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BMI index shows policy determines market attractiveness in Latin America

By: Henry Lazenby     20th July 2017 With policy being of the utmost importance when determining market attractiveness, countries with reliably stable  business environments will continue to dominate the top mining risk/reward index scores in the Americas, reflecting miners' prioritisation of reducing risk, given a volatile mineral... 

A pearl at a time, Fission redefines Saskatchewan’s Athabasca basin 

By: Henry Lazenby     19th July 2017 Since the November 2012 discovery of a new high-grade uranium deposit just outside the south-western corner of Saskatchewan’s famed Athabasca basin, where the world’s highest-grade uranium mines are found, explorer Fission Uranium has succeeded in stringing together new uranium discoveries “like... 

Over halfway into the year, steel outshines oil markets

By: Reuters     19th July 2017 Over halfway into 2017, China's steel market has been the best performer among key Asian commodities because of cuts in low-grade steel production capacity that have reduced supply as demand has remained surprisingly strong. However, oil markets have been the worst performer despite a pledge by... 

Polymetal ups stake in ‘perfect fit’ Nezhda deposit

By: Mariaan Webb     17th July 2017 Encouraged by the recently published resource estimate for the Nezhdaninskoye gold deposit, in Yakutia, Russia, LSE-listed Polymetal has decided to increase its shareholding in the joint venture (JV) project to 24.7%, with an option to acquire the remaining stake. A new shareholder agreement has... 

Musgrave grows Cue resource

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     14th July 2017 ASX-listed junior Musgrave Minerals has flagged a potential enlarged operation at the Cue gold project, in Western Australia, after a resource update at the Break of Day and Lena deposits. The two deposits are estimated to host a combined mineral resource of 3.55-million tonnes, grading 3.09%... 

Tahoe goes into damage control after flagship mine suspended

By: Bloomberg     14th July 2017 Tahoe Resources, whose flagship Guatemalan mine has been suspended, is taking steps to cut costs, including possibly slowing an expansion of a project in Peru and trimming exploration. The Reno, Nevada-based company may also discuss halting its dividend at an August board meeting and might slow... 

Burundi rare earths project on track for first production

By: Nica Schreuder     14th July 2017 Rare-earth element mining company Rainbow Rare Earths says it has made significant progress towards achieving first production at its Gakara rare earths project in Burundi, East Africa, with about $6-million has been invested in the project to date. Bolstered by Rainbow’s completion of an... 

Pockets of potential bode well for future

By: Nica Schreuder     14th July 2017 The expected turning point in the African mining sector has not yet occurred, owing to continued soft economic growth in emerging economies allied to uneven global economic recoveries, divergent monetary policies and significant geopolitical/social issues, which continue to create further... 

Prophecy secures third vanadium project in 2017

By: Henry Lazenby     13th July 2017 Canadian project developer Prophecy Development Corp has secured a third vanadium-focused project in 2017, announcing on Thursday that it has signed a lease on the Louie Hill vanadium project, in Nevada With the acquisition of the Louie Hill project, together with the previously acquired... 

China's new Silk Road encroaches on US turf in Eastern Europe

By: Bloomberg     12th July 2017 In the 19th century mansion in central Belgrade where bureaucrats plan some of Serbia’s important overseas projects, 64-year-old Ivan Mrkic is busy unpacking boxes teeming with the books, research papers and maps he needs to become an instant expert on China. Mrkic, a one-time Foreign Minister,... 

Upstream oil industry continuing on the road to recovery – Woodmac

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     11th July 2017 New data by advisory firm Wood Mackenzie (Woodmac) has shown that the number of upstream oil projects reaching final investment decision (FID) in 2017 could double to 25, compared with only 12 last year. In its latest report ‘A big year for FIDs: 2017 marks a turning point’, Woodmac points out... 

Fertoz inks offtake agreement in US

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     11th July 2017 ASX-listed phosphate developer Fertoz has inked a marketing agreement for up to 10 000 t of rock phosphate from a US project owned by Solvay USA. The agreement will see Fertoz hold the exclusive right to market the product for a period of two years, with Solvey to be responsible for loading the... 

Imperial’s Mount Polley mine impacted by BC wildfires

By: Henry Lazenby     11th July 2017 Base metals miner Imperial Metals has significantly reduced operations at its Mount Polley openpit copper/gold mine, in the Williams Lake area of British Columbia, as about 17 ‘wildfires of note’ posing a threat to public safety, rage in four of the province’s six fire management centres. Many of... 

Work starts on R1.7bn fluorspar mine 

By: Martin Creamer     10th July 2017 Work has begun on the building of an opencast fluorspar mine and concentrator at Rust de Winter, 80 km northeast of Pretoria, Nokeng Fluorspar Mine announced on Monday. The wholly owned subsidiary of SepFluor said that the R1.7-billion finance for the 21-month project had been raised through a... 

R16bn Swazilink rail project being prepared for release as a PPP

By: Terence Creamer     10th July 2017 Southern African railways utilities Transnet and Swaziland Railways have agreed to package the 146-km ‘Swazilink’ greenfield line between Lothair, in South Africa, and Sidvokodvo, in Swaziland, as a public-private partnership (PPP) and may release an international tender for a 20- to 25-year... 

Improved iron-ore market bodes well for Congo project – developer

By: Mia Breytenbach     7th July 2017 The global iron-ore industry's performance improved significantly in 2016 from a cost and pricing perspective, providing a much more positive platform going into 2017, Zanaga Iron Ore Company (ZIOC) nonexecutive chairperson Clifford Elphick said in a company results statement last week. Industry... 

New mobile screen launched in S Africa

By: Victor Moolman     7th July 2017 Mobile crushing and screening equipment supplier Kleemann, part of international specialist construction equipment manufacturer Wirtgen, has launched the Mobiscreen MS 703 EVO, which is capable of processing 350 t/h, in South Africa. 

Guatemala suspends Tahoe’s flagship Escobal mining licence

By: Henry Lazenby     6th July 2017 Canadian miner Tahoe Resources says it will approach Guatemala’s Constitutional Court after the Guatemala Supreme Court provisionally suspended the mining licence on its Escobal operation, the third-largest silver mine in the world. The court issued a temporary licence suspension after... 

Iron-ore market faces extreme volatility for couple of years

By: Bloomberg     5th July 2017 Iron-ore markets are heading for a very bumpy ride in the next couple of years, marked by significant price swings as the steel industry in China restructures, according to the developer of a planned $3.7-billion mine in Australia. “Extreme volatility is going to be a hallmark of the market for... 

Monty awarded environmental approvals

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     5th July 2017 ASX-listed Sandfire Resources and its joint venture (JV) partner, Talisman Mining, have been granted environmental approval to start development activities at the Monty copper/gold project, in Western Australia. Sandfire MD Karl Simich said on Wednesday that the approval for the mining proposal,... 

Top level conference alongside the region’s finest supplier expo make Oil & Gas Africa 2017 a magnet for industry chiefs next week

     4th July 2017 Cape Town hosts one of the most important Oil & Gas sector events on the continent in 2017 with key industry speakers examining the present successes and the future of southern Africa’s energy sector Engineers from across Africa arrive in Cape Town next week for the Oil & Gas Africa 2017... 

Chinese partner helps bring down Central Eyre project cost

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     4th July 2017 Capital costs for the Central Eyre iron project (CEIP), in South Australia, has been slashed by some $295-million, from $4-billion to $3.7-billion. ASX-listed Iron Road told shareholders this week that the company’s partner China Railway Group Limited (CREC) had delivered the capital savings as... 

Kin exercises option to buy idled Gold Field plant for Leonora

By: Mariaan Webb     30th June 2017 Gold developer Kin Mining has exercised its option to buy the idled Lawlers gold processing plant from Gold Fields’ Agnew mine for A$2.5-million. The company intends to use the 800 000 t/y plant, which had been on care and maintenance for about two years, at its Leonora gold project, which is... 

Implementation of hybrid renewable-diesel microgrids set to increase

By: Nadine James     30th June 2017 Mining houses’ use of microgrids and renewable energy to generate power and supplement diesel energy at isolated mining operations has been steadily increasing, says renewable-energy and microgrid consultant THEnergy. THEnergy founder and MD Dr Thomas Hillig notes that the company has been... 

ZIOC encouraged by improved equilibrium in iron-ore market, to enhance Congo project’s investment case

By: Mia Breytenbach     29th June 2017 The global iron-ore industry's performance improved significantly in 2016 from a cost and pricing perspective, providing a much more positive platform going into 2017, Zanaga Iron Ore Company (ZIOC) nonexecutive chairperson Clifford Elphick said on Thursday. Industry operating costs have been... 

Juniors welcome WA port decisions

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     27th June 2017 ASX-listed juniors Atlas Iron and Mineral Resources on Tuesday welcomed the Western Australian government’s decision to keep export costs from the Utah Point Bulk Handling Facility (UPBHF) unchanged. Atlas and Mineral Resources are the only two remaining junior miners that export Pilbara product... 

Musina Intermodal Terminal to improve cross-border trade

By: Schalk Burger     26th June 2017 The Musina Intermodal Terminal (MIT), launched on Monday, is set to reduce the cost of cross-border trade, especially for bulk commodities, on the North-South trade corridor. The terminal, about 3 km outside Musina and about 13 km from the Beitbridge border post, will serve to move commodities,... 

Sisson tungsten/moly play gets federal nod

By: Henry Lazenby     24th June 2017 TSX-listed Northcliff Resources’ majority owned Sisson Mines has received Canadian federal approval for the Sisson tungsten/molybdenum mine, in New Brunswick, following an environmental assessment under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. The federal Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the... 

Guatemala police clear access to Tahoe’s blocked Escobal mine

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd June 2017 Police have used teargas to clear a public road near the town of Casillas, in south-east Guatemala, of protesters blocking access to Canadian miner Tahoe Resources’ controversial Escobal mine, the third-largest silver mine in the world. The TSX- and NYSE-listed miner said in a statement on Friday... 

Multidisciplinary mining company says market is challenging

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd June 2017 With the general depletion of natural sand reserves around South Africa, especially within large cities, multidisciplinary materials openpit mining company Afrimat has invested in sand producing plants – especially in Gauteng – to produce high-quality concrete sands to ensure higher concrete... 

Explorer Orla adds oxide ore project to portfolio

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd June 2017 Vancouver-based major Goldcorp has agreed to sell its Camino Rojo project, in Zacatecas, Mexico, to fellow Vancouver-based junior explorer Orla Mining, adding an advanced oxide heap leach project with significant gold reserves and resources in a favourable mining jurisdiction to Orla’s portfolio.... 

Denmark's FLSmidth sees slow recovery in investment by mining firms

By: Reuters     21st June 2017 Danish mining equipment and cement factory maker FLSmidth said on Wednesday that investment by mining firms was only slowly recovering and low prices were still weighing on the cement business. "It is still a bumpy road ahead, investments are very low - crudely low - in the mining industry, and... 

Gruyere JV's capital cost estimate adjusted

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     21st June 2017 The capital cost of the Gruyere gold joint venture (JV), in Western Australia, has increased from A$507-million to A$532-million, following an engineering, procurement and construction review by the JV partners. ASX-listed Gold Road Resources on Wednesday told shareholders that since the JV was... 

PLANT SPECS, Australia’s earthmoving equipment “Bible”, comes under new management

     20th June 2017 PLANT SPECS, Australia’s only comprehensive annual listing of earthmoving and road construction equipment – with a database of equipment specifications going back to the mid-1980s – will continue to deliver vital data to subscribers under a new management team. Well-known in the industry,... 

Access to Tahoe’s Escobal mine blocked, guidance remains unaffected

By: Henry Lazenby     20th June 2017 Protestors near the town of Casillas, in south-east Guatemala, have blocked access to precious metals miner Tahoe Resources’ flagship Escobal mine, the third-largest silver mine in the world. The protests appear to relate to a variety of issues, including claims that mining at Escobal is causing... 

Lydian hits Amulsar milestones as construction proceeds apace

By: Henry Lazenby     20th June 2017 Construction of Lydian International’s 100%-owned Amulsar project, in Armenia, is advancing fast with 58% of the $369.9-million project capital committed as of May 31. Priority will now shift to advancing site earthworks. 

SWC welcomes moratorium on Wild Coast mining, but remains sceptical

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     19th June 2017 Activist group Sustaining the Wild Coast (SWC) has welcomed a notice gazetted by Mineral Resources Minister Mosebenzi Zwane which blocks any mining or prospecting applications on the Xolobeni mine area, in Bizana, in the Eastern Cape, for the next 18 months, “or until the Minister is satisfied... 

Chamber going to court to halt devastating charter blow to already battered mining sector 

By: Martin Creamer     15th June 2017 The Chamber of Mines of South Africa will be applying at the earliest opportunity for a court date for a declaratory order on continuing empowerment consequences, as well as immediately seeking an interim court interdict to suspend the implementation of Mining Charter Three, the devastating set... 

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