Archive | Gold and Silver

This Miner’s $190 Billion Tax Bill Would Take Centuries to Pay – by Thomas Biesheuvel (Bloomberg News – July 24, 2017)

Tanzania sent Acacia Mining Plc a tax bill equal to almost two centuries worth of the gold producer’s revenue.

The government issued the company, which mines all of its gold in the African country, with a $40 billion tax bill and another $150 billion in interest and penalties, Acacia said in a statement Monday. The charge covers alleged under-declared export revenues from the Bulyanhulu and Buzwagi mines over periods between 2000 and 2017.

Acacia reiterated that it has fully declared all revenues. The stock sank as much as 17 percent on Tuesday to the lowest since December 2013. In just three days, the company has lost 42 percent of its value.

The giant tax bill is the latest twist in an increasingly ugly spat between the government and Acacia. Continue Reading →

Würth Canada and Missanabie Cree First Nation sign joint venture agreement – by Rob O’Flanagan (Northern Ontario Business – July 21, 2017)

The two parties will work together to supply northern Ontario gold mines on Missanabie Cree territory

Würth Canada, headquartered in Guelph, has signed an important agreement with the northern Ontario community of Missanabie Cree First Nation. The First Nation, with traditional lands located about 400 kilometres north of Sault Ste. Marie, has agreements with two private mining companies with operations on those lands.

Chief Jason Gauthier said during an agreement signing event Thursday at Würth’s 345 Hanlon Creek Boulevard location, that the First Nation has agreements to provide services and personnel on some aspects of those mining operations. To meet those obligations, Missanabie Cree has partnered with Würth as a supplier.

The signing included a prayer of thanksgiving, and a gift of tobacco to the Indigenous visitors. Würth is an international company with 70,000 employees worldwide. In 2013, the company had $14 billion in sales. Its Canadian arm was founded in 1971. Continue Reading →

Sage Gold puts the pieces in place for 2018 production – by Ian Ross (Northern Ontario Business – July 25, 2017)

Picking up the Clavos Mine near Timmins has been about as turn-key as a mining project gets for Sage Gold. Things have fallen nicely into place for the Toronto developer as the company transitions from being a pure exploration player to becoming a mine operator in one of the world’s richest gold camps by early next year.

The Clavos Gold Project, 32 kilometres northeast of the city, was one of the few fully permitted mines in Canada that was sitting in mothballs in the East Timmins gold camp. Sage completed its phased-in acquisition of the former St. Andrew Goldfields mine last fall and had the provincial government reactivate the mine’s production permit.

With a private equity partner on its side, the company raised $11.5 million last November, and has raised a few million more since then. A good chunk is devoted to refurbishing the portal-and-ramp mine with the aim of restarting commercial production by the second quarter of 2018. Continue Reading →

Hitting the gold mine: Ottawa NGO imports first legal gold from the Congo – by Elise von Scheel (CBC News Ottawa – July 24, 2017)

Almost all of the Congo’s gold is illegally traded on the black market

A little over a month ago, Joanne Lebert boarded a plane to make the long flight from the Democratic Republic of the Congo to Toronto. She was helping transport a tiny package that could change the way gold from the Congo is traded internationally.

Lebert, executive director of Partnership Africa Canada, was carrying 238 grams of raw gold purchased from mines near the remote town of Mambasa. According to PAC, Lebert’s import was one of the first legal gold purchases from the African nation.

Partnership Africa Canada is an Ottawa-based NGO that is spearheading efforts to ethically import gold from the Congo to Canada. They sent their first shipment to a jewelry store in Toronto that makes fair trade pieces. An estimated $28 billion in unrefined gold lies deep beneath the soil in the eastern regions of the Congo, but 98 per cent of it leaves the country illegally, according to the International Peace Information Service. Continue Reading →

Porcupine camp remains mineral rich – by Thomas Perry (Timmins Daily Press – June 13, 2016)

Please note this article is over a year old but still very relevant. – Stan Sudol

The Porcupine camp may be more than 100 years old, but that doesn’t mean geologists
have unlocked all its secrets.“There is also a new model in the camp,” van Hees said.

TIMMINS – The Porcupine camp has been producing gold for more than 100 years and there is no indication that is about to change anytime soon. Ed van Hees, Regional Resident Geologist for the Timmins District with the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines, points out between Timmins and Kirkland Lake, there are currently 16 operating mines and 13 of those are gold deposits.

“In terms of gold deposits, there are now, I think, 12 deposits that have produced 10 million ounces and three of them are in Timmins — the Holllinger, McIntyre and Dome mines,” he said.

The boundaries of the Porcupine camp are open to interpretation, depending on who you are talking to, but from van Hees’ perspective it extends 30 or 40 kilometres beyond (Tahoe Resources/Lake Shore Gold’s) Timmins West mine and stretches through the Hollinger, Dome McIntyre and 20 to 30 kilometres to the east of the (Glencore Kidd operations) smelter. Continue Reading →

[Yukon Mining] Junior shakeup in the White Gold District – by Andrew Topf ( – July 23, 2017)

The White Gold District in the Canadian Yukon territory is continuing to see movement, this time among junior gold explorers hoping to grab a piece of the action.

Last week Taku Gold (TSXV:TAK) said it has picked up four White Gold properties from Golden Predator Mining (TSXV:GPY), including one from Golden Predator’s subsidiary, Golden Predator Exploration. The four properties are 40 Mile, Korat, Chopin and Lucky Joe.

According to Taku Gold the highlight of the all-share deal is the acquisition of the Lucky Joe prospect, since it butts up against Taku’s Rosebute project to the north. The company adds that it will be able to capitalize on Goldcorp (NYSE:GG, TSX:G) recently building a road to access the Coffee gold project the gold major acquired from Kaminak Gold: Continue Reading →

Acacia Mining pressed over deaths in Tanzania – by David Pilling (Financial Times – July 23, 2017)

Acacia Mining, which is in the midst of a multibillion-dollar dispute with the Tanzanian government over tax and royalties, is facing renewed pressure to address long-running alleged human rights violations at one of its mines in the east African country.

Since 2014, at least 22 people have been killed and 69 injured, many after being shot at or near Acacia’s North Mara gold mine, according to Rights and Accountability in Development, a UK charity, which accuses the London-listed miner of taking a “militarised” approach to guarding its assets in one of Tanzania’s poorest regions.

It was “unfathomable” that Acacia was not addressing human rights concerns as part of high-level discussions with the government to resolve a separate tax dispute, Anneke Van Woudenberg, executive director of RAID, said. Continue Reading →

Why IAMGOLD could be the next gold major: CEO Steve Letwin interview – by Jonathan Roth (CEO.CA – July 24, 2017)

Can IAMGOLD make the move from a mid-tier gold producer to a major? The company’s CEO sure thinks so. In an expansive interview recently taped in Nelson, British Columbia, Stephen Letwin touches on everything from IAMGOLD’s recent upward surge and why gold majors are facing serious challenges to his own upbringing and what he’s learned about leadership. For investors in the gold space, there is a lot of red meat.

Originally a senior executive in the oil business, Letwin was headhunted for the IAMGOLD chief executive position in 2010. His family and friends were initially puzzled by his decision to leave an oil career that, by his own admission, had made him “a lot of money.”

“I got a lot of pushback from a lot of friends who said, ‘Why would you take that risk?’” says Letwin. “I said, ‘I’ve got about 10 to 15 years to do something, I’d like to go and try that.’ Continue Reading →

Exclusive: Tanzania questions Acacia Mining staff in row with government (Reuters U.S. – July 21, 2017)

LONDON (Reuters) – Tanzania detained and questioned two senior local Acacia Mining staff at an airport this week in a dispute with the government, two sources said on Friday, and the company said it was having trouble renewing work permits for foreign staff.

Chief Executive Brad Gordon denied a Reuters report that foreign staff were asked to leave by the government due to a dispute over mining licenses and accusations of tax evasion.

He said its local employees had been interviewed by Tanzanian “government agencies” but did not confirm detentions. “We were having difficulty getting work permits renewed. But no foreign nationals have been asked to leave the country. So there may be some confusion in that. That’s a normal part of business,” Gordon told Reuters. Continue Reading →

Top 10 Canadian-based gold developers – by John Cumming (Northern Miner – July 20, 2017)

Global mining news

Gold exploration and development is enjoying a boom again, and Canadian juniors are leading project advancement at home and abroad.

The following are the top-10, Canadian-headquartered gold companies that are developing projects but not yet in commercial production, ranked according to market capitalization in mid-July. Gold royalty and streaming companies are not included in the list.

1. Novagold Resources – $1.9 billion market capitalization

Vancouver-based Novagold Resources (TSX: NG; NYSE-MKT: NG) is a familiar name in the gold sector, especially amongst retail investors. Novagold’s flagship project is its half interest in the large but remote Donlin Gold project in southwestern Alaska, which is a fifty-fifty joint venture with Barrick Gold (TSX: ABX; NYSE: ABX). Continue Reading →

Indonesia’s Neverending Freeport-McMoRan Saga – by Nithin Coca (The Diplomat – July 20, 2017)

The 50-year relationship between Indonesia and its largest taxpayer comes under scrutiny.

The drama started nearly two years ago, when Setya Novanto, the speaker of the Indonesian Parliament, was forced to resign after being caught trying to extort U.S. mining giant Freeport McMoRan, which was looking to extend its contract in Indonesia.

Things heated up again earlier this year, when, alongside nationalist-tinged protests, it looked like Freeport was on its way out. Then, unexpectedly, a deal seemed to be reached. It was too good to be true, and again, today, the situation is unsure. After years of on-again, off-again negotiations between the Indonesian government and its largest taxpayer and longtime partner, things look stuck right where they started, with both sides intransigent and blaming the other.

The relationship between Freeport, Indonesia, and the restive West Papua region where most of Freeport’s mines are located gives a glimpse into the development policies of Southeast Asia’s biggest country, and the still-ongoing challenge of moving on from the brutal legacy of resource extraction and militarism of the Suharto era. Continue Reading →

Game changer: NIRB now says yes to Nunavut’s Back River mine – by Lisa Gregoire (Nunatsiaq News – July 19, 2017)

“Sabina’s revised plans now constitute some of the most protective caribou protection measures ever developed for the Arctic”

It turns out that now is a good time to go ahead with Sabina’s Back River gold mine project. After saying “no” to the multi-million dollar Kitikmeot project in June 2016, and being told by a federal minister that “no” was the wrong answer, the Nunavut Impact Review Board “has concluded that the Back River Gold Mine Project Proposal may proceed at this time.”

However, the NIRB says this was not a foregone conclusion.

“For those who may have expressed concern that the Board’s further consideration of the Project would be a ’rubber stamp’ only, and would not lead to any substantive improvements to the Project, the Board notes that the further consideration was conducted with the same care and thoroughness as the original assessment,” the NIRB said in a July 18 news release. Continue Reading →

Investors Are Pouring Money Into Silver ETFs – by Eddie Van Der Walt (Bloomberg News – July 18, 2017)

Silver, known for being a market of extremes, is living up to its reputation this year. Prices rallied 17 percent in the first four months of the year, only to reverse and wipe out those gains.

Despite the selloff, investors are pouring money into exchange-traded funds, and assets have reached a record 21,211 metric tons, valuing the holdings at $11 billion. At the same time, the picture is bearish in the futures market, where hedge funds now hold the first net-short position in two years.

Different kinds of investors are driving the opposing trends, according to George Coles, an analyst at research firm Metals Focus Ltd. Large, active hedge funds shorted Comex futures because of the risk of higher U.S. interest rates, driving silver prices lower, he said. ETF buyers tend to be smaller traders that use silver for long-term diversification of their portfolios. They’ll be rewarded for their bullishness as slower U.S. economic growth spurs demand for haven assets, Coles said. Continue Reading →

Gold shops: coming to a high street near you? – by Jon Yeomans (The Telegraph – July 16, 2017)

At Baird & Co’s gold refinery, boss Nick Hammond is sorting through a tray of scrap jewellery. Bracelets, necklaces, a horse pendant (called a “banger” because it is hollow, and could explode under high heat) and a military medallion dated 1895 are all destined for the furnace. “It’s sad, but we can’t hold them back – they all go in the pot,” Hammond says, pointing out that Baird would have paid around £30,000 to pawn brokers and other dealers for the contents of the tray.

Baird’s high-security factory, on an industrial estate in East London, is home to the UK’s only gold refinery. The family-held business, which celebrates its 50th anniversary this year, is a supplier of gold bars to the Royal Mint and one of the UK’s biggest producers of gold wedding bands.

It has just opened a showroom and vault in the Hatton Garden area of London, hoping to lure new customers into the world of gold. “If you want long-term exposure to gold, you have to make the case for physical gold,” says Hammond. The yellow metal is famed for its status as a safe haven and a store of wealth in times of uncertainty, but is there really a growing demand for physical gold? And how are companies exploiting the opportunity? Continue Reading →