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Critical Minerals News

Smarter mining key amid current market conditions

By: Tracy Hancock     Updated 6 hours ago Despite the boon of improved uranium demand, overall, depressed commodity prices and costly operating conditions are emphasising the need for Namibian mining companies to ensure that they mine a lot smarter, and more efficiently and sustainably. “We believe that our solutions meet that criteria.... 

Pilbara Minerals pauses dividend, cuts capex as it targets $200m in savings

By: Mariaan Webb     22nd February 2024 Australia’s biggest pure-play lithium producer, Pilbara Minerals, has opted to withhold its interim dividend as the company moves to preserve its balance sheet strength in an environment of lower spodumene prices. In addition to the pausing the dividend payment, Pilbara has also lowered its 2023... 

Pilbara Minerals pauses dividend, cuts capex as it targets $200m in savings

Lithium producer IGO beats on profit, shares up

By: Reuters     22nd February 2024 Australia's IGO reported interim underlying profit ahead of analysts' expectation on Thursday, even as the battery metal producer reeled from falling prices of key commodities, and said it did not have plans to further trim production. Shares of IGO gained nearly 3% to A$7.27 by 23:38 GMT, while... 

Ivan Vella started as IGO CEO in December
Ivan Vella started as IGO CEO in December

Appian appoints UK politician as strategic adviser; forms partnership with SAFE

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     21st February 2024 Investment adviser Appian Capital has appointed Dominic Raab as senior strategic adviser on global affairs. In this newly created role, he will support Appian on geopolitical strategy and risk, building on his international experience gained in UK government. 

An image of UK politician Dominic Raab
Dominic Raab

Piedmont sells remaining Sayona stake

By: Mariaan Webb     21st February 2024 US-based lithium miner Piedmont Lithium on Wednesday announced that it would sell the rest of the shares it held in Australian miner Sayona Mining for A$59.9-million, or $39.4-million. The Nasdaq- and ASX-listed company agreed to sell 1.15-billion shares of Sayona for A$0.052 a share through a... 

Piedmont sells remaining Sayona stake

Iluka confirms cost blowout at Australian rare earths refinery

By: Mariaan Webb     21st February 2024 Critical minerals company Iluka Resources on Wednesday confirmed a major cost overrun at its Eneabba rare earths refinery, stating that the project would cost between A$1.7-billion and A$1.8-billion. This is at the top-end of the A$1.5-billion to A$1.8-billion guidance range provided in... 

Iluka MD Tom O'Leary says the Eneabba refinery project has not been immune to inflation
Iluka MD Tom O'Leary says the Eneabba refinery project has not been immune to inflation

BHP eyes 500 000 t/y of copper from South Australia

By: Mariaan Webb     20th February 2024 Diversified mining company BHP is advancing several avenues for copper growth, CEO Mike Henry said on Tuesday, highlighting the key role that its South Australian assets will play in the group’s copper growth trajectory. The Melbourne-headquartered mining firm acquired more exposure to... 

BHP eyes 500 000 t/y of copper from South Australia

US moves to restore stockpiling ‘panic button’ in EV metals fight with China

By: Bloomberg     20th February 2024 Insiders liken it to a “panic button.” And for more than 80 years, the primary job of the National Defense Stockpile has been to keep the US military supplied with essential raw materials and protect against supply shocks. So when China surprised the markets by restricting exports of two niche... 

US moves to restore stockpiling ‘panic button’ in EV metals fight with China

Metals Acquisition dual lists on ASX following A$325m IPO

By: Creamer Media Reporter      20th February 2024 Copper miner Metals Acquisition Limited (MAC) on Tuesday started trading on the ASX, following completion of its oversubscribed initial public offering (IPO) in Australia. MAC raised A$325-million through the issue of 19.12-million chess depository interests (CDIs) at the top of its indicative... 

Metals Acquisition dual lists on ASX following A$325m IPO

NewPeak sells Finland, NZ gold assets as it switches to battery metals

By: Mariaan Webb     19th February 2024 Australia-based NewPeak Metals has announced the sale of its Finland and New Zealand gold permits as part of the company’s strategic rejuvenation plan to focus on battery and critical metals. The ASX-listed company on Monday announced a binding term sheet to sell 100% of its interest in its... 

Industry welcomes WA nickel royalty rebate as step in right direction

By: Mariaan Webb     19th February 2024 The announcement from the Western Australian government, to provide 50% royalty relief over 18 months, to nickel producers is welcome news to an industry under pressure, says the Association of Mining and Exploration Companies (AMEC). “There is no doubt this timely assistance from the WA state... 

BHP is planning to shut down its Nickel West operations (pictured), attributing the decision to a significant decline in nickel prices.
BHP is planning to shut down its Nickel West operations (pictured), attributing the decision to a significant decline in nickel prices.

Top lithium supplier Albemarle says prices are unsustainably low

By: Bloomberg     16th February 2024 Low lithium prices are “unsustainable” and will have to rise in order to trigger the supply investments needed to meet long-term demand growth, according to Albemarle, the world’s biggest producer. Lithium suppliers around the world are reining in spending and, in some cases, production after... 

Albemarle CEO Kent Masters
Albemarle CEO Kent Masters

Crucial decarbonisation investigation into Hillside Aluminium is continuing intensely 

By: Martin Creamer     16th February 2024 Solutions to support decarbonisation, while ensuring operational competitiveness into the future, are continuing to be intensely investigated at South Africa's large Hillside Aluminium operation in KwaZulu-Natal, South32 CEO Graham Kerr assured Mining Weekly in an interview on Thursday, following... 

South32 CEO Graham Kerr.
South32 CEO Graham Kerr.

Energy transition driving continued surge in metals, mining M&A activity

By: Tasneem Bulbulia     16th February 2024 The ongoing surge in mergers and acquisitions (M&A) activity in the metals and mining sector is expected to continue into this year, driven by the global energy transition, with industry players targeting critical minerals to align their portfolios with the requirements of the future, Fitch... 

Pursuing sustainable battery metals supply

16th February 2024 Despite a projected gradual decrease from 76% of global cobalt mine production in 2023 to 67% in 2028 and 66% in 2033, the DRC will continue to be the most dominant producer globally, according to price reporting and research agency Benchmark Mineral Intelligence. This decrease in production... 

An aerial view of a formal copper mine in DRC with load haul dump vehicles
CHAIN OF SUPPLY The copper mining sector in the Democratic Republic of Congo will benefit from the global increased demand for battery metals

Now palladium comes under the Heraeus-Sibanye spotlight to boost hydrogen economy 

By: Martin Creamer     15th February 2024 Germany’s Heraeus Precious Metals and South Africa’s Sibanye-Stillwater are partnering to explore new applications for platinum-group metals (PGMs) in the hydrogen economy, with a specific focus on how applications can profit from the unique traits of palladium, one of the six PGM elements.... 

Palladium bars.
Palladium bars.

Africa moves a step closer to continent’s first cobalt refinery

By: Bloomberg     15th February 2024 Africa could have its first cobalt sulphate refinery by the end of 2025, one of the few outside of China capable of making the product that’s a key component of lithium-ion batteries. Nigeria-based Africa Finance Corp. last week signed an expression of interest to provide $100-million in... 

Despite weak lithium prices, Albemarle beats on cost cuts

By: Reuters     15th February 2024 Albemarle, the world's largest lithium producer, posted a better-than-expected adjusted quarterly profit on Wednesday as aggressive cost cuts helped offset plunging prices for the metal used to make electric vehicle batteries. The slowing pace of EV adoption globally, combined with lithium... 

Despite weak lithium prices, Albemarle beats on cost cuts

Hydrogen cars come into sharp new focus as global climate politics takes turn for better 

By: Martin Creamer     14th February 2024 For the first time, luxury vehicle manufacturer BMW has a fleet of hydrogen-fuelled cars on South Africa’s roads, supported by a green hydrogen refuelling infrastructure set up at its Midrand campus in Johannesburg. The outcome of BMW, Anglo American Platinum (Amplats) and Sasol finding common... 

The BMW iX5 Hydrogen passenger car being refuelled with green hydrogen.
BMW, Anglo American Platinum, Sasol talk to Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer on the new BMW iX5 Hydrogen taking to South Africa’s streets. Video: Darlene Creamer.

Tycoon Birla’s Hindalco bids for Indian critical minerals leases

By: Bloomberg     14th February 2024 Hindalco Industries is bidding for critical minerals exploration sites being auctioned by India, as the metals producer owned by billionaire Kumar Mangalam Birla seeks to build its portfolio of materials required for the world’s green-energy transition. India began the process late last year to... 

IEA to launch security programme for minerals critical to energy sector

By: Reuters     14th February 2024 The International Energy Agency (IEA) is launching a programme to secure the supply of minerals critical to energy security, as demand rises fast while manufacturing remains in the hands of a few key producers, its executive director said on Tuesday. Fatih Birol said the production of electric... 

IEA executive director Fatih Birol
Photo by Bloomberg
IEA executive director Fatih Birol

Canada to accelerate critical mineral mining - Energy Minister

By: Reuters     14th February 2024 Canada plans to boost its energy security by slashing the time it takes to develop new critical mineral mines by nearly a decade with improved permitting processes, Energy Minister Jonathan Wilkinson told Reuters on Tuesday. Ottawa is focused on six critical minerals key to making electric... 

Energy Minister Jonathan Wilkinson
Energy Minister Jonathan Wilkinson

Power aggregators seen as key accelerators of South African mining’s energy transition  

By: Martin Creamer     13th February 2024 Many energy projects selling to one buyer, who in turn sells to many mines – this procurement model is seen as a key financial tool to accelerate the energy transition of South Africa’s mining industry. “We think the aggregator model can really accelerate the requirements of the mines to get... 

Nedbank CIB) Energy Finance Co-Head Amith Singh.
Nedbank CIB Energy Finance Co-Head Amith Singh interviewed by Mining Weekly's Martin Creamer. Video: Darlene Creamer.

Opinion: Takeways from the 2024 Mining Indaba

13th February 2024 In this article, policy advisor and Associate Fellow of Chatham House Sheila Khama writes that the Investing in African Mining Indaba is progressively repositioning itself internally but also being shaped by external forces. Just 15 years ago, being a miner felt like pushing water uphill. The... 

Opinion: Takeways from the 2024 Mining Indaba

2024 defining year for world’s first woman-owned phosphate mine, looking at IPO   

By: Martin Creamer     12th February 2024 Adelaide Ruiters has been slogging away for ten years to get the world’s first woman-owned phosphate mine up and running. Now, 2024 looks like the year she'll likely do it. Ribbon-cutting for Adelaide Ruiters Mining and Exploration (ARME) is now expected around June, July ­– and being considered,... 

ARME founder and CEO Adelaide Ruiters.
AMRE CEO Adelaide Ruiters interviewed by Mining Weekly’s Martin Creamer. Video: Shadwyn Dickinson. Video Editing: Nicholas Boyd.

Mining’s focus switching to critical minerals, with ESG pressures increasing

By: Rebecca Campbell     12th February 2024 The need to transform the global energy system and to cut carbon emissions, to counter the danger of climate change, is shifting the mining spotlight away from traditional high-value resources, such as gold and diamonds, to what are now being called “critical transition minerals”. So stressed... 

Anglo American, Finnish Minerals sign battery value chain agreement 

By: Schalk Burger     12th February 2024 Mining multinational Anglo American and Finnish State-owned mining company Finnish Minerals Group have signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) to explore opportunities to further support the northern European country's battery strategy. As a Finnish state-owned company with a mandate to foster... 

Anglo American projects and development director Alison Atkinson.
Anglo American projects and development director Alison Atkinson.

Honda talks test Canada’s desire to move away from blockbuster EV subsidies

By: Bloomberg     12th February 2024 Canada’s strategy to lure electric vehicle manufacturing is shifting toward financial incentives based on tax credits, and away from the huge production subsidies that were promised to companies including Volkswagen in 2023. But the pace of that transition will be put to the test this year as... 

Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne
Industry Minister Francois-Philippe Champagne

Electra receives govt grant for Ontario cobalt sulphate refinery

By: Creamer Media Reporter      12th February 2024 The Canadian government made a $5-million investment to support the construction of North America’s first cobalt sulphate refinery, dual-listed Electra Battery Materials reported on Friday. The investment will be provided in the form of a grant from the Federal Economic Development Initiative... 

Electra CEO Trent Mell
Electra CEO Trent Mell

EU, US to align global minerals push against China’s supply grip

By: Bloomberg     12th February 2024 The US and the European Union are in talks to merge a core area of their efforts to engage suppliers of critical minerals in resource-rich nations, seeking to streamline their push against China’s dominance in materials key for future technologies. The aim is to combine the EU’s high-level... 

EU, US to align global minerals push against China’s supply grip

Mandrake receives BLM permit for Utah lithium project

By: Creamer Media Reporter      9th February 2024 ASX-listed Mandrake Resources has received the required permitting form the US federal Bureau of Land Management (BLM) for the re-entry of two wells at the 379 km2 Utah lithium project, in the Paradox basin. BLM approval follows the submission by Mandrake of a detailed Notice of Intent submitted... 

Permanent aerial mesh support, exoskeletons under scrutiny to make mining safer 

By: Martin Creamer     9th February 2024 Minerals Council South Africa is looking at the possibility of promoting permanent aerial mesh support throughout the mining industry as part of its fall-of-ground action plan. The Minerals Council has a robust fall-of-ground action plan that targets several dimensions of the biggest contributor... 

Minerals Council CEO Mzila Mthenjane flanked by Japie Fullard (left) and Dushendra Naidoo (right).
Minerals Council CEO Mzila Mthenjane flanked by Japie Fullard (left) and Dushendra Naidoo (right).

Atlantic Council’s Africa Center launches programme on African critical minerals

By: Creamer Media Reporter      9th February 2024 The Africa Centre of think tank Atlantic Council is launching an innovative three-year programme focused on critical minerals in Africa. As home to 30% of the world’s critical-mineral reserves, Africa has a central role to play in twenty-first-century supply chains, particularly for electric... 

PDAC to focus on new industry fundamentals

9th February 2024 This year’s Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) convention, will include a key programme that will help miners understand how to navigate environmental, social and governance (ESG) factors and benchmarks, following the growing focus on ESG scorecards and the influence these... 

A group of core samples listed and on display at last years PDAC
AT THE CORE The Core Shack – a unique venue where explorers may display their core samples – will again be an attraction at this years PDAC

Programme eyes critical minerals

By: Donna Slater     9th February 2024 Independent Vancouver, Canada-based public geoscience organisation Geoscience British Columbia is bringing together government, industry and other partners for the first desktop phase of the Critical Minerals and Metals in British Columbia Mine Tailings and Waste Rock Facilities programme to... 

Uranium explorer expands portfolio

9th February 2024 Uranium exploration company Skyharbour Resources has acquired several new prospective uranium exploration claims through online staking and through an agreement with exploration and project generating company Eagle Plains Resources, contributing to Skyharbour’s large property portfolio. These... 

an aerial view of the Russel Camp in Canada which is part of Skyharbours portfolio
SKYHARBOUR FROM THE SKY The Russel Camp in Canada which is part of Skyharbours portfolio

Lithium miner inks staff air transport deal

9th February 2024 Canadian critical minerals miner Nemaska Lithium, in November 2023, reported its partnership with regional airline Air Creebec to provide reliable, safe and comfortable air transportation for its employees and subcontractors, to its Whabouchi mine site. Located in the Eeyou Istchee James Bay... 

an aerial view of the Nemaska Whabouchi mine
PILOT PROJECT The remote location of the Nemaska Whabouchi mine makes it necessary for the company to fly its staff in to the area
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