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Chrome, ferrochrome output dipped in 2015 as sector went through difficult phase

By: Ilan Solomons     20th May 2016 Chrome ore and ferrochrome global output decreased marginally in 2015, which is a clear indication that the industry is going through a tough phase with some major players facing financial difficulty. This is according to International Chromium Development Association (ICDA) market research... 

South African software to improve plant operations

By: Robyn Wilkinson     20th May 2016 South African process and operations management solutions provider BluESP is introducing Model Predictive Control, a form of advanced process control technology, with applications to improve plant efficiency in several industries, including smelting and minerals processing. 

South African software to improve plant operations
PLANT OPTIMISATION BluESP’s Model Predictive Control technology the software is ideally suited to the smelting and minerals processing industries

Lorimer decries mining’s production crash, job losses

By: Martin Creamer     17th May 2016 Mineral Resources Shadow Minister James Lorimer MP on Tuesday decried the sharply reduced output of South Africa’s once-colossal mining industry and warned that mining's “jobs bloodbath” had only just begun. State statistics compiler StatsSA reported earlier this month that South Africa’s... 

Lorimer decries mining’s production crash, job losses
Shadow Minerals Minister James Lorimer

Miners adapting to more austere fundamental backdrop – report

By: Henry Lazenby     17th May 2016 Mining companies, in general, are adapting to a more austere fundamental backdrop, despite a recent announcement in Chinese media that the country would be removing stimulus and reprioritising reforms, which caused significant apprehension during Bank of America Merrill Lynch’s (BofAML’s) recent... 

Miners adapting to more austere fundamental backdrop – report

Draft Mining Charter under intense legal scrutiny

By: Martin Creamer     10th May 2016 The possible far-reaching implications for the mining industry of the new draft Mining Charter came under intense scrutiny in Johannesburg on Tuesday when a team of lawyers discussed the various changes contained in the draft and focused in particular on its attempt to align the mining industry –... 

Draft Mining Charter under intense legal scrutiny
Sabelo Dlamini of Fasken Martineau

Solar power solutions supplied to opencast mines

By: Kimberley Smuts     6th May 2016 Tailor-made energy solutions provider ZRW Mechanika’s supply of solar-powered masts last year to chrome mining company Samancor Western Chrome, which operates an opencast mine in Marikana, in the North West, has sparked interest from numerous municipalities in South Africa, Namibia and Botswana,... 

Solar power solutions supplied to opencast mines
POWER SOLUTION The ZRW mobile solar-powered floodlighting system was supplied to Namibian iron-ore mine which requires electricity to run 24/7

Glencore cuts supply cloth to fit demand coat

By: Martin Creamer     4th May 2016 The mix of mining and marketing within the same company provides sensitivity to commodity price falls. Continually highlighting the value of the mining-marketing mix is Glencore, which is quick to respond to market changes. 

Glencore cuts supply cloth to fit demand coat
Photo by Duane Daws
Ivan Glasenberg hand-in-hand with Education Minister Angie Motshekga at school opening.

Chromite recovery firm reports injury-free milestone

By: Ilan Solomons     29th April 2016 South African chromite recovery business Masa Chrome Company reported achieving seven years of total injury free shifts, which equates to 2 555 injury free days, on February 28. The International Chromium Development Association (ICDA) has welcomed this achievement by the company and hopes Masa... 

Chromite recovery firm reports  injury-free milestone
NOTABLE ACHIEVEMENT The International Chromium Development Association has welcomed this safety achievement by Masa Chrome Company

Companies bought to enhance training offering

     29th April 2016 Training, supply and management group Workforce Holdings announced in January that it had acquired the various operating companies comprising outsourcing solutions providers Quyn Outsource Solutions. Workforce has predominantly placed staff in nontechnical positions and adding Quyn to its service... 

Companies bought to  enhance training offering
Photo by Bloomberg
SKILLS OFFERING EXPANDED Quyn Outsource Solutions’s e provision of technical skills to clients across a range of industries represents diversification for Workforce

MetSkill

By: Creamer Media Reporter      29th April 2016 Process industry training provider MetSkill is actively involved with the development of the new occupational qualifications for the Quality Council for Trades and Occupations under the Mining Qualifications Authority (MQA). Benoni, Gauteng-based MetSkill, 100% owned by MD Rebecca Sands, has... 

Mineworkers empowered

By: Kimberley Smuts     29th April 2016 If workers in the mining, energy and construction industries want to improve their financial situation, it is important that they take advantage of the financial literacy programmes currently being rolled out by financial assistance provider Mineworkers Investment Trust (MIT), which supports... 

Mineworkers empowered
Photo by Bloomberg
INVESTING FOR THE FUTURE The Mineworkers Investment Trust's financial literacy training started in Mpumalanga as a pilot study in June 2015 with more training expected to take place this year

Society aims to integrate more students into mining sector 

By: Kimberley Smuts     29th April 2016 The University of Witwatersrand's Students Mining Engineering Society (SMES) aims to increase the integration of mining engineering graduates into the mining industry this year, as well as to encourage mining engineering students to have an opinion on mining-related issues in South Africa. SMES... 

Society aims to integrate more students into mining sector
FORTUNE MSIBI Mining engineering students face the challenge of a lack of available jobs in the sector, as a result of South Africa’s financial crisis

Technological advancements continue despite mining sector’s downturn

By: Sascha Solomons     29th April 2016 Beneficial trends and technological advancements in the mining industry are being introduced regardless of the depressed market conditions that the sector faces, says environmental management company I-CAT Environmental Solutions technical manager Morne van Wyk. One such trend is recycling water... 

Technological advancements continue despite mining sector’s downturn
HYFLUX KRISTAL HOLLOW-FIBRE Ensure the effective and environmentally safe reduction of excess wastewater in the mining industry

Jubilee’s ASA punching above its processing weight

By: Natasha Odendaal     28th April 2016 AltX- and Aim-listed Jubilee Platinum has increased the chrome processing capability of its Dilokong chrome mine (ASA project) beyond its design capacity. In an update to the market on Thursday, CEO Leon Coetzer said the ASA project was currently processing feed at 60 t/h, significantly above the... 

Empty mining pipeline expected to be hot Junior Indaba topic

By: Martin Creamer     25th April 2016 Mining’s problematic empty pipeline, which should be a major worry to both the mining industry and governments, is expected to be a hotly debated topic at the upcoming Junior Indaba in Johannesburg. Chairperson Bernard Swanepoel said on Monday that the Junior Indaba’s recently launched programme... 

Empty mining pipeline expected to be hot Junior Indaba topic
Photo by Duane Daws
Bernard Swanepoel

Merafe reports higher Q1 production

     20th April 2016 Ferrochrome producer Merafe Resources on Wednesday reported a 4% year-on-year increase to 103 000 t in attributable ferrochrome production from the Glencore Merafe Chrome Venture for the first quarter of the year. This was compared with attributable ferrochrome production of 99 000 t in the first... 

Ontario once more budgets a billion for RoF development, private sector takes action

By: Henry Lazenby     15th April 2016 For the third consecutive year, the Liberal Ontario government has made a C$1-billion commitment toward development in the emerging Ring of Fire (RoF) nickel/chromite mining camp, in the province’s remote far north. The RoF presented a multigenerational economic opportunity for the province, with... 

Ontario once more budgets a billion for RoF development, private sector takes action

Zwane gazettes Mining Charter review for comment

By: Martin Creamer     15th April 2016 Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane on Friday gazetted the draft reviewed broad-based black economic empowerment Mining Charter for public comment. The Ministry said in a release to Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly Online that the draft sought to strengthen the charter’s efficacy to effect... 

Zwane gazettes Mining Charter review for comment
Photo by Duane Daws
Mosebenzi Zwane

Middle East, North Africa on mining periphery despite hosting 30% of the world’s minerals

By: Ilan Solomons     15th April 2016 Despite having more than 30% of global mineral reserves, the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) region severely lacks exploration and resource development investment. The region’s mining industry is facing several challenges such as social and environmental pressure from communities living near... 

Middle East, North Africa on mining periphery despite hosting 30% of the world’s minerals

Modernisation at heart of new State-backed local mining equipment body

By: Martin Creamer     13th April 2016 The modernisation of South Africa’s mines and the extension of their lives are at the heart of a new government-backed local manufacturing body that will have access to a State-owned developmental cluster location, where joint development initiatives are envisaged. The new organisation – Mining... 

Modernisation at heart of new State-backed local mining equipment body
Photo by Duane Daws
Anton Wheeler (right) with Martin Creamer

Geochemical mapping of KZN leads to discovery of new target zones

By: Ilan Solomons     8th April 2016 The Council for Geoscience (CGS) has carried out a semiregional geochemical survey of the Tugela Terrane, in KwaZulu-Natal, which has resulted in the delineation of several new target areas for follow-up studies and a few geological anomalies near to known mineral occurrences, which warrant... 

Geochemical mapping of KZN leads to discovery  of new target zones
SURVEYING TUGELA In total 11 321 soil samples, each weighing 5 kg, were collected from a depth of 20 cm on a 500 m by 500 m grid

Rand offsets weaker prices for platinum, chrome producer Tharisa

By: Martin Creamer     7th April 2016 Weaker dollar platinum group metals (PGMs) and chrome prices in the three months to end March were partially offset by local currency decline which lifted the rand prices, JSE-listed and Cyprus-domiciled Tharisa reported on Thursday. The average PGM basket price for the quarter of $685/oz... 

Rand offsets weaker prices for platinum, chrome producer Tharisa
Photo by Duane Daws
Phoevos Pouroulis

Glencore agri sale surprises on upside

By: Martin Creamer     6th April 2016 The announcement by Glencore that it is selling 40% of its agricultural business to Canada Pension Plan Investment Board for $2.5-billion cash has received the nod from analysts. Glencore said the proceeds from the transaction would be used to reduce net debt. 

Glencore agri sale surprises on upside
Photo by Duane Daws
Ivan Glasenberg

Research predicts another tough year for commodities

By: Henry Lazenby     30th March 2016 In the wake of lacklustre discipline by producers to curtail output in the face of relentless price declines, Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML) Global Research was concerned that another leg of lower prices may be required to incentivise another round of cuts for a range of materials. In its... 

China sets course for smooth economic transition and commodity price gains

By: Simon Rees     24th March 2016 The retreat of commodity prices on the back of China’s economic shift belied rising levels of uptake and the likelihood of an upcycle later in the decade, CRU Group managing consultant Philip Macoun told an audience at the recent Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada convention.... 

China sets course for smooth economic transition and commodity price gains

KPMG calls for levelling of mine rehab playing field

By: Martin Creamer     24th March 2016 KPMG corporate tax head Muhammad Saloojee wants the tax authorities to level the mine rehabilitation playing field by ensuring that mine rehabilitation insurance premiums are tax deductible. His commentary to Creamer Media’s Mining Weekly Online comes against the background of a tax ruling that... 

KPMG calls for levelling of mine rehab playing field
Photo by Duane Daws
Muhammad Saloojee

IFM creditors to vote on amended BRP, acquisition price lowered to R520m

By: Creamer Media Reporter      18th March 2016 Creditors of International Ferro Metals (IFM) will, on March 24, vote on an amended business rescue plan (BRP) for subsidiary IFM South Africa (IFMSA), with the BRP outlining a decrease in the purchase price payable by Samancor Chrome to an estimated R520-million, compared with an initial price... 

IFM creditors to vote on amended BRP, acquisition price lowered to R520m

Noront closes C$6.33m prospectus offering

By: Henry Lazenby     18th March 2016 The largest landowner in Northern Ontario’s Ring of Fire chromite and nickel mining camp Noront Resources has raised gross proceeds of C$6.33-million after closing its short-form prospectus offering the company announced on Thursday. The company had issued the maximum number of units and... 

Motsepe spells out difficulty of retaining mandatory BEE ownership in perpetuity 

By: Martin Creamer     16th March 2016 The difficulty companies have in preventing their mandatory black economic empowerment (BEE) ownership arrangements from unravelling when BEE shareholders sell out is highlighted by top South African business leader Patrice Motsepe’s personal experience of BEE undoing within his diversified... 

Motsepe spells out difficulty of retaining mandatory BEE ownership in perpetuity
Photo by Duane Daws
Patrice Motsepe

Merafe cash skyrockets on ferrochrome venture’s superb showing

     10th March 2016 Ferrochrome company Merafe shot the proverbial lights out in 2015, when its cash generation went through the roof and every box was ticked, from upped production to improved safety. Mining Weekly editor Martin Creamer joins Creamer Media's Sashnee Moodley in studio to discuss the developments. 

Merafe cash skyrockets on ferrochrome venture’s superb showing

Merafe cash skyrockets on ferrochrome venture’s superb showing

By: Martin Creamer     8th March 2016 Ferrochrome company Merafe, which generates revenue and operating income primarily from its chrome venture with mining and marketing major Glencore, shot the proverbial lights out in 2015, when its cash generation went through the roof and every box was ticked from upped production to improved... 

Merafe cash skyrockets on ferrochrome venture’s superb showing
Photo by Duane Daws
Zanele Matlala

Moody’s cuts BHP’s debt rating

By: Henry Lazenby     4th March 2016 Investment risk ratings agency Moody’s Investors Service on Thursday cut the world’s largest miner BHP Billiton’s debt rating from A1 to A3, mentioning the deterioration in the company's earnings and cash flow, which has led to significantly weaker credit metrics. The outlook for all ratings of... 

Glencore posts $4.9bn net loss

By: Martin Creamer     1st March 2016 Diversified mining and marketing company Glencore on Tuesday reported a net loss to equity holders of $4.9-billion for 2015, a year of focus on debt reduction, supply discipline and cost efficiencies. The company recorded net exceptional charges to equity holders of $5.8-billion, related... 

Glencore posts $4.9bn net loss
Photo by Duane Daws
Ivan Glasenberg

Subscription Offer: Two-years for the price of one

     29th February 2016 Subscribe to Engineering News and Mining Weekly for two years, but only pay for the first year.  The weekly editions of Engineering News and Mining Weekly will be posted to your preferred postal address and also gain access to: 

Subscription Offer: Two-years for the price of one

Northam Platinum advancing growth projects to meet projected 2020 undersupply

By: Martin Creamer     26th February 2016 Platinum mining company Northam Platinum on Friday elaborated on its growth projects that are timed to counter a lack of replacement investment over the past decade across the primary production industry, which is expected to lead to under supply. Northam Platinum CEO Paul Dunne told mining... 

Northam Platinum advancing growth projects to meet projected 2020 undersupply

Ferrochrome price nears bottom, but no improvement expected just yet – analyst

By: Ilan Solomons     12th February 2016 The ferrochrome market is nearing the bottom of the cycle. This is evidenced by the fact that the latest price contractions have resulted in closures across the supply chain, states mining consultancy Core Consultants MD Lara Smith. She notes that stainless steel production during quarter four of... 

Ferrochrome price nears bottom, but no improvement  expected just yet – analyst
Photo by Duane Daws
REDUCED USE Ferrochrome capacity use has slowed to 54% in 2015, compared to 60% in 2014

Mining stocks resemble ‘a big Walmart sale’ as low commodity prices persist

By: Henry Lazenby     12th February 2016 Sentiment remain negative about the mining and oil and gas industries as the super cycle nears a protracted potential bottom, resulting in dwindling market capitalisations for companies large and small and cruelly undervalued stock prices – creating a buyer’s market for the savvy investor. Chief... 

Mining stocks resemble ‘a big Walmart sale’ as low commodity prices persist

Glencore reports lower FY coal, copper output

By: Creamer Media Reporter      11th February 2016 Output across most of diversified major Glencore’s production categories fell in 2015, with coal output down 10% year-on-year, copper production 3% year-on-year and nickel 5% year-on-year. Coal production decreased to 131.5-million tonnes, owing to the curtailment of production in response to... 

Glencore reports lower FY coal, copper output
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