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Vale's Q3 iron ore output, sales drop; Newcrest OKs Cadia expansion's 1st phase


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Vale's Q3 iron ore output, sales drop; Newcrest OKs Cadia expansion's 1st phase


Vale's Q3'19 iron ore output, sales down YOY

Vale SA's third-quarter iron ore production fell 17.4% year on year to 86.7 million tonnes from a record 104.9 Mt, while pellet production fell 19.8% to 11.1 Mt from a record 13.9 Mt. Iron ore sales fell 11.8% to 74.0 Mt, as pellet sales sunk 22.3% to 11.1 Mt. Despite further slashing its annual pellet production target to 43 Mt, Vale reaffirmed its iron ore and pellet sales guidance of between 307 Mt and 332 Mt, with sales estimated to be around the midpoint.

Newcrest approves first phase of Cadia expansion project

Newcrest Mining Ltd.'s board approved the execution of the first of two stages of the Cadia expansion project in New South Wales, Australia. A feasibility study estimated first-stage capital cost of US$685 million to increase plant capacity of 33 million tonnes per annum. The first-stage comprises development of the PC2-3 mine, where production is targeted in fiscal 2023.

Evolution hikes FY'20 production cost estimate; fiscal Q1 output slips YOY

Evolution Mining Ltd. raised its all-in sustaining cost guidance for fiscal 2020 by A$50 per ounce to between A$940/oz and A$990/oz, citing a revised mine plan at the Mount Rawdon pit in Queensland, Australia, and higher royalty payments and lower by-product credits. The company produced 191,967 ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of A$1,018/oz in the first fiscal quarter ended Sept. 30, down from 200,218 ounces of gold at all-in sustaining costs of A$885 per ounce in the year-ago quarter.


* Chilean state-owned copper miner Codelco is mulling closure of operations at its Ventanas copper smelter in a bid to cut down on pollution, Reuters reported. Chilean President Sebastian Pinera is expected to announce the closure in the COP25 climate change conference, scheduled in December.

* The liquidation of Doe Run Peru SRL's assets in Peru is gradually advancing as the liquidator firm obtained the necessary votes from creditors to turn mining unit Cobriza into a separate company, Minera Cobriza SA, to expedite its sale. However, creditors representing workers did not approve the conversion of the La Oroya metallurgical complex into a separate business, daily El Comercio reported.

* Trafigura Beheer BV is helping to finance a US$450 million copper and cobalt facility at the Mutoshi mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo, even while Glencore PLC is set to close its Mutanda copper mine in the African country by the end of the year, Financial Times reported, quoting unnamed sources. Trafigura is part of a consortium, which includes the First Bank of Nigeria and Africa Finance Corporation, backing the processing plant. Trafigura is betting that the Mutoshi mine can become a competitive producer just as demand starts to rise.

* Chinese copper imports fell 14.6% year over year to 445,000 tonnes in September, while aluminum exports were down 14.2% over the period to 435,000 tonnes, Reuters reported, citing General Administration of Customs data.

* Nyrstar NV's Langlois zinc mine in Quebec will operate on care and maintenance, with production to cease in December, following an in-depth geological and budget analysis. Nyrstar said the rock conditions have deteriorated to the point where the company considers it uneconomic to continue to mine ore in 2020.

* The European Union imposed tariffs as high as 66.4% on steel products from China as part of a crackdown on alleged dumping by Chinese exporters of steel wheels for vehicles, European Views reported.

* A major nickel exploration campaign will start this month at Hannans Ltd.'s Forrestania nickel project in Western Australia.


* Alamos Gold Inc. suspended construction work at its Kirazli gold project in Turkey due to a delay in the renewal of its mining concessions, which expired Oct. 13. The suspension will push the initial production at Kirazli from the previous target of late 2020.

* Lundin Gold Inc. said operations at its Fruta del Norte gold mine in Ecuador are returning to normal as movement of key supplies and personnel resumed after the road blocks were lifted. The company expects commissioning activities to return to the normal plan within the next few days.

* B2Gold Corp. approved the US$38 million construction of a solar battery plant at its Fekola gold mine site in Mali. The construction will start at the end of 2019 and is expected to complete in August 2020.

* Anglo Asian Mining PLC's gold equivalent production slid to 20,227 ounces in the third quarter, from 24,412 ounces a year ago. Quarterly sales, meanwhile, climbed to 14,894 ounces of gold bullion at an average of US$1,513 per ounce, from prior-quarter sales of 13,467 ounces at US$1,332/oz.

* Horizon Gold Ltd. kicked off a scoping study after optimizations identified the highest potential for open pit mining at the Swan North and Swift deposits at its Gum Creek gold project in Western Australia. The study, based on open pit mining with processing by toll treating, is expected to complete in November.

* Altyn PLC outlined an ore reserve at its Teren-Sai project in Kazakhstan of 16.4 million tonnes at 2.74 g/t gold and 4.54 g/t silver containing 1.45 million ounces of gold and 2.40 Moz of silver.

* GWR Group Ltd. signed a joint venture agreement with Blackham Resources Ltd. to mine at the Wiluna West Gold project in Western Australia. The agreement provides for Blackham and GWR to delineate and mine gold deposits at Wiluna West and for processing to take place at the Matilda operation.

* Saturn Metals Ltd. estimated higher indicated and inferred mineral resources of 24.5 million tonnes grading 1.0 g/t gold for 781,000 ounces of gold at a cutoff grade of 0.5 g/t gold for its Apollo Hill project in Western Australia, from the previous estimate of 20.7 million tonnes grading 1.0 g/t gold for 685,000 ounces of gold.

* Ariana Resources PLC was granted renewal of an operational license for its Salinbas gold project in Turkey for five years until June 3, 2024. The company now holds all three operational licenses, Ardala, Salinbas and Hizarliyayla, comprising the Salinbas project, and resource drilling is expected to start in the second quarter of 2020.

* Chaarat Gold Holdings Ltd. expects to publish an update for the mineral resource estimate of its Tulkubash gold project before the end of the year. The resource estimate will be used for the project's reserve estimate and the economic model during the first quarter of 2020.


* Peru's Federation of Mining, Metallurgical, Iron and Steel Workers plans to hold a national strike on Nov. 27, said the organization's general secretary Jorge Juárez, against extractive companies' rejection to establish collective negotiations to standardize labor benefits, daily Gestión reported.

* India's National Company Law Appellate Tribunal temporarily blocked JSW Steel Ltd.'s takeover of Bhushan Power and Steel Ltd. amid a fraud probe into the insolvent steelmaker.

* PJSC PhosAgro CEO and President of the Russian Fertilizer Producers Association Andrey Guryev presented an environmental labeling scheme for Russian mineral fertilizers to Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev, Deputy Prime Minister Alexey Gordeev and Agriculture Minister Dmitry Patrushev. The use of the labels is expected to strengthen the competitive advantages of Russian producers of environmentally friendly phosphates in global markets in the context of the tightening of EU regulations in the near future for fertilizers with high levels of cadmium and other heavy metals.

* PJSC PhosAgro and Ma'aden Phosphate Co. signed a cooperation agreement with the Russian Direct Investment Fund to support global food security through the use of environmentally friendly phosphate-based fertilizers.

* The Western Australian Department of Water and Environmental Regulation has granted Sheffield Resources Ltd. the Stage 1B works approval for the Thunderbird mineral sands project, amending the original authority provided by the Stage 1A Works approval to construct and operate the project, to include an above-ground tailings storage facility for the first three years of production and allow the installation of product load out facilities at the mine site.

* MACA Ltd. was awarded the Bulk Earthworks for Access Roads and Infrastructure contract for the Iron Bridge magnetite project, a joint venture between Fortescue Metals Group Ltd. subsidiary FMG Iron Bridge and Formosa Steel IB Pty. Ltd. The contract is expected to generate A$26 million revenue for MACA and has already commenced.


* U.S. Vanadium Holding Co. LLC acquired a vanadium pentoxide producing facility in Hot Springs, Ark., from a leading Russian steel conglomerate. According to the release, it is the only high-purity vanadium production facility in the U.S. Investors in U.S. Vanadium include Techmet Ltd., Elysee Development Corp. and The Lind Partners LLC.

* Bacanora Lithium PLC, which is planning a US$300 million capital raise early next year, said that its deal with China's Ganfeng Lithium Co. Ltd. will put the London-listed company in a better position to raise cash for its Sonora lithium project in Mexico, Reuters reported. Construction at Sonora is slated to begin in the second quarter of 2020 with production in early 2022, six months later than previously expected.

* Sagon Resources Ltd. estimated a maiden inferred mineral resource of 13.0 million tonnes grading 1.13% total rare earth oxides, comprising 147.3 million kilograms of TREO for its Cummins Range rare earths project in Western Australia.

* Core Lithium Ltd. agreed with Lithium Plus Pty Ltd. to acquire the rights to apply for an ancillary mineral lease within exploration license EL31133, as part of the Finniss lithium project in the Northern Territory of Australia.

* Talga Resources Ltd. estimated a maiden resource of 4.6 million tonnes at 25.82% graphite, containing 1.2 million tonnes graphite for its Niska deposits, which forms part of the Vittangi graphite project in Sweden.


* Zimbabwe Mines Minister Winston Chitando said that the country is targeting a fourfold increase in revenue from minerals to US$12 billion by 2023, but gave little detail on how this would be achieved, Bloomberg reported. Chitando is also expecting diamond production to increase to 11 million carats by 2023 from 3.2 million carats in 2018, according to Reuters.

* Publicly traded North American metals and mining companies show generally credit-friendly governance characteristics, according to Moody's.

* A total of 128 mining fatal accidents in China were recorded this year in China, as of Oct. 12, down 28.1% year on year, Xinhua reported, citing National Coal Mine Safety Administration spokesman Shi Baozhong.

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