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Asia News

Clients planning to close many renewable energy project deals this year – Nedbank CIB  

By: Martin Creamer     11th April 2022 While Africa is blessed with great natural sun and wind resources, it has about 600-million people living without access to electricity, which is one of the biggest impediments to the continent’s economic growth. Renewable energy is available to put an end to this impediment, as it can provide... 

Pilbara ticks the boxes on POSCO JV

By: Esmarie Iannucci     11th April 2022 Lithium miner Pilbara Minerals has announced the satisfaction of all conditions precedent for the formation of a downstream joint venture (JV) with Korean major POSCO. The formation of the JV and completion of Pilbara Mineral’s initial 18% equity subscription in the JV company, with an option to... 

Hydrogen economy ‘incredibly exciting opportunity’, says Minerals Council’s Baxter 

By: Martin Creamer     8th April 2022 Mobility in mining is perfectly suited to kickstarting the domestic hydrogen adoption process, according to Minerals Council South Africa CEO Roger Baxter, who drew attention during the PGMs Industry Day conference to several mining companies that had already played a leadership role in the... 

Picture supplied.
Minerals Council South Africa CEO Roger Baxter.

Investors urge Rio Tinto to cut indirect emissions

By: Reuters     8th April 2022 Rio Tinto on Friday said climate change was at the heart of its new strategy, as shareholders at its first in-person annual general meeting (AGM) in two years in London demanded the miner set clear targets to cut indirect emissions. Rio Tinto recorded its best ever annual profit in 2021 and gave... 

Automated mining vehicles at Rio Tinto's mines

Turquoise Hill forms special committee to consider Rio Tinto buyout offer

By: Marleny Arnoldi     8th April 2022 Canada-based Turquoise Hill Resources has formed a special committee of independent directors to consider the proposal made by the company’s majority shareholder Rio Tinto International Holdings to buy out the remainder of shares in the company. Rio Tinto in March announced an unsolicited,... 

New lithium technology can help the world go green, if it works

By: Reuters     8th April 2022 Rio Tinto, General Motors and even the US Energy Department are investing heavily in a crop of newer technologies that could revolutionize the way lithium is produced for electric vehicle batteries. Now those technologies just have to prove they work on a commercial scale. 

China coal hub approves mega-mine that can produce for 97 years

By: Bloomberg     7th April 2022 Officials in the key Chinese coal mining hub of Ordos approved a massive mine that can produce 15-million tons annually and operate for nearly 97 years. The city’s natural resources bureau on April 2 gave a license to Lianhai Coal Industry to operate the Baijiahaizi mine, which covers about 170... 

Moody’s raises metals, mining price assumption amid ongoing volatility

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     7th April 2022 Ratings agency Moody´s Investor Services has raised its near-term price assumptions for metals and mining to reflect the heightened volatility in the markets as the Russia-Ukraine crisis tightens commodity supplies, it notes in a new report. Price assumptions incorporate Moody´s expectations that... 

Chaarat’s loss narrows on good performance at Armenia mine

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     7th April 2022 Aim-listed Chaarat generated revenue of $92.4-million from concentrate sales for the 12 months ended December 31, 2021, with $72.8-million relating to own ore revenue and $19.6-million to third-party ore revenue. Group earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) was... 

New process needed when appointing public-service managers – Motlanthe  

By: Martin Creamer     7th April 2022 To build a capable State, the way public-service managers are appointed should be reformed, says former President Kgalema Motlanthe. By doing so, the country would be assured of selecting the best available talent, added Motlanthe, who was speaking to Centre for Development and Enterprise... 

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Photo by Creamer Media
Kgalema Motlanthe

Russian coal and oil paid for in yuan to start flowing to China

By: Bloomberg     7th April 2022 Russian coal and oil paid for in yuan is about to start flowing into China as the two countries try to maintain their energy trade in the face of growing international outrage over the invasion of Ukraine. Several Chinese firms used local currency to buy Russian coal in March, and the first... 

A photo of coal mining operations

Glencore highlights emissions reduction in inaugural ethics, compliance report

By: Marleny Arnoldi     6th April 2022 Diversified miner Glencore has published its inaugural Ethics and Compliance Report, with key findings including the group’s 5% reduction in total emissions in 2021 and payments to governments totalling $7.6-billion. The report states the company’s commitment to deliver value for its 135 000... 

Hydrogen key to long-term use of platinum, says SFA Oxford’s Forrest   

By: Martin Creamer     6th April 2022 Coordinated industry intervention is required to create sustainable platinum group metals (PGM) markets, with hydrogen the key to the long-term use of platinum, said outgoing SFA Oxford head Stephen Forrest in a swansong address. “Promote PGMs heavily as platinum’s structural surplus helps... 

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Platinum Group Metals Industry Day covered by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer Media

India continues with major nuclear energy development programme

By: Rebecca Campbell     6th April 2022 India currently had ten nuclear reactors under construction and had authorised the construction of another ten. The country had also imported 7 546 t of natural uranium ore concentrate and 56.78 t of enriched uranium fuel pellets over the past three years, complementing the country's own uranium... 

Blackstone hunting for nickel feedstocks

By: Esmarie Iannucci     6th April 2022 ASX-listed Blackstone Minerals is on the hunt for third party nickel concentrate providers to help feed its planned downstream operations in Vietnam. Blackstone MD Scott Williamson told delegates at Paydirt’s Battery Minerals conference, in Perth, that the company would supply roughly 50% of... 

Rio taxes reached A$13.3bn in 2021

By: Esmarie Iannucci     6th April 2022 Diversified miner Rio Tinto paid $13.3-billion in global taxes and royalties during 2021, up from $8.4-billion in 2020. Despite the ongoing challenges of Covid-19, Rio made a total direct economic contribution of $66.6-billion in the countries and communities where it operates in 2021, compared... 

Green finance taxonomy to help investors make green project decisions – law firm 

By: Martin Creamer     5th April 2022 South Africa’s first green finance taxonomy will help investors and financial institutions make more informed decisions on ‘green’ projects, say Webber Wentzel’s Patrick Heron and Joon Chong. Heron and Chong describe the taxonomy, launched by National Treasury last Friday, as an official... 

Pictures supplied
Patrick Heron (left) and Joon Chong.

Countries must choose their own energy transition pathways, says WCA

By: Marleny Arnoldi     5th April 2022 The World Coal Association (WCA) says global events in recent months have highlighted the fragility of the new energy paradigm, reminding the world of the need to advance energy independence and security. Addressing the South African Colliery Managers Association on April 5, WCA CEO Michelle... 

Metals, new mine investment required now to support future energy transition 

By: Donna Slater     5th April 2022 Despite the significant energy intensity required to mine metals, the commodities are still “essential for the energy transition to succeed”, says BHP market analysis and economics VP Dr Huw McKay. He says that, although having a common goal of limiting global warming to below 2 °C of... 

BHP's Spence mine

Zambia’s copper potential coming to fore again as Castillo survey shows upside 

By: Martin Creamer     5th April 2022 London- and Sydney-listed base metal explorer Castillo Copper has identified multiple copper-potential drill-testing targets at its Mkushi project in Zambia, Africa’s second-largest copper producer. Castillo stated in a release to Mining Weekly on Tuesday that the formulation of a drilling... 

Supplied picture.
Castillo Copper MD Dr Dennis Jensen.

Manganese mine achieves record ten-million fatality free shifts

By: Martin Creamer     4th April 2022 Assmang’s Black Rock mine, near Hotazel in the Northern Cape, has achieved ten-million fatality free shifts, a record that has taken 13 years to achieve. Assmang is a 50/50 partnership between Patrice Motsepe’s African Rainbow Minerals and Desmond Sacco’s Assore. 

Picture supplied
Surrounding the trophy of St Barbara, the patron saint of miners, are, from left, Black Rock Senior GM Wilhemina Ngcobo, African Rainbow Minerals COO Phillip Tobias, and African Rainbow Minerals Ferrous Division CE Andre Joubert.

Indian state cancels Adani bids to supply imported coal

By: Reuters     4th April 2022 India's southern Andhra Pradesh has cancelled bids made for two separate tenders by India's Adani Enterprises to supply imported coal as the prices quoted were too high, two state government officials told Reuters. It is the first time in recent years that a major government tender for imported... 

The battery metal really worrying China is lithium, not nickel

By: Bloomberg     4th April 2022 Nickel has captured much of the limelight among battery metals in recent weeks, and understandably so. Wild price swings, including an unprecedented 250% advance over two trading sessions amid a short squeeze, and concerns tied to Russia’s role as a key supplier have added to longstanding worries... 

Minerals Council ending century-long relationship with Johannesburg CBD

By: Martin Creamer     4th April 2022 Minerals Council South Africa has begun a new era by moving into modern premises in Rosebank, Johannesburg, and closing a century-long chapter in Johannesburg’s central business district (CBD). The historic Minerals Council building, on Hollard Street– which was constructed in 1921 – will be sold. 

Creamer Media picture.
Photo by Creamer Media
Historic Minerals Council building, on Hollard Street.

Ivanhoe, Vedanta among first seeking Saudi exploration licence

By: Bloomberg     4th April 2022 Ivanhoe Electric, set up by financier Robert Friedland, and India’s Vedanta are among eight firms that have been qualified to bid for one of the first exploration licenses in Saudi Arabia as the country seeks to attract $170-billion of investment to develop its mining industry. Saudi Arabia’s... 

Sibanye-Stillwater highlights battery grade nickel sulphate fetching price premium 

By: Martin Creamer     1st April 2022 Precious metals mining company Sibanye-Stillwater on Friday highlighted the quality elevation of its price-discounted nickel sulphate crystals to price-premium battery grade through the introduction of the Thakadu Battery Materials operation into the Base Metal Refinery in North West province.... 

Creamer Media screenshot
Sibanye-Stillwater operation highlighted during Bank of America conference virtual site visit.

Copper prices slip on China's gloomy factory activity data

By: Reuters     1st April 2022 Copper prices dropped on Friday as demand worries rose after data showed factory activity in top metals consumer China slumped last month at the fastest pace in two years, with a firm US dollar also weighing on sentiment. Other base metals also fell as investors were cautious ahead of a key US... 

Copper tightness 'is far beyond a price issue', Freeport CEO says

By: Bloomberg     1st April 2022 Freeport-McMoRan and Goldman Sachs share a bullish outlook for copper. They appear to diverge, however, on how much of an impact higher prices would have on supply growth. Goldman analyst Nicholas Snowdon told a copper conference Wednesday that current near-record prices need to go much higher... 

Freeport CEO Richard Adkerson
Freeport CEO Richard Adkerson

Platinum supply on downhill slope – Northam  

By: Martin Creamer     31st March 2022 Platinum group metals (PGMs) mining company Northam Platinum displayed graphs during Thursday’s presentation of half year results, which indicate that PGMs supply is on a hiding to nothing on the way to 2040. “There’s a systematic global primary supply problem and the scarcity of both new PGM... 

Creamer Media screenshot
Northam Platinum half-year results presentation covered by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer

China Moly says 'significant progress' made on Tenke mine dispute

By: Reuters     31st March 2022 China Molybdenum said "significant progress" had been made on a dispute regarding the Tenke Fungurume copper and cobalt mine (TFM) in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC). The dispute between China Moly and Democratic Republic of Congo's state mining company Gecamines, which hold 80% and 20%... 

Growth outcomes inform approach to dividends ­as Northam digs in on RBPlat deal

By: Martin Creamer     31st March 2022 Growth outcomes will inform Northam Platinum’s approach to dividends, the platinum group metals (PGMs) company stated in reporting 60%-higher half-year headline earnings a share. Northam highlighted that it still had an option to acquire a further 3.29% in Royal Bafokeng Platinum (RBPlat), which... 

Creamer Media picture.
Photo by Creamer Media
Northam Platinum CEO Paul Dunne

China's coal output set for moderate growth in 2022 -industry body

By: Reuters     30th March 2022 China is expected to see its coal output to grow further in 2022 after hitting a record last year, an industry body forecast on Wednesday, as the country will need to consume more of the dirty fossil fuel to power its economic growth. The world's second-largest economy and its biggest coal... 

Vedanta investing R7bn in Gamsberg 'green' zinc expansion  

By: Martin Creamer     30th March 2022 The board of directors of Vedanta Zinc International (VZI) has approved a R7-billion investment into Gamsberg Phase 2 expansion project in the Northern Cape, which will double the mine and plant capacity from four-million tons to eight-million tons a year. In metal terms, will increase output... 

Vedenta Zinc International executive director and CFO Pushpender Singla.
Vedanta Zinc International’s Pushpender Singla interviewed by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Nicholas Boyd. Video editing: Darlene Creamer

Rio Tinto defends Turquoise offer, says will 'deliver value for all stakeholders'

By: Reuters     29th March 2022 Rio Tinto on Tuesday said its offer to buy the 49% of Turquoise Hill Resources it does not already own for about $2.7-billion will "deliver value for all stakeholders" as it develops a massive copper and gold mining project in Mongolia. The mining giant is facing rising pressure from Turquoise... 

China’s imports have shifted platinum into global deficit, says independent consultant 

By: Martin Creamer     29th March 2022 China’s importation of platinum has shifted platinum’s supply balance into deficit, says independent precious metal consultant Dr David Davis. Supply-and-demand forecasts presented to the market are not giving the complete picture, Davis contends in a 17-page analysis published by Singapore-based... 

Creamer Media picture.
Photo by Creamer Media
Independent precious metals consultant Dr David Davis.

LBMA, WGC collaborate to develop blockchain-backed gold bar integrity programme 

By: Donna Slater     29th March 2022 Independent precious metals authority the London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) and gold authority the World Gold Council (WGC) plan to collaborate to develop and implement an international system of gold bar integrity, chain of custody and provenance – the Gold Bar Integrity Programme. Over... 

A photo of gold bars and nuggests

Lake Resources gets offtake interest from Japan

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th March 2022 Lithium developer Lake Resources has inked a non-binding memorandum of understanding (MoU) with Japan’s Hanwa Co. for the supply of up to 25 000 t/y of lithium carbonate over a ten year period. The MoU would allow for a minimum 15 000 t/y offtake from Lake Resource’s Lake Kachi lithium project,... 

Nickel Mines brings another furnace online

By: Esmarie Iannucci     29th March 2022 ASX-listed Nickel Mines has started the commissioning of the third of four rotary kiln electric furnace (RKEF) lines at its 80%-owned Angle nickel project, in the Indonesia Weda Bay Industrial Park (IWIP). Having announced the maiden nickel pig iron (NPI) tap from the first RKEF line in late... 

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