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Weekly Features

Coal terminal avoiding ‘catastrophic failure’, doubling equipment capacity

By: Victor Moolman     17th February 2017 Phase 1 of the Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT) yard machine upgrade, in KwaZulu-Natal, will be completed in February 2018, says engineering and infrastructure advisory services company Aurecon. 

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

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

Consultancy attributes growth rate to specialist teams

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 Gauteng-based mine planning and engineering consultancy Ukwazi grew by 29% in 2015, exceeding its average growth rate of between 22% and 23% recorded over the previous five and ten years.    According to Ukwazi director and principal mining engineer Jaco Lotheringen the company’s formal study... 

Ethics, the foundation of project management

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 An organisation’s ethics and, more importantly a project’s leadership is the very foundation on which its successful development is based, says Denver-based project management expert, course leader and author Terry Owen. In a handbook titled Project Management for Mining, published in 2015, which... 

Ethics, the foundation of project management
Photo by Bloomberg
TRUST IS KEY Project leadership must embrace the personal traits of integrity, fairness, faithfulness and honesty

High-value projects key to success in economic downturn

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 By identifying and concentrating on high-value projects as a positive project management practice, mining companies and project managers can help ensure the success of projects amid the current slump in the mining industry, local mining and exploration consultancy The MSA Group notes. MSA Group... 

High-value projects  key to success in economic downturn
EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT Project management companies must intensely interrogate a project’s ability to survive in tough financial times

Industry association provides diverse professional certificate

     19th February 2016 Nonprofit professional membership association Project Management Institute (PMI) is providing the Project Management Professional (PMP)certification which comprises rigorous process that shows the achievement, knowledge and skills of a project manager in the project management environment.... 

Modikwa South 2 handover slated for July

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 The completion of South African mining company African Rainbow Minerals’ (ARM’s) Modikwa platinum mine South 2 Phase 1 decline shaft is in its final stages and will be handed over to the mine in July. The execution project is contracted to Centurion-based project management and consultancy Fox... 

Modikwa South 2 handover slated for July
Photo by Bloomberg
PROJECT SUCCESS Fox Projects completed the execution of Anglo American Platinum/ ARM’s Modikwa mine north decline and handed over the project in December 2015

Safety, risk ownership key to thriving projects

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 Effective risk-mitigation measures and a sound safety-management system are integral to the development of a successful project, stipulates global mining and engineering planning and service provider WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff. The company has been operating in Africa for the past 20 years and has... 

Safety, risk ownership key to thriving projects
Photo by Bloomberg
BUYING INTO SAFETY Project managers are responsible for creating a culture of safety at project sites

Aligning mining projects with financing requirements a challenge

By: Bruce Montiea     13th February 2015 Aligning mining projects in Africa with international project financing requirements, while ensuring that there is a direct link to the work conducted on the ground and that clients’ expectations are being met, can be challenging, says global consulting organisation Golder Associates head of... 

Aligning mining projects with  financing requirements a challenge
Photo by Bloomberg
INCREASED IMPORTANCE The issue of sustainability in the mining industry has become more prominent over the past ten years

Companies sign MoU for graphite project development

     13th February 2015 Engineering and construction services company China Railway 24th Bureau Group in January signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) in terms of which it will offer engineering, procurement and construction (EPC) services to graphite producer Magnis Resources’ Nachu project, in south-east... 

Companies  sign MoU for graphite project  development
Photo by Bloomberg
SUPERIOR PRODUCT The graphite that Nachu can produce has the potential to be among the best in the world

Companies to benefit from fishbone method

By: Bruce Montiea     13th February 2015 Mining companies stand to benefit from professional and specialist project management service provider VBKOM Projects’ “unique application” of the fishbone diagram, also known as the Ishikawa diagram, in providing project management services, says company senior mining decision support consultant... 

Companies to benefit from fishbone method
FISHBONE DIAGRAM VBKom projects has established that the reverse fishbone diagram can be effectively applied to structure any project brainstorming session

Company foresees growth in African shaft sinking opportunities

     13th February 2015 Africa has the potential to create more shaft sinking operations opportunities in the near future, says engineering contracting company Murray & Roberts Cementation. The company’s business development executive Allan Widlake says, as a result of the emerging opportunities, Murray & Roberts... 

Company foresees  growth in African shaft sinking opportunities
INCREASED OPPORTUNITY Murray & Roberts Cementation expects a growth in shaft sinking operations in Africa

Consultancy acquires specialist mining software

     13th February 2015 Mining consultancy and software provider RungePincockMinarco (RPM) in January announced its acquisition of end-to-end spatial solution provider PrimeThought Software Solutions’ intellectual property rights for its specialist software products used in the management and reporting of geospatial... 

Control over key performance criteria can reduce project costs

By: Bruce Montiea     13th February 2015 Mining companies can reduce a project’s final installed cost by 5% to 10% by effectively tracking key performance criteria, says consulting services company SNC-Lavalin project manager John Dixon. He explains that this can be done using a smart and accurate work- breakdown structure, budget and... 

Control over key  performance criteria can reduce project costs
PROFITABLE The fundamentals for mining projects in Africa remain lucrative and the industry continues to offer opportunities

MTS upgrades benefit mines

By: Bruce Montiea     13th February 2015 A mine technical system (MTS) running on a platform that is nearing its end-of-life creates risks in terms of planning and reporting on operational activities of a mine. It could render the mining company involved unable to keep up with advancements in technology, says EON Consulting principal... 

MTS upgrades  benefit mines
KEEPING UP A mine technical system is a crucial part of a modern mine, enabling it to keep up with advancements in technology

Multinational consultancy signs project management contract

     13th February 2015 British multinational consultancy, engineering and project management company Amec Foster Wheeler in January entered into a three-year project management contract with Chinese coal mining company Shenhua Ningxia Coal Group. In terms of the contract, Amec Foster Wheeler will be part of an... 

Multinational consultancy signs project management contract
Photo by Bloomberg
EXPERIENCED Amec Foster Wheeler has more than 80 years’ experience of working in China, dating back to the 1930s

On-time commissioning of mining complex demonstrates company’s abilities

By: Bruce Montiea     13th February 2015 The completion of the commissioning of Russia’s Vladimir Grib diamond deposit’s mining and concentration complex as per schedule, showcases engineering, procurement, and construction management services provider Tenova Bateman’s ability to execute projects on time and within budget, the company... 

On-time commissioning  of mining complex  demonstrates  company’s abilities
VLADIMIR GRIB COMPLEX The project implemented modular design aspects, with the plant designed for operation in the subarctic environment of Russia's far north

DRA sharpens focus on international expansion

By: Mariaan Webb     12th December 2014 From a modest start 30 years ago as an electrical control and instrumentation company, DRA has morphed into one of the continent’s largest project management and engineering enterprises with operations in Africa, North America, Europe and the Pacific. It is to these international markets that the... 

DRA sharpens focus on international expansion
Photo by Duane Daws
DRA CEO Paul Thomson

Education at the heart of DRA’s corporate social investment

By: Mariaan Webb     12th December 2014 Recognising the need for a constant supply of well-qualified, locally educated graduate engineers and scientists to recruit from, DRA has placed education at the heart of its corporate social investment (CSI) programme, with 26 local nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) benefiting from its... 

Maintenance specialist upbeat about 2014 contract renewals

By: Mariaan Webb     12th December 2014 Outsourced plant operations and maintenance specialist Minopex, a member of the DRA Group, has been awarded three contract renewals in 2014, which MD Gerhard Hendriksz says is indicative of the value-add service that the company offers. 

Mining division expanding again

By: Mariaan Webb     12th December 2014 DRA Mining – a division offering specialised mining services and total mining service solutions – is bouncing back after the South African mining industry took a knock in the post-Marikana environment. 

Mining division expanding again
Photo by Duane Daws
DRA director responsible for the mining division, Neale Goddard

Mining downturn threatens to erode local talent pool

By: Mariaan Webb     12th December 2014 Slow growth in the South African mining industry is threatening to erode the availability of critical skills in the local industry, as experienced engineers turn to other emerging and faster-growing industries for work opportunities. 

Mining downturn threatens to erode  local talent pool
Photo by Duane Daws
DRA CEO Paul Thomson

New Oman office already bringing in leads

By: Mariaan Webb     12th December 2014 Having already established a strong foothold in sub-Saharan Africa, Johannesburg-headquartered  

New Oman office already bringing in leads
Photo by Duane Daws
DRA COO Michiel van Niekerk

Refurbished winders attractive alternative

By: Mariaan Webb     12th December 2014 Refurbishing existing mine winders remains a popular practice in the mining industry, with DRA’s specialist consultant winder systems team reporting that the majority of its clients choose refurbished equipment where possible, owing to significant cost and time savings. 

Refurbished winders attractive alternative
Photo by Duane Daws
DRA director responsible for the winder systems business, Graham du Plessis

Cloud-based project solution implemented at blue-chip clients

By: Dylan Slater     14th February 2014 Project management company SSG Consulting’s cloud-based KEY360 project management software solution is being implemented at an increasing number of blue-chip clients, including several South Africa-based mining houses. 

Cloud-based project  solution implemented at blue-chip clients
MEDUPI PROJECT The Grootegeluk Medupi expansion project enabled 20 companies to collaborate over a single installation of KEY360

Expats head up Australian projects

By: Dylan Slater     14th February 2014 A tag team comprising two former South Africans has been appointed by professional services firm Deloitte as part of the company’s new approach to liaising with clients and managing mining projects on Australia’s east and west coasts. 

Expats head up Australian projects
NICKI IVORY Rapid and sustainable cost reduction has become a necessity

Konamanje Engineering & Shower Projects

     14th February 2014 Established in 2008, Gauteng-based Konamanje Engineering and Shower Projects (KESP) provides a variety of emergency showers and eyewash stations that are manufactured, supplied and repaired in line with international standards, to meet the requirements of the safety industry.  

Konamanje Engineering & Shower Projects

New entrants could impact on project management trends

By: Dylan Slater     14th February 2014 Engineering, procurement and construction management (EPCM) services provider Tenova Bateman says that several relatively new entrants in Africa’s mining sector may play a pivotal role in evolving project management trends. 

New entrants could impact on project management trends
STEHAN VAN DER POST External project management is definitely a growing trend from the owner’s perspective

Project life-cycle approach ensures success

     14th February 2014 Consulting engineering and project implementation firm Hatch Goba reports that its commitment to taking responsibility for the duration of its clients’ projects’ life-cycle ensures the greatest possible success. 

Project life-cycle approach ensures success
JOHAN BREYTENBACH Hatch Goba’s project life-cycle process offers dedicated support from inception to completion
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