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MINE digital magazine: Issue 36 | August 2015

According to research, the minerals trade has been partly responsible for fuelling deadly conflicts that have displaced 9.4 million people and fuelled violence and rape in a number of countries, and the EU is taking action after MEPs voted in favour of a law to tackle the trade in conflict minerals. We look into the law and ask what the EU can learn from the US in enacting it.

In Australia, we find out why the government decided to drop an investigation into claims that the world’s biggest iron ore miners are driving down prices to push their rivals out of the game, and we learn more about the ‘rare earths crisis’ and China’s dominance in the market.

We also speak to entrepreneurial mining veteran Henk Van Alphen about his new gold exploration company, check up on how BHP Billiton spin-off South32 is faring, and ask how Amur Minerals managed to work its way through the Russian licensing system to own a single licence covering what could be one of the world’s largest ever nickel assets. Moreover, we look into environmental opposition to seabed mining and solutions to Australia’s legacy of abandoned mines.

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In this issue

Rising Above or Going South?
Although it initially received a mediocre response from investors, BHP Billiton spin-off South32 has now gained the backing of number of analysts and institutional funds. However, opinions remain divided about the new company’s future. Adam Leach investigates
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Price Tactics
The Australian government has decided against investigating claims that iron ore miners are intentionally driving down prices to push their rivals out of the game. Adam Leach looks into the debate surrounding price tactics
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The False Monopoly
Despite widely publicised concerns over constrained supplies, the ‘rare earths crisis’ has laid bare the vulnerability of China’s ‘monopoly’ over these vital elements. Chris Lo investigates
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Learning Lessons
A new EU law, similar to the US’s Dodd-Frank 1502 clause, could help to end the use of conflict minerals in manufacturing. Heidi Vella asks what lessons the EU should take on board to help end a deadly trade
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Going for Gold
Entrepreneurial mining veteran Henk Van Alphen tells Heidi Vella about his newest endeavour, gold exploration company Wealth Minerals, and what he has learned from his many years in the industry
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Humble Beginnings
Amur Minerals has managed the seemingly impossible, working through the Russian licensing system and gaining approval for a detailed exploration and mine production licence on the Kun-Manie nickel copper sulphide deposit. Adam Leach finds out what’s next for the project
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Beyond the Sea
The vast potential for minerals in the Clarion-Clipperton zone of the North Pacific Ocean is thought to be unmatched, but environmental opposition to seabed mining is growing. Heidi Vella asks how economics and the environment can be balanced
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Mission Makeover
Degrading the environment and the industry’s reputation, Australia’s abandoned mines are growing in number.
Heidi Vella learns about the reasons behind the country’s legacy of post-mininig wastelands and potential solutions to the problem
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Next issue preview

Zambia has capitalised on private sector interest in its mineral deposits for decades, but now a period of tense negotiations between public and private is expected as the government seeks to get greater value and encourage foreign investment in infrastructure. We profile Zambia’s playing field. Meanwhile, in Australia, up to five million jobs are expected to become automated across the economy by 2030. We ask what the trend could mean for Australia’s mining workers.

We also learn more about a new mineral sands joint venture between major Rio Tinto and junior Savannah Resources, report on the M&A climate as consolidation in the industry continues, and look into investigations by the US Department of Justice regarding suspected price manipulation in precious metals at some of Wall Street’s biggest financial institutions.

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