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Asia News

B2Gold suspends mining in Philippines, African operations continue

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     23rd March 2020 Canada-based gold producer B2Gold’s Fekola and Otjikoto mines, in Mali and Namibia, respectively, continue to operate as normal, but the company has had to temporarily suspend mining at its Masbate mine, in the Philippines as a result of the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic. Mining was suspended as a... 

Mining Company Katanga sues China MMG's Kinsevere mine in Congo

By: Reuters     23rd March 2020 China's MMG on Monday said Mining Company Katanga (MCK) has obtained a freezing court order over some assets of its Kinsevere copper mine in Democratic Republic of Congo and is seeking damages of $258-million over a mining services contract. MCK has commenced legal proceedings as it claims MMG... 

Mining Company Katanga sues China MMG's Kinsevere mine in Congo

Bacanora’s Mexico lithium project faces delay

By: Simone Liedtke     23rd March 2020 Lithium exploration and development company Bacanora Lithium continues to progress all its work streams, despite the timetable for the engineering work at its Sonora lithium project, in Mexico, having been impacted on by delays in Asia and North America because of the Covid-19 outbreak.... 

Santos defers Barossa and PNG expansion plans

By: Esmarie Iannucci     23rd March 2020 Oil and gas major Santos has announced plans to cut planned capital expenditure and reduce production costs in response to the Covid-19 pandemic and the falling oil prices. The ASX-listed company would reduce planned capital expenditure for 2020 by some A$550-million, or 38%, while also... 

Santos defers Barossa and PNG expansion plans

Covid halts Lynas plant

By: Esmarie Iannucci     23rd March 2020 Rare earths miner Lynas has temporarily suspended production at its Malaysian plant, as the Malaysian government tightened control as the COVID-19 cases escalate. Lynas on Monday said that as part of the temporary plant shut-down to care and maintenance mode, the company has retained some... 

Oil Search takes precautionary measures in PNG

By: Esmarie Iannucci     23rd March 2020 ASX-listed Oil Search has placed staff and operations in Papua New Guinea (PNG) on lockdown after that country reported its first cast of COVID-19. Oil Search on Monday said that the company has been monitoring COVID-19 since early in the year, and had established a taskforce to proactively... 

Gold pares weekly losses after weaker dollar brings relief 

By: Bloomberg     20th March 2020 Bullion got a reprieve Friday as the dollar halted its rally, although the metal remains poised for a back-to-back weekly loss. Gold headed for its biggest daily gain since March 3 and silver earlier jumped the most since 2014. Precious metals are rebounding after days of relentless selling by... 

Gold pares weekly losses after weaker dollar brings relief

Buy gold 'right here and now', top wealth manager says 

By: Bloomberg     20th March 2020 Now’s the time to buy gold, according to one of the world’s leading wealth managers, which flagged bullion’s prospects after the haven lost out to the dollar in recent weeks as the pandemic roils markets. “When I think about what would I buy in the right here and now, I would be buying gold,”... 

Buy gold 'right here and now', top wealth manager says

Anglo takes companywide measures to limit spread, mitigate impacts of Covid-19 

By: Marleny Arnoldi     20th March 2020 Global diversified miner Anglo American has announced the measures that it is taking in light of the Covid-19 outbreak across its mining and corporate operations. CE Mark Cutifani says the measures are often tailored to the specific nature and location of a particular site to protect the... 

Anglo takes companywide measures to limit spread, mitigate impacts of Covid-19

Gold to remain attractive investment asset despite impact of Covid-19

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th March 2020 The World Gold Council (WGC) on Thursday said deceleration in economic growth globally will undoubtedly impact on consumer demand for gold and gold’s volatility may remain high. However, high risk levels, coupled with widespread negative real rates and quantitative easing, will be supportive of... 

Gold to remain attractive investment asset despite impact of Covid-19

Fitch lowers mineral output forecasts for 2020 in light of mine stoppages

By: Marleny Arnoldi     19th March 2020 Research agency Fitch Solutions has revised downwards some of its mineral production forecasts for this year, in light of increasing operational disruptions while Covid-19 continues to spread globally. For example, Fitch revised its production forecast for copper to 20.28-million tonnes, from... 

Question marks over protracted re-entry of trimetal PGM catalysis  

By: Martin Creamer     19th March 2020 Trimetal catalysts, which use three platinum group metals (PGMs) rather than two and thereby balance PGM demand, have a multi-decade history of curbing gasoline vehicle emission, which poses question marks over why their re-adoption should be so protracted. New York-based CPM Group MD Jeffrey... 

Question marks over protracted re-entry of trimetal PGM catalysis
Photo by Creamer Media
CPM Group MD Jeffrey Christian

After the rout, platinum and palladium face more turmoil before recovery

By: Reuters     19th March 2020 Platinum and palladium will remain turbulent in coming months after huge losses sparked by the spread of coronavirus, before starting a tentative recovery with support from palladium's supply gap and platinum's correlation with gold, analysts said. Platinum has plunged 40% and palladium 45% from... 

From using drones to stockpiling cyanide, miners keep digging amid pandemic

By: Reuters     18th March 2020 From using drones for field inspections to stockpiling cyanide, miners are scrambling to maintain output amid the coronavirus pandemic, a task made trickier in underground mines where social distancing is nearly impossible. The virus has claimed 8 700 lives and infected over 200 000 globally.... 

From using drones to stockpiling cyanide, miners keep digging amid pandemic

Stunned world grapples with 'once-in-100-year' coronavirus battle

By: Reuters     18th March 2020 Hundreds of millions of people worldwide were adjusting on Wednesday to once-in-a-generation measures to battle the coronavirus crisis that is not only killing the old and vulnerable but also threatening prolonged economic misery. The fast-spreading disease that jumped from animals to humans in... 

Miners join forces on hydrogen to decarbonise operations 

By: Esmarie Iannucci     18th March 2020 Mining majors BHP, Fortescue Anglo American and consulting engineering group Hatch have formed a Green Hydrogen Consortium to jointly accelerate decarbonisation within their global operations. The goal of the consortium is to identify opportunities to develop green hydrogen technologies for the... 

Miners join forces on hydrogen to decarbonise operations

Indonesia tin miner PT Timah cuts output, delays exports on coronavirus

By: Reuters     18th March 2020 Indonesian tin miner PT Timah, the world's second-largest producer, said it is temporarily reducing its production and will delay exports as the coronavirus outbreak has impacted demand for the metal. "In the current situation, due to coronavirus outbreak, many companies are stopping production... 

Automotive battery makers looking to alternative chemistry to lower costs

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     18th March 2020 Major automotive battery makers and car manufacturers are planning to alter battery chemistry to lower the cost of new electric vehicles (EVs) being rolled out this year, mining and materials forecaster Afriforesight says. The race to cost cuts intensified last week with the largest Chinese EV... 

Menar progressing gold project in Kyrgyzstan  

By: Martin Creamer     17th March 2020 Private investment and management company Menar, which is planning to invest R7-billion in coal projects in South Africa, is also progressing a gold project in Kyrgyzstan. “We’re looking at a sizeable gold project,” said Menar MD Vuslat Bayoǧlu, who is hoping that the Kyrgyzstan project will... 

Menar progressing gold project in Kyrgyzstan
Menar MD Vuslat Bayoǧlu talks to Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer about gold project in Kyrgyzstan. Video Editing: Nicholas Boyd. Photograph: Donna Slater. Video: Kutlwano Matlala.

Slowing demand likely to push zinc price lower this year, says Fitch Solutions

By: Marleny Arnoldi     17th March 2020 Research agency Fitch Solutions has revised its forecast for the zinc price for this year to $2 250/t, down from $2 450/t previously, as an amalgam of market forces put in motion by the Covid-19 outbreak, which has led to factory shutdowns in China and other parts of the world. The average zinc... 

Slowing demand likely to push zinc price lower this year, says Fitch Solutions

Iron-ore prices resilient, activity levels healthy – S&P Global Platts

By: Reuters     17th March 2020 S&P Global Platts, which produces an iron ore benchmark index, said on Monday iron-ore prices have been resilient and activity levels have remained healthy recently. On Sunday, the China Iron & Steel Association (CISA) had warned about speculation risks in the market as the iron ore index was... 

Gold slumps and platinum falls by most ever amid hunt for cash 

By: Bloomberg     16th March 2020 Precious metals took another beating on concerns that a wave of emergency stimulus measures by central banks won’t be enough to improve a rapidly deteriorating economic outlook. Gold, coming off the biggest weekly drop in almost four decades, extended losses below $1 500/oz as market sentiment... 

Gold slumps and platinum falls by most ever amid hunt for cash

China steel assoc warns of iron-ore speculation risks amid market fluctuations

By: Reuters     16th March 2020 China Iron & Steel Association (CISA) warned about speculation risks in the market, as the trend for the iron-ore index was deviating from the supply and demand fundamentals and the spot market, the Xinhua official news agency reported on Sunday. Benchmark Platts iron-ore index had surged 15%,... 

Coronavirus precautions slow work on Oyu Tolgoi – Rio Tinto

By: Mariaan Webb     16th March 2020 Work on the Oyu Tolgoi underground project, in Mongolia, has been slowed as a result of measures put in place by Mongolia to contain the spread of Covid-19, diversified mining major Rio Tinto said on Monday. Mongolia has restricted the movement of goods and people in the country, as well as... 

Coronavirus precautions slow work on Oyu Tolgoi – Rio Tinto
Shaft 2, which is completed, at Oyu Tolgoi.

Oil falls deeper into turmoil triggered by epic demand collapse

By: Bloomberg     16th March 2020 Oil’s spectacular collapse deepened as widening global efforts to fight the spread of coronavirus were set to trigger the most severe contraction in annual oil demand in history. Futures tumbled by more than 6% after plunging by a quarter last week -- the largest drop since 2008. Even a massive... 

Gold’s worst week since 1983 strips metal of safe-haven status

By: Bloomberg     15th March 2020 Gold posted its worst week in over three decades, joining the collapse across global markets that not even the traditional safe haven could dodge. In the rush to raise cash and cover losses in other markets, investors are pulling their money out of bullion, typically seen as a store of value... 

Gold joins global market slump as investors cash in on rally

By: Bloomberg     13th March 2020 Not even the safe haven of gold has been spared from this week’s global market rout. Bullion is set for its biggest weekly loss since 2016, despite climbing to the highest in more than seven years earlier this week, as investors sell the metal to meet liquidity needs. Volatility continued in... 

Gold joins global market slump as investors cash in on rally

Silvercorp ramps up Chinese mines

By: Mariaan Webb     12th March 2020 TSX- and NYSE American-listed Silvercorp Metals on Thursday reported that its mines in China – Ying and CG – had achieved about 94% of planned mining and development stope production capacity. The company started ramping up its mines in mid-February, with no reportable incidents and in full... 

Coal miner Exxaro driving rigorous renewable energy strategy  

By: Martin Creamer     12th March 2020 South Africa’s electricity generation crisis has created major opportunities for companies, businesses and individuals to start generating their own power, Exxaro CEO Mxolisi Mgojo said on Thursday when the JSE-listed black-empowered company declared generous dividends following a resilient 2019... 

Coal miner Exxaro driving rigorous renewable energy strategy
Exxaro CEO Mxolisi Mgojo talks self-generation to Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video editing: Nicholas Boyd. Photographs: Donna Slater. Video: Kutlwano Matlala.

Gold holds the line in ‘time of crisis’ as disruption spirals

By: Bloomberg     12th March 2020 Gold held its ground as the disruption to the global economy from the coronavirus pandemic intensified, with the US announcing that it’ll suspend travel from Europe to battle the outbreak, and investors shunning risk assets from equities to industrial commodities. Palladium tanked. Bullion... 

Gold holds the line in ‘time of crisis’ as disruption spirals

Nordgold increases funding for employee development, wellbeing

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     12th March 2020 Gold producer Nord Gold (Nordgold) has increased funding for its employee development and wellbeing programmes by more than 17% to about $9.9-million for the 2020 financial year, from $8.2-million in the prior financial year. The Nordgold employee development programme incorporates the company’s... 

BHP is world’s most valuable mining brand, but loses strongest title to Rio Tinto

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th March 2020 Global mining group BHP has retained the title of the world’s most valuable mining, iron and steel brand, despite recording a 3% drop in brand value to $5.8-billion. This is according to the latest report by brand valuation consultancy Brand Finance, which highlights that BHP’s brand value was... 

BHP is world’s most valuable mining brand, but loses strongest title to Rio Tinto

Oil’s biggest crash in a generation has silver lining for miners

By: Bloomberg     12th March 2020 The financial turmoil crushing industrial-metals equities has a silver lining: lower energy prices can be a boon to miners. “It’s a big positive,” said David Harquail, CEO of streaming and royalties company Franco-Nevada. Fuel is a key operating cost for miners because it’s needed to run the... 

Oil’s biggest crash in a generation has silver lining for miners

Goldman manager says virus hit may be worse than market bets

By: Bloomberg     12th March 2020 A Goldman Sachs Group asset manager who correctly predicted last year’s rally in stocks says the equity market is overly complacent about the possible damage from the coronavirus and could face more declines. “We don’t think the stock market has priced in the worst outcome of the virus as... 

Exxaro lifts dividend, creates jobs, supports enterprises 

By: Martin Creamer     12th March 2020 Black-controlled diversified resources group Exxaro, which created 746 jobs and supported 30 small, medium-sized and microenterprises in the twelve months to December 31, reported a R235-million top-line 2019 increase, raised its dividend payout and lifted headline earnings a share. Core earnings... 

Exxaro lifts dividend, creates jobs, supports enterprises
Photo by Creamer Media's Donna Slater
Exxaro CEO Mxolisi Mgojo.

New catalyst technology bodes well for platinum – Implats 

By: Martin Creamer     11th March 2020 The newly announced tri-metal catalyst technology that rebalances market demand for platinum group metals bodes well for platinum, Implats CEO Nico Muller said on Wednesday. The tri-metal catalyst technology, which involves the use of palladium, rhodium and platinum in various degrees of loading,... 

New catalyst technology bodes well for platinum – Implats
Photo by Creamer Media
Implats CEO Nico Muller

Opec sees no oil demand growth in 2020 as virus batters forecast

By: Bloomberg     11th March 2020 Opec expects there will effectively be no growth in global oil demand this year, slashing its forecasts as the coronavirus hits the world economy. Having expected a month ago that fuel consumption would increase by just under 1-million barrels a day, or 1%, in 2020, the group said in a report on... 

New platinum coin testament to major marketing effort – Implats 

By: Martin Creamer     11th March 2020 The launch of the Big Five platinum coin series, aimed at boosting investment demand for platinum, is testament to the wonderful marketing effort of leading members of the South African mining industry, said Implats CEO Nico Muller said on Wednesday. Muller heaped praise on Minerals Council South... 

New platinum coin testament to major marketing effort – Implats
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