Engineering & Mining Journal

DEC 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 43 of 115

CHINA MINING 2018 42 E&MJ • DECEMBER 2018 During the 20 th China Mining conference, it quickly became apparent that major changes are taking place. The theme of the conference, which was held at the Meijiang Convention Center in Tianjin during mid-October, was "New Pattern of Opening, New Model for Cooperation." Being the fourth largest city in China and the 11th largest in the world, Tianjin was an ideal backdrop for this discussion with its modern amenities and infrastructure. Similar to Toronto or Frankfurt, it's also a major banking center. China is well aware of its status as the largest consumer and, in some cases, the largest producer of raw materials. It leads the world in gold production. The country consumes most of the nonferrous base metals and iron ore. It mines and burns three or four times as much coal as the No. 2 consumer. China's influence on rare earth metals is well-documented. Chinese President Xi Ping has redirect- ed diplomatic strategy toward internation- al cooperation with the Belt and Road Ini- tiative (B&RI). An action plan to promote B&RI has been developed that promotes an opening up and cooperation for the re- sources sector, strengthening policy and information sharing. Rule changes related to foreign investment have removed entry restrictions. Basically, through the B&RI, China is open for business, and it and its neighbors will benefit from the policy. China initiated serious reforms related to mineral resources in 2017. It canceled lots of administrative approval items, re- vised the regulations for geological data, and abolished regulations related to the qualifications for mineral exploration. As far as resource management, the Ministry of Natural Resources was established in March 2018, further streamlining regula- tions by combining several agencies. The new ministry now manages state-owned natural resource assets, monitors ecosys- tems and improves environmental man- agement. In April 2018, the government began adjusting the supply and demand with a notice related to coal and steel. Large productive operations were encour- aged to continue, while inefficient capac- ity was idled. This move pushed seaborne coal prices higher and it had a moderat- ing effect on iron ore prices. At the same time, under the direction of Mr. Xi, China has embarked on a path to restore and rehabilitate mines at home and develop new green mines. The green development idea begins with using ad- vanced technology for exploration. Indus- try standards have been established for the construction of green mines that cover six areas: environment, resource develop- ment methods, comprehensive utilization, energy and emission reductions, techno- logical innovation, and enterprise manage- ment. The plan is to improve the mining industry's image and secure the economic benefits associated with these operations. A host of mining executives and gov- ernment administrators gave presenta- tions and what follows is a summary. The Chinese include oil and gas along with mining when they address mineral re- sources. Also, the term ecological is used frequently where most developers in the West simply say environmental. Most of the program was delivered in Chinese and E&MJ should be forgiven for what may have been lost in translation. Ministerial Changes Mr. Xi promised a "beautiful China" with clean air and blue skies during the 19th Party Congress last year and protecting the environment has become a priority for Bei- jing. China established two ministries, the Ministry of Natural Resources and the Min- istry of Ecological Environment, to oversee the protection of its natural resources, and ecology and environment. The move brings together regulatory responsibilities that were scattered across many agencies. A rising political star, Lu Hao, was ap- pointed to run the new Ministry of Natu- ral Resources and he kicked off the China Mining 2018 conference. "For this conference, we take up the theme of 'Open- ing New Model for Coopera- tion,'" Hao said. "We will further open the mining sector to estab- lish the new pat- China's Miners Promote New Era of Openness and Cooperation Major reforms within the mining sector and the government will foster green mines at home and greater investment abroad By Steve Fiscor, Editor Lu Hao leads China's Ministry of Natural Resources. Zijin Chairman Chen Jinghe delivers a presentation on the history and future development of the Chinese mining industry during the keynote session.

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