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Legislative Environment News

BRC DiamondCore liquidation hearing extended to June 19

By: Martin Creamer     21st April 2009 The Kimberley High Court of South Africa would hear the application for the liquidation of two subsidiary companies of the Toronto- and Johannesburg-listed diamond-mining company BRC DiamondCore on June 19, BRC DiamondCore financial director Brian Scallan said on Tuesday. Scallan told Mining... 

Chamber believes SA wage talks will get under way in mid-May

By: Esmarie Iannucci     21st April 2009 South Africa's Chamber of Mines confirmed on Tuesday that it had received demands from the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM), but that it was still awaiting submissions from other unions in the sector. Wage negotiations were likely to get under way in earnest during the middle of May. 

Enrolment of mining students 
unaffected by economic slowdown

By: Jonathan Faurie     17th April 2009 Education and training efforts in the mining industry have not been significantly impacted by the global financial crisis reports Chamber of Mines Professor of Mining Engineering and head of the Wits School of Mining Engineering, Professor Huw Phillips. 

Inconsistencies in Mining Charter, BBBEE codes a cause for concern

By: Loni Prinsloo     17th April 2009 Broad-based black economic empowerment (BBBEE) consultants EconoBEE CEO Keith Levenstein says that a significant concern arises from the contradictions in the Mining Charter and the implementation of BBBEE codes. 

Protesters block road to Fortuna's silver/gold project in Mexico

By: Liezel Hill     16th April 2009 A group of demonstrators have “illegally” blocked the main access road to Fortuna Silver Mines; San Jose silver-gold project, as well as the nearby San Jose del Progreso town, the firm reported on Thursday. The group, which ranges from 10 to 50 people, is mainly comprised of people from outside... 

Gemfields calls for postponement of TanzaniteOne general meeting

By: Esmarie Iannucci     14th April 2009 Gemfields on Tuesday urged shareholders of Aim-listed TanzaniteOne (T1) to postpone an upcoming general meeting, claiming that a proxy-form error could preclude a bloc representing one-fifth of T1 shareholders from participating. In an open letter to shareholders, Gemfields, whose bid for T1... 

Simmers on site at Pamodzi’s Orkney gold mine as mystery funder offers $40m

By: Martin Creamer     14th April 2009 As the liquidation date of Pamodzi Gold’s Orkney gold mine was extended, the provisional liquidators reported that JSE-listed gold miner Simmer & Jack was on site at Pamodzi Gold's Orkney gold mine undertaking a due diligence study – and also that a separate mystery suitor was looking into... 

JIC to bring Pamodzi gold mine back, restore 1 200 jobs immediately  

By: Martin Creamer     14th April 2009 Contract mining company JIC Mining Services of Midrand is taking immediate steps to bring Pamodzi Gold's Orkney gold mine out of care-and-maintenance and back into production, initially restoring 1 200 jobs and later all 2 800. Liquidator Enver Motala of SBT Trust said that production would take... 

Concerns shift for BEE mining companies

By: Philippa Levenberg     10th April 2009 As the Mining Charter rounds the five-year mark and the economic crisis takes its toll, many companies in the mining space are scrambling to salvage black economic empowerment (BEE) deals that are underwater. BEE compliance has become a valuable asset and a sure-fire way for companies to advance... 

Vague legislation, regulatory uncertainty impedes empowerment

By: Philippa Levenberg     10th April 2009 The Mineral and Petroleum Resources Development Act of 2002 (MPRDA) is one of the few pieces of legislation that gives direct effect to socioeconomic empowerment objectives. Key licensing provisions of the MPRDA, however, have led to regulatory uncertainty in the South African mining industry and... 

Women fight for inclusion in BEE model 

By: Philippa Levenberg     10th April 2009 The empowerment of women in the mining sector is espoused by legislation. The Mining Charter, which outlines broad-based socioeconomic empowerment targets for the South African mining industry, states that stakeholders should aspire to a baseline of 10% women participation by 2009. This is,... 

BEE investment in mining set for uncertain future

By: Philippa Levenberg     10th April 2009 Doomsday predictions have been promulgated for the future of black economic empowerment (BEE) in the South African mining sector. This has been prompted by the global financial crisis, characterised by falling share prices and a drop in commodity values, that has left the mining industry... 

Safety equipment supplier advances empowerment, adds value

By: Philippa Levenberg     10th April 2009 Safety equipment manufacturer and supplier MSA Africa has recognised the importance of black economic-empowerment (BEE) compliance in “moving up the value chain.” Mining companies increase their BEE scorecard ratings when they procure services from empowered suppliers.  

Mining initiative uplifts local community

By: Philippa Levenberg     10th April 2009 Earthmoving equipment welding repairs company JCB Barokatshipi Tse Kgolo is building a workshop at platinum-miner Anglo Platinum (Angloplat’s) Potgietersrus mine. This initiative will empower the local Mapela community.  

Chamber of Mines worried about rising incidence of acid mine drainage

By: Jonathan Faurie     10th April 2009 The Chamber of Mines, the association that looks after the interests of the local mining industry, has openly admitted that acid mine drainage is a growing problem in the industry that needs significant attention. 

R1bn in liquid assets remains locked up as JCI/R&E merger is voted down 

By: Martin Creamer     9th April 2009 Shareholders on Thursday voted down the formal merging of the mining companies JCI and Randgold & Exploration (R&E) – but informal negotiations are poised to continue in order to reach a new settlement that has the potential to unlock R1-billion in liquid assets alone, at a time of liquidity... 

Board, dissidents trade blows as Polar Star vote nears

By: Liezel Hill     8th April 2009 For the second time this year, a Toronto-based mining company is squaring up for a showdown with a group of dissident shareholders, who want to replace the current board with a slate of their own nominees. In March, the board of base-metals miner HudBay Minerals conceded defeat before the... 

Pamodzi Gold given six more days to come up with cash or evidence of cash

By: Martin Creamer     8th April 2009 The judicial managers have given Pamodzi Gold six days to come up with cash or have the entire group plunged into liquidation, SBT Trust’s Enver Motala told Mining Weekly Online on Wednesday. Motala said that the deadline of Wednesday April 8 for the continuance of the judicial management of... 

Sword of Damocles lifted – Tom Dale on lower Honeywell settlement

By: Martin Creamer     8th April 2009 “The Sword of Damocles has gone,” Sallies CEO Tom Dale told Mining Weekly Online as the news broke on Wednesday of the International Chamber of Commerce International Court of Arbitration meting out a far lesser penalty payment in the Honeywell case than might have been. The international... 

Now Pamodzi Gold’s fundless judicial management on knife edge 

By: Martin Creamer     7th April 2009 The judicial management of Pamodzi Gold’s Free State and East Rand operations may be short-lived. Joint provisional liquidator and judicial manager Enver Motala told Mining Weekly Online on Tuesday that, if there were no funds in the company’s account on Wednesday, he would be applying to the... 

MPRDA amendments do little to clear up dump confusion - Matjila

By: Esmarie Iannucci     6th April 2009 The proposed amendments to the Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA) suggested by the Department of Minerals and Energy (DME) in terms of rights to mineral dumps would not cover the gap exposed in terms of the Jagersfontein case, a senior legal manager said on Monday. A... 

SA mining law changes may result in further mining right application delays  

By: Esmarie Iannucci     6th April 2009 The proposed changes to South Africa’s Minerals and Petroleum Resources Development Act (MPRDA), especially around community interest and environmental regulation, were likely to add to delays currently experienced in acquiring mining and exploration rights. Law firm Webber Wentzel partner Manus... 

Caledonia will restart Zimbabwe gold mine

By: Liezel Hill     4th April 2009 Canada-based Caledonia Mining plans to restart its Blanket gold mine, in Zimbabwe, “as soon as possible”, after receiving the permissions and licences it needs under the country's new regulations governing gold trading, the firm announced on Friday. Caledonia shares leapt 63,6% on the news, to... 

MQA enlists educational institutions in bid to improve mines’ safety performance

By: Jonathan Faurie     3rd April 2009 Tertiary institutions, such as the University of Johannesburg (UJ), have been the focus of a major campaign to improve South African mine health and safety standards reports the Mining Qualifications Authority (MQA). 

TanzaniteOne urges shareholders to vote for protective mantle

By: Martin Creamer     1st April 2009 Aim-listed coloured-gemstone miner TanzaniteOne on Wednesday urged its shareholders to vote for a mantle of protection against hostile takeovers at a special general meeting (SGM) on April 19. The company, which mines tanzanite in Africa, drew shareholders’ attention to the recommendations of... 

SA mineral-law claimants stick to their ‘expropriation’ guns 

By: Martin Creamer     1st April 2009 The South African mineral-law claimants, who took their grievances to a world body, said on Wednesday that they remained “fully confident” in the strength of their “expropriation claims” against the South African government. Responding to Tuesday’s South African government media release on the... 

World body gives miners 2 months to see if SA mineral laws equal expropriation

By: Creamer Media Reporter      31st March 2009 The South African Government has agreed to a two-month stay of an international arbitration in which Italian granite miners claim that their mineral rights are being expropriated by South Africa's minerals legislation. The South African government said in a media release on Tuesday that the... 

SA mining keen on beneficiation strategy, against being forced to beneficiate – Chamber

By: Martin Creamer     31st March 2009 The South African mining industry had always been against being forced by law to beneficiate the metals and minerals that it mined, but was enthusiastic about being part of a beneficiation strategy that involved South Africa as a whole, Chamber of Mines (CoM) CE Mzolisi Diliza said on Tuesday.... 

South Africa should set out to dominate in resources – Clem Sunter 

By: Martin Creamer     27th March 2009 South Africa should set out to dominate in resources as the country remained “very resource rich” despite the decline in gold and diamond production, renowned scenario planner Clem Sunter said on Friday. Sunter, who served in mining for more than 40 years with diversified major Anglo American,... 

Replicating Liberia’s mineral auctioning system would yield greater benefits for SA

By: Jonathan Faurie     27th March 2009 South Africa’s mining industry is at a crossroads and could capitalise on a radical system used in Liberia to improve the cash flow generated from the awarding of mineral order rights. 

Deferred royalties law will have far-reaching implication – KPMG

By: Loni Prinsloo     27th March 2009 Although deferred for implementation to March 2010 by the National Treasury, the Mineral and Petroleum Resources Royalty Act (2008) will have far-reaching implications for the mining sector, states international auditing, tax and advisory firm KPMG’s energy and natural resources tax director... 

New 100% tax write-off for investment in bottom-end junior mining

By: Martin Creamer     27th March 2009 South African Finance Minister Trevor Manuel’s July 1 tax-break introduction for investment in support of junior mining are seen as an attempt to create a new class of investor that is “generously incentivised” to support the bottom end of the junior-mining scale. “It’s a big incentive, with... 

Vilified Transnet says coal exporters failing to use available rail capacity

By: Martin Creamer     25th March 2009 Vilified State-owned rail enterprise Transnet Freight Rail says it has “excess and under-utilised capacity” on its coal line and is puzzled by claims that rail constraints are limiting exports from Richards Bay Coal Terminal (RBCT), Durban and Maputo. Transnet Freight Rail spokesperson Sandile... 

New HudBay board plans shareholders meeting by midyear

By: Liezel Hill     24th March 2009 The newly installed board of directors of HudBay Minerals will call a meeting of shareholders before the end of June, to present its view of the base-metals miner's situation, and map out plans for the way forward, chairperson Wesley Voorheis said on Tuesday. An increasingly acrimonious battle... 

JCI brings merger date forward to April 9

By: Martin Creamer     24th March 2009 The date of the next hearing into the proposed merging of mining companies JCI and Randgold & Exploration (R&E) has been brought forward to April 9. Earlier this month, senior counsel Michael van der Nest, acting chairperson in the absence of senior counsel Vincent Maleka, adjourned the meeting... 

New 100% July 1 tax write-off for investment in bottom-end junior mining

By: Martin Creamer     20th March 2009 South African Finance Minister Trevor Manuel’s gazetted tax breaks for investment in support of junior mining are seen as an attempt to create a new class of investor that is “generously incentivised” to support the bottom end of the junior-mining scale. “It’s a big incentive, with 100% tax... 

South African diamond industry seeking ways to mitigate economic downturn

By: Leandi Kolver     20th March 2009 Across the mining industry the effects of the current economic downturn have made a severe impact on production and sales, and resulted in the loss of many jobs. Slowly, but surely, the crisis is spreading to the diamond sector. 

Mining facing serious challenges, but prices should return to 2006 levels next year – insurance group

By: Loni Prinsloo     20th March 2009 Specialist insurance company Lombard Insurance Group states that the South African mining industry finds itself facing serious challenges including limitations on capital availability, high levels of volatility and uncertainty in equity markets. 

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