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27 June 2019
India’s Mines Ministry is drawing up contingency plans to offer a three-year extension for merchant mining leases slated to expire in March next year. Sources in the Ministry said that while the government was pushing state governments to initiate auction of about 288 mining leases expiring next year, the risks of slippages in completing the auction process, forced closure of the operating mines and resultant disruption of raw material supplies to metal companies were getting “clear and distinct”.
The newly elected government of southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh has rescinded an order issued by a previous government permitting bauxite mining along the Eastern Ghats around Vishakhapatnam. By recinding the bauxite mining order, the TSR Congress-led government, elected last month, met the demands of indigenous people, who for years had been opposing all mining operations in the forested Eastern Ghats.
The Trump administration is throwing a lifeline to the massive Pebble mine planned near Alaska’s Bristol Bay, as regulators move toward undoing Obama-era environmental restrictions that have thwarted the project. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) will resume considering on Wednesday whether to withdraw the proposed water pollution restrictions that have effectively stalled the project since they were outlined in 2014, said a senior EPA official who asked for anonymity to discuss the matter before it is public. Reconsidering the issue – after a year-and-a-half hiatus – is a necessary prelude to the EPA officially lifting the restrictions later.
There are indications that Aim-listed Katoro Gold’s 75%-owned Haneti nickel project, in Tanzania, could host a chonolith-type nickel sulphide deposit. The company would, therefore, push ahead with preparations for a fully funded drilling programme at the two key targets, Mihanza Hill and Mwaka Hill, where it hoped to determine the existence of disseminated or massive sulphide mineralisation and define a future larger drilling programme, Katoro executive chairperson Louis Coetzee said in a statement on Wednesday.
Should the gold price be sustained at $1 400/oz – a level it breached at the start of this week – it could be the beginning of a rebirth of the neglected junior gold mining sector, which has lost significant value over recent years. This is the view of Canadian gold explorer and developer Orefinders, which said on Wednesday that should gold hold at the key psychological threshold of $1 400/oz for a few months, it would restore confidence to the market and return generalist capital to the sector.