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Chamber notes Gordhan’s bemoaning of Section 54 stoppages

By: Martin Creamer     22nd February 2017 The Chamber of Mines of South Africa has described Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan as having done an effective job of maintaining fiscal discipline with a budget deficit of 3.1% in these most trying of times. The chamber comments that the 2017/18 Budget demonstrates the truism that sustaining and... 

Pan African CEO accuses union of ‘blatantly false’ safety statements 

By: Martin Creamer     22nd February 2017 The CEO of the London Aim- and Johannesburg-listed precious metals and coal mining company Pan African Resources on Wednesday accused the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) of making statements that were “blatantly false” on safety practice at the Evander gold mine in Mpumalanga. “I will not say... 

Group Five reports R383m loss, CEO Eric Vemer resigns

By: Irma Venter     22nd February 2017 Group Five CEO Eric Vemer has unexpectedly announced his resignation – “within the next few weeks” – from the JSE-listed construction group. Vemer took over from Mike Upton on December 1, 2014, and spent less than three years at the helm of Group Five. 

Pan African ups earnings, pays record dividend

By: Martin Creamer     22nd February 2017 Precious metals and coal producer Pan African Resources on Wednesday announced higher earnings and revenues, and a record dividend pay-out of R300-million, despite lower gold production in the six months to December 31. Earnings per share increased by 33.4% to 16.58c a share and the board... 

$1bn earmarked for AngloGold’s deep-but-cheap Mponeng mine

By: Martin Creamer     21st February 2017 A big capital investment is on the cards for AngloGold Ashanti’s Mponeng gold mine, the world’s deepest underground operation. The former Western Deep Levels Number One operation was on the receiving end of a surfeit of comment when AngloGold Ashanti presented cash-rich results on Tuesday.  

Bacanora buys 50% stake in German lithium project

By: Anine Kilian     21st February 2017 Aim- and TSX-V-listed Bacanora will acquire a 50% stake in the Zinnwald lithium project, in Germany, from European solar panel producer SolarWorld for €5-million, plus an undertaking to invest a further €5-million on a feasibility study (FS). The FS is expected to take 18 to 24 months to complete. 

Restructured Imperial continues disposal spree

By: Irma Venter     21st February 2017 A new-look, restructured Imperial Holdings has, since 2015, disposed of, or is busy disposing of, 42 businesses with a total revenue of R11.9-billion and operating profit of R937-million. These disposals include Regent Insurance’s non-South African operations, as well as Jurgens Caravans and... 

Germany shares its renewable-energy lessons

By: Kim Cloete     21st February 2017 Germany is on an all-out campaign to decarbonise its energy system, with plans to slice carbon dioxide (CO2) emissions by 80% to 90% by 2050. It has identified hydrogen as an essential part of decarbonising its energy system. 

Ending mine fatalities most pressing 2017 priority – AngloGold

By: Martin Creamer     21st February 2017 The first and most pressing of AngloGold Ashanti’s key 2017 priorities is to put an end to mine fatalities by improving workplace conditions and bettering legal compliance, AngloGold Ashanti chief operating officer South Africa Chris Sheppard said on Tuesday, when the company posted stunning... 

De Beers lifts FY16 underlying Ebitda by 42%

By: Ilan Solomons     21st February 2017 Higher revenues contributed to a 42% improvement year-on-year in diamond miner De Beers’ underlying earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) to $1.4-billion in 2016. A 30% increase in revenue to $6.1-billion was driven by stronger rough diamond demand, which led to... 

DPI Plastics upgrades large-bore extrusion line for new Ultraflo™ range

     21st February 2017 DPI Plastics has upgraded the tooling on its large-bore extrusion line at its Roodekop facility in Johannesburg in order to extend its current range of Ultraflo™ PVC-m pressure pipes to include diameters of up to 630 mm and a 16-bar maximum operating pressure. The Ultraflo™ range has been... 

EOH, Steag join forces to boost energy services in South Africa

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     21st February 2017 JSE-listed technology solutions provider EOH Industrial Technologies on Tuesday entered into a strategic joint venture (JV) with German energy group Steag Energy Services broaden EOH’s services offering in South Africa. The JV will cover all aspects of power project developments, from inception... 

Anglo targets further $1bn in cost, volume improvements in 2017

By: Ilan Solomons     21st February 2017 Diversified miner Anglo American is this year seeking an additional $1-billion in incremental net cost and volume improvements, while also aiming to return to an investment-grade credit rating and resume dividend payments. The group has already identified 75% of these targeted net cost and volume... 

ConCourt rules in favour of gold producers over 2013 wage agreement extension

By: Creamer Media Reporter      21st February 2017 The Constitutional Court ruling in favour of the gold producers this week brings “final certainty” on the nature of an extended 2013 wage agreement. The ruling, relating to a June 2014 Labour Court order that upheld an interim order preventing the Association of Mineworkers and Construction Union... 

Sibanye secures SARB approval for Stillwater deal

By: Natasha Odendaal     21st February 2017 Precious metals mining company Sibanye has secured the South African Reserve Bank’s (SARB’s) approval for its R30-billion acquisition of US-based platinum group metals producer Stillwater Mining Company. Triple-listed Sibanye on Tuesday said the transaction remained on schedule for a... 

Rock-drill operator dies at Lonmin’s K3 shaft

By: Creamer Media Reporter      21st February 2017 An investigation is under way after a rock-drill operator died and two other employees were injured in an incident at dual-listed Lonmin’s K3 shaft on Friday. Lonmin on Tuesday said a preliminary investigation indicated that the incident was possibly the result of the rock-drill operator drilling... 

Newmont appoints new head for South American assets

By: Natasha Odendaal     21st February 2017 Gold and copper producer Newmont Mining has tasked mining executive Dean Gehring with leading its South American business, effective June 1. Gehring will succeed Trent Tempel, who is retiring after 33 years at the firm. 

Free cash rockets to $278m, dividend resumed – AngloGold

By: Martin Creamer     21st February 2017 Gold mining company AngloGold Ashanti will resume dividends after lower operating and interest costs helped it nearly double free cash flow to $278-million on lower production. In the 12 months to December 31, AngloGold Ashanti produced 3.6-million ounces of gold across its 17-mine portfolio at a... 

Rockwell concludes sale of noncore assets

By: Natasha Odendaal     21st February 2017 While dual-listed Rockwell Diamonds is not yet in the “home stretch” of its quest to effect a turnaround, the company is gaining traction with the conclusion of the sale of its noncore Saxendrift alluvial diamond assets in the Middle Orange River region to private firm Nelesco 318 for... 

Edenville raises £2m to advance Rukwa project to production

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     20th February 2017 Aim-listed Edenville Energy has raised £2-million through an oversubscribed subscription of 250-million new ordinary shares at 0.8p apiece. The company also issued 125-million warrants to the subscribers on the basis of one warrant for every two new ordinary shares, exercisable at 1.08p per... 

New panel established to guide Gauteng on infrastructure projects 

By: Natasha Odendaal     20th February 2017 The Gauteng provincial government (GPG) has established an economic advisory panel to advise it on the roll-out of social and economic infrastructure projects planned for the next two years. GPG aims to leverage the various infrastructure projects planned for the next two years to promote the... 

Metallon reports 40% y/y Ebitda improvement

By: Anine Kilian     20th February 2017 Zimbabwe-focused gold producer Metallon Corporation grew its earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation (Ebitda) by 40% to $18.6-million in 2016, from $13.3-million in 2015.  “2016 was a year of positive progress for Metallon. The business delivered an outstanding Ebitda . . .... 

Petmin expects lower interim HEPS; basic earnings to increase by 216%

By: Anine Kilian     20th February 2017 JSE-listed Petmin expects its basic earnings a share for the six months ended December 31, to be about 216% higher year-on-year at 8.3c, compared with a loss of 7.15c for the six months ended December 31, 2015. Petmin had incurred a R115-million impairment on the investment in the Veremo project... 

Goldplat maintains H1 profitability

By: Anine Kilian     20th February 2017 Aim-listed Goldplat has continued to improve its profitability during the six months to December 31, with pre-tax profit up 238% year-on-year to £1.33-million. “At the operating level the profit was £1.01-million. Cash and cash equivalents at the end of the period stood at £885 000,” chairperson... 

Petra posts strong interim results, lifts production 24% y/y

By: Anine Kilian     20th February 2017 FTSE 250 miner Petra Diamonds’ production increased by 24% year-on-year to two-million carats for the six months ended December 31.  Revenue rose 48% to $228.5-million, while earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation were up 80% to $87.1-million. 

Minergy to list coal project in Botswana, also eyeing JSE

By: Martin Creamer     20th February 2017 Coal and energy company Minergy said on Monday that it will list on the Botswana Stock Exchange in the first half of this year and is also planning a Johannesburg Stock Exchange listing in 2017’s latter half. In the initial capital raising ahead of the listing of its Masama coal project, Minergy,... 

Stellar to enter into tribute mining agreement with Octea

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     20th February 2017 Stellar Diamonds has terminated discussions with Octea Mining around the acquisition of the Tonguma kimberlite diamond project, in eastern Sierra Leone. Instead, Stellar and Octea intend to enter into a tribute mining agreement, which will allow Stellar to fund and mine the Tonguma licence area,... 

Pan African shares fall on fatality-linked mining suspension at Evander

By: Martin Creamer     20th February 2017 The share price of Pan African Resources fell by more than 8% in early trade on Monday after the company issued a stock exchange news service notice announcing a fatality-linked 55-day mining suspension of the Evander shafts where studies recently identified critical infrastructure issues... 

Harmony reports fatality at Bambanani

By: Natasha Odendaal     20th February 2017 JSE-listed Harmony Gold on Monday reported a fatality at its Bambanani mine, in Welkom, in the Free State An investigation is under way after a winch driver was fatally injured in a fall-of-ground incident on Friday. 

African Utility Week Industry Awards include new gas, small scale and ICT categories to reflect evolution of energy and water sectors

     20th February 2017 Nominations are open for top industry professionals and projects   “I know the energy revolution is powering up and ready to take off. We should embrace energy trade with each other”.  With these words Mr Kandeh Yumkella, UN Under-Secretary-General and Former Special Representative of the... 

Asa delivers mixed quarter as Trojan weighs on performance

By: Natasha Odendaal     17th February 2017 London-listed Asa Resources has delivered a mixed performance in the third quarter as commodity prices declined and some lingering operational difficulties persisted at its Trojan nickel mine, in Zimbabwe. However, the company has implemented several mitigating measures to deal with the... 

New CEO to restructure, refocus Miranda Minerals

By: Anine Kilian     17th February 2017 JSE-listed Miranda Minerals has appointed Theo Botoulas as its new CEO. “Botoulas has been appointed as CEO with the specific mandate to restructure and refocus the company and to create for it a sustainable future in the minerals space,” Miranda chairperson Dr Lelau Mohuba said in a statement on... 

Afarak upbeat on prospects for 2017 after tough 2016

By: Anine Kilian     17th February 2017 After a difficult trading 2016 financial year, LSE-listed Afarak says it is well-positioned to benefit from an upswing in the market that started in the three months ended December 31. The group on Friday posted earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortisation of €5.5-million for... 

New Draft White Paper suggests standard gauge network for freight rail 

By: Irma Venter     17th February 2017 A new national rail strategy, proposed to become legislation in 2018/2019, will give policy direction to the rail sector for the first time in 150 years, says Department of Transport deputy director-general rail Jan-David de Villiers. The policy – currently a Draft White Paper – comes as South... 

CoAL to convert $10m YBI loan to equity

By: Anine Kilian     17th February 2017 Yishun Brightrise Investment (YBI) will soon hold 19.28% of Coal of Africa Limited’s (CoAL’s) share capital, following the conversion of a $10-million loan repayment into equity. CoAL in September 2015 entered into a loan agreement with YBI for $10-million. In May 2016, CoAL and YBI amended the... 

A380 airliner restored to the Johannesburg route by Emirates

By: Keith Campbell     17th February 2017 Major international airline Emirates, based in Dubai, recently reintroduced the Airbus A380 Superjumbo on to its Dubai-Johannesburg route, to meet growing passenger demand. Previously, the airline had operated the A380 on its Johannesburg route for a few months in 2011/2012, but the market had... 

Anglo’s New Largo project considered in coal mine sale package

By: Bloomberg     17th February 2017 Anglo American may sell its New Largo project in a package with three other coal mines that supply South Africa’s power utility, as the company moves forward with plans to scale down operations. State-owned Eskom is discussing with Anglo the sale of the New Vaal, Kriel and New Denmark mines that... 

Biogas needs favourable REIPPPP allocation for sustainable development

By: Nadine James     17th February 2017 The measureable and sustainable development of South Africa’s biogas industry requires projects, and therefore a favourable  Renewable Energy Independent Power Producer Procurement Programme (REIPPPP) allocation, to prove sufficient financial viability to financial institutions is essential.... 

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