Chinese investors to fund US$10B metallurgical complex in South Africa
Chinese investors signed agreements to build a US$10 billion metallurgical complex in South Africa, with construction set to start in 2019, Reuters reported. The project will see the construction of plants with production capacities of 3 million tonnes per annum of stainless steel, 3 million tonnes per annum of ferrochrome and 500,000 tonnes per annum of silicomanganese.
Usiminas swings to loss in Q2 on forex losses
Usinas Siderúrgicas de Minas Gerais SA swung to a net loss of 19 million Brazilian reais in the second quarter, from a net income of 176 million reais a year earlier. The results were affected by a 16% depreciation of the reais against the U.S. dollar in the period. Revenue totaled 3.20 billion reais, a 24.7% increase on an annual basis, while adjusted EBITDA slipped 30.8% to 519 million reais.
Gold Road looking at Canada, US expansion after Gruyere success, CEO says
Gold Road Resources Ltd. CEO Ian Murray told S&P Global Market Intelligence that the company is looking at acquiring early stage assets in tier one jurisdictions in Canada and the U.S. as the Gruyere JV with operator Gold Fields Ltd. has given it the freedom to explore in its own right and was preferable to funding the project with bank debt.
* Mining majors BHP Billiton Group and Rio Tinto are forecast to distribute A$6.7 billion in dividends, amid bullish commodity prices, Bloomberg News reported. Coal rail network operator Aurizon Holdings Ltd. is tipped to increase its payout by 56%, while copper miner OZ Minerals Ltd. is slated to increase its dividend by 50%.
* The Indian government is planning to auction 12 mineral blocks, including eight iron ore mines, three graphite blocks in Jharkhand, and one limestone block in Andhra Pradesh within the next two months, The Press Trust of India wrote, citing an official document.
* South32 Ltd. could seek to resolve an ongoing legal battle over its Cerro Matoso nickel mine in Colombia through international arbitration, The Australian Financial Review reported. Earlier in the year, the Colombian Constitutional Court determined that waste from Cerro Matoso had led to members of the seven indigenous and Afro-Colombian communities being diagnosed with problems, and ordered the company to pay damages as well as to apply for a new operating license.
* About 85% of the 800-strong workforce at First Quantum Minerals Ltd.'s Las Cruces copper mine in Spain started a strike, demanding the payment of hazard pay for subcontractors, Mining.com reported, citing Spanish media.
* GreenBank Capital Inc. requested the TSX-V to delay the approval of Minfocus Exploration Corp.'s attempt to sell shares to insider and affiliate Francis Manns, calling the move by Minfocus' directors "irresponsible."
* Chennai Solidarity Group, a non-governmental organization, claimed that Vedanta Ltd.'s Tuticorin copper smelter in southern India's Tamil Nadu state emitted between 2 and 21 tonnes of cancer-causing arsenic into the environment every day during its operations, The Hindu reported.
* Lundin Mining Corp.'s C$1.4 billion takeover bid for Nevsun Resources Ltd. will put shareholders to the test with one key question: is it enough? Some analysts speculate that shareholders will hold out for a sweeter deal, while others expect that the offer will satisfy appetites.
* ECobalt Solutions Inc.'s two major shareholders, Australia's Regal Funds Management and hedge fund Tribeca Investment Partners, called for a change in the company's senior management or the launch of a sales process, due to concerns that the delay in the development of the Idaho cobalt project is wasting the windfall from high demand in the battery sector, Reuters reported. Separately, Jervois Mining Ltd. acquired 4.54% of eCobalt's issued share capital.
* Jiangxi Copper Co. Ltd. expects its first-half net profit to increase between 415 million Chinese yuan and 664 million yuan, or between 50% and 80%, on a yearly basis, driven by higher prices for the company's major metal products during the period.
* Petropavlovsk PLC's first-half gold production slumped 13% yearly to 201,400 ounces, due to lower grades processed and a decrease in the contribution from gold in circuit. Gold sales also fell 13% to 201,400 ounces at higher average realized gold prices of US$1,285 per ounce.
* Gold Fields CEO Nick Holland believes that its South Deep mine in South Africa can succeed, despite spending about US$2.3 billion on the mine and consistently missing production targets, Bloomberg News reported.
* Capital costs for the Gruyere joint venture between Gold Fields and Gold Road was bumped up further to A$621 million, with first gold targeted for production in the June quarter in 2019. The revised capital cost reflected an increase from the original A$507 million estimate and the revised estimate of A$532 million.
* Adam Nikitins, Brett Lord and Samuel Freeman of Ernst & Young were appointed as joint administrators of WPG Resources Ltd., as the ASX-listed gold miner could no longer meet the conditions of a previously signed term sheet with the Byrnecut Entities to complete its recapitalization process.
* A U.S. judge dismissed lawsuits against Barclays PLC and four other banks by investors alleging a multiyear silver price-fixing conspiracy, Reuters reported.
* Indian state miner National Mineral Development Corp. Ltd. won an e-auction to acquire a gold mine in the country's Andhra Pradesh state, beating out Adani Enterprises Ltd. and Vedanta, Reuters reported, citing Chairman Baijendra Kumar.
* Newmont Mining Corp. unit Newmont Tanami Pty. Ltd. elected to proceed with the proposed joint venture over Nova Minerals Ltd.'s Officer Hill gold project in Australia's Northern Territory.
* The Darasunsky gold mine in Russia's Zabaikalye region suspended work for two months due to financial problems, with a loan needed to restore its operations, Kommersant reported, citing a report by Interfax.
* Dome Gold Mines Ltd. tapped IHC Robbins to complete a definitive feasibility study for the Sigatoka iron ore project in Fiji.
* Firesteel Resources Inc. shareholders approved the company's name change to Nordic Gold Corp.
* CITIC Resources Holdings Ltd. booked an attributable net profit of HK$529.1 million, or HK$6.73 per share, in the first half, reflecting a 186% increase yearly. Revenue rose 40% to HK$2.15 billion.
* Sundance Resources Ltd. reached a binding term sheet to convert A$133 million in notes, due to mature in September 2019, into about A$58.2 million in shares and a capped production royalty.
* Rey Resources Ltd. agreed to sell the Duchess Paradise thermal coal project in Western Australia, through the sale of its subsidiary Blackfin Pty. Ltd., to Yuanrun Investment Ltd. for A$24 million.
* Vostokugol received a 50% stake in Rostec's Ogodzhinskoye coal deposit in Russia's Amur region and in the Vera port in Primorye, Kommersant reported.
* Canada Coal Inc. signed an arm's-length nonbinding letter of intent for a reverse takeover by Geberi Ltd., or Medcolcanna SAS, and subsequently exit the mining sector.
* Bathurst Resources Ltd. agreed to advance part of the C$7.5 million post exploration tranche to Jameson Resources Ltd. to advance permitting and other activities related to the completion of a bankable feasibility study for the Crown Mountain coking coal project in British Columbia.
* Sociedad de Inversiones Pampa Calichera SA, one of the companies through which businessman Julio Ponce holds his stake in Chile's Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile SA, sold US$275 million in bonds in the local market, Reuters reported. The 15-year bond had a 4.5% annual interest rate.
* Syrah Resources Ltd. slashed its full-year graphite production guidance to between 135,000 tonnes and 145,000 tonnes, from 160,000 tonnes previously. C1 cash operating costs are slated to increase to between US$430 and US$450 per tonne, from US$400 per tonne.
* Orano SA's net loss reached €205 million in the first half, widening from €154 million in the year-ago period. Revenue in the period slipped to €1.71 billion, from €1.79 billion.
* Lucapa Diamond Co. Ltd. recovered an 11.88-carat diamond from a bulk sampling program at the North zone of its 70%-owned Mothae diamond mine in Lesotho.
* Tango Mining Ltd. sold a 42.26-carat diamond recovered from run-of-mine gravel at the Oena diamond mine in South Africa for US$11,267 per carat on a tender at the Kimberley Diamond Exchange.
* Lithium Consolidated Mineral Exploration Ltd. secured seven lithium assets, covering 2,340 hectares, in Zimbabwe's Mutare Greenstone Belt.
* Wolf Minerals Ltd. increased an existing Bridge Facility to £69 million, from £65 million, and secured a standstill from senior lenders on the deferral of approximately £2.1 million in principal and interest repayments until Oct. 28.
* Core Exploration Ltd. inked a nonbinding term sheet with Shandong Ruifu Lithium Co. Ltd. for the offtake of up to 150,000 tonnes per year of lithium concentrate from the Finniss lithium project in Australia's Northern Territory. Shandong Ruifu will provide a conditional US$35 million prepayment facility, as well as secure a 10% interest in the ASX-listed explorer.
* Rift Valley Resources Ltd. began field surveys at the Longonjo rare earths project in Angola, in support of a 9,000-meter drilling program, which remains on schedule to begin before the end of August.
* Liontown Resources Ltd. outlined a maiden resource at the Cambridge deposit, part of the Toolebuc vanadium project in Queensland, Australia. The inferred resource for the deposit stood at 83.7 million tonnes grading 0.30% vanadium pentoxide, using a 0.25% cutoff grade.
* UraniumSA Ltd. will rename as Twenty Seven Co. Ltd. after receiving approval during its general meeting.
* The administration of Chile President Sebastián Piñera will submit a bill to modernize the country's Environmental Impact Assessment System, La Tercera reported. Changes in the system include an 18-month consultation process conducted by private companies before submitting the environmental impact study of a project for approval and the formalization of the agreements act that serves as the basis for any future EIA that enters the system.
* A Brazilian mining regulator established in late 2017 with an aim to accelerate regulatory process and attract foreign investment in the sector has yet to begin activities, with experts cautioning that the agency could be stalled at least through the October general elections or until 2019, Reuters wrote.
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