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Africa News

Mwana pours first gold at Zimbabwe's Freda mine

By: Shannon de Ryhove     14th October 2009 Multicommodity resources company Mwana Africa on Tuesday announced the first pour of 180 oz of gold following the completion of Phase 1 of its refurbishment programme at the Freda Rebecca gold mine, near Bindura, in Zimbabwe. "The first gold pour marks a significant milestone in the... 

Diamond demand outstripping supply – Oppenheimer

By: Martin Creamer     14th October 2009 Demand for diamonds was "most probably" outstripping supply and, as a diamond producer, De Beers was wanting to produce "as many diamonds as possible", De Beers chairperson Nicky Oppenheimer said on Tuesday. Oppenheimer, speaking on CNN to Fareed Zakaria, said that the Chinese and Indian people... 

Endeavour Financial already looking at gold deal No 2 

By: Liezel Hill     13th October 2009 Merchant bank Endeavour Financial is already looking closely at a second potential gold transaction, after it announced last month it would take a 54% stake in struggling gold junior Etruscan Resources, Endeavour marketing and business development director Sally Eyre said in an interview.... 

Midlands Minerals hopes to raise $6m in private placement

By: Liezel Hill     13th October 2009 Midlands Minerals, which hopes to refurbish and restart its Sian gold mine, in Ghana, has hired D&D Securities and Clarus Securities to conduct a private placement of up to $6-million, on a best-efforts basis. The company will offer up to 40-million units, at C$0,15 apiece. Each unit is made up... 

Wits Gold completes Potchefstroom goldfield technical report

By: Esmarie Iannucci     13th October 2009 JSE-listed gold explorer Wits Gold on Tuesday reported that an independent technical report of its gold and uranium resources in the Potchefstroom goldfield, had been completed. In addition to an inferred resource of 333,6-million tons, at 7,1 g/t gold, or 75,8-million ounces, it was now... 

Continental says SA project could also produce export coal

By: Esmarie Iannucci     13th October 2009 ASX-listed Continental Coal reported on Tuesday that two seams at its Vlakvarkfontein project, in South Africa, were capable of producing export-quality coal. The company said that a recently received washability data report on the project also indicated that it could produce coal suitable for... 

Eskom says talks have been initiated with BHP about commodity-linked power contracts 

By: Terence Creamer     13th October 2009 South Africa's power utility Eskom confirmed on Tuesday that it was pushing ahead with plans to renegotiate commodity-linked electricity tariffs with resources groups, such as BHP Billiton, whose aluminium smelter investments in South Africa and Mozambique were premised on access to low-cost... 

Great Basin to start trial mining at Burnstone

By: Esmarie Iannucci     13th October 2009 TSX- and JSE-listed Great Basin Gold (GBG) on Tuesday reported a 6% increase in measured and indicated resources at its Burnstone project in South Africa, where trail mining will get under way this month. The company, which also owns the Hollister project in Nevada, said that Burnstone’s total... 

Central Rand says Puno court case postponed

By: Esmarie Iannucci     13th October 2009 JSE-listed gold junior Central Rand Gold (CRG) on Tuesday reported that the court case, in which black economic-empowerment firm Puno Gold was attempting to interdict CRG South Africa (CRGSA) from its activities, has been postponed until November 5. The case was due to be heard on Tuesday. 

SA's coal output likely to rise by 2011, boosted by Waterberg mines

By: Creamer Media Reporter      13th October 2009 South Africa's coal production will struggle to meet demand over the next few years, but coal production could likely be on the upward trend by 2011 if new mines are opened in the Waterberg coalfield, despite the environmental and logistical constraints the industry is facing, growth consultancy... 

Platmin begins search for new CEO to succeed Watson

By: Chanel de Bruyn     12th October 2009 Aim-, JSE- and TSX-listed Platmin has started evaluating suitable candidates to succeed its current CEO Ian Watson, who will retire as an executive and director of the junior mining company at the end of the year. "Ian has been a director and executive of Platmin since 2004 and has guided the... 

Wage strike ends at DRDGold's Blyvoor mine

By: Chanel de Bruyn     12th October 2009 A strike by 3 900 employees at South African miner DRDGold's Blyvooruitzicht mine, near Carletonville, has ended after nearly four weeks, the company announced on Monday. Members of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) downed tools at the company's Blyvooruitzicht and Crown mines over wages... 

Harmony says worker killed at Free State mine

By: Chanel de Bruyn     12th October 2009 A mineworker had been killed in a fall-of-ground incident at Harmony Gold’s Bambanani mine, in the Free State, the gold-miner reported on Monday. Spokesperson Marian van der Walt said that the incident happened at 23:50 on Sunday during face cleaning operations at the mine. 

Gold One on track to produce 20 000 oz by year-end – CEO

By: Chanel de Bruyn     12th October 2009 ASX- and JSE- listed Gold One’s growth projects were taking shape, keeping it on track to ramp up its production to 20 000 oz of gold before the end of the year, CEO Neal Froneman told shareholders on Monday. In a statement, he noted the company was on track to achieve that target, with its... 

Moto shareholders approve Randgold merger

By: Chanel de Bruyn     12th October 2009 Shareholders in Aim- and TSX-listed gold development company Moto Goldmines have approved the merger with Africa-focused Randgold Resources. Gold companies AngloGold Ashanti and Randgold Resources earlier this year teamed up in a $488-million deal to acquire Moto, which is developing a gold... 

Riversdale may use Zambezi river to transport Mozambique coal

By: Chanel de Bruyn     12th October 2009 ASX-listed coal-miner Riversdale Mining would submit a feasibility study and an environmental impact study (EIS) for its proposed plan to transport coal via barge along the Zambezi river, in Mozambique, to that country’s government during the second half of next year. The company on Monday said... 

Now Mandela/Zuma's Aurora buys Pamodzi Gold East Rand 

By: Martin Creamer     12th October 2009 New gold-miner Aurora Empowerment Systems has bought the liquidated Pamodzi Gold East Rand assets, Mining Weekly Online can today report. The hedged East Rand property, the last piece of the stricken Pamodzi Gold group to be bought out liquidation, is the second Pamodzi Gold asset that Aurora... 

Sentula unveils plan to sell Koornfontein for R686m

By: Chanel de Bruyn     12th October 2009 JSE-listed Sentula Mining’s share price rose sharply in early morning trade on Monday, after the company announced plans to sell its 49,9% stake in the Koornfontein coal mine, in Mpumalanga province, for R686-million in cash, as part of a recapitalisation process. The fraud-hit company, which... 

SA power tariff increases to lead to more mining job losses – union

By: Creamer Media Reporter      9th October 2009 South Africa’s power utility Eskom’s planned tariff increases of at least 45% a year over the next three years, could lead to a second wave of widespread retrenchments in the country’s mining industry, trade union Solidarity warned on Friday. “There are already indications that marginal gold... 

SACMH says case for capital raising, reopening mine ‘difficult’

By: Esmarie Iannucci     9th October 2009 JSE-listed coal junior South African Coal Mining Holdings (SACMH) said on Friday that the business case for raising capital and reopening its mine remained “difficult”, as the export price of coal had remained under R500/t since April. In April, SACMH placed its mining operations on... 

Gold at $1 050 to $1 100/oz likely in 2010 - JPMorgan  

By: Reuters     9th October 2009 JPMorgan lifted its 2009 price forecasts for gold and silver on Friday and said new record highs for gold at $1 050/oz to $1 100/oz were likely in early 2010. In a research note, the bank said it has revised its 2009 price view for gold up to $948/oz from $939/oz predicted in July. It said it... 

Lonrho Mining quits SA, shifts focus to Angola diamond project

By: Chanel de Bruyn     9th October 2009 ASX-listed Lonrho Mining could now focus on its joint-venture (JV) Lulo diamond project, in Angola, after its South African subsidiary companies had been successfully sold to New African Mining and African Renaissance Holdings. “It is with a sense of great relief that this particular chapter in... 

Metmar sees headline earnings a share falling sharply

By: Esmarie Iannucci     9th October 2009 JSE-listed commodities trader Metmar on Friday advised shareholders that attributable earnings for the six months ended August, were likely to increase between 15% and 20%, compared to the previous corresponding period. This was mainly as a result of the inclusion of the sales profit from... 

Solidarity concludes Hotazel wage agreement

By: Esmarie Iannucci     9th October 2009 Trade union Solidarity has concluded its wage agreement with diversified miner BHP Billiton’s Hotazel Manganese Mines (HMM), in South Africa’s Northern Cape. Following a third round of negotiations, the trade union concluded a wage agreement for an increase of 8% with HMM.  

Chrometco narrows interim loss

By: Creamer Media Reporter      9th October 2009 AltX-listed minerals exploration company Chrometco narrowed its net loss in the first six months of the 2010 financial year to R1,7-million, compared with a net loss of R2,9-million the year before. Its headline loss a share improved to a loss of 0,96c a share in the six months ended August 31,... 

Platmin concludes R400m Investec financing deal

By: Esmarie Iannucci     9th October 2009 JSE-, TSX-, and Aim-listed Platmin has concluded a R400-million, 12-month, renewable, revolving commodity financing agreement with Investec Bank. The funds would be used for working capital purposes, Platmin said on Friday. 

Wallington to lead Firestone’s Waterberg coal study, CEO steps down

By: Esmarie Iannucci     9th October 2009 JSE- and ASX-listed mineral explorer Firestone Energy has appointed former Anglo American executive John Wallington as MD to lead the bankable feasibility study of the junior company’s Waterberg coal project, in South Africa. Wallington will replace Firestone CEO Garth Higgo, who will be leaving... 

Sundance submits iron-ore feasibility study to Cameroon govt

By: Esmarie Iannucci     9th October 2009 Africa-focused explorer Sundance Resources has presented the feasibility study for its Mbalam iron-ore project to the government of Cameroon, the ASX-listed company said on Friday. The explorer submitted the feasibility study to the Industry, Mines and Technological Development Minister, in... 

Blyvoor workers accepts 8% wage increase – DRDGold

By: Esmarie Iannucci     9th October 2009 South African gold producer DRDGold in Friday confirmed that workers at its Blyvooruitzicht mine had verbally accepted the 8% basic wage increase. Spokesperson James Duncan said that the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) had held a mass meeting with its members at Blyvoor on Thursday, to... 

Clashing views on how treated mine water should be used

By: Loni Prinsloo     9th October 2009 Acid mine drainage (AMD) and, more specifically, a solution to AMD, have developed into a hot debate since the first decant of this toxic water became evident in 2002. AMD has been described as one of the most serious and potentially enduring environmental problems for the mining industry and,... 

Platinum Group unveils updated feasibility study: output up, capex down

By: Liezel Hill     9th October 2009 TSX- and Amex-listed Platinum Group Metals (PTM) has completed an independent update for its Western Bushveld Joint Venture Project 1 platinum mine, in South Africa, and now expects to produce 275 000 oz/y of platinum group metals and gold, compared with a previous forecast of 250 000 oz/y, the... 

Zim Mining Indaba to be an annual event

By: Jonathan Faurie     9th October 2009 The future of the Zimbabwe Mining Indaba has been cast in stone after the 2009 Indaba was seen as a resounding success by the Zimbabwe Ministry of Mines and Mining Development. 

Zim govt threatens to repossess unused mining claims

By: Barnabas Thondhlana     9th October 2009 Zimbabwe is conducting an audit of the mining industry with a view to repossessing all mining claims that are being held for speculative purposes, reports Mines and Mining Development Minister Obert Mpofu. 

Paladin says worker killed in Malawi vehicle accident

By: Creamer Media Reporter      8th October 2009 An employee at ASX- and TSX- listed Paladin Energy’s Kayelekera uranium mine, in Malawi, has died in a vehicle accident, the company reported on Thursday. A contracted minibus, which was transporting 19 of the mine’s employees, had overturned on a site access road and rolled down an embankment... 

First Uranium boosts Q3 output 44%

By: Creamer Media Reporter      8th October 2009 TSX- and JSE-listed First Uranium’s gold production increased by 44% quarter-on-quarter to 21 374 oz in the third quarter of its financial year, ended September 30, 2009. The 7 952 oz of gold produced at its Ezulwini mine was 110% higher than the previous quarter, while Mine Waste Solutions... 

Baobab completes Mozambique magnetite, ilmenite scoping study

By: Esmarie Iannucci     8th October 2009 Iron-ore, base, and precious metals explorer Baobab Resources had successfully completed a scoping study of its Tete magnetite and ilmenite project, in Mozambique, the company reported on Thursday. An independent conceptual mineral process and financial modelling of the project found that the... 

DRDGold says striking Crown employees return to work

By: Esmarie Iannucci     8th October 2009 South African gold producer DRDGold on Thursday reported that around 500 workers at its Crown operation had returned to work, after a wage agreement was reached with the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM). Speaking to Mining Weekly Online, DRDGold spokesperson James Duncan said that the NUM had... 

Gold junior Simmers' shares rise on R100m cost savings, doubling of mine life

By: Martin Creamer     8th October 2009 The share price of JSE-listed Simmer & Jack Mines (Simmers) rose more than 6% on Thursday on the news of R100-million annual cost-saving synergies and the potential for the doubling of the life of its latest acquisition. The synergies and mine-life doubling were identified during the integration... 

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