DMR to take... 

IRREFUTABLE INFRINGEMENT:
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