Chilean court mandates shutdown of Barrick's Pascua-Lama, confirms US$11.5M fine
Chile's environmental court ordered Barrick Gold Corp. to close the Chilean side of its Pascua-Lama gold-silver project and confirmed a US$11.5 million fine against the Canadian miner, Reuters reported. The project, located on the border of Chile and Argentina, is operating under a temporary closure plan after it was put on hold in 2013 due to environmental issues, political opposition, labor unrest and development costs that ballooned to US$8.5 billion.
B2Gold eyes African assets Barrick Gold puts up for sale after Randgold merger
B2Gold Corp. is interested in acquiring any West African assets that Barrick Gold may consider as noncore after the latter completes its takeover of Randgold Resources Ltd., Reuters reported Oct. 13, citing B2Gold CEO Clive Johnson. The Vancouver, British Columbia-based miner is particularly interested in projects it can develop to produce about 200,000 ounces of gold annually for at least 10 years, as opposed to already-built mines, Johnson said in the newswire's report.
Evolution Mining Ltd.'s gold production dropped to 200,218 ounces at all-in sustaining costs of A$885 per ounce in its first quarter of fiscal 2019, from record output of 220,971 ounces of gold and record-low AISC of A$786 per ounce in the same period a year ago. Gold output at the Cowal mine in New South Wales fell yearly to 61,260 ounces at AISC of A$958 per ounce, from 70,140 ounces at AISC of A$712 per ounce.
* Two BHP Billiton Group petroleum units sued to compel EXCO Resources Inc. to turn over US$9.3 million in production proceeds the latter allegedly wants to use to satisfy the claims of other creditors, Reuters reported.
* Vedanta Ltd.'s mined metal output from its Indian zinc operations grew 6% year on year to 232,000 tonnes in the second quarter of fiscal 2019, driven by a 44% yearly surge in underground production.
* Codelco will lay off 1,000 workers, comprising mostly of contractors, at its Salvador division up to mid-2019, mainly due to the exhaustion of copper reserves in some of the mine's deposits and the forthcoming launch of its US$1.1 billion Rajo Inca project, La Tercera reported.
* Rio Tinto may cut the interest rates on the loans it makes over the Oyu Tolgoi copper mine in Mongolia, The Australian Financial Review reported, citing Mongolian media. The state owns 34% of the mine, but relies on loans from Rio Tinto to cover its share of construction costs.
* A scoping study for Azure Minerals Ltd.'s Oposura zinc-lead-silver project in Sonora, Mexico, outlined a pre-tax net present value of A$112 million, an internal rate of return of 76% and a 16-month payback period.
* Minotaur Exploration Ltd. reached a deal to earn up to an 80% interest in the 629-square-kilometer Windsor base metals project in Queensland, Australia.
* Pure Minerals Ltd. agreed to acquire Queensland Pacific Metals Pty. Ltd., an Australian company seeking to develop a nickel-cobalt processing plant in Townsville and holds an ore supply agreement to purchase high grade nickel-cobalt ore from New Caledonian mining firms Societe des Mines de la Tontouta and Societe Miniere Georges Montagnat SARL.
* BCM Resources Corp. completed a previously announced option agreement to purchase up to a 60% interest in the Thompson Knolls copper-gold project in Utah from Inland Explorations Ltd.
* Cradle Arc PLC secured from the Botswana Ministry of Mineral Resources, Green Technology and Energy Security the extension of mining license number 2010/96L, covering the Thakadu and Makala deposits of the Mowana copper mine, now valid up to May 31, 2020.
* Detour Gold Corp. said activist shareholder Paulson & Co. Inc. rejected the company's settlement offer to end their dispute. Detour Gold offered Paulson a number of concessions, including a spot on the board, but ruled out a sale. In a separate statement, Paulson countered that the alternatives it provided were outright turned down by Detour Gold.
* Polymetal International PLC increased its stake in the Veduga gold deposit in Russia to 74.3% by acquiring a 31.7% stake in the project's license holder, Amikan LLC, for US$19.7 million in shares.
* Stonewall Resources Ltd.'s scoping study for its Theta Hill gold project in South Africa pegged a posttax net present value, discounted at 7.5%, of up to US$152 million, an internal rate of return of 132% and a 7.6-year mine life.
* Marindi Metals Ltd. acquired a highly prospective tenement covering historical high-grade gold workings in the southern Forrestania greenstone belt in Western Australia from Bar None Exploration Pty. Ltd. for A$20,000 and 3 million shares. The property complements the extensive gold potential of its Forrestania gold-lithium project.
* Canada's environmental assessment agency is seeking public feedback on Atlantic Gold Corp.'s proposed gold mine in Nova Scotia, CBC News reported. The mine would operate for six years, with construction slated to start in 2021. The company estimates it will extract 400,000 ounces of gold from the site.
* Australian Mines Ltd. extended the closing date of its IPO for the spinoff of its noncore gold and base metals assets in Western Australia to Nov. 15.
* Apollo Consolidated Ltd.'s exploration drilling at the Lake Rebecca gold project in Western Australia identified a new gold surface located 100 meters to the north of the Jennifer Lode deposit. The discovery, dubbed as the Laura Lode deposit, resulted in the extension of the Rebecca mineralized corridor to over 1.3 kilometers in strike, while remaining open.
* AuStar Gold Ltd. received approval for the renewal of mining license MIN 5299, covering its Rose of Denmark gold mine in Victoria, Australia.
* GT Gold Corp.'s share price caught fire after it released a series of drillholes pointing to a new copper-gold discovery in British Columbia at a target called Saddle North on its Tatogga property. Drilling highlights included an interval of 904 meters grading 0.51 g/t gold, 0.30% copper and 0.93 g/t silver from 15 meters. Drilling at the deposit continues, said Amandip Singh, GT Gold's director of corporate development.
* Thiess Pty. Ltd. secured a five-year, A$1.2 billion contract to provide mining services at BHP Billiton Group's Mount Arthur coal mine in New South Wales, Australia.
* Unionized workers at Cleveland-Cliffs Inc.'s Tilden and Empire mines in Michigan, and United Taconite and Hibbing Taconite mines in Minnesota, ratified a new four-year labor contract. The new deal covers approximately 1,800 workers.
* The U.S. Department of the Treasury set a new deadline of Dec. 12, from Nov. 12 previously, to wind down dealings with sanctions-hit companies En+ Group PLC and United Co. Rusal PLC.
* J.P. Morgan Cazenove reassessed its stance on the European steel sector, marking ArcelorMittal, SSAB A/B and Aperam SA as "overweight" while tagging shares of Voestalpine AG, thyssenKrupp AG and Outokumpu Oyj as "neutral." The bank said the sector at large remains under pressure amid ongoing macroeconomic uncertainty that has impacted demand for steel.
* GFG Alliance founder and Chairman Sanjeev Gupta is targeting an initial listing of either his steel or energy assets in Australia next year, Reuters wrote.
* Some 500,000 tonnes of Thai steel products have been exempted from the Trump administration's Section 232 tariffs and quotas on steel and aluminum imports, Post Today reported, citing Adul Chotinisakorn, director-general of the Department of Foreign Trade.
* RWE AG may axe jobs at its Hambach mine, which employs 4,600 people, following a court order that halted the company's plan to clear a forest to expand its coal operations, Reuters reported, citing newspaper Rheinische Post.
* Kumba Iron Ore Ltd. finalized the transfer of employees, assets and liabilities of the shuttered Thabazimbi iron ore mine to ArcelorMittal South Africa Ltd., effective Nov. 1.
* Australian Bauxite Ltd.'s Alcore Ltd. subsidiary completed the design phase of its stage-one project on schedule and began acquiring equipment to begin production before year-end, ahead of schedule.
* Mission Coal will close its Pinnacle mine in Wyoming County in West Virginia, displacing about 400 workers, The Associated Press reported.
* Arafura Resources Ltd. signed a memorandum of understanding with JingCi Material Science Co. Ltd. for the supply of neodymium-praseodymium oxide from its Nolans project in Australia's Northern Territory.
* First Graphene Ltd. reached a three-year deal with the University of Manchester for the supply of graphene products for research to be undertaken by the Graphene Engineering Innovation Centre.
* The US$1.26 billion raised by junior and intermediate companies in September was the second-highest amount raised in 2018 to date, according to the Metals and Mining Research team at S&P Global Market Intelligence. It also marked the fifth month in the past year that companies succeeded in raising over US$1 billion.
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