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Europe News

First Quantum gets shareholder approval to buy Finnish nickel firm

By: Matthew Hill     13th June 2008 TSX-quoted miner First Quantum Minerals on Friday said that Finnish acquisition target Scandinavian Minerals' shareholders had voted in favour of its C$281-million cash and share offer, first unveiled in April. First Quantum said that the deal was expected to become effective on June 18,... 

Bacteria doing sensational 98% recovery job for Finland nickel entrant 

By: Martin Creamer     13th June 2008 Bugs are helping to a new Nordic nickel entrant to hit the recovery high spots and hold its share price high despite the world’s credit crunch. 

'Intelligent' drill rig consumes 10% less diesel

By: Martin Creamer     13th June 2008 With today’s surface-mining industry going all out to cut its rising fuel bills, it is no wonder the new Sandvik DPi, which lops 10% off fuel consumpion, is attracting so much global attention. 

Monto Minerals suspends shares, seeks funds

By: Liezel Hill     12th June 2008 Shares in Aim- and ASX-listed industrial minerals producer Monto Minerals have been suspended on both exchanges, on the request of the company, the firm said on Thursday. 

Lonhro sells noncore SA assets to focus on Angola project

By: Matthew Hill     12th June 2008 Lonhro Mining, formerly Nare Diamonds, said on Thursday that it would sell its prospecting rights for ground in the Northern Cape, as it wanted to focus on its Lulo diamond project in Angola, and branch out into bulk commodities. The ASX-listed company said that it had already reviewed a number... 

Sallies appoints Implats’ Fred Roux as chair

By: Matthew Hill     12th June 2008 Fluorspar producer Sallies has appointed the vastly experienced Dr Fred Roux as nonexecutive chairperson, effective July 1, splitting Tom Dale's dual role of CEO and chairperson. Roux was also nonexecutive chairperson of world number-two platinum producer Impala Platinum, previously having... 

Central Rand Gold names new FD to replace Vittino

By: Matthew Hill     12th June 2008 Former diversified mining giant BHP Billiton number cruncher Sarel Johan du Toit will replace LSE- and JSE-listed Central Rand Gold (CRG) FD Ric Vittino, who is leaving the company, on August 1. 

Rio Tinto partners with BRC DiamondCore in DRC prospects

By: Matthew Hill     12th June 2008 Diamond junior BRC DiamondCore (BRC) has signed a letter of intent with diversified giant Rio Tinto, whereby the bigger company could earn a 60% stake in the company's northern-Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) prospects. To do this, Rio Tinto would have to give BRC $550 000 for... 

Lundin CEO upbeat on Tenke Fungurume project

By: Liezel Hill     11th June 2008 While the purchase of a stake in the Tenke Fungurume copper/cobalt project last year has proved a “value-destroying exercise” for the company so far, Lundin Mining CEO Phil Wright is determined to see it through to production, scheduled to begin towards the end of next year.... 

BRC DiamondCore recovers 1 465 ct from bulk sampling at SA project

By: Matthew Hill     11th June 2008 Diamond junior BRC DiamondCore, which formed through a merger earlier this year, said on Wednesday that it had recovered 1 465 ct so far from bulk sampling at its alluvial Silverstreams project, near Prieska in the Northern Cape. The stones that the TSX- and JSE-listed company had sold thus far... 

Rio Tinto to build $270m molybdenum plant in Utah

By: Liezel Hill     11th June 2008 Diversified miner Rio Tinto will spend $270-million on the construction of a molybdenum processing facility at its Kennecott Utah Copper (KUC) operations, in the US, the group announced on Wednesday. The new molybdenum autoclave process plant will enable lower-grade concentrate to be processed... 

Guinea reviews Rio Tinto’s Simandou iron-ore project

By: Mariaan Webb     11th June 2008 Diversified-miner Rio Tinto’s mining concession for its Simandou iron-ore project, in Guinea, was under review, the company said on Wednesday. Rio Tinto said that it had received a letter from that country’s president’s office, questioning the validity of a decree issued for... 

Angloplat man to head up Braemore Resources

By: Creamer Media Reporter      10th June 2008 Anglo Platinum head of process control and instrumentation, Leon Coetzer, would take over as MD and CEO of Aim-listed nickel and platinum-group metal (PGM) producer Braemore Resources on July 1, Braemore announced on Tuesday. The company said in a statement that Coetzer would initially divide... 

Kazakhstan to swap shares in Eurasian for Kazakhmys stake

By: Liezel Hill     10th June 2008 LSE-listed miner Kazakhmys has agreed to buy a 7,66% stake in fellow Kazakh miner Eurasian Natural Resources (ENRC) from the government of Kazakhstan, in exchange for 15% of Kazakhmys, the company said on Tuesday. The exchange ratio will be 1 Kazakhmys share for 1,23 ENRC shares, and the deal... 

Inmet warns of possible production delays at Las Cruces

By: Liezel Hill     10th June 2008 TSX-listed Inmet Mining believes it has come up with a solution to the Spanish water authority's concerns over a water system at its Las Cruces project in the country, but cautioned on Monday evening that the start-up of the processing plant, and first cathode production, could be delayed.... 

African Eagle updates Zambia exploration programme

By: Creamer Media Reporter      10th June 2008 AltX- and Aim-listed African Eagle Resources on Tuesday reported that it was actively exploring uranium and iron-ore targets within its Sasare licence area, in eastern Zambia. The company also said that a high-grade copper mineralisation of 4,03% to a depth of 33 m was determined in one diamond... 

Gold drops below $890 as US dollar firms

By: Reuters     10th June 2008 Gold extended losses on Tuesday and dropped below $890 an ounce after the US dollar gained on expectations of a possible interest rate hike, reducing the metal's appeal as an alternative investment. Gold fell to $889,80/890,70 an ounce from $894,00/896,00 late in New York on Monday, when it... 

Braemore Resources plans to list in Johannesburg

By: Liezel Hill     9th June 2008 Aim-listed Braemore Resources, which has the rights to use South African State-owned Mintek's ConRoast smelting technologies, will apply for a listing on the JSE, the company announced on Monday. The listing would give Braemore access to to South African capital markets, enlarge its... 

Gold above $900 on record oil, hits 2-week high

By: Reuters     9th June 2008 Gold rose to its highest level in almost two weeks on Monday, moving back above $900 as speculative buying picked up after oil hit a record high, lifting the metal's appeal as a hedge against inflation. Platinum also jumped to its highest in nearly two weeks on worries about supplies in... 

Australian antitrust regulator starts probe into BHP Rio Tinto bid

By: Liezel Hill     6th June 2008 The Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) will start its assessment of BHP Billiton's proposal to buy rival Rio Tinto, after receiving a submission from the larger company on Friday. The ACCC has invited comment from other miners and interested parties, and will seek talks... 

Crew Gold passes 5m oz resource milestone at Guinea mine

By: Liezel Hill     6th June 2008 UK-based Crew Gold has increased the measured and indicated resources at its Lefa gold project, in Guinea, to 5,1-million ounces, plus 1,3-million ounces of resources in the inferred category, the company said on Friday. 

New Finnish nickel entrant eyeing Nordic platinum possibilities

By: Martin Creamer     6th June 2008 London-listed Nordic miner Talvivaara plc, which plans to produce its first nickel metal in October using bioheapleaching, is also targeting platinum group metals (PGM) production. Talvivaara CEO Pekka Perä tells Mining Weekly Online that PGMs are known to be present in the region's... 

Power uncertainty may hamper platinum acquisitions, says Implats chief

By: Matthew Hill     6th June 2008 Doubt over State-owned Eskom's ability to provide enough power to South Africa's mining sector will cause setbacks to platinum projects, and could prevent acquisitions in the sector, world number-two producer Impala Platinum (Implats) said on Friday. "I believe uncertainty in... 

Petra consortium granted mining rights for iconic Cullinan mine

By: Matthew Hill     6th June 2008 South Africa's Department of Minerals and Energy has given the Petra Diamonds-led consortium the green light for the cession and transfer of the historical Cullinan diamond mine's new-order mining rights, the Jersey-based company said on Friday. The Petra Diamonds Cullinan Consortium... 

Alrosa makes offer for 6,5% stake in Polyus Gold

By: Liezel Hill     5th June 2008 Russian diamond producer Alrosa has offered to buy a 6,5% stake in Polyus Gold, the gold-miner said on Thursday. 

River Diamonds raises £5,5m to study Vatukoula expansion

5th June 2008 LSE-listed River Diamonds has raised £5,53-million by selling about 130-million shares, the company said on Wednesday.  

Mining contractor starts underground development at CAG’s Bibiani project

By: Chanel de Bruyn     5th June 2008 Aim-listed gold mining and exploration company Central African Gold (CAG) on Thursday announced that mining contracting joint-venture (JV) firm African Underground Mining Services (AUMS) had completed site establishment and had started work on the development of CAG's Strauss decline at the... 

Eldorado argues its case in hostile Frontier bid

By: Liezel Hill     4th June 2008 Vancouver-based Eldorado Gold went on the offensive on Wednesday, claiming that takeover target Frontier Pacific had not properly responded to the benefits Eldorado believes would accrue to the smaller firm's shareholders, if the companies were to merge.  

Industry needs $700/oz gold to stay afloat - Barrick's Sokalsky

By: Liezel Hill     3rd June 2008 On average, gold producers will need the price of gold to stay north of $700/oz if they are to turn a profit in the current environment of rising costs, Barrick Gold CFO Jamie Sokalsky said on Tuesday. Industry cash costs are currently around $450/oz to $500/oz and, taking into account the cost... 

Outokumpu unveils plans to double ferrochrome output in Finland

By: Liezel Hill     3rd June 2008 The board of stainless steel producer Outokumpu has given the go-ahead to a €420-million plan to double its ferrochrome production capacity in Finland, to 530 000 t/y, by 2011. Ferrochrome prices have surged in the last year, buoyed by stainless steel demand and power supply worries in... 

Newmont lifts stake in Gabriel Resources

By: Liezel Hill     3rd June 2008 Gold major Newmont Mining has bought an additional 1,5% in Toronto-based Gabriel Resources, bringing its holding in the smaller company to 19,9%, just shy of the 20% threshold that would require Newmont to make a mandatory offer for Gabriel. 

Aquarius’ Everest employees return to work

By: Matthew Hill     3rd June 2008 A 1 300-worker strong illegal strike at Aquarius Platinum's Everest mine in Mpumalanga ended on Monday evening, leading to the total loss of 1 950 oz of platinum-group metals, the company said on Tuesday. The unrest began on Wednesday last week, and the Labour Court granted the miner an... 

First metal from world's first bioleach nickel mine Oct 1, says Talvivaara CEO

By: Martin Creamer     3rd June 2008 The first metal from the world's first bioheapleaching nickel mine would be produced on October 1, Talvivaara Mining plc CEO Pekka Pera said in Finland on Tuesday. The London-listed Talvivaara uses the bioheapleaching method to extract nickel from one of the largest known sulphide nickel... 

Eldorado starts construction at Turkey gold project

By: Liezel Hill     2nd June 2008 Vancouver-based Eldorado Gold has received all the necessary permits and approvals to start building its Efemcukuru mine, in Turkey, and has begun site preparation work at the project, the company said on Monday. Efemcukuru, which will be the company's second mine in the country, is expected... 

Kermas offers to buy Metmar’s stake in metal alloys producer

By: Matthew Hill     2nd June 2008 Commodities marketing company Metmar rose to a new high in Johannesburg on Monday afternoon, after it announced the sale of its stake in metal alloys producer PGR 17 for R390-million to London-based Kermas. Kermas had made an irrevocable offer to buy PGR 17 with effect from September 1, of which... 

River Diamonds confident of profitability at Fiji mine

By: Liezel Hill     30th May 2008 Aim-listed River Diamonds, which poured the first gold this month after reopenening the Vatukoula mine, in Fiji, is optimistic that it will be able to turn a profit at the operation, chairperson Colin Orr-Ewing said on Friday. The company gained control of the mine in April when it bought the... 

Cape Diamonds agrees to buy SA gem producer

By: Matthew Hill     30th May 2008 London-based Cape Diamonds, which mines diamonds near Kimberley in South Africa’s Northern Cape province, announced on Friday that it had agreed to buy junior KMG Diamond Resources SA in an all-scrip deal. KMG operated two diamond mines in the same vicinity as Cape’s Elandslaagte... 

BHP Billiton files Rio Tinto takeover plans with EU regulator

By: Liezel Hill     30th May 2008 The world's biggest miner, BHP Billiton, has formally filed for antitrust clearance from the European Commission for its hostile takeover bid for rival Rio Tinto, the company said. The commission has the authority to block the merger or require BHP to sell certain assets if the takeover... 

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