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Legislative Environment News

Good geology, favourable policy underpin stable mining industry

By: Nadine James     1st July 2016 South American mining countries Argentina, Brazil, Chile and Peru have adequately managed the 2015 commodities crash, as their mining industries remain stable with a positive outlook, advises international market researcher BMI Research. BMI commodities analyst Molly Shutt notes that the... 

SA mining not yet ‘radically transformed’ – DMR official

By: Ilan Solomons     1st July 2016 The depressed global economic environment has created challenges in the mining sector, and although some commodities are beginning to emerge from the slump, conditions remain difficult for the sector, Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) deputy director-general Joel Raphela told delegates at the... 

SA mining not yet ‘radically transformed’ – DMR official
Photo by Duane Daws
JOEL RAPHELA The Mining Charter has helped to transform the local mining sector, as more black people have been able to participate as mine owners and managers

Canada court overturns federal approval of Enbridge oil pipeline

By: Reuters     30th June 2016 A Canadian court has overturned the approval of Enbridge's Northern Gateway oil pipeline, adding another steep obstacle to a project fiercely opposed by environmentalists and many aboriginal groups. The Federal Court of Appeal ruled in a 2-to-1 decision released on Thursday that the government... 

Canada court overturns federal approval of Enbridge oil pipeline

Resources Watch 

     30th June 2016 Mining Charter should be policy not law; And, potential mining investors urged to consider rest of Africa as well 

Resources Watch

New Indian minerals policy clears way for private explorers

By: Ajoy K Das     30th June 2016 The Indian Union Cabinet of Ministers on Wednesday approved the National Mineral Exploration Policy (NMEP), paving the way for private and government agencies to bid for at least 100 mineral blocks. Under the policy, provincial governments would identify prospective mineral blocks to be... 

New Wits Mining Institute to focus on innovation

By: Martin Creamer     30th June 2016 Innovative technology solutions for the struggling mining sector will be the focus of a new unit at the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits), which brings together various disciplines under former School of Mining Engineering head Professor Fred Cawood. The new Wits Mining Institute will... 

New Wits Mining Institute to focus on innovation
Wits Mining Institute director Professor Fred Cawood

Glencore throws full weight behind transparency in money-to-govts report 

By: Martin Creamer     29th June 2016 Global diversified mining and marketing company Glencore threw its full weight behind complete openness in its maiden Payments-To-Governments Report 2015. In a 17-page outline, Glencore CFO Steve Kalmin provides an overview of the $5-billion it paid last year to 16 governments ranging from... 

Glencore throws full weight behind transparency in money-to-govts report
Photo by Duane Daws
Glencore CFO Steve Kalmin

Mining Indaba slashes prices for mining corporates

By: Martin Creamer     29th June 2016 Mining companies attending the upcoming Investing in African Mining Indaba in Cape Town will benefit from significantly reduced registration fees. Mining Indaba officials have introduced price reductions of up to 50% for the February 6 to 9 event, now in its twenty-third year. 

Mining Indaba slashes prices for mining corporates
Mining Indaba MD Jonathan Moore

Indian Cabinet clears new mineral exploration policy – govt source

By: Reuters     29th June 2016 India's cabinet on Wednesday cleared a new mineral exploration policy that will allow private companies to carry out stand-alone exploration for the first time, a government source said. India is keen to get private firms to start exploring for more minerals like diamonds and gold, where current... 

Waterberg rail supply disappoints Exxaro

By: Martin Creamer     28th June 2016 Rail supply in the Waterberg region since the beginning of the year has been disappointing, Exxaro Resources said on Tuesday. The JSE-listed company reported receiving only 3.5 trains a week from Transnet Freight Rail instead of the required five, a situation likely to persist until the... 

Waterberg rail supply disappoints Exxaro
Photo by Duane Daws
Exxaro CEO Mxolisi Mgojo

Amec welcomes govt decision to extend interim relief of port charges

By: Samantha Herbst     28th June 2016 The Association of Mining & Exploration Companies (Amec) has welcomed the decision to extend the $2.50/t interim relief package at the Utah Point Bulk Handling Facility in Port Hedland for at least another 12 months. Western Australian State Development Minister Bill Marmion, together with... 

Kyrgyz environment agency approves Centerra’s 2016 Kumtor mine plan

By: Henry Lazenby     27th June 2016 Officials of a Kyrgyz environmental protection agency have averted the shutdown of Canadian miner Centerra Gold’s Kumtor mine on July 1 by approving the operation’s mine plan for the remainder of 2016, the company reported Monday. The Kyrgyz Republic State Agency for Environmental Protection and... 

TransCanada formally seeks Nafta damages in Keystone XL rejection

By: Reuters     27th June 2016 TORONTO – TransCanada is formally requesting arbitration over US President Barack Obama's rejection of the Keystone XL pipeline, seeking $15-billion in damages, the company said in legal papers dated Friday. TransCanada submitted a notice for an arbitration claim in January and had then tried... 

Pricing freedom for India-based mining entities run by the provinces

By: Ajoy K Das     27th June 2016 As part of its aim to usher in commercial coal mining in India, the government has empowered provincial governments with pricing freedom for coal produced by provincial government-controlled mining entities. The provinces would also have the freedom to enter into joint ventures and appoint mine... 

Substantive mineral law issues still far from resolved – Herbert Smith Freehills 

By: Martin Creamer     27th June 2016 The content and the implications of the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) Amendment Bill are extraordinarily complicated. Three issues, which embody the most significant negative implications for the mining industry and South Africa, have been delaying the finalisation of... 

Substantive mineral law issues still far from resolved – Herbert Smith Freehills
Photo by Duane Daws
Herbert Smith Freehills' Ben Winks

Huge Brexit bonanzas for AngloGold, Gold Fields – Moody’s

By: Martin Creamer     27th June 2016 As a result of Britain deciding to exit the European Union, two South African gold mining companies are heading for huge free cash bonanzas, ratings agency Moody’s said on Monday. AngloGold Ashanti is set to generate an additional $120-million in free cash flow in the second half of 2016 and Gold... 

Huge Brexit bonanzas for AngloGold, Gold Fields – Moody’s
Photo by Duane Daws
AngloGold Ashanti CEO Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan (Venkat)

Brexit could push gold price as high as $1 400/oz in coming weeks

By: Ilan Solomons     24th June 2016 Gold and silver prices on Friday surged above their 2016 highs in the wake of the outcome of the British referendum to leave the European Union (EU) – the so-called Brexit. Fitch Group research firm BMI on Friday said it expected additional gains for these precious metals over the coming weeks. 

‘Staggering’ uncertainty driving gold – World Gold Council

By: Martin Creamer     24th June 2016 With Britain voting to exit the European Union, the World Gold Council expects to see strong and sustained inflows into the gold market driven by the "staggering" level of protracted uncertainty that investors now face. The council said on Friday that gold’s surge to $1 313.85/oz was providing... 

‘Staggering’ uncertainty driving gold – World Gold Council

Gold mining companies granted partial leave to appeal against certification judgment

By: Anine Kilian     24th June 2016 The South Gauteng High Court on Friday granted gold mining companies leave to appeal against a finding amending the common law in respect of general damages claims regarding the class certification judgment handed down by the court in May. It, however, refused leave to appeal on the certification... 

Metallica gets green light to move forward with Urquhart sans EIS

By: Samantha Herbst     24th June 2016 The Commonwealth Department of the Environment has determined that ASX-listed Metallica Minerals’ Urquhart bauxite project, in north Queensland, does not require an environmental impact assessment (EIS), as the impact of the project is considered minimal. “This major milestone confirms that the... 

Consider rest of Africa as well, potential mining investors urged 

By: Ilan Solomons     24th June 2016 Young business people that are wanting to get involved in the mining industry should broaden their horizons and not limit themselves by focusing on South Africa alone, as there many opportunities in the rest of the African continent also exist, Small Business Development Minister Lindiwe Zulu... 

Consider rest of Africa as well, potential mining investors urged
UPS AND DOWNS The mining sector is cyclical in nature and will therefore provide significant opportunities for those that are able to ride out the market’s current headwinds

Embracing technology key to success of the mine of the future

By: Mia Breytenbach     24th June 2016 For mining to be part of the twenty-first century, it has to create a range of benefits as part of the business model, have access to realistic commodity pricing models and must embrace technology, says University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) Mining Institute director Professor Fred Cawood says.... 

Embracing technology key to success of the mine of the future
Photo by Bloomberg
FUTURE MINE The trends around key mining industry issues could lead to possible futures characterised by an African mining boom

Exit of mining majors creating openings for would-be young investors

By: Ilan Solomons     24th June 2016 There are significant opportunities for young entrepreneurs to enter the local mining industry, particularly with a number of senior miners exiting their existing assets owing to depressed commodity prices and general business challenges, Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) deputy... 

Exit of mining majors creating openings  for would-be young investors
Photo by Duane Daws
JOEL RAPHELA Great strides have been made in transforming the mining sector and bringing in new, young business people over the past 22 years

Incremental mine development key for gold sector

By: Simon Sonnekus     24th June 2016 In the face of global capital constraints, gold mining companies have been forced to look into alternative options for the development of mines. The gold mining industry is known traditionally for larger-sized operations that require the establishment of a large reserve base as well as large... 

Incremental mine development key for gold sector
Photo by Bloomberg
GROWTH The steady gold price has been a bright light in an otherwise deflated commodities market

Analyst urges caution as lithium excites and pitfalls multiply 

By: Simon Rees     23rd June 2016 Lithium’s prospects are bright as demand from the battery sector is surging and observers believe it will only get better as more electric vehicles (EV) are produced and new energy storage solutions arise, such as Tesla’s Powerwall technology. Indeed, prices had marched higher, while... 

Analyst urges caution as lithium excites and pitfalls multiply
Photo by Reuters
Rockwood's Lithium plant on the Atacama salt flat, the largest lithium deposit currently in production, in the Atacama desert of northern Chile

Chile's Congress approves minimum wage hike proposal

By: Reuters     23rd June 2016 Chile's Congress approved on Thursday the government's proposal to gradually increase the monthly minimum wage by 26 000 pesos, nearly $39, to 276 000 pesos ($412) within 18 months. With the Lower House of Congress' approval, the minimum wage hike proposal is ready to be signed into law. 

Bank of England, offshore centres holding SA gold worth R75bn 

By: Martin Creamer     23rd June 2016 The Bank of England and other official sector institutions at offshore bullion centres are holding a large percentage of South Africa’s gold. At last count, these holdings totalled four-million ounces of South Africa’s gold, worth nearly $5-billion. 

Bank of England, offshore centres holding SA gold worth R75bn
DA Shadow Finance Minister David Maynier

New Philippine Minister says openpit mining is 'madness'

By: Reuters     23rd June 2016 The incoming Minister in charge of Philippine mining has slammed the use of openpits to extract minerals, describing it as "madness" even to consider the method in the resource-rich country because of the environmental impact. The stance by Regina Lopez, an environmentalist who on Tuesday... 

Canada’s pipeline operators on the hook as 'absolute liability' provisions kick in 

By: Henry Lazenby     21st June 2016 The new Pipeline Safety Act has come into force in Canada, heralding a new era of absolute liability for pipeline owners and operators and setting out financial resource requirements to pay for all costs related to a spill or rupture. The National Energy Board (NEB) on Monday welcomed the... 

Canada’s pipeline operators on the hook as 'absolute liability' provisions kick in

Average capex overrun for mining companies hits 37% – EDC study

By: Simon Rees     20th June 2016 The average cost overrun for mining projects studied by Export Development Canada (EDC) has reached 37% over the capital expenditure (capex) budgeted, EDC managing principal Tin Lwin told an audience at a recent meeting of the Canadian Institute of Mining’s Management and Economics Society in... 

Average capex overrun for mining companies hits 37% – EDC study

DMR, Keaton at odds over status of Vaalkrantz retrenchment process

By: Ilan Solomons     17th June 2016 The Department of Mineral Resources (DMR) continues to engage management of the Vaalkrantz colliery, in KwaZulu-Natal, to explore job saving options, DMR spokesperson Ayanda Shezi told Mining Weekly on June 3. She said the DMR continued to engage coal producer Keaton Energy’s wholly owned... 

DMR, Keaton at odds over status of Vaalkrantz  retrenchment process
Photo by Duane Daws
VAALKRANTZ COLLIERY, KWAZULU-NATAL Leeuw Mining and Exploration had concluded a Section 189A process for the retrenchment of all 80 employees at its Vaalkrantz colliery

Govt prioritises fight against acid mine water in Gauteng

By: Dylan Slater     17th June 2016 Government’s acknowledgment of the severity of acid mine drainage (AMD) in the Witwatersrand, in Gauteng, and the subsequent priority given to take steps to alleviate the problem is of “significant importance”, states Federation for a Sustainable Environment (FSE) CEO Mariette Liefferink.  

Govt prioritises fight against acid mine water in Gauteng

Mozambique’s new Nacala coal line already in line for upgrade

By: Keith Campbell     17th June 2016 In Mozambique, the coal transport capacity of the new Nacala Corridor railway route, from the inland Moatize coal field to the port city of Nacala-a-Velha, will be increased with a $3-billion investment in the near future. This was reported last week by Mozambican Cabinet spokesperson Mouzinho... 

US SEC proposes mining rules to sync with global standards

By: Reuters     16th June 2016 The top US securities regulator on Thursday proposed new requirements for what companies must disclose about their mining properties, saying the industry had undergone significant changes in recent years and had become more globalised. The proposal would align with "global standards and give... 

Peruvian mining volumes continue to grow as new president takes helm

By: Simon Rees     15th June 2016 The Peruvian mining industry is expected to spur renewed growth in the country as output grows, prices stabilise and revive, several speakers told a recent Peruvian-Canadian Chamber of Commerce economic outlook seminar. The recent Peruvian election was so close that the winner Pedro Pablo... 

Peruvian mining volumes continue to grow as new president takes helm
Photo by Reuters
Incoming Peruvian president Pedro Pablo Kuczynski

Coal firm to pay Obama mentor $435 000 to fight climate plan

By: Bloomberg     14th June 2016 Peabody Energy Corp. is set to pay President Barack Obama’s Harvard Law School mentor $435 000 this year to help the bankrupt coal producer challenge the administration’s signature environmental law. The payments to Laurence Tribe, a constitutional law expert and legal icon – spanning May to... 

Brazil judge dismisses $5.7bn civil suit against Samarco – Vale

By: Reuters     14th June 2016 Brazilian iron-ore miner Vale SA said on Monday that a 20-billion reais ($5.7-billion) civil suit over last year's Samarco mine disaster has been dismissed, the company said in a securities filing. The mine is operated by Samarco Mineração SA, a joint venture between Vale and the world's largest... 

Brazil judge dismisses $5.7bn civil suit against Samarco – Vale

Big boost for South African mining as old Comro reopens  

By: Martin Creamer     13th June 2016 The revitalisation of the South African mining industry through the resuscitation of research and development (R&D) is under way as an outcome of the Mining Phakisa, a strategy forged by 120 government, company, union and nongovernmental participants, who last year spent five weeks working... 

Big boost for South African mining as old Comro reopens
Photo by Creamer Media
CSIR mining manager Navin Singh
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