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Another Canadian iron ore partnership in the works

Closely following the CAD$4.9 billion Cliffs-Consolidated Thompson deal earlier this year, Canadian iron ore company New Millenium Capital Corp. has teamed up with Tata Steel Ltd. for a huge iron ore project, The Financial Post reported: With a giant Indian steelmaker providing the cash, New Millennium Capital Corp. is preparing to develop what it thinks will be the largest mine in Canadian history. Following months of due diligence, Montreal-based New Millennium unveiled a joint venture with Tata Steel Ltd. on Monday that will guide financing and construction of its mammoth Taconite iron ore project in Labrador and Quebec.

Canadian gov’t to spend $25 million on exploration

Reporting from the PDAC, The London Free Press says the federal government will spend $25 million on mineral exploration over the next five years in the hopes of driving more mining business to Canada. Minister of Natural Resources Christian Paradis made the announcement from the annual mining conference in Toronto on Monday. The announcement more than doubles the initial two-year allocation of $12 million to help develop new ways of looking for deep mineral deposits and to help boost private sector activity in the highly lucrative and increasingly competitive industry, the minister's office said.

Ridgemont Strikes MOU With Toquaht Nation of Vancouver Island, BC

Ridgemont Iron Ore Corp. (TSX-V:RDG) has concluded a Memorandum of Understanding ("MOU") with the Toquaht Nation whereby the parties have agreed to an ongoing business relationship with respect to the exploration and development of Ridgemont's Redford iron ore property located on Vancouver Island, outside of Ucluelet, British Columbia. The MOU establishes that Ridgemont and the Toquaht Nation will work together to establish a long term, mutually beneficial and cooperative business relationship.

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Inmet, Lundin shareholders given two more weeks to review Equinox bid

Shareholders of Lundin Mining Corp. and Inmet Mining Corp. will have two more weeks before they are asked to vote on a friendly merger of the two entities. Canadian Press said the posptponement of the shareholder meetings, from March 14 to March 28, was decided on the weekend after a hostile takeover bid was announced last week by Equinox Minerals: The reason for the postponement is to allow time for shareholders to receive and review the recommendation of the board of directors in relation to the Equinox (TSX:EQN) bid, Lundin said Sunday in a news release.

Nonferrous minerals exploration rebounds 45% to second-highest total on record

Responding to rising metals prices and more stable markets, most mining companies increased exploration budgets in 2010. The result was a 45% increase in estimated worldwide nonferrous metals exploration spending over 2009. Regionally, Latin America (led by Mexico, Peru, Chile, Brazil, and Argentina) was the top exploration destination in 2010-a position it has held for the better part of two decades-while Canada was the top country overall. Gold was the leading target, attracting more than half the global exploration budget total, with copper a distant second.

PotashCorp’s Allan mine in expansion mode

The increase in the demand for potash, along with higher prices, is fuelling an expansion of PotashCorp's Allan mine in Sasatchewan, The Star Phoenix reports. The $550 million expansion began in 2009 and is expected to push production at the site from two million to three million tonnes per year by 2012: “Over the last two decades the potash industry has been fairly stable, it had plateaued,” said Larry Long, general manager of the Allan mine. “Now with all the influx of orders for potash, the market has expanded quite a bit, countries all over the world are using our product at a higher rate, so we are in a position where we have to expand to meet the demand.

Chilean mine rescue capsule to be on display in Toronto at upcoming Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC) convention

One of the three rescue capsules built to rescue 33 Chilean miners trapped underground last year will be on public display at the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada’s International Convention, Trade Show and Investors Exchange, to be held at the Metro Toronto Convention Centre (south building) from Sunday, March 6 to Wednesday, March 9.

New Gold has record year

New Gold had their best year in 2010, with increased production and declining costs resulting in record earnings and cash flow, the B.C.-based company said on Friday. Consolidated revenue for the year was $530 million compared to $324 million in 2009, which the company attributed to higher production rates and elevated gold prices. Earnings from mine operations jumped 129% to USD$203 million, compared to $89 million in the previous year.

Lake Shore Gold hits high-grade intersections at Thunder Creek

Lake Shore Gold Corp. (TSX:LSG) announced results from six drill holes (3,035 metres) from the 730 Level at the Thunder Creek Project with four holes (1,060 metres) being collared underground and two holes (1,975 metres) on surface. The holes are part of a continuing drill program to define the overall geometry and grade of the Porphyry and Rusk Zones near the 730 elevation in order to complete an initial National Instrument 43-101 compliant resource estimate. The Thunder Creek project is within the company's Timmins West Gold Complex near Timmins, Ontario.