Engineering & Mining Journal

APR 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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70 E&MJ • APRIL 2018 Formed in 1988, the company's legacy pre- dates the formation of Cameco to the 1950s. To ensure that Cameco retains a presence in Saskatchewan, the government has kept a "golden share", stipulating that the head office must be in Saskatoon. The rest of the company shares are publically owned. Cameco has gained a strong foothold in the global market over the years, but has also been subject to unfavorable market conditions since the Fukushima disaster in 2011, since when the market has seen al- most continuous decline. In response to market oversupply, Cam- eco has reduced production at all its sites and will be putting the McArthur River/Key Lake operations on standby in 2018. Ka- zakhstan-based KazAtomProm, the world's largest producer, will also reduce uranium production by 20% in 2018 to better align supply with demand. These moves by the world's uranium giants will cut global an- nual production from 160 million lb, with about 35 to 40 million lb now not coming out of the ground. "We are optimistic for the future, although we are not out of the woods yet; there is still a lot of inventory in the world so the market will take some time to bounce back," said Tim Gitzel, president and CEO, Cameco. "However, the moves that have been made by the major produc- ers send a signal that a US$20/lb price for uranium is not sustainable. We are defi- nitely headed in the right direction and we have an optimistic demand outlook because we project a significant increase in nuclear power." Cameco still expects to meet all contrac- tual obligations and has a plan in place to sustain its employees over the suspension period. Saskatchewan is the largest potash pro- ducer in the world, possessing almost half of global reserves. Activity over recent years, such as expansions of existing mines, the opening of a new mine and the advance- ment of several exploration projects towards potential production translates into roughly C$20 billion in total investment over that time. "Saskatchewan's potash industry had sales of production of 11 million mt K 2 O in 2016 – the second highest in our history," highlighted Hon. Steven Bonk, until very re- cently Minister of Economy, Government of Saskatchewan. "Over the past decade, our productive capacity has increased by about 80%. Rising global population and the in- creasing wealth of developing nations will continue to be factors driving this growth in the foreseeable future." In a significant move, Agrium and Potash Corp. of Saskatchewan (PCS) will merge, having received U.S. Federal Trade Commis- sion clearance in 2017. The new company, Nutrien, is expected to be the third largest natural resource company in Canada, with headquarters in Saskatoon, Saskatchewan. May 2017 saw the grand opening of K+S Potash Canada's Bethune mine, becoming the first new mine in Saskatchewan in more Potassium Chloride Monthly Price - US Dollars per Metric Ton Uranium Monthly Price - US Dollars per Pound Source:

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