China Mining News

China's gold output to reach 400 t/y by 2014, demand at 700t

Chinese gold demand could rise over 22 percent in the next three years and sharply outpace domestic production, the head of the country's largest state-owned gold miner China National Gold Group said on Thursday, signalling room for a strong ramp up in imports. Gold production should reach 400 tonnes by 2014, a gain of nearly 19 percent from 2010, but consumption is set to grow by nearly a quarter to 700 tonnes, Sun Zhaoxue, president of the group, told reporters at the sidelines of a conference in Shanghai.

Reuters: China interested in building nuclear plant in East Africa

Reuters reports: China wants to help build nuclear power generation in East Africa, uranium mining and investment company IBI Corp said in a statement after meeting Chinese officials in Beijing, revealing China's undimmed appetite for overseas nuclear expansion despite the Japanese nuclear crisis this year. IBI, which has uranium-prospective land in Uganda, said its director, A.J. Coffman, held an "encouraging meeting... with the relatively new umbrella organization overseeing China's research and development of Generation 3 and Generation 4 nuclear power plant designs."

Baosteel positive about getting approval for Zhanjiang project from government

China's Baoshan Iron & Steel Co Ltd expects to receive regulatory approval for its coastal Zhanjiang project this year, Chairman He Wenbo said on Tuesday, despite government resolve to extend a fight against overcapacity. "We will try to obtain approval this year, and are starting to build a raw materials dock," He, also president of parent Baosteel Group, told reporters on the sidelines of a company event.

Dramatic fall in China rare earths exports

China's rare earths exports in April were 53% down on a year earlier and 12.6% from the March figure, yet export value per tonne rose ten-fold, customs data showed on Monday. China, which controls about 97% of rare earth output, has angered customers in Japan, the United States and Europe by clamping down on production and sale of the 17 rare earth elements, citing a need to clean up highly polluting production processes and to stop illegal exports.

Reports: Chinese steel giant says iron ore market is in a ‘bubble’

"Everyone who has money is rushing to invest in iron ore," Baosteel Group chairman, Xu Lejiang said on Friday, warning that supply may outstrip demand “sooner than expected” pushing prices down in the process. Brazil’s Vale, and Australian heavyweights BHP and Rio Tinto have some $45bn slated for new mines. The cash price of 62%-iron ore shipped to China's Tianjin port has almost tripled from Nov. 21, 2008 when data became available, according to the Steel Index.

Canadian Press: Chinese invest $73m in Quebec iron ore explorer

Two Chinese state-owned companies have invested over $73m for a roughly 30% interest in privately-owned Century Iron's plans to export iron ore extracted at several properties in Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador in eastern Canada. The transactions are part of $115.5m of financing arranged by Century Iron through private placements and the amalgamation of Century Iron Mines Corp. and Century Iron Ore Holdings.

BHP's treatment, refining costs with large Chinese smelters rise 25%

Large copper smelters in China settled term treatment and refining charges with global miner BHP Billiton Ltd at $90 per tonne and 9 cents per pound respectively for delivery in the second half of this year, a smelter source said on Friday. The second-half treatment and refining charges, or TC/RC, will nearly double from the same period of 2010 and represent a rise of 25 percent from about $72 for the first half of 2011. The term TC/RC for the full year 2010 was $46.5 and 4.65 cents.

Chinese gold production rises 4% in Q1

China's gold output in the first three months of 2011 totalled 73.412 tonnes, up 4.63 pct from the same months of 2010, the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology said on Friday. It said gold mining output was 60.262 tonnes, up 5.18 percent, while another 13.15 tonnes was obtained from smelting base metals, up 2.21 percent from a year earlier.

China's Stocks Decline on Rate Concern, Higher Energy Costs

May 19 (Bloomberg) -- China’s stocks fell for the first time in three days, led by property developers and power producers, on concern the central bank will boost borrowing costs and higher energy costs will hurt corporate earnings. Poly Real Estate

Reuters: Quality issues threaten India iron ore sales to China

Reuters reports that world number three supplier India's iron ore exports and prices could be hit by quality issues raised by China on $2.2bn worth of shipments. India sends almost all its exports to China, trade worth around $1.5bn per month. During the first four months of 2011, over a third of India's exports to the Chinese province of Jiangsu were substandard, China's General Administration of Quality, Supervision, Inspection and Quarantine said in a notice posted on its website.

Investors worried about bullion’s direction should look east

Many investors are calling into question billionaire hedge-fund manager George Soros’s commitment to gold. With higher highs no longer a regular occurrence in the gold market, some see Soros’s dumping of gold ETFs as a clear sign that the party is over. But as trading in the first Asian precious metal futures contract opens on Wednesday, bearish investors may want to take a cue from the millions — maybe billions — of investors in India, China, Vietnam and across the region who are pouring money into gold and are willing to pay a premium.

Noront inks $17.4m deal with Baosteel in Ontario Ring of Fire

Noront Resources has completed a brokered placement worth $17.4 million, the Toronto-listed junior explorer announced yesterday. The deal will give Baosteel the right to increase its stake in Noront to 19.9%. It will also give Baosteel, a large steel producer owned by the Chinese government, a seat on Noront's board of directors. Proceeds from the placement will be used for feasibility studies on Noront's Eagle's Nest nickle-copper-palladium property and the Blackbird chromite deposit in the Ring of Fire poly-metallic mining district in northern Ontario, Canada.

Ivanhoe Mines: Construction of Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold-silver complex advancing toward planned start of commercial production in the first half of 2013.

Overall construction of the Oyu Tolgoi Project was 15.1% complete by the end of Q1'11, slightly ahead of the planned 14.8%. Total capital invested in the project by the end of Q1'11 was $1.8 billion. The Oyu Tolgoi Project initially is being developed as an open-pit operation, with the first phase of mining planned to start at the near-surface Southern Oyu deposits, which include Southwest Oyu and Central Oyu. A copper concentrator plant, related facilities and necessary infrastructure that will support an initial throughput of 100,000 tonnes of ore per day are being constructed to process ore scheduled to be mined from the Southern Oyu open pit. Commercial production of copper-gold-silver concentrate is projected to begin in the first half of 2013.

Infrastructure projects essential to Russian mining

Often located in some of the world’s most sparsely populated areas, developing mining projects in resource-rich areas more often than not means working in some of the most isolated regions known to man. From Azerbaijan to Zimbabwe, operators face a common challenge: that of ensuring the local infrastructure is able to support the demands placed upon it by a profitable mining operation.

Silvercorp reports record silver production of 5.3 million ounces, record net income of $68.8 million, up 79%, and record cash flows of $104.2 million, up 60% for fiscal year 2011

Silvercorp Metals reported in Q4 that net earnings were up 29% to $12.6 million, or $0.07 per share, compared to net earnings of $9.8 million, or $0.06 per share, in the same quarter last year. It also said that quarterly cash flows from operations up 44% to $34.3 million, or $0.20 per share, from $23.8 million in the same quarter last year. Production was 1.05 million ounces of silver in the quarter, resulting in a record annual production of 5.3 million ounces of silver and achieved the fifth consecutive year of production growth.

Montreal Gazette: Rare earth metals clampdown benefits Canadian miners

The Montreal Gazette reports on an Ernst & Young report released this week that points to opportunities for rare earth companies in Canada and elsewhere, as a result of REE export restrictions imposed by China: China’s clampdown on exports of rare earth metals used widely in smartphones and other electronic products, is opening up huge opportunities for the Canadian and international mining industry, consultants Ernst & Young said Wednesday.

More signs of a top in the rare earth stock bubble

About one month ago, I wrote about the overvaluation in the rare earth stocks. Even though many disagreed with the prediction that this sector was at or near a top, all of these stocks have dropped, some significantly in the past 4 weeks.

Sandvik and Shandong Energy JV for underground coal equipment

Sandvik Mining and Construction and Shandong Energy Machinery in Xintai, Shandong Province, China, have signed an agreement to form a 50/50 owned joint venture for the production and sales of coal mining equipment. The joint venture is expected to be established within six months, following customary regulatory approvals.

Coal use in china shines light on growth

International coal prices hit $124 per ton this week, the highest levels in five months, as strong demand from reconstruction projects in Japan and reduced supply from flood-ravaged Australia has made coal supply tight.

China's Jinchuan silent on media reports regarding Lundin Mining bid

No word yet from China's Jinchuan Group as to whether the company is officially in the market for Canada's Lundin Mining. Canadian media reports claim a consortium headed by Jinchuan, which includes sovereign wealth fund China Investment Corp., was planning a takeover bid for the Canadian base metals miner.

China group in talks to buy Lundin: Globe and Mail

The months-long saga over the future of Lundin Mining took another interesting twist on Friday, when a consortium of Chinese companies jumped in with a potential bid, according to a story in The Globe and Mail. Lundin has been the target of two takeover bids, the first by Inmet Mining, which recently fell through, and the second by Equinox Minerals, which unveiled a $4.8 billion hostile takeover bid to counter the Inmet offer. That deal was derailed when China's Minmetals Resources tried to acquire Equinox, which has since been acquired by Barrick Gold, which presented a richer offer worth $7.3 billion.

28 People Arrested in Diamond-Smuggling Ring Bust

Chinese police said they have shut down a Hong Kong-based diamond-smuggling ring, in three months of arrests and confiscations. Twenty eight people were arrested between January and March and diamonds worth $31 million were confiscated, making it one of the largest busts in diamond history.

Super cycle? Or the endgame of cheap?

Back in 2005, we were asked by the esteemed journal, The Banker, to write an op-ed piece and we chose the topic "China and the End of Cheap." Memory of this came back to us recently with talk rising about how production costs and wages were rising in China, prompting manufacturers to shift production elsewhere (with the dilemma of where else to shift that was so absolutely cheap and yet could get the task done). We had posited in our note that China would follow the path of Japan, Korea, and Taiwan in ceasing to be the "cheap and cheerful" production sites for the world's knick-knacks. Read the full article.

Russian metals firms constrained by rail

Russia's two main rail lines into Asia and, in particular China, are increasingly overburdened which is causing a headache for metals firms looking to increase exports.

Japan rare earth imports from China jump 40% in March

Japan's imports of rare earths from China rose 40 percent in March from the previous month, Ministry of Finance data showed, with some observers saying demand is so far unaffected by last month's devastating quake though the outlook remains murky.