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In This List

ArcelorMittal to spend US$1.8B in modernization; Albemarle cuts capex by US$1.5B

Mining Exploration Insights December

Mining Exploration Insights: Dip in gold drilling weighs on results

Mining Exploration Insights: Is the exploration sector back on recovery?

State of the Market: Mining Q2-2019


ArcelorMittal to spend US$1.8B in modernization; Albemarle cuts capex by US$1.5B

TOP NEWS

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.

Lithium-miner 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.

Evraz cuts interim dividend as H1 net profit plummets 70% YOY

Russian steelmaker Evraz PLC cut its interim dividend to 35 U.S. cents per share, from 40 cents per share a year ago, as net profit in the first half plummeted 70% year over year to US$344 million, or 21 cents per share. The results were impacted by higher costs, a swing to a foreign exchange loss of US$273 million from a US$147 million year-ago profit, and impairments of noncurrent financial assets totaling US$56 million.

BASE METALS

* Protests against copper mines in Peru have held up 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' Constancia have been unable to ship copper concentrates from Matarani to Asia and Europe, the report said.

* Nickel Mines Ltd. is on its way to entering the S&P/ASX 300 thanks to its profitable partnership with Tsingshan Holding Group Co. Ltd., and the Chinese company's battery material plans in Indonesia could see the ASX-listed company realizing further upside in the electric vehicle supply chain, according to an exclusive S&P Global Market Intelligence report.

* 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.

* Ero Copper Corp. raised its full-year 2019 production guidance to between 38,000 tonnes and 40,000 tonnes of copper, from 36,000 tonnes to 38,000 tonnes, after its first-half output already reached 75% of the full-year total in 2018. Second-quarter copper output increased to 10,473 tonnes, from 5,684 tonnes in the comparative period.

* Hudbay Minerals Inc. produced 30,363 tonnes of copper concentrates in the second quarter, down from 37,625 tonnes last year. The company swung to a net loss of US$54.1 million, or 21 cents per share, from 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 7.95% interest in the Rosemont project in Arizona.

* For the second quarter, 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.

* Glencore PLC's Mopani Copper Mines PLC unit in Zambia officially shut down two shafts at the Nkana mine, leading to the dismissal of 1,400 mine contractors, Reuters reported.

* The Chinese Ministry of Natural Resources accepted the mining license application by Griffin Mining Ltd.'s Chinese subsidiary, Hebei HuaAo Mining Industry Co. Ltd., for Zone II at the Caijiaying zinc mine in China's Hebei province. A new license is expected to be issued within 40 days.

* The Public Authority for Mining in Oman advised Savannah Resources PLC that it intends to grant mining licenses over the Mahab 4 and Maqail South high-grade copper deposits, part of the Block 5 exploration license. The licenses will be granted after new licensing fees are set under the new mining law and the fees are paid.

* 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.

PRECIOUS METALS

* 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.

* Wheaton Precious Metals Corp. swung to a second-quarter net loss of US$124.7 million, or 28 cents per share, from a year-ago profit of US$318.1 million, or 72 cents per share, as a result of a noncash impairment of US$166 million related to a deal it struck last year 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.

* Wesdome Gold Mines Ltd. booked an increase in second-quarter net income to C$8.3 million, or 6 cents per share, from C$5.7 million, or 4 cents per share, following a 47% yearly rise in mine profit and 34% jump in revenue.

* Goldrich Mining Co. said its 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.

* Higher sales in its fiscal first quarter helped Silvercorp Metals Inc. book an attributable net income of US$12.6 million, or 7 cents per share, compared to US$10.9 million, or 6 cents per share, in the prior year,

* Sibanye Gold Ltd. said a significant improvement in second-quarter operational results was expected to carry through to the second half of 2019. 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 U.S. cents, instead of between 6.8 cents and 7.2 cents per share guided in a trading statement a week earlier. The forecast change relates to a restatement of the gain on the disposal of investments.

* AngloGold Ashanti Ltd.'s first-half profit attributable to shareholders was US$114 million, or 27 U.S. cents per share, surging 245.5% from US$33 million, or 8 cents per share, a year ago. Results in the period were positively influenced by strong performance across the company's operating assets.

* SSR Mining Inc.'s second-quarter net income surged to US$12.4 million from US$2.6 million a year ago on the back of a 49% increase in revenue.

* 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.

* Altius Minerals Corp. swung to a second-quarter loss of C$1.9 million, or 5 cents per share, from a year-ago profit of C$5.5 million, or 12 cents per share. Attributable royalty revenue increased to C$19.5 million, or 46 cents per share, from C$16.5 million, or 38 cents per share.

* 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.

BULK COMMODITIES

* 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."

* The chairman of Steel Authority of India Ltd., Anil Kumar Chaudhary, survived a "murderous assault" by four unknown men who stopped him as he was driving home, the company said. In a Reuters report, Chaudhary suspected that the attack may have been related to his business dealings.

* African Export-Import Bank granted credit approval to provide Danakali Ltd.'s preferred power contractor, Inglett & Stubbs International, with a US$42 million guarantee, which will facilitate senior debt funding for the power plant at the Colluli sulfate of potash project in Eritrea.

SPECIALTY

* Lucara Diamond Corp. upgraded its full-year 2019 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 last year.

* The EU's Horizon 2020 project awarded the U.K.'s University of Birmingham a €4 million grant to build a pilot facility that will recover rare earth metals from scrap, Mining Weekly reported.

* 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.

* Altura Mining Ltd. agreed to earn a 51% interest in Sayona Mining Ltd.'s 1,806-square-kilometer lithium portfolio in Western Australia's Pilgangoora mining district by spending A$1.5 million on exploration over three years.

INDUSTRY NEWS

* 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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