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Poseidon signs Black Swan ore tolling agreements

By: Mariaan Webb     21st September 2018 Base metals firm Poseidon Nickel has found two potential sources of third-party feed for its Black Swan concentrator, which the company is touting as an alternative processing facility for stranded nickel miners following the closure of BHP Billiton’s Nickel West Kambalda concentrator. Private... 

BHP's Spence copper mine in Chile partially closed following fire

By: Reuters     21st September 2018 Global miner BHP Billiton said on Thursday that a fire at its Spence copper mine in Chile had forced it to partially shut down operations. No one was injured in the fire, which has since been extinguished, the company said. 

BHP seeks approval for $50m US pact over fatal Brazil dam burst

By: Reuters     20th September 2018 BHP Billiton has asked a US judge to approve a $50-million settlement of claims that it fraudulently inflated its share price by overstating its ability to manage safety risks before a fatal 2015 dam burst at a Brazilian mine. The Anglo-Australian mining company's preliminary settlement of... 

Chilean lawmakers study extra tax for copper, lithium mines

By: Reuters     14th September 2018 Chile's congress is studying a proposal for an additional royalty payment for copper and lithium miners operating in the country to bolster the development of the regions around their deposits, according to a draft seen by Reuters. The initiative, which was put forward by opposition legislators... 

The Dickinson Group 

13th September 2018 The Dickinson Group of Companies is a leading provider of furnace and industrial services to the mining, metal smelting, mineral processing, thermal power generation and petrochemicals refining industries. The company has the capacity, technology, equipment and expertise to undertake complex... 

Giant diamonds has been mining's one success story this year

By: Bloomberg     7th September 2018 This summer’s crash in commodity prices is turning it into a year to forget for miners. Unless you dig the world’s biggest diamonds. Gem Diamonds has been the standout performer in the FTSE All-Share Mining Index, gaining almost 70% this year. In comparison, almost every other miner is in... 

Rio Tinto exec joins Turquoise Hill board

By: Creamer Media Reporter      7th September 2018 NYSE- and TSX-listed Turquoise Hill has appointed Rio Tinto VP for copper and diamond sales and marketing, Alan Chirgwin, to its board of directors. Chirgwin has extensive commercial background and a proven track record in the resources industry, specifically in the Asia Pacific region,... 

Copper deal day hits with a flurry of M&A for the hottest metal

By: Bloomberg     5th September 2018 "Everyone loves copper and everyone wants to buy it” has been this year’s mining mantra. Today the ball started rolling. China’s Zijin Mining Group swooped on a huge undeveloped copper mine in Serbia, acting as a white knight to beat out an earlier hostile bid from a Canadian rival. At the same... 

US–China trade tensions to shackle copper prices

By: Reuters     29th August 2018 Copper prices have recovered from a recent rout, but the possibility of the trade dispute between the Washington and Beijing escalating and its potential to crimp demand in China, the world's top consumer, is expected to cap gains. Benchmark copper on the London Metal Exchange at $6 100 has... 

Nutrien steers potash recovery as BHP waits in the wings

By: Reuters     20th August 2018 Canada's Nutrien, the world's biggest potash miner by capacity, has helped engineer a surprising price rebound for the fertilizer by idling capacity. Now the trick will be keeping prices from appreciating too much to ensure a major would-be competitor, BHP Billiton, stays on the sidelines. 

Mozambique's ruby mining goes from ‘wild west’ to big business

By: Bloomberg     13th August 2018 Sebastiao Pedro struck it lucky in 2014 when, as a 21-year-old small-scale miner, he found a large red ruby in northern Mozambique. He sold it to a buyer from Vietnam for $43 000, returned to his family 900 miles away and built a house with the proceeds. Then the money ran out. 

Copper shorts exposed to supply shock as giant mine faces strike

By: Bloomberg     12th August 2018 Copper bears could get caught wrong-footed as a strike looms at the world’s biggest mine. In the US, hedge funds’ bearish bets outnumber bullish wagers by the most since 2016, latest government data show. The top brokers on the Shanghai Futures Exchange boosted their net-short position by more... 

Increased exploration spend boosts services demand

By: Donald Makhafola     10th August 2018 Mining activities and the number of exploration projects in Australia have been steadily increasing since 2017, and this has, subsequently, resulted in an increased demand for South African airborne geophysics technology provider Spectrem Air’s services, says Spectrem Air GM Louis Polomé.... 

Humiliated for years, women are fighting back in mines of Chile

By: Bloomberg     8th August 2018 he first time Karen Requena entered the cafeteria at BHP Billiton’s massive Escondida mining operation in northern Chile, she couldn’t help feeling countless eyes fixed on her body as she walked across the vast hall. “It can’t get worse than that,” she thought. Then as Requena looked for a place... 

Copper supply woes on show with No. 2 mine output to halve

By: Bloomberg     6th August 2018 A battle over the world’s second-largest copper mine has dogged Freeport-McMoRan shareholders for more than a year. Now it may be the turn of the copper market. Production at Grasberg in Indonesia will fall by more than half next year as its giant pits transition to underground operations,... 

Rising oil prices threaten to erode mining sector's profitability

By: Reuters     6th August 2018 Rising oil prices are the latest challenge to the mining sector's profitability, threatening to eclipse hard-fought efficiency gains during the past two years and increasing metals demand. Miners use heavy fuel oil to generate electricity at remote sites; they also use it for transport, with... 

Blockchain technology could prove beneficial to the mining industry – Fitch Solutions

By: Creamer Media Reporter      3rd August 2018 Blockchain has the potential to serve as a powerful tool for mining companies looking to improve their environmental, social and governance standards as consumer pressure in this regard continues to grow, the latest report by Fitch Solutions shows. While blockchain also offers a number of other... 

Chilean workers vote to strike at world's biggest copper mine

By: Reuters     2nd August 2018 Workers at BHP Billiton's Escondida mine in Chile, the world's biggest copper mine, have voted to reject a company wage offer and go on strike, according to a communique sent to Reuters on Thursday. A total of 2 330 members voted on strike action, with 1 955 supporting it and 370 accepting the... 

Will BHP's CEO follow top miner's shale unit out of the door?

By: Bloomberg     27th July 2018 BHP Billiton’s $10.8-billion of deals to exit its troubled US shale unit will allow CEO Andrew Mackenzie to shower investors with returns. It may also be a chance for him to bow out on top. Mackenzie, 61, who’s held his post since 2013, has delivered on plans to simplify BHP around a tighter... 

SA iron-ore industry struggles more than most

By: Paige Müller     27th July 2018 The outlook for the South African iron-ore industry remains “bleak”, owing to stagnant local economic growth, a negative local investment environment and a significant drop in global demand for iron-ore, says commodities market analysis firm Core Consultants MD Lara Smith. She emphasises that the... 

Matt Mullins

By: Martin Creamer     27th July 2018 This week Mining Weekly features Matt Mullins, the director of Tecoma Strategies and chairperson of the SAMCODES Standards Committee 

The world's biggest miners want more copper but nobody's selling

By: Bloomberg     17th July 2018 It’s the mining world’s biggest dilemma: everyone’s hunting for copper deals, but even the richest producers just can’t pull the trigger. The largest miners all say they’re bullish on copper and looking for growth in the metal that’s forecast to be in ever-greater demand as cities expand and... 

Top-grade iron-ore may spike to $100/t

By: Bloomberg     16th July 2018 High-grade iron-ore may spike to $100 a metric ton as China intensifies a clampdown on pollution by restraining industrial activity, adding further momentum to a trend that’s reshaped the global market in recent years and driven buyers in Asia’s top economy to seek out better-quality material.... 

Copper trains ransacked by 'moles' in full-moon desert heists

By: Bloomberg     13th July 2018 On nights lit by a full moon, thieves leap from trucks onto trains as they roll through Chile’s Atacama desert, before throwing 80-kg slabs of copper to the ground and disappearing into the dark. It’s a tactic known as “the cat” and the robbers are “moles” because no one knows where they come... 

Bluejay's Dundas may be attractive to Rio Tinto – analysts

By: Mariaan Webb     12th July 2018 The closure of Rio Tinto's South African subsidiary Richards Bay Minerals (RBM) as a result of violent protests this week, may play into the hand of London- and Frankfurt-listed Bluejay Mining, which is developing the Dundas ilmenite project, in Greenland. The project is said to be the... 

Ecuador attracting mining interest, political risks weigh on Latin America outlook

By: Mariaan Webb     12th July 2018 The South American country of Ecuador is attracting interest among foreign mining companies, as a low-risk, high-reward market, where government remains supportive of mining, despite the February referendum restricting mining in protected areas. Market intelligence firm BMI, which publishes a... 

BHP makes contract offer to union at Escondida mine in Chile

By: Reuters     12th July 2018 BHP Billiton handed in a proposal for a new labor contract to the union at its Escondida copper mine in Chile that includes a salary readjustment linked to inflation and a $23 000 bonus per worker, the company said on Wednesday. The offer falls short of fulfilling some of the demands laid out... 

Indonesia reaches preliminary deal with Freeport on Grasberg

By: Bloomberg     12th July 2018 Indonesia has struck an “initial agreement” to take majority ownership of Freeport-McMoRan’s giant Grasberg copper and gold mine, President Joko Widodo told reporters in Jakarta on Thursday. State-owned PT Indonesia Asahan Aluminium, also known as Inalum, will end up with a 51% stake,... 

BP is front-runner to buy BHP's US shale unit

By: Bloomberg     8th July 2018 BP has emerged as the front-runner to buy BHP Billiton’s onshore oil and gas operations in the US, according to a person familiar with the matter. The London-based oil major has made the highest offer for the assets, which BHP prefers selling in a single package, said the person, who asked to... 

BHP, workers at Escondida mine in Chile 'far from agreement'

By: Reuters     6th July 2018 Negotiations between workers and BHP Billiton at the Escondida copper mine in Chile, the world's largest, are "far from reaching agreement" with less than three weeks to go before the negotiation deadline, a union official told Reuters on Thursday. The official, Carlos Allendes, said the union... 

Iron-ore slides to seven-month low as trade war fears mount

By: Bloomberg     5th July 2018 Iron-ore’s starting to buckle after a series of warnings that prices are set to drop amid rising global supply, and as investors fret about the potential impact of escalating trade tensions between the US and China. Benchmark spot ore eased to $62.50/t on Thursday, the lowest since November,... 

US probe darkens Glencore's horizons from Africa to Americas

By: Bloomberg     4th July 2018 The US corruption and money-laundering probe into Glencore Plc represents the sum of all fears for the world’s largest commodity trader and its billionaire CEO Ivan Glasenberg. The possibility that the Justice Department would add to the dizzying array of regulatory and legal headaches the Swiss... 

Samarco is said to be nearing settlement with Brazil prosecutors

By: Bloomberg     15th June 2018 After a year of back and forth, the owners of the idle Samarco iron-ore mine are close to signing a definitive settlement with Brazilian prosecutors that will clear the way for restart preparations and debt talks to begin, according to people briefed on the matter. Joint venture partners Vale... 

Copper giant's cost crusade imperiled by wage largess of peers

By: Bloomberg     13th June 2018 Generous wage concessions made by private-sector copper producers to avoid strikes in Chile are emboldening unions at Codelco, undermining efforts by the state-owned behemoth to contain costs. That’s the view of CEO Nelson Pizarro, whose focus on costs in a five-decade mining career earned him... 

China Inc takes another bite of Congo's copper mining riches

By: Bloomberg     12th June 2018 China is making another big bet on copper in the Democratic Republic of Congo, deepening its presence in a country that’s proved very difficult for Western business. Congo holds huge reserves of copper, but is also one of the hardest countries to navigate -- with problems with security,... 

Workers at BHP's Spence copper mine in Chile approve labour contract

By: Reuters     11th June 2018 Unionised workers at BHP Billiton's Spence copper mine in northern Chile have approved a new labor contract, union president Ronald Salcedo said on Monday. Spence is one of the Anglo-Australian miner two mines in Chile. The other, Escondida, the world' largest copper mine, earlier this month... 

Escondida union to copper investors: bet on quick wage deal

By: Bloomberg     8th June 2018 The world’s largest copper mine probably will avoid a repeat of last year’s prolonged strike as the two sides reign in expectations, according to a union leader. The main union at Escondida in Chile presented its demands to owner BHP Billiton on Friday, and the company has until the weekend to... 

Southern has copper giants in the crosshairs with Peru expansion

By: Bloomberg     1st June 2018 Southern Copper is preparing to scale the ranking of global producers by spending more than $10-billion in Peru and Mexico, taking advantage of rising prices underpinned by years of industry belt-tightening. The fifth-largest copper producer hopes to start work on its Tia Maria project in Peru... 

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