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Rio Tinto's Q3'19 iron ore output up 6%; NLMK's Q3'19 steel sales fall 9%


Rio Tinto ups Pilbara iron ore shipments, production in Q3'19

Rio Tinto's Pilbara iron ore shipments in the third quarter increased 5% year on year to 86.1 million tonnes, while Pilbara iron ore production increased 6% to 87.3 million tonnes. Bauxite output was up 9% to 13.8 million tonnes, but aluminum output declined 3% to 789,000 tonnes. Rio Tinto's Turquoise Hill Resources Ltd., meanwhile, reported a decrease of 27.8% year on year in copper production to 28,446 tonnes, and a decrease of 66.8% year on year in gold production to 25,607 ounces.

NLMK's Q3'19 steel sales fall 9% YOY as repairs weigh on output

Top Russian steelmaker PJSC Novolipetsk Steel's third-quarter sales fell 9% year over year to 4.02 million tonnes as output registered a second consecutive quarterly decline due to ongoing blast furnace repairs at its Lipetsk operations. Third-quarter crude steel output dropped 16% year over year to 3.73 Mt.

Newmont Goldcorp's Ahafo expansion hits commercial production

Newmont Goldcorp Corp.'s US$175 million expansion of its Ahafo gold operations in Ghana reached commercial production, with expectations that it would lower costs and boost output. Newmont expanded the Ahafo mill by 50% and estimated that gold output would climb to between 550,000 and 650,000 ounces per year on average until about 2025.


* OZ Minerals Ltd. raised its projected annual gold output to between 123,400 ounces and 136,800 ounces, from between 122,200 ounces and 135,600 ounces, as it anticipates higher output from its Antas gold operation in Brazil. The company produced 24,663 tonnes of copper and 30,346 ounces of gold in the third quarter, both down from the previous quarter.

* OceanaGold Corp. slashed its full-year gold production guidance to between 460,000 and 480,000 ounces, from between 500,000 and 550,000 ounces previously, due to a blockade disrupting operations at its Didipio gold-copper mine in the Philippines. The company's production in the third quarter totaled 107,478 ounces of gold and 2,316 tonnes of copper, compared to 138,000 ounces of gold and 4,300 tonnes of copper in the third quarter of 2018.

* Sierra Metals Inc. reported 34% year-over-year jumps in silver and copper production for the third quarter to 1.0 million ounces and 11.1 million pounds, respectively. Zinc output rose 8% on a yearly basis to 22.5 million pounds, lead output rose 65% to 10.5 million pounds, and gold output jumped 83% to 3,490 ounces.

* Horseshoe Metals Ltd. proposed to form a joint venture with Copper Mining and Metallurgy Pty Ltd. to acquire 50% interest in the license to operate the Mount Gunson copper project, and agreed to acquire Stockworks Exploration and Mining Pty Ltd.'s Glenloth gold project. Both projects are in South Australia.


* Anglo American PLC expects the mine life of its US$5 billion Quellaveco copper project in Peru to reach nearly 100 years. "This is not going to be a 30-year mine. My personal opinion is that it is going to be closer to 100 years," McCulley reportedly said in a briefing. "It will be a license to print money for a long period of time."

* Codelco is considering shutting down its Ventanas copper smelter in Chile due to pollution issues. Chilean President Sebastian Pinera plans to announce the Ventanas closure during the COP25 climate change conference in the capital, Santiago, in December, according to media reports.

* Antofagasta PLC reached a labor agreement consisting of a 36-month contract with a union of supervisors at its flagship Los Pelambres copper mine in Chile. The contract includes a 1% hike in salaries, a signing bonus of US$17,000 and loan incentives for workers.


* Evolution Mining Ltd.'s flagship Cowal gold mine in New South Wales could face production constraints by the end of the financial year if the state's drought doesn't break, The Australian reported, quoting CEO Bob Fulker. The company is working on a number of mitigation strategies for the water crisis that is threatening to disrupt the state’s mining industry, but confirmed a dry summer could threaten Cowal’s operations.

* Zijin Mining Group Co. Ltd. is aiming to double its gold production in the next five years as the company looks to build up its international presence, even though it expects to miss output targets for 2019, George Fang, executive director and senior vice president of Zijin, told delegates at LBMA's Global Precious Metals Conference in Shenzhen in the Chinese province of Guangdong.

* B2Gold Corp. has completed the sale of the El Limon and La Libertad gold mines in Nicaragua to Calibre Mining Corp. for US$100 million.

* Fortuna Silver Mines Inc. reported a 13% year-over-year dip in silver production to 1.9 million ounces for the third quarter, while gold output fell 9% to 11,436 ounces.

* Anglo Asian Mining PLC's gold equivalent production slid to 20,227 ounces in the third quarter from 24,412 ounces a year ago.

* Great Panther Mining Ltd. slashed its full-year gold equivalent production guidance to between 150,000 and 160,000 ounces from between 171,500 and 185,000 ounces, mainly due to a geotechnical issue at its Tucano gold mine in Brazil.

* RNC Minerals is targeting production of between 42,000 to 49,000 ounces of gold at an average all-in-sustaining cost of US$1,150 to US$1,250 per ounce for the second half.

* Magna Terra Minerals Inc. entered into a definitive share purchase agreement to acquire Anaconda Mining Inc. subsidiary 2647102 Ontario Inc., owner of the Great Northern and Viking gold projects in Newfoundland and Labrador, and the Cape Spencer gold project in New Brunswick.

* 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 Horizon's 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.

* Authorities in Guyana ordered Troy Resources Ltd. to halt operations at the Karouni gold mine after a worker died due to an embankment collapse at the property's Hicks 1 extension trench.

* Thomson Resources Ltd. agreed to acquire the Yalgogrin gold exploration project in central New South Wales, Australia, located 50 kilometers north of its Bygoo tin project, from private company Bacchus Resources Pty Ltd.

* 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.

* 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.

* Maya Gold & Silver Inc. started a 51,000-meter drill program at its properties in Morocco, broken down to 10,000 meters for Boumadine, 31,000 meters for Zgounder and 10,000 meters for Azegour, with a total of 11 drills.

* TMAC Resources Inc. produced 36,290 ounces of gold in the third quarter, up from the 33,100 ounces produced in the same period a year ago.

* Generation Mining Ltd. has engaged P&E Mining Consultants to undertake a preliminary economic assessment of the Marathon Deposit on its 51%-owned Marathon palladium project in Ontario, Canada. The PEA is scheduled to begin immediately and expected to be completed by the end of the year.

* Gran Colombia Gold Corp. estimated a total measured and indicated resource of 6.3 million tonnes grading 4.2 g/t gold for 860,000 ounces of gold for the Zona Alta within the Marmato gold project in Colombia. Total measured and indicated resource for the Zona Baja also within Marmato are estimated at 17.3 million tonnes grading 3.7 g/t gold, for 2 million ounces of gold. A preliminary economic assessment outlined an initial capital cost of US$269 million for the Deep Zone mining operation between 2020 and 2022.

* Northern Star Resources Ltd. has taken control of Echo Resources Ltd. with the acquisition of 59.3% of its shares.


* PJSC Magnitogorsk Iron & Steel Works, Russia's third-largest steelmaker reported a 2.3% yearly fall in output of pig iron to 2.56 million tonnes in the third quarter, while crude steel dropped 5.4% to 3.19 Mt. Finished products fared worse, slumping 7.3% to 2.79 Mt. The company warned that performance in the fourth quarter would suffer from seasonally weak business activity and a significant correction in global prices.

* South32 Ltd. is reviewing the future of its Temco manganese alloy smelter in Tasmania, with closure, mothballing or sale as the only options under consideration, The Australian reported. A confidential report reveals that the closure of the smelter would slash state energy demand by 5% to 10%, further challenging the viability of up to 10 wind farms.

* China's steel sector fragmentation is worsening as unplanned new capacity at small mills undermine government efforts to restructure and merge companies in the huge industry, Reuters reported, quoting Chinese Society for Metals President Gan Yong.

* The European Investment Bank stopped short of agreeing a strategy to limit funding for fossil fuels, a plan that would help Europe fight climate change, Bloomberg reported.


* PJSC Alrosa's revenue for the first nine months of the year, on Russian Accounting Standards, decreased 35% year on year to 119.8 billion Russian rubles due to the difficult situation the global diamond market is facing. The company's net profit decreased 42% to 42.2 billion rubles.

* Nemaska Lithium Inc. is letting go of 64 employees to help ensure optimization of current cash flow and the continuation of its Quebec-based Whabouchi lithium project, for which it is adjusting the date of implementation due to delays in finalizing financing.

* The mayor of the municipality of Fiambalá, Ms. Roxana Paulon, and the council of Fiambalá city has unanimously approved the granting of a 610-hectare land parcel within close proximity of Fiambalá city for the development of the Fiambalá Industrial Park. The grant will include a 349-hectare section of the land, which will be given to Liex SA, a wholly owned subsidiary of Neo Lithium Corp. in Argentina, for the future construction of the company's full-scale lithium carbonate plant.

* Wealth Minerals Ltd. signed a memorandum of understanding granting Rosatom subsidiary Uranium One Group an option to acquire up to 51% of its Atacama lithium project in Chile.


* Minehub Technologies Inc. completed the development of its technology platform designed to improve efficiency in trading operations and environmental and social governance compliance in mining and metals supply chain. The platform's first release offers comprehensive functionality that enables miners to capture mineral production and digital contracts with buyers, streamline the post-trade operations including document flow, financing and logistics.

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