Mining companies are aggressively initiating strategic investments and fund raising to develop new mining projects, particularly in China, where companies are eager to invest.

China-based gold company Zijin Mining says it is considering a $1bn investment in copper and gold ventures in the Philippines over the next five years.

Zijin has been seeking mineral resources acquisitions outside China and has already made investigations into several overseas projects.

China Nonferrous Metal Mining Group Co (CNMC) has completed Chinese and Zambian government approval procedures to acquire Luanshya Copper Mines (LCM) of Zambia. CNMC has acquired an 80% stake in LCM for $50m.

CNMC’s successful acquisition of LCM will increase the latter’s reserves of copper, cobalt and other resources by about three million tons.

Also in China, Yanzhou Coal’s $3.2bn takeover bid was approved this week by Australia’s Felix, which produces about 4.8 million tons of coal a year.

Moly Mines signed a subscription agreement with Hanlong Mining Investment, Sichuan Hanlong’s Chinese subsidiary, through which the latter will offer $200m in equity and debt funding to Moly.

According to the agreement, Hanlong will also arrange or provide $500m debt funding by 30 June 2010 for the Spinifex Ridge molybdenum / copper project.

The funding will allow Moly develop the ten-million-tons-per-annum Spinifex Project by mid-2010 in addition to repaying outstanding payments.

In the Americas, Toronto-based Volta Resources Inc signed a definitive agreement with Randgold Resources to acquire the latter’s interests in the Kiaka gold project in Burkina Faso for C$4m and 20 million Volta shares.

And in Australia, a merger agreement between small-cap mining company Sylvania Resources and Finnish metals refining group Ruukki has been called off following negotiations that kicked off in June.

Ruki was hoping to buy Sylvania for €268m in an all-share deal but both parties struggled to implement the deal.