Hudbay Minerals in talks to acquire Mantos Copper
Hudbay Minerals Inc. entered discussions to acquire Mantos Copper SA, Bloomberg News reported, citing people familiar with the matter. Mantos can generate as much as US$780 million in a sale, two of the sources told Bloomberg. Meanwhile, Canadian private equity firm Waterton Global Resource Management, one of Hudbay's largest shareholders, called for a moratorium on any mergers and acquisitions.
Kirkland Lake Gold to continue cheap deal hunt, chairman says
Kirkland Lake Gold Ltd. Chairman Eric Sprott said he will continue to look for out-of-favor companies and management teams that would come cheap for merger and investment opportunities, even if such moves get heavy criticism as they have in the past. Sprott said in his keynote address to the Precious Metals Investment Symposium in Perth, Australia, that it was the case in one of his first investments when he got into gold, when it was about US$250 per ounce, by investing in Goldcorp Inc. with its Red Lake mine.
Jiangxi's crackdown on illegal rare earth mining seen boosting prices
The Chinese province of Jiangxi launched a four-month crackdown on illegal rare earth mining in September, a move market watchers believe will contribute to boosting the price of rare earth and the number of authorized producers. The latest crackdown is expected to impact about 5,000 tonnes of production, or about 10% of neodymium and praseodymium supply in the industry, which may lead to an increase of between 5% and 25% for neodymium and praseodymium prices by year-end as stockpiles are depleted, CLSA resources analyst Dylan Kelly told S&P Global Market Intelligence.
* U.S.-based exploration and mining company CENTAR Ltd. will sign contracts with Afghanistan to develop two sites with potentially significant copper and gold deposits. The projects could generate a combined economic impact of about US$1 billion and create nearly 13,000 jobs.
* Aurania Resources Ltd.'s shares jumped more than 9% after it announced key copper discoveries at its Lost Cities-Cutucu project in Ecuador.
* Tiger Resources Ltd. signed a second deed of forbearance, under which its senior lenders have agreed to waive repayments on their existing secured debt facilities until Oct. 31, 2019, enabling the company to implement an updated life-of-mine plan for its Kipoi copper mine in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. The initial deed of forbearance was scheduled to conclude Oct. 24. The company remains in voluntary suspension from trading on the ASX as it continues to restructure and improve operational and financial performance.
* Margaux Resources Ltd. terminated its agreement to acquire Apex Resources Inc.'s Jersey-Emerald property in British Columbia.
* New Century Resources Ltd. will begin shipping zinc concentrate produced at its Century zinc mine in Queensland, Australia, in late October, after the successful refurbishment of its transshipment vessel.
* Nusantara Resources Ltd. Managing Director Mike Spreadborough dismissed market concerns that it would struggle to fund its now development-ready Awak Mas open-pit gold project in South Sulawesi due to negative perceptions around Indonesia, saying Australians are notorious for misunderstanding their nearest northern neighbor.
* The president of South Africa's Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union, Joseph Mathunjwa, sharply criticized mining companies, particularly the platinum industry, over plans to cut thousands of jobs. Calling on the government to intervene, he said, "Revoke licenses, give them to the juniors and give jobs to the people. Take away the license and give it to stakeholders that actually seek to employ, give it to other potential miners." Lonmin PLC and Impala Platinum Holdings Ltd. recently announced employee layoffs that will collectively see about 20,000 jobs axed.
* SolGold PLC said it is set to complete further drilling of 32,000 meters at Alpala deposit within its Cascabel project in northern Ecuador in 2018 and expects to complete an updated mineral resource estimate in December.
* Centamin PLC's third-quarter total gold production at its Sukari gold mine in Egypt fell 25% yearly to 117,720 ounces but represented a 27% increase from second-quarter output of 92,803 ounces due to month-on-month improvements in the open pit and underground operations.
* Resolute Mining Ltd. hedged 35,000 ounces of gold at an average price of A$1,728 per ounce between June 2019 and December 2019, which is at a premium to Resolute's budgeted gold price of A$1,700 per ounce for its Ravenswood gold mine in Queensland, Australia.
* Evolution Mining Ltd. received regulatory approval from the New South Wales Department of Planning and Environment to increase the plant processing rate at its Cowal gold mine by 31% to 9.8 million tonnes per annum.
* Alacer Gold Corp., which owns 80% of the Çöpler gold mine in Turkey, expects to meet the lower end of its production guidance this year of between 160,000 and 230,000 ounces of gold. The company produced 26,160 ounces of gold in the third quarter, bringing its total output for the first three quarters to 89,233 ounces of gold.
* Almaden Minerals Ltd. said a feasibility study for the Ixtaca gold project in Puebla, Mexico, is near completion and is anticipated this year.
* Doray Minerals Ltd. signed a binding agreement to divest its Andy Well gold project in Western Australia to a Galane Gold Ltd. unit for A$10 million in cash and shares. Galane also secured the right to earn-in to the nearby Gnaweeda gold project through staged expenditure commitments.
* Searchlight Minerals Corp. secured an option from privately held Diamond Projects Inc. to acquire four claims in Saskatchewan as well as a right of first refusal on additional claims in the area. The new claims are near the company's Bootleg Lake gold project.
* The Western Australian government ruled out the possible purchase of two major gold specimens from RNC Minerals' Beta Hunt mine, despite calls to keep them for their significance in the state's mining heritage, The West Australian reported.
* Vitol Group and Trafigura Group Ltd. will bid for South Africa's Optimum Coal Holdings Ltd, which is under bankruptcy protection, Bloomberg reported. The due diligence period starts Oct. 8, and the bids are expected to be finalized by the end of November. According to the report, bidders are being drawn by Optimum's entitlement to ship 8 million tonnes of coal through the Richards Bay Coal Terminal, Africa's largest, where shipments are choked due to limited port capacity.
* ThyssenKrupp AG plans to keep a minority stake of about 30% in proposed company spinoff thyssenKrupp Industrials AG, which may lead to an eventual takeover bid, Reuters reported, citing Tekin Nasikkol, head of the works council at thyssenKrupp Steel Europe and a member of thyssenKrupp's supervisory board.
* A German court ruled that RWE AG will not be allowed to clear the company-owned Hambach forest for mining until a court reviews the claims from an environmental group that opposes the mining project, Reuters reported. The company said it would lose as much as €5 billion if it is unable to continue mining lignite by removing the last portion of the forest.
* Rio Tinto and Hancock Prospecting Pty. Ltd. opened the Baby Hope iron ore mine, part of the larger Hope Downs joint venture operation in Western Australia, which is expected to sustain existing capacity at the Hope Downs 1 operation. In addition, the companies agreed to invest in automating the operation's hauling and drilling processes.
* Bauxite miners in Guinea routinely displaced locals from their lands to build mines and other related infrastructure, Human Rights Watch said in a 146-page report. The report focused on China Hongqiao Group Ltd.'s Societe Miniere de Boké and the Compagnie des Bauxites de Guinee SA joint venture of Rio Tinto and Alcoa Corp.
* Polish Deputy Minister of Energy Grzegorz Tobiszowski wants coal production in the country to increase by up to 6 million tonnes by 2025 to partially replace coal imports, Puls Biznesu reported.
* The Polish government said it will place a ban on the worst-quality coal to fight smog and improve air quality, Reuters reported. The ban is effective June 30, 2020, with environmentalists criticizing the move, saying the nearly two years given to the industry showed that the government placed the industry's interests ahead of the health of its citizens.
* Australian Potash Ltd. said it will benefit from the A$35 million of funding the federal and state governments committed for upgrading a 100-kilometer section of the Great Central Road between the company's Lake Wells project and Laverton in Western Australia, which starts January 2019. Managing Director Matt Shackleton said it would allow the company to use Laverton as the hub for their operation, "avoiding the capital cost of many site-based services."
* Thai Mocambique Logistica SA's plan to develop a US$2.8 billion coal transportation project, which includes a railway line and port in Mozambique, is in jeopardy of collapsing as it has not secured commitments from coal miners that would use the line, Bloomberg News reported.
* Yara International ASA consolidated the ownership of Galvani Indústria Comércio e Serviços SA for US$70 million in cash over three years, a conditional future payment related to project success, and the transfer of certain assets to the Galvani family. Yara Brazil will wholly own the industrial unit in Paulínia with integrated single super phosphate production and a fertilizer bulk blend facility, and the Serra do Salitre project, with an annual production capacity of about 1.2 million tonnes of phosphate ore and 1.5 million tonnes of finished fertilizer.
* Jiangxi Ganfeng Lithium Co. Ltd. priced its Hong Kong listing at the bottom of its marketed range at HK$16.50 per share, raising US$421 million, Reuters reported, citing a source involved in the deal. The report said the company could raise up to US$448 million if an overallotment option is exercised after shares begin trading Oct. 11. Ganfeng Lithium aimed to generate up to US$676 million from the planned IPO.
* Chile's antitrust court, Tribunal de la Libre Competencia, approved an out-of-court agreement between Chilean antitrust regulator Fiscalía Nacional Económica and Tianqi Lithium Corp. over the latter's US$4.07 billion acquisition of a 24% stake in Chilean lithium producer Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile SA.
* Altura Mining Ltd. started loading 5,000 dry tonnes of high-grade lithium concentrate for its maiden shipment from Port Hedland in Western Australia to China-based off-take partner Lionergy Ltd.
* Cauldron Energy Ltd. agreed to acquire the Pippingarra and Marble Bar lithium projects in Western Australia, covering 360 square kilometers in total, from Mercury Resources Group Pty. Ltd. for 40 million shares, 40 million options, 60 million performance shares, A$500,000 in cash and a 1% net smelter royalty.
* Almonty Industries Inc. is close to securing US$73 million in project financing from KfW IPEX-Bank for developing its Sangdong tungsten mine in South Korea.
* While most delegates at the Joburg Indaba conference in Johannesburg applauded the country's new mining legislation, some concerns remain, particularly around junior mining and exploration.
* The Zambia Chamber of Mines said the increase in royalties by 1.5 percentage points and additional charges for metal exports and imports by the country would "lead to famine," Bloomberg reported. An industry lobby group said the measure would "break the back" of the economy, make investments difficult, reduce jobs and taxes and consequently strain government finances for the years ahead.
* South African President Cyril Ramaphosa vowed to create 275,000 more jobs per year, including jobs in the mining sector, as part of efforts to cut unemployment, Reuters reported.
* South African Minister of Mineral Resources Gwede Mantashe dismissed two senior officials of the Department of Mineral Resources, while seven others are being investigated over fraud charges. Mantashe has taken a strong stance against corruption since he took office earlier this year.
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