Archive | Saskatchewan Mining

Miners shy away from investing in Ontario: land claim uncertainty to blame, report says – by Angela Gemmill (CBC News Sudbury – March 01, 2017)

http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/sudbury/

Want to invest in mining? Fraser report says look to Manitoba and Saskatchewan

When it comes to investment in mineral exploration, Ontario has dropped into a slump, the latest report from the Fraser Institute says. The think-tank recently rated 104 regions around the world on their geological and regulatory attractiveness to those looking to invest in mineral exploration.

The report named Saskatchewan as the top jurisdiction for investment. The prairie province moved up to first from second place in 2015. Manitoba moved up to second place this year after ranking 19th the previous year.

Western Australia dropped to third, after Saskatchewan displaced it as the most attractive jurisdiction in the world. Rounding out the top-10 are Nevada, Finland, Quebec, Arizona, Sweden, the Republic of Ireland, and Queensland. Ontario dropped three spots this year to 18th place. The reason? Mining companies are put off by the uncertainty around land claims in Ontario, the report says. Continue Reading →

Encanto Potash and Muskowekwan First Nation sign new mining regulation agreement – by Alex MacPherson (Saskatoon StarPhoenix – February 28, 2017)

http://thestarphoenix.com/

Encanto Potash Corp. has signed an agreement with Muskowekwan First Nation and the provincial and federal governments that it says will pave the way for construction of its proposed potash mine on the reserve northeast of Regina.

The agreement is expected to lead to the first First Nations Commercial and Industrial Development Act (FNCIDA), legislation that applies existing provincial rules to large-scale projects on First Nations land, the Toronto-based company said in a news release.

“By achieving this milestone, the first ever for such a planned large scale operation in Canada, we have been breaking entirely new ground,” Muskowekwan Chief Reginald Bellerose said in a statement. Continue Reading →

World’s biggest miner hasn’t given up hope for potash – by Cecilia Jamasmie (Mining.com – February 21, 2017)

http://www.mining.com/

BHP Billiton (ASX, NYSE:BHP) (LON:BLT), the largest mining company by market capitalization, sees potash as a key commodity in which to base its future growth despite prices are still hovering just above $210 a tonne, less than a half what they were only five years ago.

“Our preference long term is to grow in oil and copper, then possibly potash,” the firm’s chief executive officer Andrew Mackenzie said when releasing first half of the year results Tuesday.

BHP seems to be in no rush to advance its massive $2.6 billion Jansen potash project in Canada’s Saskatchewan province. For years the company has been sinking shafts and installing some infrastructure on site, but has not fully committed itself to the project, nor received board approval for the mine. Continue Reading →

Tepco invokes ‘Act of God’ clause on Cameco deal, but it seems more like a Hail Mary – by Drew Hasselback (Financial Post – February 15, 2017)

http://business.financialpost.com/

Tokyo Electric Power’s move to pull the plug on an agreement with Canadian uranium miner Cameco Corp. is the latest example of a company arguably stretching the traditional use of a force majeure or “Act of God” clause to suspend a contract.

Tokyo Electric Power Co. Holdings Inc. argues that it has been unable to operate its nuclear power plants in Japan because of government regulations enacted after the 2011 Fukushima nuclear disaster. The accident was caused by an earthquake and resulting tsunami. Centuries of legal tradition should easily place those natural disasters within anyone’s definition of Acts of God.

You probably can’t say that for government-made regulation, though Tepco’s obvious point is there wouldn’t be regulation but for those preceding Acts of God. Maybe it is legally possible to say those natural disasters started a chain reaction of unforeseeable events, including more government regulation. It depends on the wording of the force majeure clause in the contract between Tepco and Cameco. Continue Reading →

Uranium market conditions last year were the worst in 30 years, says Cameco Corp CEO – by Sunny Freeman (Financial Post – February 11, 2017)

http://business.financialpost.com/

Uranium market conditions in 2016 were the toughest that Cameco Corp. CEO Tim Gitzel has seen in his 30 years in the business, but he says he remains cautiously optimistic about the long-term picture.

“We’ve been saying for some time that uranium prices are neither rational nor sustainable,” Gitzel told investors during a conference call Friday to discuss its dismal 2016 earnings. “Current prices are failing to incent the investment decisions required to ensure reliable supply is available to meet growing demand out into the future.”

Cameco reported a fourth-quarter net loss attributable to shareholders of $144 million, or 36 cents per share, which was more than 10 times larger than the loss of $10 million, or three cents per share, reported in the year-earlier period. The fourth quarter of 2016 included an impairment charge of $238 million. The company booked a $210 million impairment charge in the 2015 quarter. Continue Reading →

Cameco’s brief respite from the uranium slump coming to an end – by Tim Shufelt (Globe and Mail – February 6, 2017)

http://www.theglobeandmail.com/

The financial aftershocks of the catastrophic 2011 Japanese earthquake continue to ripple through the uranium market, which, six years later, cannot seem to escape its perpetual slump. The latest reprieve from the brutal selloff is starting to look like yet another false start, merely interrupting an otherwise downward trajectory.

Canadian uranium-mining champion Cameco Corp. itself sought to rein in the market’s budding enthusiasm by calling the Street’s earnings estimates unrealistic in mid-January and warning of a 2016 loss. How big a loss will be revealed when the company reports its financials this Thursday.

“I think it’s a no-touch situation from an investment perspective for at least a year,” said John Stephenson, president of Stephenson & Co. Capital Management. Continue Reading →

Cameco Corp will fight after Tokyo Electric cancels $1.3 billion contract – by Sunny Freeman (Financial Post – February 2, 2017)

http://business.financialpost.com/

Cameco Corp. said Wednesday it has rejected a key Japanese customer’s attempt to cancel its contract — a move that would mean $1.3 billion in lost revenue — as the Saskatoon-based uranium giant works to protect deals signed with customers before the market tanked.

Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. issued a termination notice for a uranium supply contract on Jan. 24. On Monday, the Japanese power company said it would not accept a delivery scheduled for Tuesday.

Cameco shares plunged 11.29 per cent to end the day at $14.70 on the Toronto Stock Exchange. Tepco alleges a “force majeure” event — or an act of God — has occurred because it has been unable operate its generating plants for the past 18 months due to government regulations enacted after the disastrous Fukushima nuclear accident of 2011. Continue Reading →

Cameco Corp will fight after Tokyo Electric cancels $1.3 billion contract – by Sunny Freeman (Financial Post – February 1, 2017)

http://business.financialpost.com/

Cameco Corp. said Wednesday it has rejected a key Japanese customer’s attempt to cancel its contract — a move that would mean $1.3 billion in lost revenue — as the Saskatoon-based uranium giant works to protect deals signed with customers amid lower uranium prices.

Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc. issued a termination notice for a uranium supply contract on Jan. 24. On Monday, the Japanese power company said it would not accept a delivery scheduled for Tuesday. Cameco shares plunged 12 per cent just after the opening bell to $14.59 on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

Tepco alleges a “force majeure” event — or an act of God — has occurred because it has been unable operate its generating plants for the past 18 months due to government regulations enacted after the disastrous Fukushima nuclear accident of 2011. Continue Reading →

Interview with David Cates, President & CEO of Denison Mines (Resource World – January 26, 2017)

http://resourceworld.com/

Denison Mines Corp. [DML-TSX; DNN-NYSE MKT] is launching a major uranium exploration program on its mineral holdings in the prolific Athabasca Basin of northern Saskatchewan. Their $14.5 million (Denison’s share) budget will be focused on the 60%-owned flagship Wheeler River Project. Cameco holds 30% and JCU Canada 10%. Denison also has a 22.5% interest in the operating McClean Lake uranium mill.

At the Wheeler River property, the Phoenix deposit has indicated resources of 70.2M lbs U3O8 grading 19.1% U3O8, and is the highest grade undeveloped uranium deposit in the world. The Gryphon deposit is hosted in basement rock, approximately 3 km northwest of Phoenix, and hosts inferred resources of 43M lbs U3O8 grading 2.3% U3O8.

In an interview with Resource World, David Cates, President and CEO, discusses the outlook for the uranium sector.

RESOURCE WORLD: Talking to investors and mining executives, I’m getting two kinds of comments: 1) Uranium is asleep and will stay that way for some time, and 2) the price of uranium is just now starting to recover. What is your take on the uranium price scenario? Continue Reading →

UPDATE 4-Potash slump drags on as competition overheats – by Rod Nickel (Reuters U.S. – January 26, 2017)

http://www.reuters.com/

Jan 26, 2017 – The deepest slump in a decade for the oversupplied potash fertilizer market may abate only slightly in 2017, major producers say, and could take years to correct due to the imminent startup of new mines.

Canada’s Potash Corp of Saskatchewan Inc , the biggest fertilizer producer, forecast a much less profitable year on Thursday than analysts expected, and reported a surprisingly big drop in quarterly profit.

Potash prices are hovering around their lowest levels since 2007, amid bloated capacity and weakening farm incomes. Adding to miners’ problems, new low-cost mines are scheduled to begin production. Continue Reading →

Cameco defends decision to tell analysts they were wrong, but sees oversupply issues fading – by Sunny Freeman (Financial Post – January 20, 2017)

http://business.financialpost.com/

Cameco Corp. is more optimistic about long-term demand for uranium than it it has been for five years, a top executive said Thursday after its stock price tumbled following the company’s unusual warning to analysts they were too bullish on the company’s 2016 performance.

The Saskatoon-based uranium miner took an extraordinary step Tuesday by issuing an announcement that analysts’ estimates for the company’s full-year results were too high. It said it expected to report a 2016 loss Feb. 9. The company’s share price lost about 10 per cent of its value on Wednesday but recovered nearly as much Thursday when it traded around $15.60 per share at midday on the Toronto Stock Exchange.

Grant Isaac, Cameco’s chief financial officer, told the TD Securities Mining Conference that the company felt compelled to “correct what we felt was a misalignment in earnings expectations,” noting that restructuring costs from shuttered operations and legal costs associated with a tax dispute will weigh on its 2016 balance sheet. Continue Reading →

Vancouver junior inks $1 billion a year potash deal – by Frik Els (Mining.com – January 18, 2017)

http://www.mining.com/

Encanto Potash Corp. (CVE:EPO) on Wednesday announced the finalization of a blockbuster agreement with India’s national farmers co-operative to supply a minimum of 5 million tonnes of potash per year for the next twenty years.

Vancouver-based Encanto’s is advancing a $2.9 billion potash project in the Saskatchewan province of Canada in a joint venture with the Muskowekwan First Nation.

Encanto President Stavros Daskos said the deal is “clearly a defining moment for our company and the industry. India imports 100% of its potash and is susceptible to cartel-like practices from producers that can hurt its national food security.” Continue Reading →

Cameco to cut 120 mining and milling jobs in Saskatchewan – by Alex MacPherson (Saskatoon StarPhoenix – January 18, 2017)

http://thestarphoenix.com/

Cameco Corp. says it plans to continue its cost-cutting program by eliminating a total of about 120 jobs from its McArthur River, Cigar Lake and Key Lake operations in northern Saskatchewan.

The Saskatoon-based uranium miner said the changes represent about 10 per cent of the workforce at its three major facilities in the province, and that the layoffs will be complete by the end of May.

Cameco’s announcement comes less than two months after it unveiled plans to save some cash by temporarily halting production at its northern mines and mill for four weeks over the summer. Continue Reading →

Encanto Potash Corp. one step closer to financing $3B mine on Sask. First Nation – by Alex MacPherson (Saskatoon StarPhoenix – January 6, 2017)

http://thestarphoenix.com/

A junior mining company with plans to build a potash mine on a reserve northeast of Regina says two new 20-year agreements to sell a total of seven million tonnes of potash annually bring it one step closer to financing and building the massive facility.

The agreements, known as offtakes, with “bankable” India-based firms should help Encanto Potash Corp. secure the $3 billion it needs to build the mine on Muskowekwan First Nation, said the Vancouver-based company’s director of corporate development.

“We think that with this offtake, we can get our corporate financing,” Gary Deathe said, adding that while no junior mining company has successfully financed a potash operation into production, that is “100 per cent” Encanto’s plan. Continue Reading →

De Beers abandons diamond search in northern Saskatchewan – by Alex MacPherson (Saskatoon StarPhoenix – December 26, 2016)

http://thestarphoenix.com/

The world’s largest diamond mining company says it is walking away from its search for the precious stones on a 43,000-acre property in northern Saskatchewan after several “targets” turned out to be magnetic minerals mixed with organic materials.

De Beers Canada Inc. started looking for kimberlite — a volcanic rock famous for containing diamonds — north of the decommissioned Cluff Lake uranium mine in June after optioning the property from Vancouver-based CanAlaska Uranium Ltd.

On Dec. 23, the companies said in a news release that De Beers was returning 100 per cent of the project to CanAlaska after drilling seven targets and concluding that all 85 targets on the property were related to the same magnetic minerals. Continue Reading →