Sheffield Resources and Independence Group form JV for Fraser Range exploration

Sheffield Resources entered a joint venture agreement with Independence Group (IGO) to explore the Fraser Range region located in Western Australia.

The agreement includes four granted tenements, namely E69/3052 and E69/3033 (Red Bull), E39/1733 (Big Bullocks), E28/2374-I (Bindii) and ELA69/2563 (Similkameen).

IGO owns a nickel mine in the Fraser Range with significant exploration interests.

Sheffield Resources managing director Bruce McFadzean said: “We are very pleased to have formed the Fraser Range joint venture with IGO. They are a well-funded, dedicated nickel explorer and their ownership of the Nova mine underpins a long-term commitment to the region.

Kodal Minerals expands lithium portfolio with three new concessions in Mali

UK-based mining company Kodal Minerals announced acquisitions of further prospective lithium projects in southern Mali, West Africa.

The new acquisitions comply with Kodal’s strategy to identify value accretive strategic mineral opportunities in West Africa and expand its exposure to the booming lithium extraction and development industry.

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Kodal will purchase a 90% interest in the 109km² Diendio Project located in southern Mali. The project comprises three granted concessions, Diendio Sud, Diossyan Sud and Manankoro Nord.

Havilah Resources signs MoU to extend Portia Gold Mine operations

Havilah Resources Limited signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with its mining partner Consolidated Mining and Civil (CMC) for mining of the southern extension of the Portia gold deposit near Broken Hill, Australia.

Under the deal, both parties have agreed for an equal revenue sharing arrangement.

The campaign will expand Portia open-pit another 120m to the south of its current position.

It is expected to procure a significant volume of high-grade and medium grade gold mineralisation as outlined by recent drilling.

The deal extends the mine’s life by another year.

DRC gains extra 15% share in Ivanhoe’s Kamoa–Kakula Copper project

Ivanhoe Mines and its joint-venture partner Zijin Mining Group signed an agreement to transfer an additional 15% stake of the Kamoa-Kakula Copper Project to the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) Government.

The deal increases DRC’s stake at Kamoa-Kakula Copper Project to direct 20%.

After this deal, Ivanhoe Mines and Zijin will hold an indirect 39.6% interest in the project, while Crystal River Global will continue to own an indirect 0.8% interest.

Premier African Minerals appoints Afmine as contractor for Zimbabwe tungsten mine

Premier African Minerals chose African Mining and Exploration (Afmine) as principal mining contractor for the RHA Tungsten Mine (RHA) in Zimbabwe.

Afmine is a mining and exploration services company that operates in Zimbabwe.

Under the contract, Afmine will have responsibility for upgrades, development of underground operations and re-commencement of open-pit mining at RHA.

Teck Resources to take over AQM Copper

Teck Resources entered a definitive agreement to acquire all of the issued and outstanding common shares it does not already own in AQM Copper.

Teck owns more than 42 million shares of AQM, which represents nearly 30% of issued and outstanding common shares.

The principal asset of AQM is its 30% indirect interest at Zafranal copper-gold project located in south Peru. Teck already owns 50% of Zafranal project.

According to the agreement, AQM shareholders will receive C$230,000 ($0.17) per common share in cash.

Antam and Newcrest sign alliance agreement to explore deposits in Indonesia

Indonesia’s state-owned company PT Antam and Newcrest Mining Limited entered a strategic alliance agreement to explore gold and copper deposits in multiple prospective areas in the country.

Under the agreement, key locations being explored include West Java, East Java, South Sumatera, Nusa Tenggara, North Sulawesi, Halmahera and Mollucas Islands.

Every project of merit found in this exploration will be developed through a separate joint-venture agreement between the parties.

China relaxes coal mining limits to increase production

China’s top planning body relaxed restrictions it imposed on working days at its coal mines to boost production and meet the growing fuel demand during colder months.

The National Development and Reform Commission (NDRC) had previously ruled that coal mines can operate up to 276 days a year to ensure production safety. Now, the curb has been lifted and the coal mines can operate 330 days in a year, reported Reuters.

This new step will increase coal production, which is the country’s primary energy resource.

Western Australia Parliament approves sale of Utah Point facility in Port Hedland

Western Australia State Parliament passed legislation to allow the sale of Utah Point Bulk Handling Facility in Port Hedland, which is positioned in one of the largest areas for iron ore export.

Treasurer Mike Nahan stated that the Pilbara Port Assets (Disposal) Bill 2015 delivered the legal framework to transform the Utah Point facility in Port Hedland to the private sector through a long-term lease.

Nahan said: “The passage of this bill enshrines in legislation the key elements necessary for the divestment of Utah Point.

South32 to acquire Metropolitan Colliery’s stake in Port Kembla Coal Terminal in Australia

South32 entered a binding agreement to acquire the Metropolitan Colliery and the associated 16.67% stake in the Port Kembla Coal Terminal (PKCT) from an Australian subsidiary of Peabody Energy Corporation.

South32 CEO Graham Kerr said: “The Metropolitan Colliery is a natural fit within our portfolio and the acquisition is consistent with our strategy to invest in high-quality mining operations where we can create value.

“The mine’s recently upgraded infrastructure and close proximity to Illawarra Metallurgical Coal will enable us to further optimise performance and unlock unique blending and resource synergies.”