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Project Management News

Ambatovy undertakes plant maintenance as tax spat drags on

By: Henry Lazenby     26th February 2016 Operations at Madagascar’s $8-billion Ambatovy nickel/cobalt mine continued on Friday, despite all shipments to and from the operation remaining marooned at an east-coast port as a tax dispute with the Malagasy government on new shipment levies dragged on. Operator and 40%-owner Sherritt... 

Producer moves ahead in spite of hurdles

26th February 2016 Despite setbacks with regard to its Obuasi joint venture (JV) and the weak market conditions, gold mining company Randgold Resources reports that its other African projects are proving to be successful. The Tongon gold mine, in Côte d’Ivoire, is focused on sustaining the increased throughput... 

ADVANCING TONGON 
The mine will continue its work on infrastructure and economic development initiatives
ADVANCING TONGON The mine will continue its work on infrastructure and economic development initiatives

Thompson Creek swings to adjusted Q4 loss

By: Henry Lazenby     25th February 2016 Diversified miner Thompson Creek Metals Company has swung to an adjusted loss of $49.8-million, or $0.23 a share, as sharply lower molybdenum sales and lower prices for gold, copper and molybdenum impacted the bottom line. The Denver, Colorado-based company, which operates the Mt Milligan... 

Mining sector woes continue to limit economic growth in the territories in 2016

By: Creamer Media Reporter      25th February 2016 Declining metal and mineral prices, rising global inventories of most mining commodities and easing growth in the Chinese economy will weigh on Canada’s Aboriginal territories' economies this year, the Conference Board of Canada said on Wednesday. Nunavut and the Yukon were expected to see... 

N America’s infant vanadium-redox flow battery market looking for a champion

By: Henry Lazenby     24th February 2016 While several industry players are jostling to take advantage of the budding North American vanadium-redox flow battery (VRB) market, barriers to entry such as raw material cost and equipment availability are still issues, making input costs prohibitive. “The industry is still looking for a... 

Gildemeister's CellCube vanadium-redox flow battery
Photo by American Vanadium
Gildemeister's CellCube vanadium-redox flow battery

Sherritt in talks with Madagascar govt to end tax dispute

By: Henry Lazenby     23rd February 2016 Diversified Canadian miner Sherritt International on Tuesday said it had no intentions of changing the full-year guidance for its share of nickel production from the Ambatovy nickel/cobalt joint-venture operation, in Madagascar, despite the possibility that a shipping tax dispute could halt... 

Taseko and dissident shareholders at loggerheads

By: Henry Lazenby     19th February 2016 Base metals producer Taseko Mines this week cried foul when it reported that activist shareholder Raging River Capital (RRC) were involved with secret bond buying activity, that put it at odds with fellow Taseko shareholders. RRC, which had a 5.1% stake in the company that owned 75% of the... 

Ambatovy in danger of closing in less than a week, as Sherritt seeks to rejig project input

By: Henry Lazenby     19th February 2016 The shipment starved Ambatovy nickel/cobalt-producing joint venture (JV) in Madagascar might be forced to shutter operations in less than a week, after incoming and outgoing shipments have been stranded at an east-coast port since early this month, after government imposed a new shipment levy.... 

Ambatovy in danger of closing in less than a week, as Sherritt seeks to rejig project input

Gold’s breakout heralds boost for smaller producers as seniors lumber behind

By: Simon Rees     19th February 2016 Gold’s run so far this year might have surprised several analysts, specifically those who had predicted an annus horribilis for the yellow metal starting mid-2015. Gold certainly came under some pressure towards the end of 2015, hitting a calendar-year low of $1 049.40/oz London pm fix on... 

Cripple Creek & Victor mine, Colorado
Photo by Bloomberg
Cripple Creek & Victor mine, Colorado

Ethics, the foundation of project management

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 An organisation’s ethics and, more importantly a project’s leadership is the very foundation on which its successful development is based, says Denver-based project management expert, course leader and author Terry Owen. In a handbook titled Project Management for Mining, published in 2015, which... 

TRUST IS KEY
Project leadership must embrace the personal traits of integrity, fairness, faithfulness and honesty
Photo by Bloomberg
TRUST IS KEY Project leadership must embrace the personal traits of integrity, fairness, faithfulness and honesty

Safety, risk ownership key to thriving projects

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 Effective risk-mitigation measures and a sound safety-management system are integral to the development of a successful project, stipulates global mining and engineering planning and service provider WSP Parsons Brinckerhoff. The company has been operating in Africa for the past 20 years and has... 

BUYING INTO SAFETY 
Project managers are responsible for creating a culture of safety at project sites
Photo by Bloomberg
BUYING INTO SAFETY Project managers are responsible for creating a culture of safety at project sites

Modikwa South 2 handover slated for July

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 The completion of South African mining company African Rainbow Minerals’ (ARM’s) Modikwa platinum mine South 2 Phase 1 decline shaft is in its final stages and will be handed over to the mine in July. The execution project is contracted to Centurion-based project management and consultancy Fox... 

PROJECT SUCCESS 
Fox Projects completed the execution of Anglo American Platinum/ ARM’s Modikwa mine north decline and handed over the project in December 2015
Photo by Bloomberg
PROJECT SUCCESS Fox Projects completed the execution of Anglo American Platinum/ ARM’s Modikwa mine north decline and handed over the project in December 2015

Industry association provides diverse professional certificate

19th February 2016 Nonprofit professional membership association Project Management Institute (PMI) is providing the Project Management Professional (PMP)certification which comprises rigorous process that shows the achievement, knowledge and skills of a project manager in the project management environment.... 

Diamonds will remain sought after regardless of economic trends

By: Nadine James     19th February 2016 Although diamond demand is not immune to global economic trends, such as the slowed growth in China that resulted in a collapse in commodity prices, Aim-listed diamond exploration company Botswana Diamonds (BOD) executive chairperson John Teeling is still optimistic about long-term demand. “You... 

JOHN TEELING Botswana Diamonds executive chair says that despite recent economic trends, more people are entering the middle class,increasing the demand for jewellery, and thus diamonds
JOHN TEELING Botswana Diamonds executive chair says that despite recent economic trends, more people are entering the middle class,increasing the demand for jewellery, and thus diamonds

Coal-to-power project ready for bid submission

19th February 2016 Energy company Shumba Energy (SE) has made significant progress on its Mabesekwa Export Independent Power Plant (MEIPP) project, which will be ready for bid submission by mid-2016. The project is located in the Mabesekwa village in Botswana’s Central District. Shumba has started with the bankable... 

GOING FOR COAL Shumba Energy hopes that its coal-to-power project wins preferred bidder status in the independent power procurement bids
GOING FOR COAL Shumba Energy hopes that its coal-to-power project wins preferred bidder status in the independent power procurement bids

Diamond conference returns to Botswana

19th February 2016 Botswana will host the Diamonds Still Sparkling Conference, for the second time in six years. The sixth in a series of triennial diamond conferences, Diamonds Still Sparkling 2016 will be held at the Gaborone International Convention Centre, and targets the full spectrum of the diamond pipeline,... 

DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER The Diamonds Still Sparkling Conference will reiterate that fact
Photo by Bloomberg
DIAMONDS ARE FOREVER The Diamonds Still Sparkling Conference will reiterate that fact

High-value projects key to success in economic downturn

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 By identifying and concentrating on high-value projects as a positive project management practice, mining companies and project managers can help ensure the success of projects amid the current slump in the mining industry, local mining and exploration consultancy The MSA Group notes. MSA Group... 

EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT Project management companies must intensely interrogate a project’s ability to survive in tough financial times
EFFECTIVE MANAGEMENT Project management companies must intensely interrogate a project’s ability to survive in tough financial times

First phase of exploration on copper/silver project starts

19th February 2016 Australian-listed metals miner MOD Resources last month announced that Phase 1 exploration had started at its Botswana copper/silver project, which is located in the Kalahari Copper Belt (KCB) – a region where MOD has various interests in licences covering an area of about 12 000 km2. The... 

DRILL TIME Exploration on MOD's project in the Kalahari Copper Belt started in earnest in January
DRILL TIME Exploration on MOD's project in the Kalahari Copper Belt started in earnest in January

Consultancy attributes growth rate to specialist teams

By: Malusi Mkhize     19th February 2016 Gauteng-based mine planning and engineering consultancy Ukwazi grew by 29% in 2015, exceeding its average growth rate of between 22% and 23% recorded over the previous five and ten years.    According to Ukwazi director and principal mining engineer Jaco Lotheringen the company’s formal study... 

BC announces renewed support for provincial exploration tax credit

By: Henry Lazenby     17th February 2016 The British Columbia provincial government on Tuesday extended its support for the provincial Mining Exploration Tax Credit (BC METC) through to January 1, 2020, and also renewed the BC Mining Flow-Through Share tax credit, which had expired on December 31, 2015. The projected fourth consecutive... 

BC announces renewed support for provincial exploration tax credit

Search reports positive economics for Labrador rare earths project

By: Henry Lazenby     17th February 2016 Canadian explorer and project developer Search Minerals has updated a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) on its Foxtrot rare earth element project, located in south-east Labrador, reconfirming robust economics and the potential to become a profitable producer of rare earth elements (REE),... 

Great Panther restarts Guanajuato ops following explosives theft assessment

By: Creamer Media Reporter      17th February 2016 Great Panther Silver has restarted full operations at its Guanajuato mine complex, in Mexico, after the regulatory authority responsible for permitting and regulating the use of explosives concluded its investigation into explosives theft that took place at one of the operation’s mines in... 

Mining stocks resemble ‘a big Walmart sale’ as low commodity prices persist

By: Henry Lazenby     12th February 2016 Sentiment remain negative about the mining and oil and gas industries as the super cycle nears a protracted potential bottom, resulting in dwindling market capitalisations for companies large and small and cruelly undervalued stock prices – creating a buyer’s market for the savvy investor. Chief... 

Mining stocks resemble ‘a big Walmart sale’ as low commodity prices persist

Mining’s improving fortunes weighed down by debt

By: Simon Rees     11th February 2016 The mining sector was expected to climb out of the downturn’s trough by year-end 2016, Paradigm Capital partner and senior analyst David Davidson told an audience at a recent meeting of the Canadian Institute of Mining’s Management and Economics Society. However, debt levels were a notable... 

Mining’s improving fortunes weighed down by debt

Teck turns a profit in low commodity price environment

By: Henry Lazenby     11th February 2016 Canadian diversified miner Teck Resources surprised markets on Thursday with better than expected fourth-quarter earnings, beating analyst expectations by C$0.03 a share. However, the Vancouver-based miner reported a net loss of C$459-million in the fourth quarter, as it booked after-tax... 

Teck turns a profit in low commodity price environment

Engineers Without Borders working towards establishing local procurement reporting standard

By: Henry Lazenby     10th February 2016 The Mining Shared Value initiative of Engineers Without Borders Canada (EWB) has partnered with the Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) to work with international mining companies in establishing a measurement and reporting standard for local procurement by the... 

Taseko expects to benefit from BC’s power cost deferral programme

By: Henry Lazenby     9th February 2016 Base metals producer Taseko Mines expects to benefit from recently announced planned support for struggling mining companies in British Columbia. Premier Christy Clark recently revealed that government was working on a plan to enable struggling mining companies to defer some of their “very... 

Rare Earth Salts inks five-year commercial agreement with Rare Earth Recovery Sciences

By: Henry Lazenby     3rd February 2016 Mineral and applications technology company Rare Earth Salts (RES) has signed a five-year commercial agreement with significant buyer of retorted compact fluorescent lightbulb phosphor powder, Rare Earth Recovery Sciences (RERS), to produce separated rare earth oxides in the US. RERS would... 

Nautilus takes delivery of seafloor production tools

By: Creamer Media Reporter      2nd February 2016 Marine-mining pioneer Nautilus Minerals on Monday announced that the Solwara 1 Joint Venture (comprising Nautilus 85% and Eda Kopa (Solwara) Limited 15%) has taken delivery of the three seafloor production tools (SPTs) from British manufacturer Soil Machine Dynamics’ (SMD) facility, in Newcastle... 

Alcoa wins another Boeing contract

By: Henry Lazenby     29th January 2016 US alloys specialist Alcoa has won another long-term supply agreement with Boeing for multi-material aerospace parts, including for its latest commercial aircraft, the 777X, as well as the 737 MAX – scheduled for first delivery in 2017, and the 787 Dreamliner. The deal drew on capabilities gained... 

Agreement improves mining training opportunities for British Columbians

By: Henry Lazenby     27th January 2016 The British Columbia Centre of Training Excellence in Mining (CTEM) on Tuesday launched a pilot project that will offer students the opportunity to complete up to a full year of the British Columbia Institute of Technology (BCIT) mineral exploration and mining technology diploma at four new... 

Scornful report on high-tech cobalt supply chains could prove a boon to Western producers

By: Henry Lazenby     22nd January 2016 A report released this week by advocacy group Amnesty International has revealed human rights abuses by one of the world’s largest cobalt producers in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), which raises the possibility of accelerating a looming supply gap. The report, 'This is what we die for:... 

Artisanal cobalt miners in the DRC
Photo by Reuters
Artisanal cobalt miners in the DRC

Development bank seeks to grow North African presence

By: Dylan Stewart     22nd January 2016 To bolster the presence of North Africa at this year’s Investing in African Mining Indaba, multilateral development finance institution the African Development Bank (AfDB) has collaborated with the organiser to invite as many mining Ministers as possible from the region. Attendance of delegates... 

Merger enables engineering firm to weather tough market conditions

By: Nadine James     22nd January 2016 Metallurgical engineering company MDM Engineering has kept its head above water and has been able to secure new contracts despite the depressed market conditions in the mining industry, MDM executive director and founder George Bennett tells Mining Weekly. He attributes the company’s... 

GEORGE BENNETT MDM Engineering is in the process of completing three projects in South Africa
GEORGE BENNETT MDM Engineering is in the process of completing three projects in South Africa

Corporate strategy workshop to focus on value creation

By: Mia Breytenbach     22nd January 2016 While mining companies are trying to cut costs in-house and drive efficiency to survive the depressed market, advisory firm Eunomix states that these companies continue to be affected by a “tidal wave” of stakeholder pressures and volatile commodity prices. “Without a strategy to navigate through... 

UNDER PRESSURE
While mines have to cut unit costs and improve productivity, they are confronted with demands for increased transparency, accountability and social investment
Photo by Bloomberg
UNDER PRESSURE While mines have to cut unit costs and improve productivity, they are confronted with demands for increased transparency, accountability and social investment

Flexible, leaner service approach vital for African mining projects

By: Mia Breytenbach     22nd January 2016 Companies need to focus on becoming leaner and challenging the status quo when providing mining- and mineral-related services in Africa in the current global economic climate during which there has been a slump in commodity prices, engineering company WorleyParsons cautions. “The provision of... 

Vanadium producer Largo launches $26.5m private placement

By: Henry Lazenby     19th January 2016 As one of the conditions under which vanadium producer Largo Resources restructured its credit facilities in December, the company on Tuesday announced that it had arranged a non-brokered private placement offering for expected total gross proceeds of up to $26.5-million. 

Alabama Graphite reports successful testing of US-produced CSPG

By: Henry Lazenby     19th January 2016 The stock of TSX-V-listed Alabama Graphite Corp (AGC) on Tuesday traded in positive territory, boosted by a company report that it has completed successful downstream lithium-ion battery tests on its coated spherical purified graphite (CSPG). The Toronto-based firm had produced CSPG in the US... 

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