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Nautilus awarded exploration tenements in Eastern Pacific

Nautilus Minerals' (TSX:NUS)(AIM:NUS) Tongan subsidiary, Tonga Offshore Mining Ltd. ("TOML"), has become one of the first private sector organizations to be granted exploration licences in the highly prospective Clarion Clipperton Zone ("CCZ") of the Eastern Pacific. As a result of exploration conducted in the 1980s, the CCZ is known to host significant deposits of polymetallic nodules, which are golf ball sized nuggets, rich in copper, nickel, manganese and cobalt, lying on the seafloor in water depths starting at 4500 metres.

Chilean president says copper giant Codelco to remain state-owned

Chilean President Sebastian Pinera said Thursday the country's copper giant Codelco will remain state-owned in a bid to ease fears that the company will be privatized. Codelco, the world's largest copper-producing company, "belongs to all Chileans," and any attempt to privatize it was to be ruled out, Pinera said.

BHP’s Escondida workers strike as coal miners prepare for action

Workers at BHP Billiton Ltd. (BHP)’s Escondida copper mine, the world’s biggest, began striking as coal miners at the company’s Australian operations prepared to escalate industrial action. The strike by all union members at the northern Chilean mine began at 8 p.m. New York time yesterday with the changing of a shift and will run through to 8 p.m. today, which may lead to about 3,000 metric tons of lost copper production, union leader Jose Vidal said by telephone. Image of BHP's Escondida mine is by BHP Billiton.

Newcrest gold production up 16% in June quarter

Newcrest Mining, Australia's largest gold mining company, reported on Thursday that gold production rose 16% to 700,124 ounces during its June quarter. Copper production was slightly higher than the previous quarter at 20,127 tonnes. The company said cash costs of A$542 per ounce were higher than the previous quarter due to higher site costs and lower copper byproduct credits per ounce.

Copper falls on weak Chinese data

Copper fell to its lowest in almost a weak on Thursday as data showed the factory sector in top metals consumer China shrank in July, but losses were capped by a softer dollar and hopes of a resolution of the Euro debt crisis.

BHP Billiton production results in line with expectations – analysts

City broker UBS says global mining firm BHP Billiton's (LON:BLT) June production figures were slightly better than expected and gives the stock an unchanged 12 month rating of a 'buy' with a target price of £28.40. The mining giant released the figures yesterday across the spectrum of its resources, including iron ore production up 14 percent year-on-year in the final quarter.

Grasberg gets new open-pit slope monitoring system

PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI) Geo Services Division recently enhanced the slope monitoring system at Grasberg mine with the purchase of two IBIS-M radars. “Grasberg mine is one of the few mines in the world that utilises very high-technology monitoring equipment to help detect slope movements. The IBIS-M radars are top-of-the-line radars, using technology that is accurate to within approximately 0.1 mm, with coverage at some 2 km an area around 5 km square, and operating range of 10 m to 4,000 m,” explained PTFI Superintendent - Geotechnical Pit Engineering and Stability Rahadian Widiadi.