Engineering & Mining Journal

NOV 2018

Engineering and Mining Journal - Whether the market is copper, gold, nickel, iron ore, lead/zinc, PGM, diamonds or other commodities, E&MJ takes the lead in projecting trends, following development and reporting on the most efficient operating pr

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Page 25 of 83

REGIONAL NEWS - ASIA 24 E&MJ • NOVEMBER 2018 Centerra Sells Mongolian Subsidiaries Centerra Gold sold its Mongolian business unit, including the Boroo gold mine and processing facility and the Gatsuurt gold project, to OZD ASIA PTE Ltd. for $35 million. OZD has purchased all outstand- ing shares and debt of Centerra Nether- lands, BVBA which was the 100% direct shareholder of the company's Mongolian subsidiaries, Boroo Gold LLC and Center- ra Gold Mongolia LLC (CGM). "The disposition of the Mongolian business unit is another step forward in enhancing the overall quality of Center- ra's portfolio of assets and will allow man- agement to focus on the company's de- velopment projects in other jurisdictions, including Canada and Turkey," said Scott Perry, Centerra's president and CEO. OZD is a private, Singapore based company that focuses on emerging mar- kets mining and metal assets. Indian Government Will Amend Laws for Resumption of Iron Ore Mining in Goa By Ajoy K Das KOLKATA, INDIA—The Indian govern- ment will bring in amendments to federal laws to resume iron ore mining opera- tions in the western coastal state of Goa, closed down since March on court orders. Government officials said federal laws like the Mines Mineral Development and Regulation Act (MMDRA) 2015 would be amended along with a host of state laws so that Supreme Court order closing down iron ore mines in Goa could be legally cir- cumvented and mines resume operations within the current fiscal year. Resumption of mining in Goa was expected to add about 20 million ton of iron ore to total Indian production of the steel-making raw material estimated at around 205 million tons per year. The Indian apex court in a verdict in February ordered the closing down of all 88 mines in Goa maintaining that lease renewals of these mines to existing lease- holders to be illegal as they had not been renewed through the auction as had been made mandatory under MMDRA. In tandem with moves to get mining operations back on the rails and consider- ing that entire production from Goa mines were low-grade iron ore fines (Fe content 58% and lower) and almost entirely tar- geted for exports, the Indian government was working on a policy to facilitate the predominant small- and medium-scale miners to form consortium to construct pelletizations plants. The federal Ministry of Mines reckoned that higher value addition to iron ore fines through pelletizations would not only pre- vent a glut in domestic market and buildup of unsold stocks, but also cater to buyers among Chinese steel mills, which were in- creasingly preferring importing pellets over high alumina content low grade ore on offer by miners in Goa, government officials said. Higher volume conversion of fines to pellets once mines in Goa resumed op- erations would also ensure higher export realizations by miners, the officials said. The cue to promote the consortium approach by miners to construct pellet- izations plants has been taken by the ministry after three to four small- and medium-scale miners in southern state of Karnataka last month formed a consortium to put up a iron ore pellet-making plant with capacity of 1 million tons per year. It was pointed out that while exports of low-grade iron ore fines averaged between $45-50 per ton CFR China, Indian exports of pellets was currently in the range of $140-143 per ton FOB, local traders said. The traders said that over the past few months, traders representing Chinese steel mills were staying away from contracting for even high-grade Indian iron ore fines (Fe content 62% and above) with high alumina content as the Chinese government was im- posing stricter pollution control measures. Chinese steel mills were increasing in- ward shipments of iron ore pellets and Goa mines once operational would have to keep pace with this changing buyers' preference and construct pelletization plants to avoid risks of unsold stocks, the traders added. Vedanta's Mines Reach All-time High In its most recent quarterly report, Vedan- ta reported mined metal production from underground mines for Q2 FY2019 was at an all-time high of 232,000 metric tons (mt), up 10% sequentially and 44% y-o-y driven by 33% y-o-y increase in ore production. Total mined metal production increased by 10% sequentially and 6% y-o-y after the closure of open-cast oper- ations last year. Mined metal production from under- ground mines for H1 was 444,000 mt, 27% higher from a year ago even as the closure of open-cast operations caused total mined metal production to decline 2% y-o-y. Integrated metal production was 212,000 mt, flat sequentially and down 8% from a year ago. Integrated zinc pro- duction was down 5% sequentially and 16% y-o-y to 162,000 mt due to tempo- rary mismatch in zinc mined metal avail- ability even as mine production ramped up towards the latter half of the quarter. Integrated lead production jumped by 17% sequentially and 30% y-o-y to 49kt. The pyro metallurgical smelter was retrofit- ted to produce more lead metal considering the higher availability of lead mined metal leading to higher lead production. Integrat- ed silver production was up 25% sequen- tially and 23% y-o-y on account of higher lead production and higher Sindesar Khurd mine production & better silver grades. The Boroo gold mine (above) is sold to OZD ASIA PTE Ltd, along with the Gatsuurt gold project.

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