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China's coal imports from North Korea ease after sanctions

By: Reuters     24th February 2017 China's coal imports from North Korea eased last month after new UN Security Council sanctions curbing the isolated country's sales of the fuel abroad came into effect, as Russia, Mongolia, Australia and Indonesia raised shipments, data showed on Friday. January imports eased 13% from a year... 

Air force base sends 60 cadets for training

     24th February 2017 From next year the South Africa Air Force (SAAF) will send 60 cadets to a US military academy each year to pursue their first degree in their chosen fields. This will include future pilots, navigators, engineers, technicians and other support mustering. 

Climate change a 100% robust hoodwink

By: Terry Mackenzie-hoy     24th February 2017   I had to explain to somebody that the United States in 1945 dropped two nuclear bombs on Japan. The first bomb was a uranium atom bomb. The second bomb was a plutonium bomb. Following the detonation of these devices USA, Britain, France, Russia developed programs to test bombs of increasing... 

Diplomatic doldrums for Pretoria?

By: Keith Campbell     24th February 2017 While much local media attention has been devoted to US President Donald Trump, there has been something that, from a South African perspective, was much more important. This was the outcome of the African Union summit at the end of January. This appears to have been pretty much a diplomatic... 

Nuclear deal – The calm before the storm? 

By: News24Wire      22nd February 2017 National Treasury’s 2017 Budget Review and Finance Minister Pravin Gordhan’s speech kept a wide berth from mentioning nuclear energy, following President Jacob Zuma’s cue in his 2017 State of the Nation Address.As anti-nuclear energy protesters chanted "no, no nuclear power" outside Parliament on... 

Russia's Alrosa CEO could step down – sources

By: Reuters     21st February 2017 Andrey Zharkov, head of Russian diamond giant Alrosa, could step down soon, two sources familiar with the situation told Reuters on Monday. Alrosa is the world's largest producer of rough diamonds in carat terms. Together with Anglo American's unit De Beers, they produce about half the world's... 

Foreign policy rows all about the changing balance of power  

By: Aubrey Matshiqi     17th February 2017 The year began with two rows on foreign policy. The first was about a visit to Taiwan by Solly Msimang in his capacity as the executive mayor of Tshwane. The second, which riled the African National Congress (ANC) even more, was about a visit to Israel by Democratic Alliance (DA) leader Mmusi... 

High-powered speakers lined up for Nuclear Africa

By: Kelvin Kemm     17th February 2017 South Africa’s nuclear programme has attracted a great deal of public interest. This has ranged from serious scientific and engineering interest to the emotional attacks of the extreme antinuclear lobby. The antinuclear crowd does not comprise South Africa only; there are Germans, Americans and... 

African and global airlines enjoyed strong passenger growth last year

By: Keith Campbell     17th February 2017 Last year, African airlines experienced their strongest year of passenger growth since 2012, the International Air Transport Association (IATA) has reported. Passenger numbers on international flights within, and to and from, the continent, measured in revenue passenger kilometres (RPKs),... 

Proposed Stillwater acquisition nets Sibanye ‘deal of the year’ award

By: Anine Kilian     16th February 2017 Precious metals miner Sibanye’s proposed R30-billion acquisition of US-based platinum group metals (PGMs) producer Stillwater Mining Company has won Ansarada DealMakers’ Deal of the Year award. “We are honoured to receive this award, which I believe recognises that the proposed acquisition of... 

Kinross narrows Q4 loss as margins rise

By: Henry Lazenby     16th February 2017 Canadian miner Kinross Gold has reported a smaller headline loss for the fourth quarter ended December 31, as margins expanded on the back of higher gold sales and prices. The Toronto-based company reported an adjusted net loss of $50.9-million, or $0.04 a share, for the three-month period,... 

Metalloinvest places an order with SMS Concast for the revamp of a continuous caster at Ural Steel

     15th February 2017 SMS Concast, a company of SMS group www.sms-group.com, has been awarded a contract by Metalloinvest, Russia, to modernize a four-strand continuous casting machine CCM-1 at metallurgical works “Ural Steel”. The aim of the upgrade is to enable the casting of round billets of 455 millimeters... 

Electric car boom spurs investor scramble for cobalt

By: Reuters     14th February 2017 Investors are buying up physical cobalt anticipating that shortages of the metal, a key component of lithium-ion batteries used in electrical cars, will spur prices to their highest levels since the 2008 financial crisis. Prices for cobalt metal have climbed nearly 50 percent since September to... 

Glencore’s DRC copper top-up wins analyst cheer

By: Martin Creamer     14th February 2017 Diversified mining and marketing company Glencore has bought the remaining 31% stake in Mutanda Mining for $922-million and a further 10.25% stake in Katanga Mining for $38-million from Dan Gertler’s Fleurette Group, the company’s joint venture partner. The all-cash transaction will result in... 

Value-for-money motoring entrenched in 2017

     13th February 2017 The 2017 motoring year will mark the entrenchment of value-added, stylish cars in the South African market, predicts Datsun South Africa General Manager, Des Fenner, as he assesses the changes taking place in local car buying circles. The 2017 motoring year promises to be challenging for South... 

Busa worried about Sona violence, agrees greater economic transformation is needed

By: Megan van Wyngaardt     10th February 2017 The events that unfolded at Thursday’s State of the Nation Address (Sona) by President Jacob Zuma, are of serious concern and undermine the country’s progress in and towards open, transparent and constructive dialogue, Business Unity South Africa (Busa) said on Friday. “Democracy depends on... 

Pumping station optimisation saves energy, reduces leaks and reduces TCO

     8th February 2017 An upgrade of the water treatment and water supply system in Samara, Russia, has seen the implementation of innovative software-driven process optimisation built on Mitsubishi Electric MAPS SCADA. The optimisation and control solution implemented across 37 boosting pumping stations has improved... 

Forevermark brand expanding customer base globally  

By: Ilan Solomons     7th February 2017 The response to the Forevermark diamond brand has been “just great” in the past three years, which is, to a significant degree, attributable to the brand’s promise of authenticity, quality, uniqueness, integrity and being ethically sourced, states De Beers' Forevermark brand ambassador at Caratco... 

South Africans or self-interest first?

By: Riaan de Lange     3rd February 2017 I woke to bad news recently, being immediately reminded of a television series that has undisputed longevity and is a personification of both innovation and trailblazing. It is the BBC’s 1980s classic, Allo 'Allo! Unless you are of a single-digit age, or a recent arrival to the third rock from... 

DTI steps in with task team amid poultry industry crisis

By: Natasha Odendaal     2nd February 2017 The Department of Trade and Industry’s (DTI’s) action-focused government task team is in the process of identifying several interventions to resolve the current crisis surrounding poultry product dumping in South Africa’s market. The department is seeking out measures to boost trade,... 

Eskom receives 27 nuclear RFI ‘acknowledgement’ forms

By: Terence Creamer     31st January 2017 South African electricity utility Eskom has confirmed receipt of 27 ‘acknowledgement forms’ formally notifying the State-owned group of an intention to respond to its Nuclear New Build Programme request for information (RFI). It has also confirmed that notifications were received from major... 

Nord Gold mulls LSE delisting

By: Creamer Media Reporter      31st January 2017 Gold miner Nord Gold on Tuesday confirmed market speculation that it is considering a possible delisting from the LSE. The company, which operates four mines in Russia, four mines in Africa and one in Kazakhstan, said its board continued to consider options to maximise shareholder value,... 

Magnis finds a Russian partner

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     30th January 2017 Graphite developer Magnis Resources has signed a project financing and offtake memorandum of understanding (MoU) for super jumbo and jumbo flake graphite from its Nachu project, in Tanzania. Magnis said on Monday that it would work with Russia’s Rosatom International Network to formalise an... 

PotashCorp profit forecast disappoints amid tough markets

By: Bloomberg     28th January 2017 Potash Corporation of Saskatchewan, the crop-nutrient producer planning to merge with Agrium Inc, forecast lower-than-expected earnings for 2017 as it warned that new nitrogen-fertiliser plants in the US will weigh on prices. Fertiliser stocks dropped. The Canadian company also said Thursday in... 

Putin ally grabs giant gold deposit in barely contested auction

By: Bloomberg     26th January 2017 A long-time ally of President Vladimir Putin has snapped up a chunk of Russia’s giant Sukhoi Log gold field in a barely contested government auction. Bidding for the deposit was won by a venture between State-owned Rostec Corp. and Polyus PJSC, Russia’s biggest miner of the metal, after it made a... 

Uranium output forecast to hit 76 493 t in 2020 – report

By: Henry Lazenby     26th January 2017 New analysis by research and consulting firm GlobalData has forecast global uranium output to rise at a compound yearly growth rate of 4.3%, to 76 493 t in 2020. The company’s latest report states that growth in production is needed to meet upcoming demand from new reactors. 

South Africa slightly improves score in corruption perceptions index, rank drops

By: Sashnee Moodley     25th January 2017 While South Africa slightly improved its score in the Corruption Perceptions Index (CPI) for 2016 from 44 to 45, its rank in relation to all 176 countries reviewed fell three points to 64. Global civil society organisation Transparency International’s CPI score refers to the perceived level of... 

SA Pump Manufacturer Celebrates 37 Years Of Internationally Proven Award Winning Pump Designs

     19th January 2017 HAZLETON PUMPS, a family owned and managed business located in Centurion, has been continually awarded since the company’s inception 37 years ago with numerous awards and is regarded as a world leader in the pumping of high head, high volume acidic liquids containing solids utilising their... 

Nigeria plan to link mines to steel mill seen as Buhari test

By: Bloomberg     18th January 2017 Nigeria’s plan to build a railway to supply iron-ore to its idle Ajaokuta steel plant could be the biggest sign yet that President Muhammadu Buhari is implementing his policy to diversify away from oil. The project began in 1979 with what the World Bank in 2002 called obsolete Soviet technology,... 

As Kazakh market discipline points to price trough, uranium developers focus on lower costs

By: Henry Lazenby     13th January 2017 News this week that Kazakhstan will curtail its uranium output by about 10% this year has sent spot prices to the highest levels since September, provoking cautious optimism among market observers that the trough has been traversed. “I think that this move signals a fundamental change in... 

Prospective Mongolian rail line proves feasible

By: Esmarie Swanepoel     9th January 2017 Initial feasibility studies into the Erdenet to Ovoot railway, in Mongolia, have determined the project to be feasible, ASX-listed Aspire Mining has reported. The company told shareholders on Monday that the railway servicing the proposed Ovoot coking coal project would require a capital... 

Outlook 2017: SA growth weak, but stronger than 2016

By: News24Wire      3rd January 2017 South African asset prices should perform "ok", but mainly because there are more negative peers to compare to – especially Turkey – emerging markets economist Peter Attard Montalto of Nomura said on Thursday. "South Africa will see an overarching political narrative as the ANC moves to its... 

'We want the rand to fall so that when it rises, we will control the economy' - Maine 

By: News24Wire      22nd December 2016 African National Congress Youth League (ANCYL) president Collen Maine says the league wants and needs the rand to fall so that when it rises again, the country's economy will be under their control. "We want the rand to fall, we need those economic turntables. The rand will fall but when it... 

Coal traders see end of price rally as China ramps up output

By: Bloomberg     22nd December 2016 Coal’s recovery was one of the biggest surprises in commodities this year, but it is all poised to end as output rises from China, producer of half the world’s supply. After half a decade of declines, European prices rebounded more than 80% as China, also the world’s biggest consumer of the... 

Shell Lubricants Market Leader for the tenth year in a row

By: Creamer Media Reporter      20th December 2016 Shell Lubricants has retained its global market leading position in 2015 with 11.6% market share, according to Kline & Company’s Global Lubricants Industry: Market Analysis and Assessment 2016 report. This is the tenth consecutive year that Shell Lubricants has been named the number one global... 

The impending trade facilitation agreement

By: Riaan de Lange     16th December 2016 Two years ago, December 12, 2014 to be exact, my last column for the year was simply titled, ‘Trade facilitation’, and now again, my final column for 2016 is devoted to trade facilitation - the World Trade Organization (WTO) Trade Facilitation Agreement (TFA) that is. This time around, however,... 

Global base metals, US coal and steel prices stabilising – Moody's

By: Henry Lazenby     14th December 2016 The 2017 outlooks for the global base metals, US steel and US coal industries remain stable for the next 12 to 18 months, according to Moody's Investors Service. In a report released Tuesday, the ratings agency said that weak macroeconomic indicators would limit upside movement in the base metals... 

Stillwater deal runs deep

By: Martin Creamer     9th December 2016 The acquisition of America’s Stillwater Mining has the potential to put South Africa’s Sibanye on the inside track of low-cost mechanised primary mining as well as provide it with deep insight into secondary mining – the recycling of platinum-group metals (PGMs). Both these inputs will help... 

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