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Project Management News

PTM aims at positive Maseve cash flow by midyear, looking at interim financing options

By: Henry Lazenby     14th January 2017 To achieve positive cash flow and to maintain its working capital covenants under existing loan facilities, Vancouver-based Platinum Group Metals (PTM) estimates that it needs to source between C$5-million and C$15-million of additional funding. The company would weigh options, including... 

Five mining legends to be inducted to Canadian hall of fame

By: Creamer Media Reporter      13th January 2017 The Canadian Mining Hall of Fame will induct five mining celebrities into the list of extraordinary mining leaders at the annual dinner to be held for the first time at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre. According to a news release, Canadian mining celebrity Robert McEwen leads the list of... 

Federal funding for new Tlicho all-season road a boost for Fortune’s Nico project

By: Henry Lazenby     13th January 2017 Federal funding for up to 25% of the construction costs for a new 97 km all-season road connecting Highway 3 to the community of Whati, in the Northwest Territories, augers well for project developer Fortune Minerals’ endeavours to secure financing for its nearby Nico cobalt/gold/bismuth/copper... 

Integra, Goldcorp team with 4 global technology majors seeking disruptive mining technologies

By: Creamer Media Reporter      11th January 2017 Gold companies Integra Gold and Goldcorp have teamed with four of the world's largest technology companies to explore potential applications of disruptive technologies in the mining sector. #DisruptMining is a marquee event during the yearly Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC)... 

Benchmark sees softer outlook for natural graphite as Chinese regulatory overhaul starts

By: Henry Lazenby     6th January 2017 Graphite suppliers are expecting prices to fall by between 10% to 18% as China starts removing a 20% duty on all natural graphite exports from 2017 onwards, London-based Benchmark Mineral Intelligence said Thursday. When the duty is eventually removed, global prices are expected to experience... 

Benchmark sees softer outlook for natural graphite as Chinese regulatory overhaul starts

New Year heralds several senior management employments

By: Henry Lazenby     4th January 2017 Early 2017 corporate activity saw a slew of senior management appointments being made by miners. TSX- and NYSE-listed Tahoe Resources has appointed former Goldcorp president and CEO Chuck Jeannes to the board effective January 1. 

New Year heralds several senior management employments
Photo by Bloomberg
Cuck Jeannes

MGX stock spikes on successful lithium extraction from oil wastewater

By: Henry Lazenby     4th January 2017 The Canadian Securities Exchange-listed stock of lithium brines project developer MGX Minerals on Tuesday rallied more than 40% after the company announced it has successfully extracted lithium from heavy oil wastewater. The company owns a patent pending process for the extraction of lithium and... 

Largo sustains vanadium production above nameplate capacity

By: Creamer Media Reporter      4th January 2017 TSX-listed Largo Resources has hit a new monthly vanadium pentoxide production (V2O5) record at its Maracás Menchen mine, in Bahia state, Brazil, producing 828 t of the industrial metal – surpassing the previous September record by 22 t. Largo also announced that it has achieved new weekly and... 

Tesla makes Reno a critical pit stop on way to Las Vegas and CES

By: Bloomberg     29th December 2016 As far as Tesla’s concerned, what’s happening in Las Vegas can stay in Las Vegas. The real action is some 400 dusty miles northwest, across the state in Reno. The electric-car maker is seizing on next week’s consumer electronics show to host investors and analysts at Gigafactory 1, the sprawling... 

Tesla makes Reno a critical pit stop on way to Las Vegas and CES
Photo by Reuters
Tesla Model S

Zambia withholding $243m in tax refunds owed to mining firms

By: Reuters     28th December 2016 Zambia is withholding 2.4-billion kwacha ($243-million) of the 5-billion kwacha owed to mining companies in tax refunds because the correct documentation has not been provided, the tax authority said on Wednesday. Zambia's government began paying up to 800-million kwacha a month in Value Added... 

Zambia withholding $243m in tax refunds owed to mining firms
Photo by Bloomberg
A mine supervisor overlooks Metorox's Chibuluma copper mine, near Kitwe, Zambia

IHS Materials Price Index jumps to 18-month high; emergent weakness to undermine momentum

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd December 2016 Analytics firm IHS Markit reports that its Materials Price Index (MPI) rose for a sixth consecutive week, increasing 1.4% to hit a fresh 18-month high. IHS Global Insight Pricing & Purchasing senior economist Ben Orhan pointed out that ferrous metals once again drove the index higher, gaining... 

IHS Materials Price Index jumps to 18-month high; emergent weakness to undermine momentum

Nevada Sunrise, Advantage intersect potentially untapped lithium aquifer in Clayton Valley

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd December 2016 Lithium explorers Nevada Sunrise Gold and Advantage Lithium have possibly discovered an untapped lithium-brine aquifer in Nevada’s prospective Clayton Valley, giving the partners’ Toronto-listed stocks a boost Wednesday. Advantage, which is earning a 70% stake in the 405 ha Clayton NE property... 

Scotiabank Commodity Index set to end 2016 on high note

By: Henry Lazenby     21st December 2016 The Bank of Nova Scotia expects its benchmark Scotiabank Commodity Price Index to finish the year up 25%, with all sub-indices showing positive performance, the third largest Canadian banking group said Tuesday. The oil and gas index rose 55% in the year-to-November after both oil and natural gas... 

Scotiabank Commodity Index set to end 2016 on high note
Photo by Bloomberg
The surprise rally of bulk commodities, especially metallurgical coal, has lost some momentum in the final weeks of 2016

Lithium asset consolidation proceeds unabated

By: Henry Lazenby     20th December 2016 Asset consolidation is continuing in the junior lithium space, with several companies announcing deals in the past week. Wealth Minerals announced Monday that its Chilean subsidiary has entered a letter of intent dated December 12, with arm’s length vendors giving it the exclusive right and... 

Lithium asset consolidation proceeds unabated
Photo by Reuters
Demand is soaring for lithium-ion batteries, driven by the energy storage and electric vehicle markets

Largo targeting higher-margin sectors with its pure vanadium product

By: Henry Lazenby     20th December 2016 Vanadium producer Largo Resources is targeting higher-margin markets for its pure vanadium product being produced at the Maracás Menchen mine, in Bahia, Brazil. The company announced Tuesday that it intends to produce, qualify and sell its vanadium products at the specifications required for use... 

Largo targeting higher-margin sectors with its pure vanadium product
Photo by Largo Resources
Largo Resources CEO Mark Smith at the Maracas Menchen mine, Brazil

Bulk of Cullinan C-Cut Phase 1 nears completion

By: Robyn Wilkinson     16th December 2016 Mining services company Murray & Roberts Cementation will complete its contract at diamond miner Petra Diamonds’ Gauteng-based Cullinan mine this month, concluding the largest portion of the R4-billion Phase 1 expansion project that will initially extend the diamond mine’s life span by about 15 year 

Bulk of Cullinan C-Cut Phase 1 nears completion
DELICATE OPERATION Detailed planning was undertaken to deepen the shafts at the Cullinan C-Cut project without disrupting the existing infrastructure and operations

Difficult drilling proves rewarding at Koffiefontein

By: Robyn Wilkinson     16th December 2016 Diamond producer Petra Diamonds’ geological team has gained access to the kimberlite deposit between the 60 m level and 72 m level at its Koffiefontein project, in the Free State, owing to diamond drilling services provider Lesedi Drilling and Mining Contracting Company’s assistance in... 

Difficult drilling proves  rewarding at Koffiefontein
PRODUCTIVITY LIFTED Production at Petra Diamonds’ Koffiefontein project increased by 37% this year, as the result of more run-of-mine tonnage being treate

Latin American miners expected to persist with cost-cutting and disinvestment strategies

By: Henry Lazenby     16th December 2016 The end of the commodities super cycle continues to have a dampening effect on several South American economies, especially those that previously relied on high hydrocarbons prices to achieve high rates of growth. As well as hitting government earnings and rates of economic expansion, the... 

Latin American miners expected to persist with cost-cutting and disinvestment strategies

Northam Platinum growth projects on track

By: Simone Liedtke     16th December 2016 Platinum producer Northam Platinum’s strategically timed R5.5-billion growth projects are said to be on track, with good planning and sound execution set to enable it to fill any potential increased demand resulting from constrained South African supply. 

Northam Platinum growth projects on track
SUPPLY AND DEMAND The current challenging market conditions and stressed balance sheets are expected to constrain primary supply from South Africa, with global demand to grow

Systems thinking game aims to bring change to mining industry

By: Ilan Solomons     16th December 2016 Mining industry stakeholders knows that the industry must become more productive and efficient if it is to remain competitive and achieve the returns on investment required by shareholders. Local management consultancy Vuuma Collaborations has been researching other complex industries that have... 

Systems thinking game aims to bring change to mining industry
Photo by Duane Daws
SERIOUS GAMING SiMINE provides a systems thinking approach for mining through modern game technology to understand the complexities of an interconnected mining value chain

Desalination helps South32’s KZN aluminium smelter beat water woes

By: David Oliveira     9th December 2016 To ensure sustainable operations in drought sticken Richards Bay, KwaZulu-Natal, diversified miner South32 has invested R74-million in a seawater desalination plant that uses membrane technology to produce cooling process water for its Hillside aluminium smelter. The diversified miner appointed... 

Desalination helps South32’s KZN aluminium smelter beat water woes

Copper mining offers growth opportunity to dust suppressant supplier

By: Nadine James     2nd December 2016 Johannesburg-based nanotechnology provider Cruze Holdings expects to secure more work from African copper mining operations as its products generate savings by ensuring companies spend less on their existing road dust suppression measures. The company may double its mining revenue within the next... 

Copper mining offers growth opportunity to  dust suppressant supplier
DOWN WITH DUST Cruze Holdings dust palliatives are extremely effective, simple to apply and cost-effective

Crude pipeline approvals attract reaction straddling both sides of argument

By: Henry Lazenby     1st December 2016 Tuesday's approval by the federal Liberal government of Kinder Morgan’s C$6.8-billion Trans Mountain Expansion (TMX) project and Enbridge’s C$7.5-billion Line 3 Replacement project has drawn equally strong praise and criticism from Canadian business and civic organisations. Gathering almost... 

Crude pipeline approvals attract reaction straddling both sides of argument
Photo by Reuters
Protesters walk down Robson Street in opposition to Canada's decision to approve Kinder Morgan's pipeline from the Alberta oil sands to the Pacific coast, in Vancouver

Namibia Rare Earths files mining licence application for Lofdal

By: Henry Lazenby     30th November 2016 Heavy rare earth elements project developer Namibia Rare Earths has filed an application with the Namibian Mines and Energy Ministry for a mining licence for its Lofdal project, the company reported Wednesday. Since releasing its preliminary economic assessment (PEA) in November 2014, the company... 

PTM’s Maseve ramp-up dogged by DMR safety blitzes

By: Henry Lazenby     30th November 2016 The ramp up of South Africa-focused miner Platinum Group Metals’ (PTM’s)  cornerstone Maseve mine has been hampered in recent weeks by safety blitzes in the North West province by the inspectorate branch of South Africa's Department of Mineral Resources (DMR). The company noted on Tuesday that... 

Critical Elements welcomes lithium bigwig as president

By: Henry Lazenby     30th November 2016 Quebec-based lithium/tantalum project developer Critical Elements has appointed former Rockwood Lithium senior executive Dr Steffen Haber as its president effective January 1, 2017. Haber is a well-known figure in the lithium industry, having been CEO and president of Rockwood Lithium up until it... 

Capital expenditure to continue downward trend

By: Henry Lazenby     29th November 2016 Despite a modestly more buoyant outlook for key metal prices, mining capital expenditures (capex) are expected to continue on a downward slide over the next three years as miners seek further cost cuts and to improve operational margins, according to analysis by Fitch Group research arm BMI.... 

Capital expenditure to continue downward trend

Drone solution offers built-in compliance features

By: Simone Liedtke     25th November 2016 Mining companies need to be able to track their daily operations and have full visibility of their sites in real time without having to worry about putting in place time-consuming administrative systems to comply with the complex regulatory regimen for commercial drones, says commercial drone... 

Drone solution offers  built-in compliance features
REAL-TIME VIEW By accelerating a previously manual process, we are giving quarry operators real-time visibility across their sites

Fraser Alexander’s structured funding offering well received by mining sector

By: Ilan Solomons     25th November 2016 Mining services and construction company Fraser Alexander’s Integrated Mining Service (IMS) structured funding offering has been very positively received by the mining industry, says CEO Velile Nhlapo. He informs Mining Weekly that the IMS offering has been particularly popular among emerging... 

Fraser Alexander’s structured funding offering well received by mining sector
WELL RECEIVED Integrated Mining Service offerings have been particularly popular among emerging mining companies and companies with coal-to-power projects

Mining boom will highlight geology degree shortage

By: Simone Liedtke     25th November 2016 Should we enter another mining boom, there may not be enough universities offering bachelor degrees in geology to meet the industry’s subsequent demand for geological services, says mining software solutions provider MICROMINE technical product manager Frank Bilki. 

Mining boom will highlight geology degree shortage
GEOLOGY FIELDWORK Good fieldwork is critical to the success of early exploration and it is vital that exploration companies hire competent geologists.

Orocobre takes 31% Advantage stake as activity in South America’s lithium triangle heats up

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd November 2016 Investment activity in South America’s so-called ‘lithium triangle’ salt flats, or salars, is heating up with the announcement Wednesday that lithium producer Orocobre has signed a letter of intent (LoI) to acquire 31% of Advantage Lithium, in a deal valued at about $33-million. In return,... 

Orocobre takes 31% Advantage stake as activity in South America’s lithium triangle heats up
Photo by Orocobre
Olaroz, Argentina

Canada accelerates transition to clean power; to phase out coal-fired generation by 2030

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd November 2016 The Liberal Canadian federal government on Monday announced accelerated plans to transition the economy to renewable energy sources, saying it would aim to phase out coal-fired plants by 2030. According to Environment and Climate Change Minister Catherine McKenna, coal-fired electricity... 

Canada accelerates transition to clean power; to phase out coal-fired generation by 2030

Fewer entries from mining sector indicative of state of the sector

By: Ilan Solomons     18th November 2016 The current depressed nature of the mining industry globally was reflected in the lower number of entries that infrastructure software provider Bentley Systems received for its Be Inspired Awards in the Innovation in Mining category. The Be Inspired Awards highlight the world’s most “outstanding... 

Fewer entries from mining sector indicative of  state of the sector
AWARD WINNER The Be Inspired Award in the Innovation in Mining category was awarded to Tetra Tech Proteus for its work on Newmont Mining’s Tanami expansion project, in Australia

Mining promoted before protection of communities

By: Nadine James     18th November 2016 Many of the deficits pertaining to the implementation of social and labour plans (SLPs) reflect a legal regime established by the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) that, despite defined transformative objectives, primarily targets the promotion of mining activity rather than... 

Mining promoted before protection of communities
Photo by Reuters
LIVING IN MINING"S SHADOW Despite attempts to ensure that communities benefit from mining activity, the legislation surrounding social and labpur plans is flawed and skewed in the mining company's favor

Mobile technology helps eliminate blasting obstacles

By: Kimberley Smuts     18th November 2016 Explosives firm BME explored how mobile technology and centralised data could provide mine managers with an edge to comprehensively eliminate potential blast problems, through among others management of blast inputs, thereby improving blast results, at its annual Drilling and Blasting Conference.... 

Nyrstar hedges more zinc as price downside protection

By: Henry Lazenby     17th November 2016 European base metals business Nyrstar has entered into further short-term strategic hedging arrangements utilising put and call collar structures to mitigate potential down side risks to the zinc price. The global multi-metals business, with a market leading position in zinc and lead, said... 

Pure Energy hits lithium brines in Clayton Valley drill campaign

By: Henry Lazenby     17th November 2016 Canadian lithium explorer Pure Energy Minerals plans to collect new brine samples for lithium analysis and integrate that data into its existing inferred lithium brine resource through its current drill programme at the Clayton Valley South (CVS) project, in Nevada. The Vancouver-based public... 

SA mining sector generally not yet ready to willingly adopt modernised mining methods

By: Dylan Slater     11th November 2016 The South African mining sector is, generally, not yet in a position to willingly adopt and implement an array of digitalised and modernised mining methods, contrary to advisory and general industry views on the need to modernise mines to prepare them for the future, according to University of... 

SA mining sector generally not yet ready to willingly adopt modernised mining methods
IMAGINEERS The Kumba Virtual Reality Centre for Mine Design at the University of Pretoria helps students immerse themselves in realistic mining environments
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