July Newsletter – 26.07.2021
- Rerating: Top 50 mining companies double in value from covid low
- 25 Year mining licence issued for Lofdal heavy rare earths project
- Are copper prices in a supercycle? A 120-year perspective
- U.S. rising coal shipment to China shadows Australia’s mining
- South America’s left turn is bullish copper, top miner says
- How Sand Mining Devastated China’s Largest Freshwater Lake
- China targets Australia’s rare earths as tensions escalate
- GoldMining Reports New Mineral Resource Estimates for Titiribi and La Mina Projects, Colombia
Rerating: Top 50 mining companies double in value from covid low
Despite gold losing sight of last year’s record, a cooled copper price and iron ore markets that will struggle to move higher from current levels, MINING.COM’s ranking of the world’s 50 most valuable miners marched to a new high of $1.47 trillion at the end of the second quarter.
The MINING.COM Top 50* most valuable mining companies added a combined $123 billion in market capitalization over the three months to end June.
Measured from the height of the pandemic in March-April last year, the index has added a stunning $754 billion amid a debate about whether the industry is at the start of a supercycle to be measured in decades or just a post-pandemic boomlet caused by easy money, which will run its course once economic stimulus is withdrawn.
Mining, like many sectors of the industrial economy, is increasingly top-heavy and the 10 largest companies contributed more than 60% to the overall value added during the quarter.
25 Year mining licence issued for Lofdal heavy rare earths project
Namibia’s Ministry of Mines and Energy has issued a 25-year mining licence to TSX-listed Namibia Critical Metals for its Lofdal heavy rare earth dysprosium-terbium project.
The mining licence is valid through to 10 May 10 2046 and is issued to the Company’s 100% owned subsidiary, Namibia Rare Earths. Lofdal is a joint venture between the company and Japan Oil, Gas and Metals National Corporation (JOGMEC).
Lofdal is unique as one of only two primary xenotime projects under development in the world. The deposit has the potential for significant production of dysprosium and terbium, the two most valuable heavy rare earths used in high powered magnets. The project is being developed to provide a sustainable supply of heavy rare earths to Japan.
Certain conditions of the mining license are that there be a minimum 20% representation of historically disadvantaged Namibians in the management structure, including the board of the applicant holding the license and that at least 5% of the voting shares in the applicant be held by historically disadvantaged Namibians. Namibia Critical Metals has initiated the re-structuring of the management and shareholdings of its Namibian subsidiary to comply with these conditions.
Are copper prices in a supercycle? A 120-year perspective
There are multiple factors that could fuel the price of copper to record highs, including the global recovery from the COVID-19 pandemic, the U.S. trillion-dollar stimulus package, and the ongoing energy transition.
As a result of this, some global banks are predicting a supercycle for the metal, i.e., a sustained spell of abnormally strong demand growth that producers struggle to match, sparking a rally in prices that can last decades.
To put the current trend into perspective, the above graphic uses data from the U.S. Federal Reserve and consultancy Roskill to picture copper’s previous rallies over the last 120 years.
U.S. rising coal shipment to China shadows Australia’s mining
WASHINGTON, July 23 (Xinhua) — The U.S. mines have experienced a stark turnaround and boost in exports to China to the highest since 2013, Bloomberg News reported on Thursday.
According to miner Coronado Global Resources Inc., the Frontier Unity bulk vessel left the port of Newport News, Virginia with a 136,400-ton cargo bound for steelmakers in China, which was the biggest shipment of its kind from a U.S. east coast port, the report said.
“Our U.S. operations continue to successfully move met coal into China at record levels,” Gerry Spindler, Coronado’s chief executive officer, said in a statement.
He noted that the diplomatic tensions between Australia and China have reduced coal imports of the Asian nation from Australia, which may remain in place for a number of years.
South America’s left turn is bullish copper, top miner says
A hard turn to the left in South American politics may come with a silver lining for mining companies in the form of higher prices, according to Freeport-McMoRan Inc. Chief Executive Officer Richard Adkerson.
Policy uncertainty in Peru and Chile, which account for about 40% of global copper production, is supportive of future prices as producers balk on pulling the trigger on investments, he told analysts on a call Thursday. The shifting political winds are part of the challenges that mining companies face in meeting growing demand as the world transitions away from fossil fuels.
Adkerson, a 74-year-old mining veteran, plans to work with the industry in Peru to engage with the incoming government of Pedro Castillo, who has vowed to take a bigger share of the mineral windfall to fight poverty. In Chile, Freeport is holding off on a major expansion as the country debates tax hikes, drafts a new constitution and heads into a presidential election at a time when voters are pushing to address lingering inequalities.
“We really don’t know what the outcome is, bottom line,” Adkerson said. “This is going to be supportive of future copper prices.”
Copper hit a record earlier this year as economies emerged from Covid lockdowns at a time of disrupted supplies and an acceleration of a clean-energy shift that will require much more of the metal used in wiring. The prospect of surging demand comes after years of exploration and development cutbacks when prices were low and as the supply side grapples with rising social and environmental expectations and falling ore quality.
How Sand Mining Devastated China’s Largest Freshwater Lake
Sand-dredging boats near an area cleared for sand mining on Poyang Lake, Jiangxi province, December 2019. Photo: Reuters/Aly Song
Over two decades, dredging ships have sucked massive amounts of sand from the bed and shores of Poyang Lake in the eastern Chinese province of Jiangxi, drastically altering the ability of its ecosystem to function.
Decades of mass urbanisation in China have fuelled demand for sand to make glass, concrete and other materials used in construction. The most desirable sand for industry comes from rivers and lakes rather than deserts and oceans. Much of the sand used to build the country’s megacities has come from Poyang, China’s largest freshwater lake.
Reuters worked with Earthrise Media, a non-profit group that analyses satellite imagery, to map changes in the lake’s shoreline since 1997, giving an indication of how much sand has been removed.
Poyang Lake is a main flood outlet for the Yangtze River, which overflows during summer and can cause extensive damage to crops and property. In winter, the lake’s water flows back out into the river.
Sand mining in the main river and its tributaries and lakes is believed to be responsible for the abnormally low water levels during winters over the past two decades. It also has made it harder for authorities to control the summertime water flow.
China targets Australia’s rare earths as tensions escalate
China has the power to stop every technological and electrical industry in the world and plunge the planet into the dark ages any time it wants, an expert has warned.
Even more worryingly, escalating tensions between China and the West makes it look very likely that this will happen sooner rather than later.
Dr Jeffrey Wilson, research director at the Perth USAsia Centre, said that China owns around 80 per cent of the world’s supply of critical minerals – which is a “powerful weapon”.
“Critical minerals are weird rocks basically – you’ve got them in your phone, in the (TV) antenna, in your computers. They’re used in tiny quantities,” he told news.com.au.
“China has worked out they have a weapon. This is a potentially weaponisable asset, the same way Saudi (Arabia) has petrol.”
Even though a smart phone only uses 50 micrograms of critical minerals, it wouldn’t be able to function without them.
GoldMining Reports New Mineral Resource Estimates for Titiribi and La Mina Projects, Colombia
Mr. Amir Adnani reports:
VANCOUVER, BC, July 12, 2021 /CNW/ – GoldMining Inc. (the “Company” or “GoldMining”) (TSX: GOLD) (NYSE American: GLDG) is pleased to announce the results of updated Mineral Resource estimates (“MREs”) on each of its 100% owned Titiribi Project (“Titiribi”) and its La Mina Project, both located in Antioquia, Colombia.
- Measured and Indicated Mineral Resources of 5.54 million ounces gold, and 1,061.2 million pounds of copper (434.6 million tonnes grading 0.40 g/t gold and 0.11% copper) (see Table 1);
- Inferred Mineral Resources of 3.15 million ounces gold and 212.6 million pounds of copper (241.9 million tonnes grading 0.40 g/t gold and 0.04% copper) (see Table 1);#
- Indicated Mineral Resources of 0.66 million ounces gold, 1.60 million ounces of silver and 150.5 million pounds of copper (28.2 million tonnes grading 0.73 g/t gold, 1.76 g/t silver and 0.24% copper) (see Table 2); and
- Inferred Mineral Resources of 0.29 million ounces gold, 0.77 million ounces silver and 81.2 million pounds of copper (13.6 million tonnes grading 0.65 g/t gold, 1.76 g/t silver and 0.27% copper) (see Table 2);
Global Mineral Resources
- Pursuant to the updated MREs, GoldMining’s global aggregate of Mineral Resources totals (see Table 3 for details):
- 16.24 million ounces gold equivalent in the Measured and Indicated categories; and
- 16.17 million ounces gold equivalent in the Inferred category.
Alastair Still, CEO of GoldMining, commented: “We are very pleased to announce these updated Mineral Resource estimates for Titiribi and La Mina, both of which have been estimated using contemporary metal prices and cost assumptions. With estimated gold equivalent resources of 7.88 million ounces in the Measured and Indicated category and 3.62 million ounces in the Inferred category, this estimate re-affirms Titiribi’s standing as a significant gold-copper deposit in our portfolio. At the same time, the updated estimate for La Mina provides a clearer view of the potential of the high-grade gold-copper porphyry deposits at La Cantera and the Middle Zone as we execute our previously announced preliminary economic assessments and refine plans for work programs in the second half of this year.”
The MRE disclosed herein for the Titiribi Project was prepared by Dr. Robert E. Cameron, Ph.D., MMSA 01357QP of Behre Dolbear and has an effective date of June 14, 2021.
Link for more detailed information