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Coal News

Reinstatement of Eskom system reports seen as way to rebuild trust through transparency

By: Terence Creamer     7th June 2018 State-owned electricity producer Eskom has re-launched its weekly system status report as part of broader efforts to rebuild trust with South African citizens, who remain skeptical about the utility’s ability to keep the lights on. The service, which is now available on Eskom’s website, was... 

Workers call for total shutdown of Eskom amid wage negotiations deadlock 

By: African News Agency      7th June 2018 The National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) on Thursday called for a total shutdown of South African state-owned power utility, Eskom, following another collapse in wage negotiations.  Eskom workers are demanding a 15% wage increase across the board in a one-year agreement, 80:20 percent contribution... 

No let up on calls for flow-through model to boost exploration

By: Martin Creamer     7th June 2018 The failure to raise risk capital for greenfields exploration in South Africa was highlighted at this week’s Junior Indaba, where there was no let up on calls for the adoption of a proven Canada-type flow-through share scheme, and ongoing criticism of the unintended consequences of South Africa’s... 

No let up on calls for flow-through model to boost exploration
Photo by Wynand van der Merwe
JSE business development manager Patrycja Kula-Verster

Eskom to approach courts to have Nersa’s 5.23% tariff decision set aside 

By: Terence Creamer     7th June 2018 State-owned electricity utility Eskom will, in the coming days, approach the courts to have the National Energy Regulator of South Africa’s (Nersa’s) tariff determination for 2018/19 set aside, chairperson Jabu Mabuza confirmed on Thursday. The action would represent Eskom’s first-ever legal... 

Eskom to approach courts to have Nersa’s 5.23% tariff decision set aside
Public Enterprises Minister Pravin Gordhan on Eskom's restructuring, 'Gupta-risation' of coal and improving primary-energy security and costs. Camera Work & Editing: Nicholas Boyd: Recorded: 7.6.2018

Qld refutes claims it will fund access road to Carmichael mine

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     7th June 2018 The Queensland government has denied reports that it is planning to fund up to A$100-million to build an access road for Adani’s Carmichael coal mine. “There are currently no proposals about roads and Adani being considered by the government,” Queensland Mines and Energy Minister Dr Anthony... 

Mandela Mining Precinct partner boasts simulation capabilities, serves as ‘test-bed’ for Mining 4.0 technologies 

By: Nadine James     7th June 2018 SiMINE @ Mandela Mining Precinct, located at Carlow Road in Johannesburg, effectively offers two core services – experiential mining simulation as well as a “test bed” for Mining 4.0 principles and systems – for the betterment of the industry, says SiMINE director Gary Lane. He explains that... 

Mandela Mining Precinct partner boasts simulation capabilities, serves as ‘test-bed’ for Mining 4.0 technologies
Gary Lane, Harry Sinko and Antony Mello discuss SiMINE's official launch.

Seriti Resources interested in Optimum Coal as it looks to export

By: Reuters     6th June 2018 South African miner Seriti Resources wants to move into exporting coal and would be interested in buying the assets and quotas of the Gupta family's Optimum Coal, its CEO said. Bidding for Optimum Coal would pit Seriti, which has ambitions to become a black-owned mining champion, with bigger... 

Seriti Resources interested in Optimum Coal as it looks to export
Photo by Creamer Media
Seriti CEO Mike Teke

Kibo moves into the Mozambican market

By: Marleny Arnoldi     6th June 2018 Aim- and JSE-listed Kibo Mining has signed a joint venture (JV) agreement with Mozambican energy company Termoeléctrica de Benga to participate in the further assessment and potential development of the Benga independent power project, in Tete, Mozambique.  

Regency Mines contributes $2m to own 47% of US met coal JV

By: Marleny Arnoldi     6th June 2018 Aim-listed hydrocarbons and base metals miner Regency Mines has deposited $2-million in escrow, pending completion of the joint venture (JV) funding with privately-owned mining company Legacy Hill, which will see Regency owning 47% of Mining Equity Trust (MET) – a new Delaware-incorporated... 

Plan for mining community development levy scrapped

By: Bloomberg     6th June 2018 South Africa’s government has scrapped plans to compel mining companies to contribute 1% of their annual turnover to a new community development agency because it feared the funds could be abused, the nation’s mining minister said. The levy was proposed in a draft of the nation’s new Mining... 

Current mining ‘boom’ very different to last one – CRU

By: Martin Creamer     6th June 2018 A return of capital expenditure (capex) and inorganic sources of growth are seen as a key corporate priority for 2018 and beyond, CRU Group senior consultant Aleksander Popovic said on Wednesday. The provider of marketing intelligence to mining told the Junior Indaba that the company’s... 

Current mining ‘boom’ very different to last one – CRU
Photo by Dylan Slater
CRU Group senior consultant Aleksander Popovic

Thiess wins contract extension at Curragh

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     6th June 2018 The mining services division of ASX-listed Cimic, Thiess, has been awarded a A$160-million contract extension at the Curragh coal mine, in Queensland. Under the terms of the contract, Thiess will mine some 45-million cubic meters of waste and coal at Curragh’s North Pit, until June 2019. 

Multistakeholder initiative launched to address sustainable mine closure challenges

By: Nadine James     5th June 2018 Private and public sector entities officially launched a sustainable mine closure collaborative platform, called the Mine Water Coordinating Body (MWCB), at the Nedbank-New Partnership for Africa’s Development (Nepad) Business Foundation Networking Forum, hosted in Sandton, on Tuesday. The MWCB... 

South Africa’s commodity sector continues to suffer, despite favourable market conditions

By: Simone Liedtke     5th June 2018 While favourable market conditions, higher commodity prices and strong internal discipline will produce increased liquidity and balance sheet strength for miners this year, advisory firm PwC Africa energy, utilities and resources leader Michal Kotzé believes South Africa’s commodity sector will... 

Murray Energy swaps debt on heels of Trump plan to boost coal

By: Bloomberg     5th June 2018 Murray Energy Corp, the coal miner led by Robert E Murray, said some of its debt holders agreed to refinance a chunk of the company’s bonds and loans as the Trump administration makes a new push to buoy the struggling fossil fuel industry. The deal cuts debt and gives Murray Energy more time to... 

Murray Energy swaps debt on heels of Trump plan to boost coal

NUM kicks against Eskom’s 0% wage increase

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th June 2018 National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) members in the Pretoria-Witwatersrand-Vereeniging region who are employees at Eskom have resolved not to accept the utility’s offer of a 0% wage increase.  

NUM kicks against Eskom’s 0% wage increase

Two killed in abandoned mine in Morocco – agency

By: Reuters     4th June 2018 Two freelance miners have died in a rockfall in an abandoned Moroccan lead mine in a region hit by protests after the similar deaths of two other miners in December, state news agency MAP said. "Two people, aged 33 and 42, were killed on Sunday after a lead gallery partially collapsed in the... 

Prepare for greater generation competition, Radebe tells Eskom

By: Terence Creamer     4th June 2018 Energy Minister Jeff Radebe has hinted at possible dramatic changes in the structure of South Africa’s electricity supply industry, which is currently dominated by Eskom, a vertically integrated State-owned utility. During a recent stakeholder gathering the Minister responded strongly in the... 

Prepare for greater generation competition, Radebe tells Eskom

Resgen seeks additional funding while Boikarabelo delay continues

By: Simone Liedtke     4th June 2018 ASX- and JSE-listed Resource Generation (Resgen) will, this month, table a submission with international commodities group Noble Resources, for the provision of additional funding for the anticipated working capital requirement arising from the development delay in Resgen’s... 

Big investors urge G7 to step up climate action, shift from coal

By: Reuters     4th June 2018 Institutional investors with $26-trillion in assets under management called on Group of Seven leaders on Monday to phase out the use of coal in power generation to help limit climate change, despite strong opposition from Washington. Government plans to cut greenhouse gas emissions were too weak... 

Big investors urge G7 to step up climate action, shift from coal

South Africa to release new-look renewables bid window in November

By: Terence Creamer     1st June 2018 Energy Minister Jeff Radebe announced on Friday that South Africa would launch a fifth Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) bid window in November with the aim of procuring a further 1 800 MW of renewable energy from independent power producers (IPPs).... 

South Africa to release new-look renewables bid window in November
Photo by Dylan Slater
Energy Minister Jeff Radebe

Mitsui to keep stake in Australia's Kestrel coking coal mine

By: Reuters     1st June 2018 Mitsui & Co will hold on to its 20% stake in the Kestrel coking coal mine in Australia even after the planned sale of Rio Tinto's 80% stake in the mine, a spokesman for the Japanese trading house said on Friday. "We will continue to be involved in the Kestrel mine with new partners," the... 

Nkomati Anthracite to supply 40% of South Africa’s needs in three to five years

By: Marleny Arnoldi     1st June 2018 The Nkomati Anthracite mine, in which Unicorn Capital Partners holds a 50.3% interest, plans to produce as much as 40% of South Africa’s anthracite needs in the next three to five years.  

Nkomati Anthracite to supply 40% of South Africa’s needs in three to five years

Unpacking the headlines in the coal sector  

1st June 2018 This week Mining Weekly editor Martin Creamer unpacks coal litigation fears, capital deployment into Junior Mining and two coal IPPs that are not in the public interest.   

Unpacking the headlines in the coal sector
Unpacking the headlines in the coal sector

Frydenberg promises more scrutiny as study shows Hunter coal mines threaten groundwater

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     1st June 2018 Federal Environment and Energy Minister Josh Frydenberg on Friday said that any new coal mining operation in the Hunter region of New South Wales would be subject to a review of their impact on groundwater resources, before they would be approved. This comes after the government released new... 

Whitehaven aims for full Winchester South ownership

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     1st June 2018 Coal miner Whitehaven Coal on Friday said that it was hoping to take full ownership of the Winchester South coal project, in Queensland, before the end of June. Whitehaven has now completed the acquisition of mining major Rio Tinto’s 75% interest in the project for A$200-million, as part of... 

‘Law does not adequately protect pregnant women working in risk environments’

By: Nadine James     1st June 2018 The legislature should amend the Unemployment Insurance Act (UIA) to protect pregnant employees working in risk environments, says Cliffe Dekker Hofmyer employment practice director Fiona Leppan. She says South African legislation does not provide adequate protection for pregnant women working in... 

‘Law does not adequately protect pregnant women  working in risk environments’
FIONA LEPPAN If the Unemployment Insurance Act were to be amended, it should address situations where pregnant women would be prejudiced because of the work environment – not because they are pregnant

Brazilian miner’s purchases in Mozambique approaching $1-billion

By: Rebecca Campbell     1st June 2018 Brazilian mining group Vale has created a significant local supply chain in Mozambique to support its Moatize coal operation in the African country’s Tete province. This was highlighted recently by the President of Mozambique’s Confederation of Economic Associations (Confederação das Associações... 

Sentiment dampens as Charter, MPRDA deadline commitments are postponed

By: Nadine James     1st June 2018 The positive sentiment stemming from the appointment of President Cyril Ramaphosa, and the subsequent appointment of Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe has dampened recently as Mantashe pushed out the finalisation of the Mining Charter and lodged an application for leave to appeal against... 

Sentiment dampens as Charter, MPRDA deadline  commitments are postponed
WARREN BEECH Hogan Lovells’ Mining head believes Minerals Resources Minster Mantashe’s credibility has been adversely impacted by some of his recent comments

Oil & gas, mining industries anxious about top brass succession planning

By: Henry Lazenby     31st May 2018 There is real anxiety in the oil and gas and mining industries regarding the lack of aptitude to replace an ageing top-level management talent pool, Stephen Diotte, partner and head of leadership services for Odgers Berndtson tells Mining Weekly Online. He recently joined the executive search... 

Oil & gas, mining industries anxious about top brass succession planning

Civil society seeks to protect Mpumalanga water source from coal mining impact

By: Simone Liedtke     31st May 2018 New legal proceedings have been launched in the Mbombela High Court against Atha-Africa Ventures’ proposed development of the Yzermyn coal mine inside a protected area and strategic water resource area, in Mpumalanga. A coalition of eight community and civil society organisations have lodged a... 

From chopping block to 'core', Anglo fires up met coal engine

By: Bloomberg     31st May 2018 Anglo American Plc is set to boost metallurgical coal capacity at a mine complex in Australia by 25% as the business once destined for the chopping block turns into a cash machine for the century-old miner. The company plans to increase processing capacity to 20-million metric tons a year from... 

 From chopping block to 'core', Anglo fires up met coal engine

Gupta-owned mines' rehabilitation funds case back in court

By: News24Wire      31st May 2018 An application by the trustees of the mining rehabilitation funds of two Gupta-owned companies, to reverse the attachment of about R1.7-billion by the National Director of Public Prosecutions, is expected be heard in the North Gauteng High Court in Pretoria on Thursday. The money was seized by... 

Gupta-owned mines' rehabilitation funds case back in court

Commission approves NBC, ECM merger without conditions

By: Simone Liedtke     30th May 2018 The Competition Commission has approved the proposed transaction, whereby newly-incorporated company North Block Complex (NBC) intends to acquire Exxaro Coal Mpumalanga (ECM) in respect of its mining and processing business, the transferred business, without conditions. The transferred business,... 

Coal industry should ensure that it does not lower air quality to avoid silicosis repeat

By: Martin Creamer     30th May 2018 South Africa’s coal industry should ensure that it does not lower air quality to avoid ending up in the same litigious space as the gold mining sector with silicosis. Earlier this month, a class action settlement was reached with thousands of mineworkers suffering from silicosis and/or... 

Coal industry should ensure that it does not lower air quality to avoid silicosis repeat
Photo by Dylan Slater
Matleng chairperson Nelisiwe Magubane

India revives coal sector regulator proposal

By: Ajoy K Das     30th May 2018 With the auction of coal blocks for commercial mining scheduled for next month, the Indian government has revived a proposal to sett up a coal sector regulator. The Coal Ministry has already announced rules for the auction and is in the final stages of drawing up a list of coal blocks that will... 

Coal India to hike daily supplies even as governments differ on coal shortage

By: Ajoy K Das     30th May 2018 On the directive of the Power Ministry, Coal India Limited (CIL) will supply 1.4-million tons a day to all thermal power plants across the country, even as federal and state governments joust over whether the domestic power sector is facing a dry fuel shortage or not. Soon after taking charge,... 

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