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Albemarle slashes US$1.5B capex from 5-year plan; Barrick mulls Tongon mine sale


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Albemarle slashes US$1.5B capex from 5-year plan; Barrick mulls Tongon mine sale


Albemarle slashes US$1.5B capex from 5-year plan amid price slump

Amid a slump in lithium prices, Albemarle Corp. slashed capital expenditure spending plans by US$1.5 billion over the next five years, delaying construction of projects that would have brought about 125,000 tonnes more of lithium carbonate equivalent to market. President and CEO Luke Kissam said the company was focused on becoming free cash flow positive in 2021 and would not build capacity when it was difficult to pin down pricing in the longer term.

Report: Barrick mulls sale of Tongon gold mine in Cote d'Ivoire

Barrick Gold Corp. is considering selling part or all of its stake in the Tongon gold mine in Cote d'Ivoire, Bloomberg News reported, citing people familiar with the matter. The gold major is said to have tapped Bank of Nova Scotia for the sale process, which it plans to start shortly. The report noted that deliberations are at an early stage, and the company may eventually decide against selling the mine.

ArcelorMittal's Ukrainian operations agree to US$1.8B modernization plan

ArcelorMittal's Ukrainian steelmaker, ArcelorMittal Kryviy Rih, will invest over US$1.8 billion in modernizing its operations over the next five years to bring its emissions down by between 50% and 55%. The steelmaker will also press on with the construction of its continuous casting machine No. 3, which was interrupted in July by an inspection from authorities.


* Glencore PLC unit Mopani Copper Mines PLC shut down the Mindola north and central shafts at its Nkana copper mine in Zambia, in a move that was previously announced in mid-May, Reuters reported, citing a company statement. A Mopani spokesman said the company can now use the funds to complete other expansion projects.

* Ero Copper Corp. increased its full-year copper production guidance to between 38,000 and 40,000 tonnes of copper, from 36,000 to 38,000 tonnes, after second quarter output surged to 10,473 tonnes of copper, up from 5,684 tonnes produced a year ago.

* Protests against copper mines in Peru have stalled about US$400 million in copper exports since July 18, Reuters reported, citing Gabriel Monge, manager of port operator Terminal Internacional del Sur. Freeport-McMoRan Inc.'s Cerro Verde, MMG Ltd.'s Las Bambas, Glencore's Antapaccay and Hudbay Minerals Inc.'s Constancia have been unable to ship copper concentrates from Matarani to Asia and Europe.

* Rambler Metals & Mining PLC's saleable metal production in the second quarter reached 1,417 tonnes for copper and 1,321 ounces for gold, compared to 978 tonnes of copper and 1,199 ounces of gold produced a year ago.

* Europa Metals Ltd. submitted a conceptual plan for review by stakeholders as part of a process to obtain an exploitation license for its wholly owned Toral lead-zinc-silver project in Spain.

* Aurubis AG's pretax earnings in its fiscal third quarter plummeted 72% year on year to €22 million from €78 million, driven by a maintenance shutdown at its site in Pirdop, Bulgaria, and costs related to the termination of the Future Complex Metallurgy project.

* Hudbay Minerals produced 30,363 tonnes of copper concentrates in the second quarter, down from 37,625 tonnes in the year-ago period. The company swung to a net loss of US$54.1 million, or 21 cents per share, from a profit of US$24.7 million, or 9 cents per share, following a US$26 million write-down related to its acquisition of United Copper & Moly LLC's 7.95% interest in the Rosemont project in Arizona.

* For the second quarter of its fiscal 2019, Mitsui Mining & Smelting Co. Ltd. lowered its attributable net earnings forecast to ¥3.0 billion from ¥9.0 billion due to an expected sales decline in metal powder used for copper foil and electronic materials for smartphones.

* Clive Palmer's lawyers are trying to get the remaining claims of US$100 million related to Queensland Nickel Pty. Ltd. dismissed after reaching an agreement with the special-purpose liquidators, The Australian Financial Review reported.

* Indonesia's nickel miners' association called on the government to stick with the enforcement of a proposed ban on raw mineral exports in 2022 after the group learned of a plan to postpone the measure, Reuters reported.


* New Gold Inc. is raising C$150 million via a bought deal financing under which underwriters will purchase 93,750,000 common shares of the company at C$1.60 apiece. The company will use the funds to enhance financial flexibility, strengthen the balance sheet, including debt repayment, and general corporate purposes.

* Yamana Gold Inc. accepted about US$415.0 million in principal amount of notes under a buyback offer launched in July to reduce outstanding debt.

* Wheaton Precious Metals Corp. swung to a second-quarter net loss of US$124.7 million from a year-ago profit of US$318.1 million as a result of a noncash impairment of US$166 million related to a deal it struck in 2018 with Vale SA to buy cobalt from Voisey's Bay mine in Canada.

* The surging price of gold, which breached US$1,500 per ounce in recent trading, will help spur asset sales by majors this year, Franco-Nevada Corp. President and COO Paul Brink said in an earnings call as he signaled that the company's coming deals will likely be in the precious metals space.

* Osisko Mining Inc. is about 2,000 meters into a drillhole at the Windfall Lake gold project in Quebec that it hopes will set a Canadian record for length as it gambles on the potential for deep discovery, according to an exclusive S&P Global Market Intelligence report.

* Goldrich Mining Co.'s 50/50 Goldrich NyacAU Placer LLC joint venture with NyacAU LLC over the Chandalar gold project in Alaska was dissolved due to the failure to meet minimum production requirements.

* Sibanye Gold Ltd. said a significant improvement in second-quarter operational results was expected to carry through to the second half. Gold production from the South African operations in the second quarter was 155,965 ounces, 46% higher than the first quarter, after the end of a five-month strike.

* Resolute Mining Ltd. forward sold 30,000 ounces of gold at an average price of US$1,519 per ounce in scheduled monthly deliveries of 5,000 ounces between January 2020 and June 2020. The company's total hedge book now consists of 190,000 ounces in monthly deliveries out to June 2020.

* Gold Fields Ltd. advised shareholders that it expects to announce headline EPS for the six months ended June 30 of 5 US cents, instead of between 6.8 cents and 7.2 cents per share guided in a trading statement a week earlier. The change is due to a restatement of the gain on the disposal of investments.

* Torex Gold Resources Inc. achieved record gold production of 113,645 ounces and sales of 113,419 ounces in the second quarter from its Morelos gold property in Mexico.

* Endeavour Silver Corp.'s second-quarter net loss widened year over year to US$10.1 million from US$5.7 million, as revenue sank 24% to US$29.4 million amid a 22% fall in silver and 30% fall in gold output, while all-in sustaining costs grew. The company flagged a rise in second-half production along with lower costs relative to the first half.

* Evolution Mining Ltd. Executive Chairman Jake Klein sounded caution on M&A activity amid what fellow ASX-listed midtier gold miner Northern Star Resources Ltd. CEO Stuart Tonkin believes will be an improving price environment. Klein told the Diggers & Dealers conference that history shows it is better to invest counter-cyclically, as opposed to doing so when the price is going up, and risking impairments when it falls.

* A worker was killed in a locomotive accident at shaft one of Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd.'s Rustenburg operation in South Africa, Mining Weekly reported.


* United Co. Rusal PLC's net profit in the second quarter plummeted to US$285 million, from US$408 million a year ago, with the news sending the company's shares down almost 10% on the Hong Kong stock exchange. Revenue for the company increased to US$2.57 billion, from US$2.25 billion, while cost of sales climbed to US$2.13 billion from US$1.58 billion, on a yearly basis. Sales of primary aluminium and alloys increased to 1.1 million tonnes, from 783,000 tonnes a year ago.

* The chairman of Steel Authority of India Ltd., Anil Kumar Chaudhary, survived an assault by four unknown men who rammed his car as he was driving home.

* Thyssenkrupp AG is weighing a sale of its prized elevator business amid "clear interest from investors" alongside plans to list a partial stake in the unit, the German company said while outlining another cut to its fiscal 2018/19 profit forecast. Adjusted EBIT for the 12 months ending Sept. 30 is expected to be just €800 million, down from the previous forecast of €1.1 billion to €1.2 billion. Adjusted EBIT in the previous fiscal year totaled about €1.4 billion.

* Rio Tinto CEO Jean-Sebastien Jacques told Bloomberg TV that the recent slump in iron ore prices will not impact the mining major's ability to reward shareholders thanks to the quality of its asset portfolio, which he called a "cash machine."


* Malaysian Prime Minister Mahathir Mohamad said he cannot ask Lynas Corp. Ltd. to leave the country even if some people are afraid of the radioactive waste at the Gebeng plant, Reuters reported. "We invite them and then we kick them out. Others will say the country made a promise but, when there is a problem, we kick them out ... we cannot do that," Mohamad said.

* Lucara Diamond Corp. upgraded its full-year carat recoveries guidance to the range of 375,000 carats to 420,000 carats, from 300,000 carats to 330,000 carats, due to record performance of its processing plant over consecutive quarters. Second-quarter net income, however, slid to US$700,000 from US$19.7 million in the year-ago period.

* SRG Mining Inc. signed a memorandum of understanding with a U.S.-based industrial firm over the development of its flagship Lola graphite joint venture in Guinea with Sama Resources Inc.


* The Canadian government will invest C$1.5 million in a research project that aims to create a more efficient method for rock fragmentation for underground mining and tunneling projects, Mining Weekly reported.

* Glencore is working to restart operations at a shuttered electronic-scrap metals facility in Arkansas formerly owned by BlueOak Resources, Inc., E-Scrap News reported.

* South Korea blocked the entry of scrap metal cargoes from Japan over the past two weeks after the former sought certificates to prove radiation levels, sources told Fastmarkets MB.

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The item referencing Suncoke Energy published on Aug. 7, 2019 contained erroneous information and was updated following publication.