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Nickel News

Despite adverse weather, Vale reports Q1 iron-ore record

By: Henry Lazenby     21st April 2017 The world’s largest iron-ore producer Vale has lifted production of the steel-making ingredient to a new record high in the first quarter ended March, touching 86.2-million tonnes despite inclement weather. The diversified miner boosted iron-ore output by 11.2% over the comparable quarter of... 

Shaft sinking progresses at Platreef’s Shaft 1

     21st April 2017 The sinking of Shaft 1 at the Platreef platinum-palladium-gold-nickel-copper project in Limpopo, South Africa, has reached a depth of more than 283 m below surface, 697 m away from its target depth. Proceeding at an average rate of about 45 m a month, the shaft, with an internal diameter of 7.25... 

Shaft sinking progresses  at Platreef’s Shaft 1
STEADY PROGRESS The sinking of Shaft 1 is scheduled to be complete in 2018

Despite slower growth, China still key market for miners and Africa

By: Keith Campbell     21st April 2017 There can he no doubt that, for the past two decades-and-a-half or so, the biggest single influence on the global mining industry has been China. Between 2002 and 2012 that country experienced an annual average real gross domestic product (GDP) growth rate of 10.4%, as against India’s 7.6%, the... 

Despite slower growth, China still key market for miners and Africa

Philippine Minister wants to work with Maoist rebels in mine areas

By: Reuters     20th April 2017 The Philippine Environment Minister said she has been given the green light by President Rodrigo Duterte to work with communist rebel fighters to help rehabilitate and develop the country's mining areas. The decades-long conflict between the New People's Army (NPA) rebels and the Philippine... 

Noront, Marten Falls First Nation ink exploration and project advancement agreement

By: Henry Lazenby     14th April 2017 The largest landholder in the so-called Ring of Fire, an emerging base and precious metals mining camp in Northern Ontario, has signed an exploration and project advancement agreement with the Marten Falls First Nation (MFFN). The accord stipulates compensation for work already completed on... 

Scotiabank’s commodity price index gains 2.2% in February

By: Creamer Media Reporter      13th April 2017 The Scotiabank Commodity Price Index gained 2.2% month-over-month in February as industrial commodities continue to benefit from healthy demand on the back of a stronger global economic outlook, while supply-side idiosyncrasies continue to provide opportunity for differentiation, the banking... 

Western Areas restarts mill recovery project

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     12th April 2017 The board of nickel miner Western Areas has approved a A$17.5-million investment in its mill recovery enhancement project (MREP) in Western Australia. The MREP will process one of the tailings streams from the flotation plant, which contains valuable amounts of nickel that cannot be recovered as... 

Independence confirms Nova ramp-up date

By: Mariaan Webb     12th April 2017 The ramp-up of the Nova project, in Western Australia, has been delayed by three months, diversified miner Independence Group confirmed on Wednesday. The company reported that the project would reach its nameplate capacity of 1.5-million tons a year in the September quarter, instead of the June... 

LatAm water scarcity, pollution to drive more stringent enviro rules

By: Henry Lazenby     12th April 2017 New analysis by the research arm of the Fitch Group, BMI, forecasts water scarcity and contamination in Latin America will drive increasingly stringent environmental regulations in the region over the coming years. While increasing the costs for miners and delaying certain projects, the focus on... 

LatAm water scarcity, pollution to drive more stringent enviro rules

Mining showing tentative improvement off low base – chamber

By: Martin Creamer     30th March 2017 The fourth quarter mining financial statistics data released by Statistics South Africa (Stats SA) confirm the tentative improvement in the sector’s financial conditions during 2016, but off a very low 2015 base and with huge swings in performance. In 2016 rand terms, mining’s profits before... 

Mining showing tentative improvement off low base – chamber
Photo by Duane Daws
Chamber of Mines economist Henk Langenhoven

PFS demonstrates ‘healthy’ operational, financial characteristics of Odysseus project

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     30th March 2017 The prefeasibility study (PFS) into the Odysseus nickel project, in Western Australia, has estimated that the project could deliver an average of 12 000 t/y of nickel in concentrate over an initial seven-and-a-half-year mine life. Owner Western Areas on Thursday said the PFS estimated the project... 

Swedish miner says Donald Trump doesn't hold key to metal prices

By: Bloomberg     28th March 2017 The operator of some of Europe’s largest copper and zinc mines expects President Donald Trump’s plans to spend on US infrastructure to have much less impact on base-metal prices than the needs of burgeoning middle-class populations in emerging markets. That’s because projects in the US and other... 

Nevsun finds more mineralisation at Eritrea-based Bisha, satellite deposits

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd March 2017 Canadian base metals producer Nevsun Resources has found more mineralisation at its flagship Bisha mine and satellite deposits in Eritrea, on the Horn of Africa. Drilling undertaken in 2016 has increased the inferred resource at the Harena deposit by nearly 130% to 25-million tonnes grading 0.93%... 

Nevsun finds more mineralisation at Eritrea-based Bisha, satellite deposits
Photo by Nevsun Resources
Bisha, Eritrea

Canadian royalties, streaming firm Franco-Nevada reports rising revenues as it looks to diversify

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd March 2017 Canadian gold royalties and streaming firm Franco-Nevada Corp has recorded a 37.6% increase in revenue for 2016, boosted by record ounces delivered and soaring sales. The company, which derives income from 107 producing royalties and streams, achieved a 30.9% increase in gold-equivalent ounces... 

Canadian royalties, streaming firm Franco-Nevada reports rising revenues as it looks to diversify

RNC, private equity firm Waterton Global form nickel-focused partnership

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd March 2017 Canadian miner Royal Nickel Corp (RNC) has joined forces with private equity firm Waterton Global Resource Management (WGRM) to buy, develop and operate nickel assets. The companies on Wednesday announced that they had inked a joint venture (JV) accord that will result in Waterton buying a 50%... 

RNC, private equity firm Waterton Global form nickel-focused partnership

Growing output, rising precious metal prices to benefit Maverix

By: Henry Lazenby     17th March 2017 Maverix Metals, a relatively newly TSX-V-listed royalty vehicle created last July, when Canadian miner Pan American Silver spun out its royalty portfolio, populating it with some of its management, is positioned to grow output and leverage rising precious metals prices over the coming years. The... 

Growing output, rising precious metal prices to benefit Maverix

Optimism on minerals seen seeping down to grassroots explorers

By: Henry Lazenby     15th March 2017 Noting the optimism exhibited at the recent Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) international convention, held in Toronto, project generator Transition Metals says the fundamental shift in confidence it saw over the past year is consistent with this. “If you look at the... 

Optimism on minerals seen seeping down to grassroots explorers

Certification grows company’s sales, ups market share

By: Victor Moolman     10th March 2017 Valve and steel supplier Stewarts & Lloyds South Africa (S&L SA) has grown its market share in South Africa after receiving South African National Standards (SANS) certification for its RSV gate valves, reporting a 40% increase in SANS-approved valve sales since receiving certification last year. 

Certification grows  company’s sales,  ups market share
SERVICE DELIVERY Stewarts & Lloyds attributes its strategically located branch network to always being able to ensure minimal downtime for customers

BofAML warns of rising headwinds for commodities

By: Henry Lazenby     9th March 2017 Bank of America Merrill Lynch (BofAML) cast a pall on the budding optimism seen at the recent Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada’s yearly convention, in Toronto, saying that the commodity market, in general, is transitioning from tailwinds to headwinds this year. In its ‘Global... 

African mining delegation closes TSX

By: Henry Lazenby     9th March 2017 An African mining delegation, comprising government officials and mining companies, rang the closing afternoon bell of the TSX on Wednesday afternoon during the yearly Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada international convention. The delegations joined TMX Group global equity markets... 

African mining delegation closes TSX

‘What a difference a year makes’ – analysts outline mostly strong commodity fundamentals despite uncertainty

By: Henry Lazenby     7th March 2017 “What a difference a year makes,” John Butcher, principal economist at commodity consultancy Wood Mackenzie exclaimed during a technical programme at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada’s yearly convention this week. While global economic growth came in at a disappointing 2.3% in... 

Stakeholder engagement key to African development success

By: Henry Lazenby     7th March 2017 Capital for development ebbs and flows with global economic cycles, pushing to the fore the need for long-term regulatory security when it comes to multinational miners developing projects in Africa, said Ashanti Gold CEO and director Tim McCutcheon during a panel discussion on Africa’s mining... 

Stakeholder engagement key to African development success

Transformation at the core of Anglo American’s resilience

By: Henry Lazenby     7th March 2017 The ability to innovate and build adaptation into the DNA of mining companies is a critical requirement to successfully navigate major market changes, Anglo American CEO Mark Cutifani said during a keynote address at the 2017 Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada’s yearly convention.... 

Transformation at the core of Anglo American’s resilience
Photo by Duane Daws
Ango American CEO Mark Cutifani says survival meant a massive transformation of the asset base, in a rapid time frame

Uncertain politics, policy development permeates commodities price outlook 

By: Henry Lazenby     3rd March 2017 A common factor in the outlook for most commodities included in The Bank of Nova Scotia Commodity Price Index is the outsized near-term importance of highly uncertain politics and policy, the group’s commodity economist Rory Johnston said in a special report of the Commodity Price Index this... 

Uncertain politics, policy development permeates commodities price outlook
Photo by Reuters
Gold is expected to trend sideways for most of 2017 and 2018, as rising rates, a stronger dollar, and a generally sanguine investor outlook despite significant political uncertainty all pose headwinds for the yellow metal

Wellgreen achieves all Phase 1 metallurgical test objectives

By: Henry Lazenby     3rd March 2017 Wellgreen Platinum has succeeded in achieving all the objectives it set out to accomplish through the Phase 1 metallurgical programme on its Wellgreen nickel/copper/platinum-group metals (PGMs) project, in Canada’s Yukon Territory. "We have made quantum leaps in our understanding of the geology,... 

Facilitating investor support ahead of upturn in cautious market

By: Simone Liedtke     3rd March 2017 The main goal of the 2017 Investing in African Mining Indaba was to help position businesses in industry to take advantage of the expected market upturn by securing investor support, event organiser Mining Indaba MD Alex Grose tells Mining Weekly. 

Facilitating investor support ahead of upturn in cautious market
HEART OF DEALMAKING The Investing in African Mining Indaba provides a platform for mining companies to communicate their objectives with investors

Water resources under increasing pressure, bad news for mining

By: Simone Liedtke     3rd March 2017 Global water resources are being placed under increasing pressure, driven by factors like climate change and population growth, and mines risk having ‘stranded assets’ that cannot be developed without water, despite concerted corporate action and technological improvements. 

Water resources under increasing pressure,  bad news for mining
CLEMENCE MCNULTY Water is becoming a critical constraint to mine and socioeconomic development

Proactive healthcare can yield a return on investment for miners

By: Simone Liedtke     3rd March 2017 Cost containment is one of the key drivers for mining companies in the current economic climate, causing medical and healthcare services to become reactive purchases, according to medical and healthcare service provider International SOS medical director Dr Charl van Loggerenberg, who spoke to... 

Proactive healthcare can yield a return on investment for miners
NOT GRUDGE PURCHASE There are tangible benefits in investing in a healthcare strategy

Drilling services provider declares Indaba ‘great success’

By: Simone Liedtke     3rd March 2017 The 2017 Investing in African Mining Indaba was a “great success” for drilling services and equipment, including for performance tooling provider Boart Longyear, as it secured deals and has several prospective projects to follow up on, says general sales manager Andre van Heerden. 

Drilling services  provider declares  Indaba ‘great success’
TRUCORE The core-orienation tool is easy-to-use, highly accurate and features wireless communication, a corrosion-resistant steel body and a field-replaceable battery

Tough times call for cost-saving measures

By: Simone Liedtke     3rd March 2017 Mining in South Africa is tougher and costlier than ever, with investment flowing out of the country, instead of into the industry, says transport, industrial and heating fuel provider Shell South Africa commercial lubricants business-to-business marketing manager Tendani Ndwamise. 

Tough times call for cost-saving measures
INCREASING COMPLEXITY Heavy-duty machinery and equipment in the mining sector are becoming more complex and require the highest levels of professionalism from operators and servicing technicians

Anglo exceeds target as 2016 net debt declines to $8.5bn

By: Ilan Solomons     3rd March 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 exceeds target as 2016 net debt declines to $8.5bn
FOCUSED CAPITAL 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

New minerals head appointment sets cat among mining pigeons 

By: Martin Creamer     2nd March 2017 The Chamber of Mines said on Thursday that it had been caught by surprise by the appointment of the new director-general of the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR). While the chamber acknowledged that the appointment of the director-general was the prerogative of the Minister, it believed that... 

New minerals head appointment sets cat among mining pigeons
Photo by Duane Daws
Chamber of Mines CEO Roger Baxter with Senior Public Affairs Executive Tebello Chabana

Cabinet discusses new minerals director-general, mine water and mine town steps

By: Martin Creamer     2nd March 2017 The Cabinet this week endorsed the appointment of Advocate Thabo S Mokoena as the new director-general of the Department of Mineral Resources (DMR), a position that has been vacant for more than a year, and also approved the gazetting of a draft mine water management policy for public comment, as... 

Cabinet discusses new minerals director-general, mine water and mine town steps
Eastern Basin acid mine drainage plant in Springs

Axiom raises funds for Isabel 

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     1st March 2017 ASX-listed Axiom Mining will raise up to A$6.9-million to fund the further development of the Isabel nickel project, on the Solomon Islands. The capital raising will include a one-for-ten rights issue, priced at 16c a share, to raise an initial A$5.6-million. The rights issue will contain an... 

Consolidated Nickel Mines wins top honours in Investment Battlefield competition

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     28th February 2017 Zambia-focused Consolidated Nickel Mines (CNM) won the first Investment Battlefield Competition for junior miners at this year’s Investing in African Mining Indaba, with Sula Iron & Gold in second place. CNM, a subsidiary of Consolidated Mining and Investments, is planning to restart the 4 500... 

Price weakness stemmed from excess capital dole out – Glencore

By: Martin Creamer     27th February 2017 The commodity price weakness from 2012 to 2015 was the result of an over-allocation of capital from 2006 to 2012, Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg told an American audience on Monday. In an address to the BMO Metals and Mining Conference, in Miami, Glasenberg said that capital over-allocation in the... 

Price weakness stemmed from excess capital dole out – Glencore
Glencore CEO Ivan Glasenberg

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... 

Global mining-sector resurgence predicted
Standard Bank's Tim Clark and Sandra du Toit discuss their perceptions of the state of the global mining sector and give their predictions for the year ahead.

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... 

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