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June 10, 2020

Coronavirus company news summary – Goa urged to resume mining – Minerals Council South Africa provides Covid-19 update – Rwanda issues mining recovery strategies

By Matthew Hall

10 June

Vedanta has cut its aluminium cost of production (CoP) by 20% year-on-year to $1451 per tonne amid the Covid-19 pandemic, which has sucked demand and pressured international prices. For the full fiscal year FY20, the CoP declined 14% year-on-year to $1690 a tonne. Due to an increase in alumina production, the company was able to achieve competitiveness in aluminium manufacture largely. Vedanta achieved a record production of 1.81mt of alumina in FY20 at its Lanjigarh refinery located in Odisha.

The Polytechnic Mining Alumni Association of Goa (PolyMAAG) has urged the Goa government in India to take immediate steps to resume mining operations in the state. The Association said that sustainable exploration and mining of minerals plays a key role in the economic development of any country. For the state of Goa, which was already facing at an economic downturn due to abrupt stoppage of mining activities from March 2018, the Covid-19 pandemic has created a greater challenge, PTI reported.

The Minerals Council South Africa has announced that a total of 679 miners have tested positive for Covid-19 with one death in the country’s mining sector. Many of the cases have been identified even though the individuals did not show up any symptoms or show only mild symptoms. The council further said that in some of the clusters identified in mining, up to 95% of those who tested positive have been asymptomatic and tested only due to effective implementation of tracking and tracing systems. At present, more than 230,000 miners are currently back at work in the country.

The Rwanda Mines, Petroleum and Gas Board (RMB) has released a set of strategies that can facilitate mineral processing and trading companies to restart complete operations, thereby allowing the sector to recover from the Covid-19 pandemic, The New Times reported. Additionally, Rwanda has started a mining inspection campaign that will inform recovery strategies post the pandemic while also helping to contain its spread in the mining industry. Due to the implementation of lockdown measures by several countries mining and mineral trading activities across the globe have slowed down.

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