Copper Top Stories

Codelco kicks off production at El Teniente expansion ahead of schedule

Phase one was completed 15 months ahead of schedule and…

Rio Tinto Canada inspires Transition to focus on Saskatchewan project

The Sudbury-based company will concentrate on its Wollaston copper project.

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Formation Metals loses financing but continuing to develop Idaho cobalt project

Stock in Formation Metals (TSE:FCO) plunged 13% today after a European bank decided to terminate its loan agreement with the Vancouver-based company. The $79.5 million loan from BNP Paribas was to go towards construction of Formation's Idaho cobalt mine. Formation said the credit facility was terminated without the closing of the subject financing.

State of Alaska files suit to strike down anti-Pebble ordinance

The State of Alaska has filed a constitutional challenge in Alaska Superior Court to strike down a municipal ordinance recently enacted by ballot measure in Southwest Alaska's Lake & Peninsula Borough. By a margin of just 34 votes, local voters supported a ballot measure put forward by anti-Pebble activists that would restrict future development that affects more than one square mile of land within the 31,000 square mile borough.

Chinese firms in Zambia accused of mistreating workers

Chinese-run copper mines in Zambia are routinely mistreating workers and breaking the law by imposing up to 18-hour shifts and flouting international health and safety standards, according to a report from Human Rights Watch. The 122-page report draws on interviews with miners from the country's four Chinese copper operations and the 48 other mines operated my multinational companies. The Chinese companies are subsidiaries of China Non-Ferrous Metals Mining Corporation (CNMC), a state-run firm.

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Yamana Gold hikes dividend by 63% on strong third quarter

South America-focused Yamana Gold (TSE:YRI) increased production and revenue targets for the third quarter, and rewarded shareholders with a 63% dividend increase. Toronto-based Yamana boosted production 4% to 279,274 gold-equivalent ounces (GEO) and brought in $555 million for the quarter — a 22% increase. Operating cash flow rose 57% to $330 million. The higher output came despite lower production at some of Yamana's mines in Brazil, Chile and Argentina. The best production figures came out of the El Peñón mine in Chile, which posted a 15% increase in GEO, and the Gualcamayo mine in Argentina, which marked a 17% improvement.

Capstone shopping for new copper mines to crank output

Canadian copper miner Capstone Mining TSE:CS says it is looking to acquire a producer that would boost its annual output to 100 million pounds. Capstone CEO Darren Pylot told Bloomberg the company is seeking producing mines in the Americas that would add at least 40 million pounds of output.

Tenke Fungurume gets green light for $850 million expansion

Freeport-McMoRan Copper & Gold Inc. has approved a US$850 million expansion to the Tenke Fungurume mining operations in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Lundin Mining, a partner at the mine with FCX, made the announcement in a press release on Tuesday night. The phase two expansion, targeted for completion in 2013, will increase copper production by 50% to about 195,000 tonnes of copper cathode and 15,000 tonnes of cobalt in hydroxide. Funding will be split 70:30 between the mines two partners, FCX and Lundin Mining. The companies expect that capital costs will be funded by surplus cash from Tenke Fungurume operations.

TVI Pacific Inc. receives notice of ordinance that would ban new open pit mining in Zamboanga del Norte

CALGARY, ALBERTA--(Marketwire - Nov. 1, 2011) - TVI Pacific Inc. (TSX:TVI) (OTCQX:TVIPF) ("TVI" or the "Company") announced today that it has been advised by its Philippine affiliate, TVI Resource Development (Phils.) Inc. ("TVIRD") that TVIRD is preparing to file a series of legal actions in Philippine courts to prevent the implementation of an Ordinance scheduled to come into effect in the Province of Zamboanga del Norte on November 6, 2011. The Ordinance, filed with no advance notice to TVIRD or TVI, purports to ban new open pit or open cut mines in the Province of Zamboanga del Norte and causes the closure process of existing such mines to begin one year from now, or November 2012. TVIRD intends to continue operating at Canatuan without disruption during this period. This Ordinance has no impact on TVIRD's gold development project at Balabag as it is in Zamboanga del Sur, a different province. Development plans continue at Balabag.

$1.3B African copper takeover threatened

The takeover of Anvil Mining (TSE:AVM), an African copper producer, by Chinese company Minmetals Resources Ltd, could be in jeopardy. Anvil warned on Monday that the $1.3 billion deal may not be completed if the company fails to come to an agreement with partner Gecamines over contractual arrangements. According to the news release, La Générale des Carrières et des Mines Sarl (“Gécamines”) told Anvil that the takeover offer would trigger a review of the lease agreements with Anvil over the Kinsevere project in the DRC. State-owned Gécamines holds the leases to the mineral tenures.

Texas gold digger finished building only mine in Saudi Arabia not owned by royals

Arabian American Development Co, announced over the weekend it has completed construction of the gold, silver and copper mine in Saudi-Arabia which it is developing with Saudi's Al-Kobra Mining Company (Amak). The Texas-based company, which owns 37% of Amak, said it will turn the facility over to the Chinese surface operator to begin operations end-November. In July Arabian American Development got a $37m injection from a fund controlled by the League of Arab States. Shareholders in the Nasdaq-listed company saw the value of their investment rise a cool $107m as a result of the transaction and over the last month stock in the 44-year old company has risen 28.5%. The mine in a Yemen border province is the only non-government mine in the Saudi kingdom and is scheduled to begin production early next year.