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Asia News

Palladium supply shortfall will worsen this year – Johnson Matthey

By: Reuters     13th February 2019 A deficit in the palladium market that has driven prices of the autocatalyst metal to record highs will widen dramatically this year, specialist materials company Johnson Matthey said in a report on Wednesday. The company, a leading autocatalyst manufacturer, said the shortfall in the roughly... 

Harmony exploring Target North, Kalgold 

By: Martin Creamer     12th February 2019 Harmony Gold is currently adjudicating a tender for the drilling of the Target North greenfield exploration project in the Free State and is engaged in near mine brownfield exploration at Kalgold in the North West. Harmony Gold CEO Peter Steenkamp on Tuesday described the Target North prospect as... 

Harmony exploring Target North, Kalgold
Harmony Gold outlines exploration plans to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Video and Video Editing: Creamer Media’s Darlene Creamer

Harmony cuts energy consumption, ushering in solar, mulling biofuels  

By: Martin Creamer     12th February 2019 Gold mining and exploration company Harmony Gold is intensifying its efforts to cut electricity consumption to a minimum while also looking at introducing solar power and biofuel energy. CEO Peter Steenkamp said on Tuesday when the company issued its half-year results that Eskom’s problems could... 

Harmony cuts energy consumption, ushering in solar, mulling biofuels
Harmony Gold executives talk to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Video and Video Editing: Creamer Media’s Darlene Creamer

Vale disaster could see Brazil’s iron-ore competitive edge slip away

By: Mariaan Webb     12th February 2019 The January 25 Brumadinho dam disaster is expected to knock Brazil’s competitiveness in the global iron-ore market and will elicit a supply response from mines in China, as well as new projects that could be brought on line in the next few years. This is according to analysts at London-based... 

Vale disaster could see Brazil’s iron-ore competitive edge slip away

Accenture seeks to improve mining sector data analytics 

By: Simone Liedtke     12th February 2019 Global professional services company Accenture is investing in a new Applied Intelligence Studio for Mining, in Johannesburg, which will combine the latest in data science and artificial intelligence technologies with deep industry knowledge for the development of new intelligent digital... 

Accenture seeks to improve mining sector data analytics
Accenture Applied Intelligence and Data Science lead for Africa Dr Caroline Belrose discusses Accenture's new Applied Intelligence Studio for Mining with Engineering News Online. Video & Editing: Creamer Media's Nicholas Boyd.

Bezant outlines mining options for Mankayan project

By: Simone Liedtke     12th February 2019 Aim-listed Bezant Resources on Tuesday said that an independent study had found that the Mankayan copper/gold porphyry supported different robust routes for the future development of its Philippines-based project. This included, for the first time, a sub-level caving (SLC) ‘stepping stone’... 

Alrosa’s January sales down 44% y/y

By: Simone Liedtke     12th February 2019 Following a strong performance in December, Russian miner Alrosa’s rough and polished diamond sales fell to $281.5-million in January – a 44% decrease on the same month in 2018. January’s rough diamond sales amounted to $278.2-million and polished diamond sales were $3.4-million, the company... 

Alrosa’s January sales down 44% y/y

CIL lines up capex for renewed thrust on developing CBM assets

By: Ajoy K Das     12th February 2019 Seizing an opportunity offered by recently relaxed rules, State-run miner Coal India Limited (CIL) has lined up a corpus of around $422-million to kick-start its sputtering coalbed methane (CBM) projects. The renewed thrust of getting the CBM projects off the ground would be initiated by Bharat... 

Harmony Gold net profit plunges, operational cash soars

By: Martin Creamer     12th February 2019 The net profit of Harmony Gold plunged in the six months to December 31, dropping from R897-million for the corresponding period of last year to R75-million. However, production soared by 34% and operations generated R1.1-billion in free cash flow on the inclusion of the acquired Moab Khotsong... 

Harmony Gold net profit plunges, operational cash soars
Photo by Creamer Media Chief Photographer Dylan Slater
Harmony Gold CEO Peter Steenkamp

Indian Power Ministry directs priority coal supplies to pithead plants ahead of summer

By: Ajoy K Das     11th February 2019 The Indian Power Ministry has issued directives to its counterparts in the Coal Ministry and Indian Railways (IR) to give the highest priority to dry fuel supplies to pithead thermal power plants, in light of a trend of lower coal dispatching from Coal India Limited (CIL) and an expected summer... 

Xolobeni judgment continues to confound 

By: Martin Creamer     11th February 2019 Mining must take place with a strong focus on the interests of those who live in mining areas, says Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe, a standpoint that supports the notion that a mining right and a land right can co-exist, without pleasing one party at the expense of the other.  But the... 

Xolobeni judgment continues to confound
Mineral Resources Minister Gwede Mantashe

Learners represent South Africa at Taiwan International Science Fair

By: Simone Liedtke     8th February 2019 Pretoria-based Hoërskool Waterkloof learner Christiaan Bauman won the fourth prize in the engineering category at the 2019 Taiwan International Science Fair, which was held from January 26 to February 1. Bauman’s project, titled ‘Mine Safety – The Robotic Way’, addresses the problem of miners and... 

Learners represent South Africa at Taiwan International Science Fair
Hoërskool Waterkloof learner Christiaan Bauman

Fourteen NGOs oppose LME plans to ban tainted cobalt

By: Reuters     7th February 2019 Fourteen nongovernmental organisations (NGOs) including Amnesty and Global Witness have opposed plans by the London Metal Exchange to ban cobalt tainted by human rights abuses, a letter seen by Reuters showed. Cobalt is a key ingredient in the batteries that power electric vehicles, a... 

Barminco wins zinc mining contract in India

By: Esmarie Iannucci     7th February 2019 Underground mining services provider Barminco has been awarded a A$100-mllion contract from Hindustan Zinc at its Rampura Agucha mine, in India. Barminco has operated at Rampura Agucha since late 2016. 

Bluebird eyes start to South Korean mines

By: Esmarie Iannucci     7th February 2019 LSE-listed Bluebird Merchant Ventures was still targeting its first gold pour in South Korea before the end of 2019, joint venture (JV) partner Southern Gold reported. The JV is hoping to bring the Gubong and Kochang mines back to operation, with Bluebird expecting cash flow from the operations... 

Precious metal refiners face new LBMA environmental standard  

By: Martin Creamer     7th February 2019 The London Bullion Market Association (LBMA) has launched a new standard that addresses environmental as well as sustainability issues in gold and silver markets. To do that in a credible way, LBMA has been actively engaging with mining companies and producer nations. 

Precious metal refiners face new LBMA environmental standard
LBMA CE Ruth Crowell tells Mining Weekly's Martin Creamer about the association's efforts to improve environmental and sustainability within the gold and silver mining and refining sectors. Video and editing: Nicholas Boyd.

India’s Mines Ministry mulls bundled approvals ahead of new mine auctions

By: Ajoy K Das     6th February 2019 India’s Mines Ministry is working on a proposal to bundle mandatory approvals, like forest, environment and pollution, for bidders of 288 mining leases slated to expire in March next year. According to a government official, putting together mandatory approvals prior to holding auctions would... 

Centrica, Tokyo Gas sign deal to buy LNG from Mozambique

By: Reuters     5th February 2019 British energy supplier Centrica and Tokyo Gas have agreed to jointly buy 2.6-million tonnes of liquefied natural gas (LNG) a year from Mozambique LNG Company, the firms said on Tuesday. Centrica LNG Company, a subsidiary of Centrica, and the Japanese energy company said the LNG would be... 

Ford engages the mining sector on the road to more EVs

By: Kim Cloete     5th February 2019 Ford is quickening its pace towards the mass production of electric vehicles (EVs) and researching how the mining industry can help it to achieve its goals. “There are tremendous investments taking place at every level to achieve this radical revolution in the automotive industry,” Ford energy... 

Global demand for coal rises despite uncertainty

By: Kim Cloete     4th February 2019 Despite a move to renewable energy, particularly in Europe, demand for coal globally soared in 2018, led by low calorific value (CV) coal demand. The strongest import markets were China and India, while Indonesia performed extremely strongly on the supply side. China’s demand for coal... 

HCL starts work on reopening copper mine, developing greenfield reserve

By: Ajoy K Das     4th February 2019 Indian State-run Hindustan Copper Limited (HCL), the country’s sole integrated copper producer, on Saturday started construction of a concentrator at its Rakha mines, marking efforts to restart the mines in the eastern state of Jharkhand. The ground-breaking ceremony at Rakha for construction of... 

India's Vedanta says Anglo American stake buy meets governance requirements

By: Reuters     4th February 2019 Indian miner Vedanta said on Monday that its foreign unit Cairn India Holdings Limited's investment in Anglo American met all governance requirements. Vedanta's statement comes days after its shares plunged on Friday, as investors were skeptical of the merits of the investment and questioned the... 

Japan's Mitsui trims FY profit outlook, to keep stake in Vale

By: Reuters     1st February 2019 Mitsui & Co on Friday cut full-year profit forecast by 2% due to the absence of a dividend from Vale, but the Japanese trading house does not plan to change its holding in the Brazilian miner, a company executive said. With 110 people confirmed dead and another 238 missing, according to... 

India's Vedanta sinks 20% to 2-1/2-year low

By: Reuters     1st February 2019 Shares of India’s Vedanta slumped to a two-and-a-half-year low on Friday after analysts expressed concerns over an investment by the parent company of the conglomerate in African miner Anglo American. Vedanta said on Thursday its foreign unit Cairn India Holdings had paid $200-million to buy a... 

India receives 145 bids for 25 small oil, natural gas fields at auction

By: Ajoy K Das     31st January 2019 The second round of auction of 25 discovered small fields (DSF) in the Indian oil and natural gas sector has received 145 bids from 39 investors, including six foreign companies, the sector regulator has reported. The Directorate General for Hydrocarbons (DGH) states that domestic oil and natural... 

PGM-using patents abound – CPM  

By: Martin Creamer     31st January 2019 Viable patents that involve the use of platinum group metals (PGMs) should be commercialised so that PGMs become less dependent on the automotive market, says CPM Group MD and founder Jeffrey Christian. CPM’s current projections, which are similar to those in the automotive and electricity supply... 

PGM-using patents abound – CPM
CPM Group MD Jeffrey Christian talks to Mining Weekly Online’s Martin Creamer. Video: Nicholas Boyd. Video Editing: Christo Greyling.

Strong investment case for gold in 2019 – World Gold Council

By: Marleny Arnoldi     31st January 2019 Global gold demand in 2018 increased by 4% year-on-year to 4 345 t and was in line with the five-year average demand of 4 347 t. The World Gold Council’s (WGC’s) latest ‘Gold Demand Trends’ report, published on Thursday, said the increase was driven by a 52-year high in central bank buying and... 

Strong investment case for gold in 2019 – World Gold Council

India's iron-ore output at 9-year high, but shortage looms next year

By: Ajoy K Das     31st January 2019 India is poised to close the current financial year with iron-ore production of about 210-million tons, the highest in the last nine years, but domestic steel mills are still haunted by the spectre of a shortage of the raw material from next year. According to estimates from industry body, the... 

India permits women to work in underground coal mines

By: Ajoy K Das     30th January 2019 India’s Labour Ministry has issued notifications amending rules that will now permit women to work in underground coal mines to ensure gender equality and open up greater job opportunities. The rules have been amended for women working in opencast coal mines too. Until now, women were permitted... 

India to look at mining agreements during Argentine President's visit

By: Ajoy K Das     30th January 2019 India is preparing the groundwork to sign a slew of bilateral agreements with Argentina encompassing nuclear energy, and the mining of copper, lithium and cobalt during the visit of Argentine President Mauricio Marci, next month. The Argentine President will be leading a high-level business... 

Gold gets a safe-haven boost – Refinitiv’s GFMS report 

By: Nadine James     30th January 2019 Gold has benefitted in the fourth quarter of 2018 from investors seeking safe-havens, the latest GFMS Gold Survey, which Refinitiv released on Wednesday, states. Renewed interest from professional investors and a shift in the purchasing behaviour of emerging market central banks have compensated... 

Iron-ore rockets as Vale supply disruption convulses market 

By: Bloomberg     30th January 2019 The global iron-ore market was pitched into turmoil after Brazil’s Vale SA, the world’s largest producer, outlined plans to cut output after a deadly dam breach, buoying shares of rivals as investors weighed the impact of the disruption. Prices soared, with futures rallying more than 9%. Vale... 

Iron-ore rockets as Vale supply disruption convulses market
Photo by Bloomberg
Vale CEO Fabio Schvartsman

Deloitte outlines trends to assist miners find new strategic approach

By: Simone Liedtke     29th January 2019 To thrive amid the demands and exigencies that the Fourth Industrial Revolution (4IR) presents, mining companies will need a new strategic approach – one that considers not only the full range of industry shifts and risks, but that also provides executives with an enterprise-wide view of their... 

Deloitte outlines trends to assist miners find new strategic approach
Deloitte's eleventh edition of its 'Tracking The Trends' report was published on Tuesday.

Jogmec to establish Johannesburg office as African base to meet Japan's natural resource needs

By: Simone Liedtke     29th January 2019 The Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (Jogmec) will open an office in Johannesburg on February 1. This brings the number of international Jogmec offices to 14. 

Cryptocurrencies are not a safe-haven, says World Gold Council

By: Simone Liedtke     29th January 2019 While cryptocurrencies may have a role to play in financial markets, the World Gold Council (WGC) believes their “behaviour” in an environment of market uncertainty underscores that cryptocurrencies are “not a viable substitute for gold as a safe-haven”. During the fourth quarter of 2018,... 

Palladium theft rampant – FT 

By: Martin Creamer     29th January 2019 Palladium, used in catalytic converters that reduce harmful petrol vehicle emissions, is catalysing a crime wave in the UK, says the Financial Times (FT) of London. “Thieves are stealing catalytic converters – often in broad daylight – and selling the devices to illegal scrap dealers for cash,”... 

Palladium theft rampant – FT
Photo by Bloomberg
A bar of palladium.

Brazil dam disaster may delay Samarco settlement for BHP, Vale

By: Reuters     29th January 2019 Brazil's deadly tailings dam collapse is likely to complicate a settlement for a similar disaster less than four years ago at the Samarco iron ore mine, owned jointly by Vale and BHP Group, investors said on Tuesday. Vale and BHP have been aiming to restart the mine as early as 2020 following a... 

Brazil dam disaster may delay Samarco settlement for BHP, Vale
A picture of the 2015 Samarco dam disaster.

Boost for international miners as India's thermal coal imports jump

By: Reuters     28th January 2019 India's 2018 thermal coal imports rose at the fastest pace in four years, according to two industry sources, despite moves by Prime Minister Narendra Modi's government to cut imports in a bid to reduce its trade deficit. Coal is among the top five commodities imported by India, one of the... 

Boost for international miners as India's thermal coal imports jump
Ships are loaded in Richards Bay, South Africa. The country accounts for 22% of India's thermal coal imports.

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