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North America News

Embattled EPA chief's calendar shows industry had his ear

By: Reuters     9th April 2018 US Environmental Protection Agency administrator Scott Pruitt held 25-times more meetings with industry representatives than environmental advocates during his first seven months in office, according to a Reuters analysis of his schedule, reflecting the agency's pro-business approach under his... 

Fluor tenders work to Grana y Montero for Quellaveco Peru mine

By: Reuters     9th April 2018 US-based construction firm Fluor Corp subcontracted earth moving work on the Quellaveco copper mine, in Peru, to local company Grana y Montero, in a sign the stalled $5-billion project could be reactivated. Grana said in a statement late on Friday it had won a tender from Fluor for $53.9-million... 

Orocobre Q3 production woes force 10% lower guidance

By: Henry Lazenby     6th April 2018 Argentinian lithium producer Orocobre lost more than 8% on the TSX on Thursday after reporting lower-than-expected lithium production in the fiscal third quarter from the Olaroz mine, as weather issues interfered with evaporation rates, which caused management to lower guidance by 10%. Orocobre... 

Orocobre Q3 production woes force 10% lower guidance

Sibanye-Stillwater refinances, increases US dollar revolving credit facility

By: Marleny Arnoldi     6th April 2018 Precious metals miner Sibanye-Stillwater has refinanced its existing $350-million US dollar revolving credit facility (RCF) on improved terms.  

Sibanye-Stillwater refinances, increases US dollar revolving credit facility
Photo by Creamer Media
Sibanye-Stillwater CEO Neal Froneman

Dormant Swedish mine comes alive in rush for car batteries

By: Bloomberg     6th April 2018 The global race to develop batteries for electric cars is reaching deep into the pine forests of central Sweden, where a dormant graphite mine is getting a new lease on life. Woxna, situated about 259 km north of Stockholm, was mothballed in 2001 amid a slump in prices. Now, a Canadian company... 

Dormant Swedish mine comes alive in rush for car batteries
Photo by Leading Edge Materials
The Woxna mine, in Sweden.

Moody’s downgrades Eldorado credit rating

By: Henry Lazenby     6th April 2018 Moody's Investors Service has downgraded Canadian miner Eldorado Gold’s corporate family credit to B2 from B1, citing high geopolitical risks, limited mine diversity, and execution risks related to its material development projects. "The downgrade of Eldorado's rating reflects the high execution... 

Stronger gold price lifts global ETF inflows – WGC

By: Henry Lazenby     6th April 2018 Global gold-backed exchange-traded funds (ETFs) added 22.5 t of gold during March, increasing their holdings to 2 415 t valued at $102.8-billion, data provided by the World Gold Council (WGC) on Thursday shows. While the price of gold finished the month relatively flat $1 325/oz, a significant... 

Stronger gold price lifts global ETF inflows – WGC

China seeks WTO dispute resolution with US over steel, aluminum tariffs

By: Reuters     5th April 2018 China's commerce ministry said on Thursday it has initiated a World Trade Organization (WTO) dispute resolution procedure over US tariffs on its import of steel and aluminum. The move follows a back and forth dispute between the two countries over free trade, that has escalated from an... 

Gold price seen 'moving north' as world fails to replace output

By: Bloomberg     5th April 2018 Bullion prices are set to rise because there’s been a lack of exploration and the global industry isn’t replacing the reserves it’s been mining, according to Stephen Letwin, CEO at Iamgold. “Gold has a much higher probability of moving north as opposed to south,” Letwin said in an interview at... 

BHP quits World Coal Association over differences in climate policies

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     5th April 2018 Mining major BHP has taken the decision to discontinue its membership of the World Coal Association (WCA), citing “material differences” in their respective climate change policies. The diversified giant also said on Thursday that the decision was also taken in light of the “narrow range of... 

BHP quits World Coal Association over differences in climate policies

Matador buys Canadian gold project

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     5th April 2018 ASX-listed junior Matador Mining has announced plans to acquire an 80% interest in the Cape Ray gold project, in Newfoundland. The project is estimated to contain more than 500 000 oz of gold within its 100 km2 of secured tenure. 

Bacanora makes progress on German Zinnwald lithium project feasibility study

By: Henry Lazenby     5th April 2018 Project developer Bacanora Lithium is making good progress on its feasibility study for the Zinnwald lithium project, located in Germany’s Southern Saxony region, the company reported on Wednesday. The company, which has now successfully re-domiciled from Canada to London, in the UK, and moved... 

Brazil state fines Anglo American $37.73m over pipeline leak

By: Reuters     5th April 2018 The Brazilian state of Minas Gerais slapped a $37.73- million fine on Anglo American on Wednesday for pollution caused by one of two spills last month from a pipeline that carries iron-ore from the company's Minas-Rio mine. The leak in the pipeline, which carries slurry to a port in Rio de... 

Pension fund Previ not likely to sell its Vale shares in 2018 – source

By: Reuters     5th April 2018 Brazilian pension fund Previ is not likely to sell its shares in Vale in a public offering this year, a person with knowledge of the matter said on Wednesday, a week after the iron ore miner announced a more generous dividend policy. Holding on to its full Vale stake would allow Previ to take... 

First Cobalt drilling traces broad cobalt mineralisation at Woods Extension Zone

By: Henry Lazenby     5th April 2018 Explorer First Cobalt has reported the results from its latest two drill holes from the Woods Extension zone of the Cobalt South project, in the Ontario-based Canadian Cobalt Camp, returning strong grades over narrow intervals. The reported results were fairly shallow tests of the Woods Extension... 

Mackenzie Valley review board OKs Tlicho all-season road; a boon for Fortune

By: Henry Lazenby     5th April 2018 The Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board has completed an environmental assessment of the Tlicho all-season road project, proposed by the Northwest Territories government, subject to 23 measures to reduce its environmental, social and cultural impacts. The conditional approval was... 

Teck lifts Quebrada Blanca Phase 2 ownership to 90%

By: Henry Lazenby     5th April 2018 Canadian diversified miner Teck Resources has bought out a further 13.5% minority stake in the Quebrada Blanca Phase 2 (QB2) project, in Chile, for $52.5-million in cash by acquiring private Chilean company Inversiones Mineras (IMSA), the company said on Wednesday. The transaction lifts Teck’s... 

South African court backs 'once empowered, always empowered' principle

By: Reuters     4th April 2018 The South African High Court ruled in favour of the 'once empowered, always empowered' principle on Wednesday which entitles a company to keep its black empowerment status even if a black partner exits its stake in the mining firm. Uncertainty around the Mining Charter and ownership levels have... 

South African court backs 'once empowered, always empowered' principle

CAPP urges feds to ensure Canadian oil, gas benefit from growing global energy demand

By: Henry Lazenby     4th April 2018 Despite surging demand globally for all forms of energy, Canada’s oil and natural gas industry is at risk as the cumulative effect of federal and provincial policies and regulations are fast thinning the country’s market opportunity by thwarting industry growth, competitiveness and market access,... 

CAPP urges feds to ensure Canadian oil, gas benefit from growing global energy demand

Eldorado rises as Greek arbitration panel rejects State's claims

By: Henry Lazenby     4th April 2018 The TSX-listed equity of Canadian gold and base metals producer Eldorado Gold lifted off recent 52-week lows on Wednesday, after the company announced a favourable ruling by an arbitration panel in its dispute with the Greek government over its Madem Lakkos metallurgical plant. Vancouver-based... 

Eldorado rises as Greek arbitration panel rejects State's claims
Photo by Eldorado Gold
Visible mineralisation at Eldorado Gold's Skouries project, in Northern Greece

Revitalised demand growth to buttress molybdenum prices

By: Reuters     4th April 2018 Healthy demand for molybdenum rich stainless steel, especially from the oil and gas industry, plus sluggish supply growth are expected to keep the price of this minor metal riding high. Molybdenum prices at nearly $13/lb are at their highest since 2014, having more than doubled since December 2015. 

Resolute invests in explorer with DRC gold rights

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     4th April 2018 Australian gold producer Resolute Mining has taken a 27% interest in Canadian explorer Loncor Resources through a C$2.6-million subscription placement and a C$2.5-million share swap. The agreement will see Loncor acquire full ownership of two companies in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC)... 

Altona deal approved; shares to stop trading

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     4th April 2018 The Australian Federal Court has approved the merger between ASX-listed Altona Mining and TSX-listed Copper Mountain Mining Corporation. The A$93-million deal, which was launched by Copper Mountain in November, has already been approved by both sets of shareholders. 

Randgold's African mining acumen is being tested on all fronts

By: Bloomberg     4th April 2018 Randgold Resources’s celebrated ability to operate in Africa is being tested on all fronts, and it’s taking a toll on the London-listed gold miner’s stock. For most of the last decade, Randgold shares were the best performers among gold miners tracked by Bloomberg. Now they are among the worst in... 

Metals Focus sees gold climbing to $1 450/oz this year

By: Simone Liedtke     4th April 2018 Although facing a number of challenges, global market conditions are expected to become positive for gold this year, with the precious metal potentially testing  $1 450/oz before the end of 2018, consultancy Metals Focus says in its latest gold market report. The ‘Gold Focus 2018’ report, which... 

Metals Focus sees gold climbing to $1 450/oz this year

Nautilus receives further bridge loans as SPV launches in China

By: Henry Lazenby     4th April 2018 Seafloor mining pioneer Nautilus Minerals continues to secure bridge financing from Deep Sea Mining Finance, with the latest advance of $3-million bringing the loans to date to $9.65-million, the company said on Tuesday. The bridge loans are expected to form part of a larger secured structured... 

Quest for cheaper batteries lures money from Russian billionaire

By: Bloomberg     4th April 2018 Russian billionaire Oleg Deripaska is investing in research into next-generation batteries to replace the lithium-ion units that are currently used in phones and cars, and to store power from solar plants. The tycoon’s En+ Group, which owns power plants and the largest aluminum maker outside... 

Quest for cheaper batteries lures money from Russian billionaire
Oleg Deripaska

BlackRock's $1.3bn gold fund feels pain of bullion miners

By: Bloomberg     4th April 2018 This year has not been kind to precious-metal stock pickers at the world’s biggest asset manager, but their luck may be about to turn. The $1.3-billion BlackRock Gold and General Fund lost 15% last quarter, its worst performance since the third quarter of 2015. Among large materials-focused... 

Caserones copper mine in Chile says to close copper concentrator

By: Reuters     4th April 2018 Caserones copper mine, in Chile, said on Tuesday that it would temporarily shut down its copper concentrator in order to replace a leaking pipe. The Environmental Tribunal of Antofagasta, a province of Chile's northern mining region, asked Lumina Copper, which owns the mine, to shut down the... 

China slams US trade action, to retaliate on same scale, strength

By: Reuters     4th April 2018 China on Tuesday condemned the US announcement of tariffs on $50-billion worth of Chinese imports and said it would "take corresponding measures of equal scale and strength against US products." "The Chinese side strongly condemns and firmly opposes the unfounded Section 301 investigation and... 

Alcoa transfers $555m in Canadian pension obligations, assets to 3 insurers

By: Henry Lazenby     4th April 2018 US-based aluminium producer Alcoa has signed agreements with three insurers to transfer about $555-million in Canadian pension obligations and related assets of its defined benefit pension plans in Canada. The Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania-based company advised that it expects to book a noncash... 

High-grade, low-cost silver options set Americas Silver up for growth

By: Henry Lazenby     4th April 2018 Diversified miner Americas Silver is being cautious not to add too much silver to its zinc and lead production profile at a time when prices for the precious metal languish between the $16/oz to $20/oz level. “We are being very disciplined to not add too much new silver production to our... 

High-grade, low-cost silver options set Americas Silver up for growth
Photo by Americas Silver
Americas Silver's new San Rafael mine, in Mexico

Anglo American suspends Minas-Rio for 90-day pipeline check

By: Marleny Arnoldi     3rd April 2018 Diversified miner Anglo American on Thursday evening suspended operations at its Minas-Rio iron-ore mine, in Brazil, for pipeline checks, following a minor leak.  

Anglo American suspends Minas-Rio for 90-day pipeline check
Anglo American's Minas-Rio mine in Brazil

Sissingue reaches commercial production

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     3rd April 2018 ASX- and TSX-listed Perseus Mining has declared commercial production at its Sissingue gold mine, in Cote d’Ivoire. “Reaching commercial production at our Sissignue gold mine is a very important milestone for Perseus as we now have a second, high quality cash flow stream that materially reduces... 

Gold heading to $1 400/oz as Sprott sees 'winnerless' trade war

By: Bloomberg     3rd April 2018 Gold will surge to the highest level in five years if a global trade war breaks out, according to Rick Rule, CEO of Sprott US Holdings, who’s been involved in the market for four decades. Bullion could top $1 400/oz in 2018 as escalating trade tensions drive investors to havens and the... 

Gold heading to $1 400/oz as Sprott sees 'winnerless' trade war

Nevsun's Timok UZ PFS elevates deposit among best anywhere

By: Henry Lazenby     3rd April 2018 A new prefeasibility study (PFS) on Canadian base metals producer Nevsun Resources’ Timok Upper Zone (UZ) copper/gold project, in Serbia, has confirmed the project as one of the best development-stage copper assets in the world, the company reports. Vancouver-headquartered Nevsun reported last... 

Cliffs to break ground on first hot-briquetted iron plant Thursday

By: Henry Lazenby     3rd April 2018 US iron-ore company Cleveland-Cliffs of Ohio expects to break ground on its first hot-briquetted iron (HBI) plant in Toledo on Thursday. The $700-million plant signals a strategic step change for the company, whose HBI product is expected to supply the growing electric arc furnace (EAF) steel... 

Hudbay outlines new mine plan for Constancia; global resources dip on depletion

By: Henry Lazenby     3rd April 2018 Canadian base metals producer Hudbay Minerals has released a new technical report on its flagship Constancia mine, in Peru, which lifted the operation’s value, while also extending the mine life. Toronto-headquartered Hudbay said a twin-hole drill programme during the fourth quarter of 2017 had... 

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