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Probe Metals, Adventure Gold to merge; Adani facing coal overpricing claims; and Czech Republic eyes takeover of NWR unit

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Probe Metals, Adventure Gold to merge; Adani facing coal overpricing claims; and Czech Republic eyes takeover of NWR unit

TOP NEWS

Probe Metals Inc.and Adventure Gold Inc.entered into a definitive agreement to merge,creating a new leading gold explorer and developer with properties in Quebec andOntario. Under the terms, Adventure shareholders will receive 0.39 of a Probe sharefor each share held.

Adani facing coal overpricing allegations

Adani EnterprisesLtd. is under investigation by the Indian Directorate of Revenue Intelligencefor alleged involvementin a US$4.4 billion pricing scandal related to coal imported from Indonesia. Profitswere alleged to be "siphoned" overseas, as stated in the DRI alert, andpower companies used front companies in Singapore, Hong Kong and Dubai to raisecoal prices in official billing documents, the DRI claimed.

Czech government eyes takeover of New World Resources unit

In a bid to prevent its collapse, the Czech government is taking over unit . Industry Minister Jan Mladek,meanwhile, had offered an opportunity for the main owners and creditors to sellthe company and debt.

DIVERSIFIED

* The Zimbabwean government is probing RioTinto's exit from the country when it sold its two holdings in June2015. The mining giant sold its 78% interest in Murowa Diamonds (Pvt.) Ltd. and its 50% interest in to The governmentis seeking to verify "the manner in which the shares changed hands," FredMoyo, mines and mining development deputy minister, said during a question and answersession in the National Assembly.

BASE METALS

* The Indonesian group seeking to acquire a controlling stakein Newmont Mining Corp.'soperations in Indonesia secureda US$750 million loan from two state-owned banks to fund the deal, Reuters reported,citing Basis Point.

* Indonesian state-owned tin miner PT Timah (Persero) Tbk expects to quadruplenet profit in 2016 to around 400 billion Indonesian rupiah by optimizing downstreamproduction and diversification, The JakartaPost reported, citing Corporate Secretary Agung Nugroho.

* According to traders and analysts, China is expected toincrease copper exports in the next few months amid record high stockpiles ofthe red metal, Reuters reported. The country's copper export volumes are usuallysmall, but an increase in shipments — particularly at a time when Chinese demandis historically at its peak — would shake copper producers and investors aroundthe world.

* Central AsiaMetals Plc's production of copper increased36.5% year over year to 3,207 tonnes in the first quarter from its dump leach, solvent extractionand electro-winning copper recovery plant in Kazakhstan. Copper sales during thequarter were up 14% year over year to 2,550 tonnes.

* Millrock ResourcesInc. fully acquired the Chisnacopper-gold project in Alaska from CorvusGold Inc. for US$25,000. In addition to the mineral rights, Millrockalso purchased an exclusivecopy of a proprietary exploration database covering the claims and the surroundingdistrict, which represents about US$11 million of exploration work.

* The New South Wales Supreme Court dismissed the proceedings between Aurelia Metals Ltd. and Glencore Plc over a loan dispute, in accordance with theterms of settlement between the companies.

* Trevali MiningCorp.'s 2016 underground exploration drill program at its zinc mine in Peruintersected "very significant"sulfide mineralization both within the main Magistral North body as well as in thenewly discovered Oyon mantos. The intercepts are near existing mine infrastructure,and will be quickly added into the near-term mine plan.

PRECIOUS METALS

* Probe MetalsInc. and Adventure GoldInc. entered into a definitive agreement to merge, creating a new leading gold explorer and developerwith properties in Quebec and Ontario. Under the terms, Adventure shareholders willreceive 0.39 of a Probe share for each share held.

* The London Bullion Market Association is assessing proposalsto create a trading and reporting platform for gold trading in London, while theWorld Gold Council is working with the London Metal Exchange to create new futurescontracts, Bloomberg News reported,citing two people with direct knowledge of the venture. "It's a pretty bigmoment for London, and it's time to choose," said Mark O'Byrne, a directorin Dublin at brokerage GoldCore Ltd.

* Vantage GoldfieldsLtd. unit MIMCO, which owns the Lily gold mine in South Africa's Mpumalanga province, officiallyentered business rescue, Mining Weeklyreported.Three miners have been trapped underground at Lily since February, and the companycontinues to focus on their recovery.

* Kodal MineralsPlc will acquireinterests in various gold exploration properties in Mali and Ivory Coast by acquiring100% of Taruga Gold Ltd.'swholly owned subsidiary, InternationalGoldfields (Bermuda) Ltd., which owns the properties. 

* Coeur MiningInc. produced3.4 million ounces of silver and 78,072 ounces of gold in the first quarter of 2016,which compares to 3.8 million ounces of silver and 69,734 ounces of gold producedin the same period a year earlier.

* Golden Dawn MineralsInc.'s updated preliminary economic assessment on the gold project in south-centralBritish Columbia has indicateda positive underground mining project at near current gold prices. At a gold priceof US$1,250 per ounce and copper price of US$3.00 per pound, using an exchange rateof C$1.00 equal 82 U.S. cents per share, the project will generate an after-taxnet present value of C$23.3 million at a 6% discount rate, and yield an internalrate of return of 61.5%. Initial capital costs are expected at C$9.6 million andtotal life of mine capital is estimated to be C$33.5 million.

* Centamin Plcproduced 125,268 ounces of gold from its Sukari gold mine in Egypt in the first quarter, from the 108,233 ounces produceda year ago. The company maintained the full-year production guidance of 470,000ounces.

 * 's in Zimbabwe producedabout 10,822 ounces of gold in the first quarter, representing an 8.7% year-over-yearincrease. The mine is targeting total production of about 50,000 ounces of goldthis year.

* Lonmin Plcsaid a rock drill operator died at its 50%-owned Pandora platinum joint venture in South Africa'sNorth-West province, following a fallof ground accident, which did not result in any other injuries. An investigationinto the incident has begun. AngloAmerican Platinum Ltd. holds a 42.50% stake in the joint venture.

* Connemara MiningCo. PLC's drilling on its gold licenses in Inishowen, County Donegal, Ireland, returned interceptsof 3.05 meters grading 5.8 g/t of gold, including a 0.65-meter interval at 11.31g/t of gold and 0.39 meter at 26.07 g/t of gold. The initial drill results confirmedthe presence of significant grades of gold in a multivein system within the Dalradianrocks of Inishowen.

* According to Ecuadorian Mining Minister Javier Córdova, state-ownedEnami EP is looking forprivate sector partners to advanceseveral mining projects, Business News Americas reported.

* Sunrise ResourcesPlc said it will establish a new subsidiary in Nevada to gold projects in the stateusing the low-cost project generator model.

* According to statistics from the World Gold Council, centralbanks purchased 25 tons of gold in February, downfrom 41 tons a month ago, CNBC reported.

BULK COMMODITIES

* Adani EnterprisesLtd. is under investigation by the Indian Directorate of Revenue Intelligencefor alleged involvementin a US$4.4 billion pricing scandal related to coal imported from Indonesia. Profitswere alleged to be "siphoned" overseas, as stated in the DRI alert, andpower companies used front companies in Singapore, Hong Kong and Dubai to raisecoal prices in official billing documents, the DRI claimed.

* In a bid to prevent its collapse, the Czech government is taking over unit . Industry Minister Jan Mladek,meanwhile, had offered an opportunity for the main owners and creditors to sellthe company and debt.

* Lundin Law PC filed a class-action lawsuit against 's ASX-listed entityBHP Billiton Ltd., followingthe firm's investigation relating to alleged false and misleading statements issuedby the company despite knowledge of the "dangerous condition" at the Samarco iron ore mine inBrazil.

* In the first quarter of 2016, Rio Tinto's and 's iron ore shipments increased10% year over year to 270 million tonnes, Bloomberg News wrote, citing Sanford C.Bernstein & Co.'s weekly cargo-tracking report.

* The saleprocess for Tata Steel Ltd.'sloss-making U.K. operations will start April 11, and Sanjeev Gupta's Liberty HouseGroup is expected to start due diligence with an aim to acquire the troubled operation,Reuters reported, citing an interview with Gupta. He said funding the acquisitionwill not be a big issue since Liberty House has a turnover of more than US$6.5 billion,adding that competitive power prices are critical to revive the business.

* Creditors of Glencore's Optimum coal mine are likely to give the go-ahead to divestit to Tegeta Exploration and ResourcesPty. Ltd. for 2.15 billion South African rand, Bloomberg News reported.

* Arrium Ltd.'slenders have been urged not to initiate a legal battle to gain control of the administrationprocess, ABC reported.

* Separately, Australia's federal government issued a statementsaying that it is "disappointed"by Arrium's move to place the company under voluntary administration. However, thegovernment is hopeful that a positive outcome can be achieved. 

* The U.S. International Trade Commission started a into the trade of aluminumin the U.S. and overseas to determine the impact of lower-cost imports on localsmelters. The commission is expected to release the results of the investigationby June 2017.

* SunCoke EnergyInc.'s move to divest substantially all of its remaining coal assetsin a deal with Revelation Energy LLCwas called an "attractive exit"by FBR & Co. in an April 7 note.

* According to Australian Steel Institute CEO Tony Dixon, theAustralian federal government must take immediateaction to save the embattled steel industry directly responsible for the employmentof more than 90,000 people, The Australianwrote.

* Capacity cuts of up to 150million tonnes across China's steel industry are expected to resultin an industry reshuffle, which will change the ranking of domestic steel majors,Li Xinchuang, deputy secretary general of the China Iron & Steel Association,said in an interview with SNL Metals & Mining.

* China's medium-sized and large steel mills have reported aloss of 11.4 billion Chinese yuan in the first two months of this year, Shanghai Securities News wrote, citingthe chairman of the China Iron & Steel Association. CISA member mills have posteda combined loss of 100 billion Chinese yuan in their core business in the previousyear.

* In order to help easepressure on China's loss-making coal miners, the State-owned Asset Supervisionand Administration Commission, or SASAC, has urged state-owned power plants to cooperateand secure long-term coal supply contracts, Reuters reported, citing a draft documentsent to coal buyers and producers.

* Magnetic ResourcesNL's former managing director, Gavin Fletcher, named the company ina legal action in relationto unpaid termination benefits. The company disputed the allegations.  

* Afarak GroupOyj entered into a three-year agreement with a developer and manufacturerof products made from advanced stainless steel and special alloys. Afarak will supplylow-carbon ferrochrome produced at its ElektrowerkWeisweiler plant in Germany.

SPECIALTY

* Iluka ResourcesLtd. said its zircon sales for the current year might be as itwill reduce the zircon reference price for the second quarter by 10% to about US$950per tonne. The company may also adjust this year's zircon production of about 350,000tonnes; however, combined sales of zircon, rutile and synthetic rutile are stillexpected to exceed aggregate production of about 660,000 tonnes.

* Commerce ResourcesCorp. enteredinto a memorandum of understanding with NorFalco Sales, a division of Glencore unitGlencore Canada Corp.Under the terms, NorFalco will provide sulfuric acid required for the lanthanides projectin Quebec at highly competitive market rates and terms. The agreement is bindingand is subject to an initial five-year term and can be re-negotiated afterward.

* Peregrine DiamondsLtd.'s 2015 resource development program at its Chidliak diamond project in Nunavut led to a 40%increase in inferredresource tonnage to 4.64 million tonnes, and a 33% increase in contained caratsto 11.39 million carats.

* First GraphiteLtd. said the Geological Survey and Mines Bureau the industrial mining license forthe Pandeniya graphiteproject in Sri Lanka. The approval came a month after the company received the nodfrom the Central Environmental Authority for the project.

* Following an update of the mineral resource estimate for 's mineral sands project inVictoria, Australia, the total resource is now estimated at 5.71 billion tonnes of sand at an average gradeof 3.2% heavy minerals, at a 1% heavy mineral cutoff.

INDUSTRY NEWS

* According to Brazilian research firm Economatica, the totalgross debt of local nonfinancial listed firms in 2015 was 1.40 trillion Brazilianreais, with local mining and steel firms accounting for 13.5% of the figure, BusinessNews Americas reported.

* The current downturn is expected to allow different playersand particularly, private equity funds, tocome into the mining sector, Dean Braunsteiner, a partner at accountingfirm PricewaterhouseCoopers, said during a panel discussion at Mines and Money Asia2016 in Hong Kong. "There were plenty of deals happening in the private marketbut you just didn't hear about them," he said. "I think the next stepfor private equity funds is to move to the public market where the big opportunitiesare." Private equity is expected to help fill in the gap left by the publicmarket, according to Braunsteiner.

The Daily Dose is updated as of 7 a.m. Hong Kong time, and scans newssources published in Chinese, English, Indonesian, Malay, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish,Thai and Ukrainian. Some external links may require a subscription.