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In This List

Hwange Colliery starts severance program to slash workforce by up to 50%

Essential Metals & Mining Insights - August 2020

State of the Market: Mining Q2-2020

Report Outlooks of Lithium and Cobalt

Essential Metals & Mining Insights July 2020


Hwange Colliery starts severance program to slash workforce by up to 50%

TOP NEWS

Hwange Colliery to cut up to 1,200 jobs in Zimbabwe

Hwange Colliery Co. Ltd. started a voluntary severance program in March, looking to cut up to half of its workers in Zimbabwe in order to produce competitively as it looks to restart underground operations by the end of September, Bloomberg News wrote. Hwange Colliery employs about 2,400 people and is the owner and operator of the Hwange coal mine in Zimbabwe.

Chilean wage negotiations to cause further copper supply disruption

A further 15% of global copper supply is at risk from upcoming wage negotiations in Chile, according to ANZ Research senior commodity strategist Daniel Hynes. "In the copper market we're seeing an increasing amount of supply disruption," Hynes said, prompted by a strike at BHP Billiton Group's Escondida mine that lasted over 40 days. Labor contracts for several other Chilean mining operations are due to come to an end this year.

Met coal producers reportedly struggle to find miners as demand ticks up

The U.S. coal industry is reportedly finding miners are scarce as they aim to ramp up metallurgical coal production in the face of improved demand. In a research note, analyst Lucas Pipes of FBR & Co. said labor was "frequently cited as a limiting factor" by companies responding to improved metallurgical coal prices.

DIVERSIFIED

* BHP Billiton Group is seeking partners to work with as it studies the use of giant, automated cargo ships for dry bulk shipping, Bloomberg News wrote, citing the company's vice president for freight, Rashpal Bhatti.

* Anglo American Plc appointed Stuart Chambers as chairman, replacing John Parker, who will step down from the board Oct. 31 after eight years as the company's chairman. Chambers will join the company as nonexecutive director Sept. 1 and take up the chairman role Nov. 1.

BASE METALS

* Russia's PJSC Norilsk Nickel Co. said the Talnakh concentrator of its Polar Division has reached design capacity, increasing the plant's throughput capacity by over 30% to 10.2 million tonnes per annum of ore.

* First Quantum Minerals Ltd. will withdraw from the farm-in agreement over the Calingiri copper project in Western Australia. Caravel Minerals Ltd. will regain 100% interest in the project, but First Quantum will retain an 8.8% shareholding in the company.

* Artemis Resources Ltd. has started generating net revenue from copper ore sales, with the first truckload of copper oxide ore leaving its Whundo copper mine in Western Australia.

* PT Amman Mineral Internasional unit PT Amman Mineral Nusa Tenggara, which operates the Batu Hijau copper mine, aims to finalize a feasibility study on a smelter in August, Bisnis Indonesia reported, citing CEO Rachmat Makkasau. Amman is ready to spend US$9 billion to develop mines and construct smelter with a capacity of 1 million tonnes.

* Yunnan Tin Co. Ltd. emerged as the first smelter to net approval to participate in China's newly introduced tin concentrates processing trade policy, Metal Bulletin reported, citing sources.

* First Cobalt Corp. acquired 22 mining claims totaling 848 hectares in Ontario from Brixton Metals Corp. for C$325,000 in cash.

* Northern Shield Resources Inc. signed a binding option agreement with Canada's Conseil de la Nation Innu de Matimekush-Lac John, to acquire three claim blocks totaling 82 claims in Labrador Trough, Quebec. The claims are believed to be highly prospective for nickel-copper-platinum group elements.

PRECIOUS METALS

* Victoria Gold Corp. said the general corporate tax rate in northern Canada's Yukon Territory was recently reduced from 15% to 12%. The reduction boosted the economics of the company's Eagle gold project on its Dublin Gulch property, with the posttax net present value increasing to C$527 million and the internal rate of return increasing to 30.0%.

* S&P Global Ratings assigned a preliminary long-term corporate credit rating of B+ to Sibanye Gold Ltd., with a positive outlook, amid expectations that the miner will be able to generate positive discretionary cash flow and gradually reduce leverage following its Stillwater Mining Co. acquisition.

* Sibanye also received a Ba2 rating from Moody's, based on the miner's solid business profile and record of setting and maintaining conservative financial policies, the firm said.

* Oceanus Resources Corp. hit 3.15 meters of 10.1 g/t of gold and 1,990.9 g/t of silver in drilling on the Protectora vein, 800 meters north of its El Tigre property in northern Mexico. The hit comes in an area where there was little exploration in the past, Glenn Jessome, Oceanus president and CEO, told S&P Global Market Intelligence in a phone interview.

* Despite the rainy season in Peru, gold production at Inca One Gold Corp.'s Chala One plant reached 2,290 ounces in the February-April period, a 91% increase over the comparable 2016 period.

* Seabridge Gold Inc. closed the acquisition of a private company and its Snowstorm gold project, comprising 700 mining claims and 5,800 acres of fee lands in Nevada, from Paulson & Co. Inc. subsidiary PFR Gold Holdings LP.

* Beaufield Resources Inc. completed the previously reported acquisition of the 299-hectare Windfall East gold project in Quebec from Alto Ventures Ltd.

* A feasibility study at North American Palladium Ltd.'s Lac des Iles palladium mine in Ontario estimated a posttax net present value, at an 8% discount, of C$470 million, resulting from cash flow of C$678 million.

BULK COMMODITIES

* The Competition Commission in South Africa approved Coal of Africa Ltd.'s proposed acquisition of Pan African Resources Coal Holdings Pty. Ltd. and its 91% stake in the Uitkomst thermal coal operation, Mining Weekly reported. Coal of Africa in April agreed to buy the Pan African Resources Plc unit under a 275 million South African rand deal.

* Paringa Resources Ltd. said the construction of the Poplar Grove mine at its Buck Creek coal project in Kentucky will start in July, with initial production targeted for July 2018.

* Thailand's Sahakol Equipment PCL is planning to acquire an equity stake in Potash Mining Co. Ltd., which is involved in the development of a potash mine owned by ASEAN Potash Mining PCL in the northeastern province of Chaiyaphum, Krungthep Turakij reported.

* Engineering firm Civmec won about A$90 million in resources contracts, including the construction of facilities at Alcoa Corp.'s Pinjarra alumina refinery in Western Australia, The West Australian reported.

* Ukrainian producers may increase billet shipments to Egypt in response to to its anti-dumping duties on rebar imports, Metal Bulletin reported, citing sources.

SPECIALTY

* A process was initiated to sell surplus underground and surface mining equipment from diamond major De Beers SA's suspended Snap Lake mine in Canada's Northwest Territories, Mining Weekly reported. Major assets are offered by negotiated sale from June 7 to July 31, with the remaining assets slated to be auctioned during the week of Aug. 1.

* Rio Tinto unveiled a A$1.8 million coin trilogy boasting three colored diamonds recovered from the company's Argyle mine in Western Australia at the Perth Mint.

* Lithium Americas Corp. closed a US$172 million funding deal with Jiangxi Ganfeng Lithium Co. Ltd.'s GFL International Co. Ltd. unit, making the Chinese firm the largest Lithium Americas shareholder with a 19.9% stake.

* The Australian Securities and Investments Commission, or ASIC, is requesting Leadenhall Corporate Advisory Pty. Ltd. to retract its statements on the takeover bid by Lithium Australia NL of Lepidico Ltd., the Australian Government Takeovers Panel said. The ASIC alleges that Leadenhall does not have objectively reasonable grounds to provide an opinion on the takeover offer and is not an independent expert.

* Miners are eyeing to exploit the lithium resource in Czech Republic and could start mining in two years, with global demand anticipated to rise three-fold to 535,000 tonnes of lithium carbonate equivalent by 2025 from 2015, Reuters reported.

* Nevada Sunrise Gold Corp. and Advantage Lithium Corp. agreed to acquire a 100% interest in the Triton lithium property in Nevada's Esmeralda County.

INDUSTRY NEWS

* Minister for Resources and Northern Australia Minister Matt Canavan criticized the West Australian government's implementing of area-wide mining bans while appealing for a greater share of GST revenues from the Commonwealth. He added there will be areas where mining is inappropriate but it should be considered on a case-to-case basis, The West Australian reported.

* According to South Africa Chamber of Mines chief economist Henk Langenhoven, the positive contribution of the mining sector to GDP during the first quarter "masks the current precarious position of the South African mining sector." Despite production growing by 12.8% in the period, Langenhoven said there are concerning trends within the sector, Mining Weekly wrote.

* The world's top 40 miners by market capitalization posted improvements with bolstered balance sheets and a return to profitability in 2016, but the operating environment remains challenging, Mining Weekly wrote, citing PwC's Mine 2017 report.

* Following criticism by mining companies and Peru's President Pedro Pablo Kuczynski, the country adopted new and more flexible air quality standards, Reuters reported.

* Over 60 countries are set to sign a deal in Paris aimed at cracking down on tax avoidance by multinational companies, the Financial Times and Bloomberg News reported.

* Dean Smith, a senator for Western Australia, told delegates at the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies Convention in Perth that Australia's current native title process is inefficient and leads to lengthy delays and higher costs for explorers.

* China's Foreign Ministry said Zambian authorities released the 31 Chinese nationals who had been detained for illegal mining in the African country, Reuters reported. Zambia's immigration chief said the Chinese would be deported for violating the law.

* The East Kalimantan province administration of Indonesia will revoke 809 mining licenses which contracts have matured, Bisnis Indonesia reported. There are currently 1,404 mining licenses in the region.

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