Weekly roundup: Top mining stories, photos and videos
The short answer is yes.
Social media has become the quintessential networking tool for people, businesses and organizations alike. It has the power to connect brands to their consumers, inform audiences on current topics and trends, and engage audiences to interact and discuss opinions. Whether we like it, use it, or just don’t understand it, social media can be useful for everyone—even mining companies.
There are massive benefits to utilizing mining simulators for personnel training. This approach holds immense value for mining companies looking to enhance preparation of miners because it offers a quick and cost-effective way to significantly improve the skills and productivity of equipment operators.
South Africa is one of the top mining regions in the world. Famous for its abundance of profitable mineral resources such as gold, diamonds, coal and platinum, the country is estimated to have the world’s fifth-largest mining sector in terms of GDP value.
A report by Research and Markets forecasts the mining equipment market in the United States to grow at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 8.27 percent over the period 2015-2019.
Press release--Whitehaven Coal’s Narrabri North mine set new production records last year and subsequently ordered a second Cat® EL3000 Longwall Shearer and a second Cat BSLPF6 Stage Loader for delivery in August this year. The mine, located in the Gunnedah Basin of New South Wales, Australia, set a weekly production record of 257,000 tons in June and a new quarterly production record in the final quarter of the year.
Colorado-based Newmont Mining Corporation has signed a non-binding letter of intent to sell its Waihi gold mining operation in New Zealand to Oceana Gold Corporation for $101 million. Terms of the sale also include a $5 million contingent payment as well as a one percent net smelter royalty on a recent discovery north of Waihi’s current operation.
The world’s second largest mining company is getting back in the saddle again.
Rio Tinto indicated at a recent analyst meeting that it is ready to consider mergers and acquisitions again, said a Morgan Stanley report, but only if it can secure the right asset at the correct valuation and win investor support. With the mining sector hovering at the bottom of the cycle, the time could be now for Rio to pull the trigger.
Caterpillar (Langfang) Mining Equipment Co. has announced the completion of its first full armored face conveyor (AFC) system for longwall mining. The achievement is a "milestone in the facility’s evolution as a key mining equipment manufacturing plant for Caterpillar and the region”, which had previously only manufactured line pans for AFC systems.
The New York Times recently published an article examining Europe’s declining coal sector with haunting imagery from French photographer Pierre Gonnord. The portrait-style images tell a story of the harsh physical and mental conditions of coal mining, and the toll it takes on a person.
For the last 142 years, Atlas Copco has built a solid reputation for being a world-class provider of sustainable productivity solutions in the mining, construction and manufacturing industries. The company attributes its success to five strategic pillars: presence, innovation, service, operational excellence and people.
Copper, iron ore surge as Chinese investors unleash demand
The reopening of major industrial economies is sparking a surge across commodities markets from corn to lumber, with tin climbing above $30,000 a tonne for the first time since 2011 on Thursday.
In the wake of mounting evidence of inflation fuelled by higher raw materials prices, investors are also increasingly focused on when the U.S. Federal Reserve might start throttling back its emergency support.
Many banks say the rally has further to run, particularly for copper, which will benefit from rising investment in new energy sectors. Copper is at the highest in a decade, fueling bets it will rally further to take out the record set in February 2011. Steel demand is surging as economies chart a path back to growth just as the world’s biggest miners have been hampered by operational issues, tightening ore supply.
“The long-term prospects for metals prices are ‘too good’ and point to higher prices in the next few years,” said Commerzbank AG analyst Daniel Briesemann. “The decarbonization trends in many countries, which include switching to electric vehicles and expanding wind and solar power, are likely to generate additional demand for metals.”
Trading house Trafigura Group and several major Wall Street banks including Goldman Sachs Group Inc. and Bank of America Corp. expect copper to extend gains.
Copper rose as much as 1.6% to $10,108.50 a ton on the London Metal Exchange before trading at $10,080 as of 4:07 p.m. in London.
Benchmark spot iron ore prices rose to a record, while futures in Singapore and China climbed.
The boom comes as China’s steelmakers keep output rates above 1 billion tons a year, despite a swath of production curbs aimed at reducing carbon emissions and reining in supply. Instead, those measures have boosted steel prices and profitability at mills, allowing them to better accommodate higher iron ore costs.
Spot iron ore with 62% content hit $201.15 a ton on Thursday, according to Mysteel. Futures in Singapore jumped as much as 5.1% to $196.40 a ton, the highest since contracts were launched in 2013. In Dalian, prices closed 8.8% higher.
Erik Hedborg, Principal Analyst, Steel at CRU Group commented: “Recent production cuts in Tangshan have boosted demand for higher-quality ore and prompted mills to build iron ore inventories as their margins are on the rise. Iron ore producers are enjoying exceptionally high margins as well, around two thirds of seaborne supply only require prices of $50 /dmt to break even.”
Still, some analysts including Commerzbank’s Briesemann expect a short-term correction as metals become detached from fundamentals. There’s also a risk that China could engage in policies that may cool demand for iron ore and copper.
The metals rally has boosted concerns about short-term Chinese demand. Some manufacturers and end-users have been slowing production or pushing back delivery times after costs surged, while weaker-than-expected domestic consumption has opened the arbitrage window for exports.
Tin climbed as much as 2% to $30,280 a ton on the LME, boosted by rising orders for the soldering metal. Tin is at the highest since May 2011, with a 48% gain this year making it the best performing metal on the LME.