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Nickel News

Global mining-sector resurgence predicted 

By: Ilan Solomons     24th February 2017 Given that the global economy is expected to grow by 3.4% this year and 3.5% in 2018, the health of global macroeconomics is good, which bodes well for a resurgence in the global mining industry during the course of this year. This is according to Standard Bank mining and metals research head Tim... 

Rapid energy access needed in Southern Africa

     24th February 2017 The rebound in commodity prices should usher in new projects as well as the expansion of existing operations in Southern Africa’s mining industry, but the region, counteractively, has an insufficient power supply, says fast-track mobile turbine power provider APR Energy regional sales director... 

Analysts acclaim Glencore’s performance as good fundamentals return

By: Martin Creamer     23rd February 2017 Commodity market fundamentals are improving against a backdrop of better than expected demand and limited, if any, inventory build through the trough of the cycle, diversified mining and marketing company Glencore said on Thursday. This comes against the background of the London-, Hong Kong- and... 

Analysts acclaim Glencore’s performance as good fundamentals return
Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg

Western Areas swings back to profit

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     22nd February 2017 Nickel miner Western Areas has swung back to profit in the half-year ended December 31, as earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) improved by 58% over the previous corresponding period. Ebitda for the half-year reached A$29.5-million, resulting in net profit of... 

BC confirms mineral exploration tax credits in 5th balanced budget

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd February 2017 The British Columbia provincial government on Tuesday unveiled its fifth consecutive budget in the black, confirming critical fiscal supports for the mineral exploration industry, previously unveiled by Liberal Premier Christy Clark. The 2017/18 budget, which is expected to run a C$295-million... 

BC confirms mineral exploration tax credits in 5th balanced budget
Photo by Geoscience BC
The British Columbia provincial government has confirmed critical fiscal supports for the mineral exploration industry, previously unveiled by Liberal Premier Christy Clark

Anglo targets further $1bn in cost, volume improvements in 2017

By: Ilan Solomons     21st February 2017 Diversified miner Anglo American is this year seeking an additional $1-billion in incremental net cost and volume improvements, while also aiming to return to an investment-grade credit rating and resume dividend payments. The group has already identified 75% of these targeted net cost and volume... 

Anglo targets further $1bn in cost, volume improvements in 2017
Anglo American is aiming to have capital expenditure maintained at $2.5-billion and stay-in-business capital increased to $1.2-billion in 2017

Sherritt to ramp up 2017 capex as it resumes oil & gas drilling, Ambatovy charges

By: Henry Lazenby     18th February 2017 Diversified miner Sherritt International says it expects to increase capital expenditure (capex) on new mining development and fleet upgrades this year. The Toronto-headquartered company said the majority of its $129-million capex budget for this year will be focused on completing the first Block... 

Asa delivers mixed quarter as Trojan weighs on performance

By: Natasha Odendaal     17th February 2017 London-listed Asa Resources has delivered a mixed performance in the third quarter as commodity prices declined and some lingering operational difficulties persisted at its Trojan nickel mine, in Zimbabwe. However, the company has implemented several mitigating measures to deal with the... 

Philippine miner ordered shut says to ship nickel ore in March

By: Reuters     17th February 2017 Philippine miner Marcventures Mining and Development Corp, whose nickel mine was one of 23 ordered to close by the environment ministry, said on Friday it will take legal action to overturn the ruling and plans to ship out ore next month. Marcventures' mine in southern Philippines was among... 

MAC laments Canada’s declining mining competitiveness

By: Henry Lazenby     17th February 2017 Canada's mining competitiveness is declining, while exploration and mining investment dollars are flowing offshore, a new report by the Mining Association of Canada (MAC) has found. “Very simply, Canada is not as attractive as it used to be for mineral investment and competition for those dollars... 

MAC laments Canada’s declining mining competitiveness
Photo by Agnico Eagle Mines
Agnico Eagle's Meadowbank mine, Nunavut

Convention aims to bridge communication gap

By: Simone Liedtke     17th February 2017 As a continually evolving industry that operates globally, sometimes the biggest difficulty for the mining industry is getting the right people together in one place to discuss their challenges and find ways to address and, ultimately, overcome them, says Prospectors and Developers Association of... 

Convention aims to bridge communication gap
EIGHTY-FIFTH CONVENTION Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada's 2017 convention will feature more than 400 exhibitors at the investors exchange and 500 at the trade show

Digitisation of project management imperative for project success

By: Victor Moolman     17th February 2017 Business management consultant SSG Consulting will continue to focus on project management and execution as its core business this year, with the intent of increasing its drive to further improve operational throughput of organisations and projects by 30% to 50%, despite the challenges facing the... 

Digitisation of project management imperative for project success
Photo by Duane Daws
MINE UPGRADES The adoption of big data, cloud, business intelligence, artificial intelligence, mobile technology and the digitisation of business will be the primary driver of successful organisations over the next five years

Group to split to improve customer focus

     17th February 2017 Swedish sustainable productivity solutions provider Atlas Copco will create a new company focused on mining and civil engineering, should it receive backing at its annual general meeting in April. 

Group to split to improve customer focus
STREGTHENING FOCUS Mining and Rock Excavation Technique and Construction Tools are expected to benefit from a more focused management responsibility

Localised conveyor belt supply to boost operational efficiencies

By: Simone Liedtke     17th February 2017 Over the past three to four years, metal prices have dropped precipitously and North American mining operators have been forced to implement more operational efficiencies, states conveyor belt vulcaniser product provider Shaw Almex CEO Tim Shaw. 

Localised conveyor belt supply to boost operational efficiencies
CONVEYOR BELT SOLUTION Many operators have turned to offshore conveyor belt suppliers, resulting in premature product failures and unreliable supply

New US President may benefit the resources sector

By: Henry Lazenby     17th February 2017 While US President Donald Trump is likely to lower US corporate taxes, bringing US dollars back into the country and rebuilding American infrastructure through a massive $1-trillion spending programme, Trump is coming in at the “US midnight” Euro Pacific Capital analyst Peter Schiff says. Markets... 

New US President may benefit the resources sector

Rehabilitation plan important for proper project management

By: Victor Moolman     17th February 2017 Rehabilitation should be included and budgeted for in a project’s initial mine plan to ensure proper project management over the entire mine life cycle, says nonprofit organisation Land Rehabilitation Society of South Africa (LaRSSA) president Raina Hattingh. 

Rehabilitation plan important for proper project management
Photo by Victor Moolman
OFTEN NEGLEGTED Unfortunately, the need for including rehabilitation components early on in mine plans is often neglected in South Africa

Major South African coal extension project on cards – South32

By: Martin Creamer     16th February 2017 A decision will be taken in the June quarter on go-ahead for the Klipspruit Life Extension coal project in Mpumalanga, which is said to have robust economics. The original BHP Billiton capital expenditure (capex) of $500-million-plus for the two-year development has been more than halved under... 

Major South African coal extension project on cards – South32
South32 CEO Graham Kerr

First Quantum says restores access to Ravensthorpe nickel mine

By: Reuters     16th February 2017 Access to the Ravensthorpe nickel mining complex in Australia has been re-established following heavy rains last weekend that flooded local roadways, owner First Quantum Minerals said on Thursday. There were concerns that supplies of nickel from Ravensthorpe would be cut off, exacerbating an... 

Philippines' minister extends mining crackdown, cancels 75 contracts

By: Reuters     14th February 2017 The Philippines' environment minister on Tuesday ordered the cancellation of 75 mining contracts, stepping up a campaign to stop extraction of resources in sensitive areas after earlier shutting more than half of the country's operating mines. The contracts are all in watershed zones, with many... 

Nickel market rebalancing put on hold as divergent Indonesia, Philippines strategies signal standoff

By: Henry Lazenby     14th February 2017 A rebalancing of the nickel market has been cast into doubt as divergent strategies by major producers Indonesia and the Philippines muddles the outlook, a recent report by Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML) has found. While Indonesia looks to increase nickel exports, the Philippines is... 

Nickel market rebalancing put on hold as divergent Indonesia, Philippines strategies signal standoff

Canadian Mining Eye index disappoints in Q4 as gold, nickel prices undermine buoyant copper, zinc

By: Henry Lazenby     13th February 2017 The Canadian Mining Eye index declined by 13% during the quarter to December 31, as weakness in gold and nickel prices was partially offset by gains in copper and zinc prices. Having recorded a 4% gain in the prior quarter, the index, administered by professional services firm EY, underperformed... 

Canadian Mining Eye index disappoints in Q4 as gold, nickel prices undermine buoyant copper, zinc

Australia's Ravensthorpe nickel mine cut off by rains – First Quantum

By: Reuters     13th February 2017 Heavy rains have cut access in and out of the Ravensthorpe nickel-producing operations in Western Australia, owner First Quantum Minerals said on Monday. The processing of nickel ore into metal was continuing at the site, 250 km from the Port of Esperance on the Indian Ocean, the company said in... 

Trafigura acquires 15.5% stake in Finnish nickel mine

By: Reuters     10th February 2017 Commodity trader Trafigura will take a 15.5% stake in Finland's nickel and zinc mine Terrafame, it said on Friday, which will help the mine ramp up operations following years of losses and production problems. Through its Galena fund, Trafigura will acquire the 15.5% stake in the mine and finance... 

New Bill on way to boost State involvement in mining

By: Martin Creamer     10th February 2017 A new Bill is to be presented to the South African Parliament to strengthen the State’s role in the industry, currently dogged by legislative, regulatory and administrative tensions between government, business and labour. The Mining Company of South Africa Bill will be presented to Cabinet and... 

New Bill on way to boost State involvement in mining
President Jacob Zuma

Chamber calls on mining to renounce its apartheid past

By: Martin Creamer     6th February 2017 Mining is the foundation of the South African economy. Much of the manufacturing and services sectors exist because they were initiated to service and provide inputs to the mining industry since the second half of the 19th century. However, mining was also one of the foundation stones of South... 

Chamber calls on mining to renounce its apartheid past
Photo by Duane Daws
Chamber of Mines president Mike Teke

AMVI cleared to continue Philippine ops

By: Henry Lazenby     3rd February 2017 A joint venture between TSX-V-listed companies TVI Pacific and Mindoro Resources, Agata Mining Ventures Incorporated (AMVI), is among 12 mining companies that have passed an audit by the Philippine Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) and will be allowed to continue operating.... 

Amendment Bill in limbo, but processes crucial

By: Sascha Solomons     3rd February 2017 While stakeholders are waiting for the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) Amendment Bill to pass into law, it is important to not only comply with the current version of the MPRDA, but also to take into account the proposed amendments, comments Hogan Lovells partner and head... 

Amendment Bill in limbo, but processes crucial
WARREN BEECH Renewed consultation might eliminate some of the concerns on the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act Amendment Bill

Anglo American increases Q4 output in most segments, but copper down year-on-year

By: Ilan Solomons     3rd February 2017 Diversified miner Anglo American achieved higher output for most of its products in the fourth quarter ended December 31, but copper production fell by 19% year-on-year. The lower copper production, which decreased to 146 600 t, was mainly the result of lower grades and the impact of adverse... 

Anglo American increases Q4 output in most segments,  but copper down year-on-year
IMPROVED OUTPUTS Nickel production increased by 4% year-on-year to 10 900 t, following the successful ramp-up of the Barro Alto mine, in Brazil, to nameplate capacity in the third quarter

Mining Charter ‘merely draft’ – law firm

By: Sascha Solomons     3rd February 2017 Much controversy surrounds the April 2016 publication of the draft reviewed Mining Charter, but law firm Werksmans Attorneys reminds concerned stakeholders that it is still “merely in draft form”. Extensive comments were furnished from various industry stakeholders after the publication of the... 

Mining Charter ‘merely draft’ – law firm
CHRIS STEVENS The real-world implications of the revised charter will be fairly substantial for mining companies if it is published in the form in which it was published for comment in April 2016

Mining remains core to defining South Africa’s economy – Manuel 

By: Martin Creamer     2nd February 2017 For the last 150 years, mining has been the driving force of South African industry and economic development. Even though dislike of mining is expressed in various ways, that does not take away from the manner in which mining has shaped South Africa and influenced the interactions of its people. 

Mining remains core to defining South Africa’s economy – Manuel
Photo by Duane Daws
Former Finance Minister Trevor Manuel

Sherritt forecasts higher 2017 nickel output

By: Mariaan Webb     1st February 2017 Canada-based Sherritt International Resources is forecasting higher nickel production in 2017, especially from its 40%-owned Ambatovy nickel and cobalt joint venture (JV), in Madagascar. The diversified miner on Tuesday provided a nickel production guidance (100% basis) of 81 000 t to 86 000 t... 

Bank upbeat about mining sector in 2017, predicts steady commodity price uptick 

By: Ilan Solomons     30th January 2017 Given that the global economy is expected to grow by 3.4% this year and 3.5% in 2018, the health of global macroeconomics is good, which bodes well for a resurgence in the global mining industry during the course of this year. This is according to Standard Bank mining and metals research head Tim... 

Bank upbeat about mining sector in 2017, predicts steady commodity price uptick
Standard Bank’s Tim Clark and Sandra du Toit discuss their perceptions of the state of the global mining sector and predictions for the year ahead. Video and editing: Darlene Creamer 30.1.2017

Digital mining gaining traction – EY 

By: Martin Creamer     30th January 2017 The tempo of mine modernisation – the coming together of mechanisation, digitisation and behavioural change – is on the up as mining companies pursue what is seen as the next productivity step change. With several companies having already mechanised, a growing number are now looking to digitise... 

Digital mining gaining traction – EY
Photo by Duane Daws
EY mining and metals leader Wickus Botha

AME BC reports progress made on key policy issues amid rising commodity tide

By: Henry Lazenby     28th January 2017 Optimism has returned to the junior exploration industry, based on changed market fundamentals and more buoyant commodity prices, the Association for Mineral Exploration British Columbia (AME BC) president and CEO Gavin Dirom tells Mining Weekly Online in an interview. “It’s amazing what... 

AME BC reports progress made on key policy issues amid rising commodity tide
Photo by Henry Lazenby
AME BC chairperson and CEO Gavin Dirom

Amtec

     27th January 2017 Witbank-based Applied Mineral Technologies (Amtec) specialises in the construction of materials handling systems and processing plants. “Amtec is especially proficient and experienced in brownfield and shutdown construction activities having successfully undertaken many ‘difficult’ projects in... 

Amtec

Favourable mining cycle will not negate structural challenges

By: Nadine James     27th January 2017 The structural challenges facing the mining sectors of topical African mining countries, namely Zambia, Namibia, Botswana, South Africa and the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), will be only slightly alleviated by an improved mining cycle, says commodities consultancy Core Consultants and its... 

Favourable mining cycle will not negate structural challenges
Photo by Reuters
FRONT RUNNER The Nickel outlook is strong and base metals are expected to outperform

Juniors to battle for project development prizes at Indaba

     27th January 2017 Identifying the best junior mining companies for investors and supporting the development of new projects is at the core of the annual Investing in African Mining Indaba, says event organiser Mining Indaba MD Alex Grose. 

Juniors to battle for project development prizes at Indaba
ALEX GROSE Participating junior miners will receive feedback from a judging panel comprising members from leading investment management groups at this year’s Investment Battlefield

New equipment to be showcased

     27th January 2017 Equipment developers Volvo Construction Equipment and Terex Trucks will be represented by plant and equipment supplier Babcock at the 2017 Investing in African Mining Indaba, where it will showcase new products from the manufacturers that will be introduced this year as part of the company’s... 

New equipment  to be showcased
BIGGER AND BETTER The Volvo A60H 60 t articulated hauler is the largest of its kind in the world
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