Global mining code a benchmark for the industry, says lead consultant
Last month saw the launch of a model mining code from the World Initiative of Mining Lawyers (WIOML), designed to influence and guide mining countries in attracting investment and securing fair benefits from mineral exploitation within their borders.
The code has been welcomed by Andrew van Zyl, partner and principal consultant engineers and scientists, SRK Consulting. Van Zyl was speaking at the WIOML conference in France, where the code was officially launched.
“The code provides a good starting point for countries without a code in place yet, it also provides a useful benchmark against which a country could compare its existing code.” He said.
Applying a clear and reasonable mining code will go a long way to attracting investors, said Van Zyl, and should be augmented by a culture of constructive collaboration among mining stakeholders – which could gain traction while the global economy waits for commodity prices to improve.
“There is little appetite or ability right now to raise the billions of dollars needed to develop large mining projects,” he said.
“But there is the time to invest much smaller amounts in the vital but neglected process of forging agreement and trust between miners, governments, communities, NGOs and other interested parties.”
Mining Global has spoken with Al Gourley, Head parent of Mining at Fasken Martineau and Chairman & Director of the World Initiative of Mining Lawyers. Look out in the coming months for the interview and editorial exploring the mining code, it’s impact on the industry and how WIMOL hopes to influence a culture of change across the global industry.
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Lynas revenue jumps 21% as rare earth prices jump
Australian miner Lynas Rare Earths posted a 20.6% rise in revenue in the March quarter as selling prices for the key metals it mines hit record highs amid strong demand, particularly for neodymium and praseodymium (NdPr).
NdPr is used in magnets for electric vehicles and windfarms, in consumer goods like smartphones, and in military equipment such as jet engines and missile guidance systems.
The company said it plans to maintain production at 75% however, as it seeks to continue to meet covid-19 safety protocols and grapples with shipping difficulties. Shares in Lynas fell 6.1% after the results.
“They have faced a few logistics issues, and it would be good to know when they are going to start lifting their utilisation rates a bit,” said portfolio manager Andy Forster of Argo Investments in Sydney.
“Pricing has been pretty strong although it may have peeled back a bit recently. I still think the medium, long-term outlook is pretty good for their suite of products.”
Lynas post ed revenue of A$110mn ($85.37mn) for the three months to the end of March, up from A$91.2mn a year earlier as prices soared.
It said its full product range garnered average selling prices of A$35.5/kg during the March quarter, up from $23.7 in the first half of the financial year. “While the persistence of the covid crisis, especially in Europe, calls for careful forecasts for our business ahead, we see the rare earth market recovering very quickly,” said Lynas, the world’s largest rare earths producer outside China.
Freight demand has spiked during the pandemic, while the blockage of the Suez Canal in March delayed a shipment to April.
Lynas’ output of 4,463 tonnes of rare earth oxide (REO) during the quarter was marginally lower than 4,465 tonnes from a year earlier.