4th March 2015

Former Xstrata CEO poised for a comeback with X2 Resources – by Eric Reguly (Globe and Mail – March 4, 2015)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

Mick Davis, the mining boss who sold Xstrata to Glencore for $50-billion (U.S.), has reached $5.6-billion in investor capital to finance a mining investment campaign that will almost certainly turn his comeback vehicle, X2 Resources, into an operating company this year.

X2 announced the finish of its capital raising effort from a roster of international “blue chip” investors Wednesday night in London. If debt leverage is added to the figure the new company would have considerable firepower, making it capable of buying assets or operating companies valued at $15-billion to $20-billion.

The $5.6-billion includes $4-billion in committed equity capital that can be spent immediately, and US$1.6-billion that can be spent under certain conditions. A year ago, X2 announced that it had raised $3.75-billion in unconditional and conditional capital, none of which has been spent. The new figure includes the amount raised last year.

The capital comes from 20 investors, of which only two have been identified. They are Noble Group of Hong Kong, one of the world’s largest commodities trading and infrastructure companies, and TPG Capital, the private American investment firm with $65-billion in capital under management. The others are sovereign wealth funds and pension funds, several of which are Canadian. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Glencore-Xstrata PLC, X2 Resources | 0 Comments

4th March 2015

NEWS RELEASE: Inaugural De Beers Ice Road Run in Aid of First Nation Youth Suicide Prevention

CFO to run full marathon on winter ‘ice road’ to raise funds for Mushkegowuk Enrichment Fund

TORONTO, March 3, 2015 /CNW/ – Looking to generate both funds and awareness, the Chief Financial Officer of De Beers in Canada will run 42 kilometres on a northern Ontario ice road in the inaugural De Beers Ice Road Run in support of the Mushkegowuk Council’s inquiry into youth suicide in the region.

Steve Thomas will take to the road on Wednesday, March 11, 2015, departing from the De Beers Victor Mine in Ontario’s Far North, approximately 1,100 kilometres north of Toronto in the James Bay Lowlands. Thomas will cover the full marathon distance on the ice road that connects the mine to the local communities for a short period each winter.

Accompanied by a safety support vehicle, Thomas – an experienced marathon runner who has competed in several events, including Boston, Toronto, Vancouver and Ottawa – will complete the distance in stages, running for 60 minutes at a time before returning to the support vehicle for a short break from the extreme cold that occurs this time of year in the James Bay region.

Thomas said that while De Beers has been a corporate supporter of the Mushkegowuk Council and their inquiry into youth suicide, he felt he wanted to do something on a personal level. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canada Mining, Diamonds, Ontario Mining | 0 Comments

4th March 2015

PDAC 2015: Junior miners dig into new ways to tap retail investors – by John Shmuel and Peter Koven PDAC 2015: Junior miners dig into new ways to tap retail investors – by John Shmuel and Peter Koven (National Post – March 3, 2015)

The National Post is Canada’s second largest national paper.

TORONTO — For junior exploration companies, alternative financing options such as crowdfunding are starting to be taken seriously.

The halls of the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) conference here are littered with companies clinging onto their last dollars and seeing no opportunity to raise money through traditional equity issues.

So it was no surprise that a big focus of the conference on Monday was digging into the alternatives. Some of them, notably crowdfunding, have real potential. But the rules remain uncertain and they raise serious concerns that even the experts acknowledged are not yet understood.

For decades, exploration companies could count on Canadian retail investors to provide capital. Now that institutional investors have almost entirely stopped funding greenfield exploration, they need to tap into retail more than ever. But under the current securities regime, they have failed to do that in recent years. Now they need to win the retail investor back.

“This is the worst bear market in decades and the retail investor has completely left the room,” said junior mining analyst John Kaiser. He added that the sector has become “inaccessible to the retail investor.” Read the rest of this entry »

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4th March 2015

NEWS RELEASE: Working Group on Natural Resources Development Releases Its Final Report: Importance of Engaging First Nations in Canada’s Resource Future

Click here for report: http://www.naturalresourcedev.com/wp-content/uploads/2015/03/Working-Group-on-Natural-Resource-Development-Report-small.pdf

Toronto, ON – (March 9, 2015) The Working Group on Natural Resources Development, set up as an independent body by the Assembly of First Nations and Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada today released its final report, Advancing Positive, Impactful Change. The report builds on discussions with First Nations leaders, industry and experts and sets out key themes and recommendations outlining potential ways to increase First Nations participation in natural resources development projects.

In November 2014, the Working Group held two working sessions that focused on the themes of governance, environment, prosperity and finance. The report details these discussions and ideas, along with observations and recommendations for next steps that provide a foundation for further dialogue and action.

At sessions in Edmonton and Toronto, a central message that emerged is that individuals, businesses, communities and governments need to move beyond a basic duty to consult and embrace a more robust duty to engage and involve First Nations in all aspects of natural resources development. This requires the commitment and support of all levels of government. These efforts have potential to promote greater First Nations’ participation, prosperity and well-being in a way that benefits all Canadians. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining | 0 Comments

4th March 2015

Laughren, as new chair, sees great opportunities for ONTC – by Ron Grech (Timmins Daily Press – March 4, 2015)

http://www.timminspress.com/

TIMMINS – Former Timmins Mayor Tom Laughren sees a great opportunity for Ontario Northland to make better use of its assets and to generate more revenues and attract more clients.

Laughren, it was announced last week, has been nominated for appointment as chairman of the Ontario Northland Transportation Commission rail and bus service.

Laughren’s nomination, as well as the nomination of board members Steven Carmichael, Ewen Cornick, Gaeten Malette and Ila Watson, is subject to the approval of the standing committee on government agencies. “I think we’re going to go in with the goal to create an entity that is sustainable,” he said. “New direction, new customers, new clients, that’s been one of the downfalls of Ontario Northland, especially on the rail side.

“We’ve just watched Resolute (the paper mill in Iroquois Falls) close. I’m sure Resolute would have been a huge user of Ontario Northland. We’ve seen the changes at the Kidd Metallurgical site (with the Hoyle smelter closing). So we all know the importance of rail but we also have to look at new opportunities and future opportunities.” Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Mining Railway Issues, Northern Ontario/Canada Regional Media, Timmins | 0 Comments

4th March 2015

PDAC Interview: Michael Gravelle beats the drum for Ontario – (Northern Miner – March 3, 2015)

The Northern Miner, first published in 1915, during the Cobalt Silver Rush, is considered Canada’s leading authority on the mining industry.

Ontario’s Minister of Northern Development and Mines, Michael Gravelle, and Greg Rickford, Canada’s Minister of Natural Resources and Minister for the Federal Economic Development Initiative for Northern Ontario, kicked off PDAC with an announcement of a joint investment of more than $785,000 to support economic development and community access in northwestern Ontario.

The government of Canada and the province of Ontario will each invest $393,814 to enable the Webequie First Nation, in partnership with the First Nations of Eabametoong, Neskantaga, and Nibinik, to complete a study on a regional community service corridor. The study will examine the benefits of developing an all-season transportation corridor connecting First Nation communities in the area with existing roadways, in order to capitalize on opportunities related to resource development in the region, including in the Ring of Fire, 540 km northeast of Thunder Bay.

In a further announcement on the second day of the mining conference, the provincial government said it plans to renew its 2006 Mineral Development Strategy, with fresh input from stakeholders. Over the next three months, the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines will host workshops across Ontario to provide industry, Aboriginal communities, and other community partners the opportunity to respond to the proposed themes for a renewed MDS and set priorities to strengthen the sector.

The Northern Miner caught up with Gravelle on the sidelines of the conference. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Ontario Mining, Ontario's Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery | 0 Comments

4th March 2015

Mushkegowuk rail plan still on despite road study – by Len Gillis (Timmins Times – March 3, 2015)

http://www.timminstimes.com/

The federal and provincial governments announced on the weekend that more than three-quarters of a million dollars will be spent on a study for a new road in Northern Ontario.

The announcement was made Sunday at the annual Prospector’s and Developers Convention (PDAC) in Toronto. Federal Natural Resources minister Greg Rickford and provincial Northern Development and Mines minister Michael Gravelle said their governments are contributing 50-50 to a $785,000 expenditure through the FedNor Northern Ontario Development Program.

The money is for a joint venture to study the idea of building a road into the lucrative Ring Of Fire mining prospect.

“The study will examine the benefits of developing an all-season transportation corridor connecting First Nation communities in the area with existing roadways, enabling them to capitalize on opportunities related to resource development in the region,” said the joint news release.

Reaction to the announcement is generally good, but there doesn’t appear to be a lot of overwhelming excitement, based on comments from from at least two Northern leaders. “The word I am hearing is, there’s the announcement and some people are saying, what, another study?” said Lawrence Martin, the Grand Chief of the Mushkegowuk Council. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Aboriginal and Inuit Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Mining Railway Issues, Ontario Mining, Ontario's Ring of Fire Mineral Discovery | 0 Comments

4th March 2015

PDAC 2015: Lukas Lundin sets lofty goals as he re-enters gold game – by Tommy Humphreys (National Post – March 3, 2015)

The National Post is Canada’s second largest national paper.

Legendary mining and oil tycoon Lukas Lundin has never been modest about his goals. So his latest targets probably shouldn’t surprise anyone, as eye-opening as they might sound.

“I want Lundin Mining up to $10-billion [market capitalization]. I want Lundin Petroleum up to $10-billion. And I want Lundin Gold [at] $5-billion,” the Swedish entrepreneur said in an interview in his office, which overlooks the city of Vancouver and the North Shore Mountains beyond.

On his bookshelf sits an unusual marble pig with a red dash up its spine. It is a gift from an investment banker that commemorates Mr. Lundin’s US$7.1-billion sale of Red Back Mining Inc. to Kinross Gold Corp. in 2010. That was probably the most one-sided deal in the history of the gold business, and Mr. Lundin, as he usually does, came out on the winning end.

Now the Lundin Group of Companies is back in the gold game. It paid US$240 million – including US$100 million from Mr. Lundin’s own family – to Kinross for the Fruta del Norte (FDN) project in Ecuador last year, creating Lundin Gold Inc. Kinross paid US$1.2 billion for FDN in 2008, but decided not to build the mine after the government imposed a punitive windfall profits tax.

FDN is one of the largest and richest undeveloped gold projects in the world. It’s capable of producing 500,000 to 600,000 ounces of gold per year at low cash costs, Mr. Lundin said. But he has to overcome the political problems in Ecuador that felled Kinross. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles | 0 Comments

3rd March 2015

UPDATE 2-Trading cushions Glencore from commodity price plunge – by Silvia Antonioli (Reuters India – March 3, 2015)

http://in.reuters.com/

LONDON, March 3 (Reuters) – A 15 percent rise in earnings at Glencore’s trading division partially offset a hit last year from the slide in commodity prices, leaving the mining company’s core profit just two percent lower.

Swiss-based Glencore makes about a quarter of its earnings from commodities trading, which differentiates it from mining rivals and has allowed it to withstand a steep fall in oil and metal prices slightly better than its peers.

Glencore posted 2014 adjusted earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation (EBITDA) of $12.8 billion, in line with expectations. Earnings at its trading division rose to $3.0 while mining earnings fell 7 percent to $9.8 billion.

The company has also been helped by its relatively small exposure to iron ore, the first major commodity to start a violent downward spiral two years ago.

Still, the more widespread slide in oil and metals prices last year forced Glencore to take a $1.1 billion accounting hit, with about half stemming from a pause in the development of iron ore projects it inherited from Xstrata in 2013.

The rest of the charge was largely due to an oil exploration project in Cameroon and lower platinum prices. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Glencore-Xstrata PLC, International Media Resource Articles | 0 Comments

3rd March 2015

Small miners search for capital as private-equity mining deals slip – by Rachelle Younglai (Globe and Mail – March 3, 2015)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

Private-equity interest in mining companies has waned, leaving a handful of players to pick through the debris.

For two years, private equity was all the rage as the mining industry got hit hard by the plummeting commodity prices. Traditional private-equity firms were looking for distressed assets. Bankers and others tried to establish private-equity shops.

But today, many of the big funds have not made mining investments and others have simply given up.

“They thought they could be passive financial investors, raise some capital, put it in some companies. But it is very difficult to find something where you can actually make money,” said Isser Elishis, chief investment officer with Waterton Global Resource Management.

Globally, private-equity mining deals have slipped. Last year, the private pools of capital were involved in 66 deals worth $5-billion, compared with 83 transactions worth $6.7-billion in 2010, according to data compiled by Thomson Reuters. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles | 0 Comments

3rd March 2015

Greece revokes Eldorado Gold Corp’s authorization for Skouries mining project – by Peter Koven (National Post – March 3, 2015)

The National Post is Canada’s second largest national paper.

Greece’s leftist government has taken steps to block Eldorado Gold Corp.’s key mine in the region, prompting a furious response from the Canadian miner and its employees while leaving the project’s future in question.

Investors have been watching Eldorado with concern ever since the far-left Syriza government was elected in late January. Just a few days after the election, Greece’s new energy minister Panagiotis Lafazanis said the government is ”absolutely against” to the Skouries mine, which is currently under construction. “We will examine our next moves on it,” he warned at the time.

So it was no surprise on Monday when Eldorado announced the government revoked a permit required for the Skouries processing plant. What was surprising was Eldorado’s angry public response, which was uncharacteristic of the company.

“The recent decision of the Ministry of Energy — if not reversed in a timely manner — may force Eldorado to reconsider its investment plans for Greece,” chief executive Paul Wright said in a statement. Eldorado also said the move has “no legal basis.”

The government’s decision prompted an even angrier response from union workers at the project. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles, Europe Mining, Gold and Silver | 0 Comments

3rd March 2015

A fickle exploration ranking [Fraser Institute Mining Survey] – by Kip Keen (Mineweb.com – March 2, 2015)

http://www.mineweb.com/

The oddities that come in ranking the world’s best places to explore. Strange things happen when you ask exploration company management a hypothetical question about the juiciest regions for discovery.

Every year the Fraser Institute sends out a questionnaire to mining types. Most of them are exploration management (as self-reported.) This year it sent out a little over 4,000 questionnaires and it got back responses from just over 10% of that score.

One of the topics the Fraser Institute addresses, among many, is a question of fantasy. To paraphrase: Based on what you’re familiar with, what areas hold awesome potential for discovery assuming there are no impediments to exploration, like nasty dictators, pushy anti-miners and prohibitive regulation.

The idea, the Fraser Institute says, is to poll what its respondents think are the best regions in terms of raw exploration potential.

It gets weird in two ways. It seems the potential of the world’s rocks, to the survey’s respondents, changes very rapidly, as year to year the best of rankings bounce erratically. And each year the ranking makes for odd juxtaposition.

Let’s take this year’s survey. It doesn’t start out too controversially. Yukon tops it. Alaska comes next. Nevada thereafter. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles | 0 Comments

3rd March 2015

NEWS RELEASE: Ivanhoe Mines’ Exploration Team Receives the 2015 Thayer Lindsley International Discovery Award for the Kamoa Copper Deposit in the Democratic Republic of Congo

 Robert Friedland (right) presenting the Thayer Lindsley Award to two members of the Kamoa Discovery Team - Dr. David Broughton (left) and Thomas Rogers (centre).


Robert Friedland (right) presenting the Thayer Lindsley Award to two members of the Kamoa Discovery Team – Dr. David Broughton (left) and Thomas Rogers (centre).

Award Medals Presented at the Annual Conference of the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada

TORONTO, ONTARIO–(Marketwired – March 3, 2015) – Robert Friedland, Executive Chairman of Ivanhoe Mines (TSX:IVN), and Lars-Eric Johansson, Chief Executive Officer, announced today that members of the Ivanhoe Mines exploration team have received the prestigious Thayer Lindsley Award from the Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) for the discovery of the Kamoa Copper Deposit in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

The Thayer Lindsley International Discovery Award, which is presented annually by the PDAC, recognizes an individual or a team of explorationists credited with a recent significant mineral discovery or series of discoveries anywhere in the world.

The award honours the memory of Thayer Lindsley, who was inducted into the Canadian Mining Hall of Fame in 1989 and was one of the most accomplished mine finders of the past century. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Africa Mining, Canada Mining, Copper | 0 Comments

3rd March 2015

Mining sector “in worst bear market in decades” – by Lisa Wright (Toronto Star – March 3, 2015)

The Toronto Star has the largest circulation in Canada. The paper has an enormous impact on federal and Ontario politics as well as shaping public opinion.

Crowdfunding one solution, prospectors’ conference told

Junior miners must seek new ways to find investors — including crowdfunding — if they want to survive the current industry slump, analysts told a prospectors’ convention.

A turnaround in metals prices isn’t expected until about 2017, but “that’s an eternity for the juniors,” warned longtime analyst and industry observer John Kaiser on Monday at the Prospectors and Developers Association conference in Toronto.

“We are now in the worst bear market in decades,” noted Kaiser, who is based in San Francisco and has covered the topsy-turvy sector since 1983.

He said the ongoing bear market has been dismissed as a cyclical downturn that will eventually reverse, as it always has. For instance the five-year downturn in the mining industry after the Bre-X gold salting scandal in 1997 was followed by a ‘super cycle’ of 13 years of sky-high metals prices and record share prices.

“While true for majors (big mining companies) whose fortunes hinge on the commodity cycle, it may not be true for juniors,” he said. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles | 0 Comments

2nd March 2015

Mining industry, hungry for deals and cash, meets in Toronto – by Susan Taylor and Nicole Mordant (Reuters Canada – March 1, 2015)

http://ca.reuters.com/

TORONTO (Reuters) – A four-year mining-industry downturn has left big gold producers hungry to buy reserves they haven’t had the money to find themselves, and impoverished small miners eager to cash out, setting up the ingredients for mergers and acquisitions revival in 2015.

Mining veterans say that scenario is likely to come into play at the industry’s largest annual event, the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada convention in Toronto, March 1-4, where more than 20,000 participants are expected.

Many small explorers and developers, cash-strapped after years of austerity, may be looking to attract buyers at the convention.

Big gold miners, meanwhile, have been hit by weak commodity prices that have forced them to slash exploration budgets, slowing new discoveries, and contributing to a drop in in-the-ground reserves at the world’s five biggest bullion producers.

Their reserves, cumulatively, fell 11 percent to 317 million ounces in 2014, company data show. If reserves continue shrinking, production will eventually follow.

“The big mining companies still know they have to buy projects … If you don’t buy new assets you just watch your business decline,” said John Gravelle, global mining leader at consultancy PwC. Read the rest of this entry »

posted in Canada Mining, Canadian Media Resource Articles | 0 Comments

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