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Ferrous Metals News

UG2 outperforms as Sibanye positions for new world ­  

By: Martin Creamer     21st February 2019 The soaring prices of rhodium and palladium have put new focus on the upper group two (UG2) reef, for long the poor cousin of Merensky reef in the hierarchy of platinum group metals (PGMs) mining. Merensky's predominant platinum content has made it the preferred reef for decades but UG2 is... 

Brazil regulator suspends operations at two Vale mine complexes

By: Reuters     21st February 2019 Brazil's mining regulator has ordered Vale SA to suspend activity at its Fabrica and Vargem Grande complexes, the iron ore miner said late on Wednesday, as authorities crack down after last month's fatal dam break. In a statement, Vale said the ANM mining regulator ordered the suspension in... 

Linhleko Projects, FLSmidth partner to boost Waterval chrome production by 20%

By: Nadine James     21st February 2019 Black-owned fabrication and mining installations company Linhleko Projects this week officially launched its cooperation agreement with FLSmidth – a 50/50 profit sharing agreement in which Linhleko uses FLSmidth’s REFLUX Classifier (RC) technology to enhance chrome recovery from... 

Black Iron in talks with Glencore to finance Ukraine iron project

By: Creamer Media Reporter      20th February 2019 Canadian junior Black Iron on Wednesday announced that it had signed a nonbinding memorandum of understanding with a subsidiary of Glencore, pursuant to which the parties agreed to engage in formal negotiations to finance the construction of the Shymanivske iron-ore project, in Ukraine. The... 

Glencore auditing 140 slimes dams 

By: Martin Creamer     20th February 2019 Diversified mining and marketing company Glencore is auditing 140 slimes dams, 65 of them active and 75 of them closed. The company has been undertaking detailed assessments and audits of all material tailings storage facilities (TSFs) over the past three years, after accumulating a TSF... 

Glencore auditing 140 slimes dams
Photo by Glencore
Fifty-one percent of Glencore's tailings storage faciities are upstream dams.

Fortescue interim profit jumps, special dividend declared

By: Esmarie Iannucci     20th February 2019 Higher iron-ore prices over the six months to December has allowed major Fortescue Metals to report a 10% increase in revenue and a 21% increase in underlying earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda). Fortescue on Wednesday reported that revenue for the six months... 

Fortescue interim profit jumps, special dividend declared

Brazil iron-ore tragedy brings home reality of mining risk – Kumba  

By: Martin Creamer     19th February 2019 Following 58 mineworkers suffering fatal occupational accidents in South Africa in 2018, Kumba Iron Ore CE Themba Mkhwanazi on Tuesday drew attention to 2019 beginning globally with the tragic loss of life at Brumadinho, in Brazil, as a result of an iron-ore tailings dam collapse that killed 170... 

Price premiums boosting quality-focused Kumba Iron Ore  

By: Martin Creamer     19th February 2019 South Africa’s Kumba Iron Ore, which stands head and shoulders above its peers when it comes to iron-ore quality, is achieving major price premiums well above historical heights. Structural change and strong growth in particularly the China steel market has placed the Anglo American group company... 

Price premiums boosting quality-focused Kumba Iron Ore
Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer reports on Kumba Iron Ore. Video: Creamer Media’s Nicholas Boyd.

BHP can't rescue iron-ore market after Brazil dam disaster

By: Bloomberg     19th February 2019 BHP Group, the world’s biggest miner, doesn’t have capacity to raise shipments into the iron ore market as competitor Vale faces outages following the fatal mining disaster in Brazil last month. The global iron ore market has been thrown upside down by the tragedy, after Vale was forced to... 

 BHP can't rescue iron-ore market after Brazil dam disaster

Kumba pays dividend, boosts safety, explores, creates local jobs

By: Martin Creamer     19th February 2019 Product-improving  Kumba Iron Ore generated hefty operational cash flow, paid a competent final 2018 cash dividend, pressed on with exploration in a new area and supported the creation of 2 600 new jobs in the local community, during a fatality-free, safety-boosted year, characterised by higher... 

Kumba pays dividend, boosts safety, explores, creates local jobs
Kumba Iron Ore CE Themba Mkhwanazi

Buybacks and bumper profits on the cards as mining giants report

By: Bloomberg     18th February 2019 A surge in iron-ore prices is fueling hopes for bigger returns and a share-buyback spree as the world’s top miners prepare to report results. BHP, Rio Tinto, Glencore and Anglo American are expected to announce bumper profits over the next two weeks. So far, the biggest producers have remained... 

Brazil bans upstream mining dams after Vale's latest disaster

By: Bloomberg     18th February 2019 Brazil is prohibiting a specific type of tailings dam after two of those structures owned by miner Vale burst in recent years, causing death and environmental devastation. All so-called upstream dams need to be decommissioned or removed by August 2021, according to a resolution the National... 

Brazil bans upstream mining dams after Vale's latest disaster
Vale CEO Fabio Schvartsman flies over the latest dam disaster area in Brazil.

Constitutional Court upholds Aquila’s Gravenhage manganese mining right

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     18th February 2019 The Constitutional Court has upheld a High Court judgment granting China-based Baowu Group subsidiary, Aquila Steel, a mining right over its Gravenhage manganese deposit, located in South Africa’s Northern Cape province. Aquila’s planned development of Gravenhage has been delayed for several... 

Riley restart on the cards

By: Esmarie Iannucci     18th February 2019 ASX-listed Venture Minerals is looking to restart its Riley direct shipping ore iron-ore mine, in Tasmania. The company on Monday said that it was reviewing the economics of the Riley project, following a significant recovery in the iron-ore prices, and expressions of interest by several third... 

Vale evacuates 200 people near Brazilian dam on fears of instability

By: Reuters     18th February 2019 Around 200 residents were evacuated from an area near a tailings dam in Brazil operated by Vale late on Saturday, amid fears that it was structurally weak and could burst like a similar barrier failure last month that killed 300 people. Vale said in a statement that it had evacuated people... 

Trust in tailings? Vale dam disaster spurs investors into action

By: Reuters     15th February 2019 Seeking assurances from Brazilian miner Vale by phone after a second deadly dam disaster in three years is not enough for Sasja Beslik. He plans to fly there himself to get answers. Beslik, head of sustainable finance at Swedish bank Nordea, blocked the bank's investment managers from buying any... 

Miner Vale says fire to halt operations at Malaysia distribution center

By: Reuters     15th February 2019 Brazilian miner Vale SA said a fire broke out on Friday in its distribution center in Malaysia, temporarily affecting shipments, according to a securities filing. Vale added that the fire caused "only material damages" and that operations are likely to resume in 10 to 15 days. 

Australian miner Fortescue says 2 driverless trucks involved in low-speed incident

By: Reuters     15th February 2019 Australian iron-ore miner Fortescue said on Friday that one of its driverless trucks, travelling at low speed, ran into another that was parked at its remote Western Australian operations in an incident earlier this week. No-one was hurt or at risk of being injured in the Febuary 11 incident,... 

China won't come to the rescue in global iron-ore supply crisis

By: Bloomberg     15th February 2019 China’s strict environmental regime means domestic iron ore mines won’t boost output to meet any supply shortfall after Vale’s dam disaster, according to the head of a major Chinese mining group. The global iron-ore market is in the grip of a supply shock after the deadly dam burst last month in... 

Re-evaluation of SA’s mineral beneficiation strategy urged amid slow progress

By: Paige Müller     15th February 2019 Amid slow progress in realising South Africa’s mineral beneficiation strategy – as set out in the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) 2011 policy document – mining industry participants, analysts and experts are re-evaluating the feasibility of mineral beneficiation as a growth trajectory path.... 

Re-evaluation of SA’s mineral beneficiation strategy urged amid slow progress

Champion considers doubling Bloom Lake capacity

By: Mariaan Webb     14th February 2019 Quebec iron-ore miner Champion Iron is considering doubling the capacity of its Bloom Lake mine, near Fermont, and will complete a feasibility study before the end of the year. Pending a positive decision resulting from an economical feasibility study, construction could start in late 2019 or... 

South32 finalising preferred list of coal mine bidders 

By: Martin Creamer     14th February 2019 The complete preferred list of bidders for South32’s energy coal interests is still being finalised, South32 CEO Graham Kerr told Mining Weekly Online on Thursday, when he also provided three reasons why the company’s Australian manganese operations are doing better than its South African... 

South32 finalising preferred list of coal mine bidders
Photo by Creamer Media
South32 CEO Graham Kerr

Brazil govt sets sights on Vale in 'reprivatisation' push

By: Bloomberg     13th February 2019 Brazil’s government intends to make the mining giant Vale "private again" by pushing out pension funds of State-controlled companies, a senior official said on Wednesday. Shares rose. "Vale is a State company. Pension funds controlled by the government control Vale," Privatisation Secretary... 

NGOs push to expel Brazil miner Vale from UN pact over dam disaster

By: Reuters     13th February 2019 A group of international non-governmental organisations on Tuesday demanded that Brazilian miner Vale be excluded from the United Nations' corporate responsibility pact, after a mining dam burst that killed an estimated 300 people. A letter signed by more than 15 NGOs said that Vale failed to... 

Vale disaster could see Brazil’s iron-ore competitive edge slip away

By: Mariaan Webb     12th February 2019 The January 25 Brumadinho dam disaster is expected to knock Brazil’s competitiveness in the global iron-ore market and will elicit a supply response from mines in China, as well as new projects that could be brought on line in the next few years. This is according to analysts at London-based... 

Vale disaster could see Brazil’s iron-ore competitive edge slip away

Vale's rout lures locals while foreigners remain wary, UBS says

By: Bloomberg     11th February 2019 Local investors are starting to see value in Vale SA shares after a fatal accident last month wiped out nearly a quarter of its market value, while global investors remain skeptical, according to UBS Group. Approximately 80% of Brazilian investors are showing interest in buying Vale after the... 

Xolobeni judgment continues to confound 

By: Martin Creamer     11th February 2019 Mining must take place with a strong focus on the interests of those who live in mining areas, says Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe, a standpoint that supports the notion that a mining right and a land right can co-exist, without pleasing one party at the expense of the other.  But the... 

Xolobeni judgment continues to confound
Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe

Tshipi declares R1.1bn H2 dividend

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     11th February 2019 Jupiter Mines on Monday announced that the board of Tshipi é Ntle Manganese Mining has resolved to distribute a R1.1-billion dividend to its shareholders for the second half of the 2019 financial year. Tshipi has distributed R3.2-billion in dividends for the full financial year. 

First chrome concentrate shipped from Eastplats subsidiary’s retreatment facility

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     11th February 2019 Dual-listed Eastern Platinum’s (Eastplats’) Barplats Mines subsidiary has shipped the first 10 000 t of chrome concentrate from its newly built Zandfontein Upper Group 2 tailings chrome retreatment facility in South Africa’s North West province. The retreatment facility is being commissioned,... 

China iron-ore rises to record on concerns over Brazilian supply

By: Reuters     11th February 2019 China iron-ore futures rose to a record on Monday, the first session after a week-long national holiday, on concerns that supply from Brazil, the country's second-largest ore supplier, may decline after a fatal dam accident at a Vale mine. The most-active iron ore futures for May delivery on the... 

Cliffs upbeat about 2019 as 2018 net income hits $1.1bn

By: Mariaan Webb     8th February 2019 US iron-ore miner Cleveland-Cliffs posted net income of $1.1-billion in 2018, eclipsing the previous year’s income of $363-million, on the back of an increase in revenue. Revenue jumped to $2.3-billion, from the prior year’s $1.9-billion, while cost of goods sold and operation expenses increased... 

ArcelorMittal, Vale dam inspections trigger evacuations

By: Mariaan Webb     8th February 2019 Two Brazilian towns near iron-ore tailings dams in Minas Gerais state were evacuated on Friday as a precautionary measure while inspections of the structures were under way. Vale, which is reeling from a deadly dam wall burst last month, said that the area downstream of the Sul Superior tailings... 

ArcelorMittal, Vale dam inspections trigger evacuations
Vale CEO Fabio Schvartsman flies over the Brumadinho dam disaster area.

Flying iron-ore prices to boost Black Iron’s project economics

By: Mariaan Webb     8th February 2019 Canadian iron-ore developer Black Iron says high-grade iron-ore pellet product should sell at a premium for the next few years, resulting in attractive project economics for its planned Shymanivske project, in the Ukraine. A deadly dam burst in Brazil on January 25 has lit a fire under iron-ore... 

Flying iron-ore prices to boost Black Iron’s project economics

Brazil set to ban upstream tailings dams after collapse kills hundreds

By: Reuters     7th February 2019 Brazil's mining agency plans to ban upstream tailings dams used for storing mining waste, a director at the National Mining Agency (ANM) said on Thursday, after such a dam burst last month, likely killing at least 300 people. Eduardo Leão, a director at ANM, said the agency aims to issue an... 

Namibia Critical Metals signs deal for Kunene small-scale mining initiative

By: Natasha Odendaal     7th February 2019 TSX-V-listed Namibia Critical Metals has signed a deal with a private, undisclosed Namibia-based group for the development of a small-scale manganese mine at its wholly-owned subsidiary Kunene Resources Namibia’s operations. The agreement allows the local Namibian group to produce manganese... 

Vale loses licence at dam that caused iron-ore force majeure

By: Bloomberg     7th February 2019 Vale’s licence to operate a dam key to production at one of its largest mines was revoked by a Brazilian state regulator on February 5, adding another hurdle to efforts by the iron ore king to return to normal operations. Shares declined. The world’s largest miner of the steelmaking ingredient... 

AMSA reports first profit since 2010 on back of higher steel prices  

By: Terence Creamer     7th February 2019 Following years of sustained losses, steel producer ArcelorMittal South Africa (AMSA) reported a full-year profit in 2018, on the back of a 12% rise in average realised prices and a 5% increase in sales volumes, supported by a 21% rise in export sales. The company last reported a full-year profit... 

AMSA reports first profit since 2010 on back of higher steel prices
New AMSA CFO Desmond Maharaj on the contribution made by the sale of Macsteel International Holdings to AMSA's net borrowings. Camera Work & Editing: Darlene Creamer. Recorded: 7.2.2019

Transnet promises to ramp up efficiency 

By: Kim Cloete     6th February 2019 Transnet has promised to deal with corruption and step up efficiency around its operations, which have taken a heavy knock over the past few years. “Over the past ten years, we have injected capital of R42-billion into the network side. Yet the scale of the network is worse today than it was ten... 

Transnet promises to ramp up efficiency
Photo by Creamer Media
Transnet acting CEO Tau Morwe
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