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May 2015 www.miningglobal.com

Special Report:

Greenland

A New Rich And Rare Earth Find

NewGold

+

Maximising Assets at Peak Mines in Australia

Anglo American Digging Smarter, Not Harder

Canada Ontario’s Resurgence

Iron Ore Top 10 based on 2015 guidance


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editor’s comment

in this issue

Future Victory “Victory at all costs, victory in spite of all terror, victory however long and hard the road may be; for without victory, there is no survival” – Winston Churchill IN THE M A Y E D ITI O N of Mining Global,

we spoke with Anglo American’s group head of technology development, Donovan Waller, to discuss the company’s FutureSmart™ initiative and how the innovative program will lead the mining company to digging smarter, not harder. Also this month, we examine Ontario’s fall from grace and speak with Minister Michael Gravelle from the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development and Mines to discuss how the province is reestablishing itself as the powerhouse mining jurisdiction of past. Lastly, we divulge into iron ore and highlight the top producers in the world based on 2015 guidance. The iron ore road may be rocky and hellish but these companies are expected to come out on top

Enjoy the issue!

Robert Spence Editor robert.spence@wdmgroup.com 3


C o n t en t s

Features OPERATIONS

28

6

Anglo American: Digging Smarter, Not Harder

FINANCE

14

Canada: Ontario’s Resurgence

top 10

22 4

New Gold

Iron Ore Companies based on 2015 guidance

May 2015

56 44

Nyrstar Joy Global


64 78

General Nice Development

Ministry of Mineral Resources, Greenland

Company Profiles Australia 28 New Gold

Canada 44 Joy Global 56 Nyrstar

Europe 64 Ministry of Mineral Resources, Greenland 78 General Nice Development

5


O p e r at i o n s

Anglo American: Digging Smarter, Not Harder

Donovan Waller explains how FutureSmart™ blends innovation and technology to create real value Writ ten by: Robe rt Spe n c e


7


O p e r at i o n s The last few years have seen a wave of innovation pour down on the mining industry as companies struggle to seek out new ways of maximizing production while curtailing costs. Anglo American is among the few miners swapping traditional mining methods with technology and innovation to achieve greater results. “Our objective is to drive a more sustainable approach to mining through innovation. It touches on efficiency and productivity, safety,

the environment and sustainability, so we can strengthen our competitive position over the long term,” said Donovan Waller, group head of Anglo American’s technology development. The UK-based miner is in the process of launching FutureSmart™, a refined approach to sustainable operations that blends together a number of initiatives— innovative technologies and open collaboration—to deliver greater value to Anglo’s mining activities.

“At the moment, more than 50 FutureSmart initiatives are under way to find safer, more efficient, environmentally friendly and, ultimately, more sustainable ways to mine” – Donovan Waller

XXXX

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May 2015


A n g l o A m e r i c a n : D i g g i n g S ma r t e r , Not H a r d e r

Next generation mining The face of mining is changing. Rising costs and declining commodity prices have caused the laborintensive industry of old to curate newer and more efficient ways of doing business. The goal remains the same for Anglo American, but the process of obtaining it is different. Representing an initial investment of $30 million a year, FutureSmart™ is the center of the operational and financial turnaround. The holistic

method strives for a more sustainable approach to mining for Anglo American economically, socially and environmentally. The initiative also aims to improve the mining industry’s “big picture” by delivering better value, encouraging innovation and rebuilding the sector’s public image. “FutureSmart™ represents a shift in the way we approach mining at Anglo American, and is represented in many different projects across the breadth of the business,” said Waller. “At the moment, more than 50 FutureSmart™ initiatives are under way to find safer, more efficient, environmentally-friendly and, ultimately, more sustainable ways to mine. Some of the innovations will be on a small scale, while others will be more “disruptive,” creating a step-change, worth more than new projects.” Cutting-edge technology Anglo American wants to push the boundaries of what typical mining operations can achieve. Through key partnerships, innovative technology and new ways of utilizing information, FutureSmart™ seeks to increase mining efficiency while 9


O p e r at i o n s simultaneously reducing costs and eliminating potential hazards. According to Waller, one of the most exciting technology developments in the next ten years will be the use of lasers as cutting tools. “In the geothermal industry in America, we see drills that are reliant on lasers for penetration, and we are confident that we will be able to adopt a similar technology in mining to replace the traditional drill and blast, eliminating the safety risks and the impact on the surrounding environment and, at the same time, drastically reducing the time, energy,

“FutureSmart represents a shift in the way we approach mining at Anglo American, and is represented in many different projects across the breadth of the business.” – Donovan Waller

10

May 2015

resources and costs. Replacing drill and blast processes with laser technology also has the potential to cut out traditional and expensive truck haulage, replaced with a conveyor belt or pipe system and bring about a step-change for the industry.” A major component of Anglo American’s FutureSmart™ initiative is utilizing 3D technology to provide richer information for faster and improved decision making. “We have seen too many instances of mining companies losing many millions and sometimes billions of dollars of capital by failing to


A n g l o A m e r i c a n : D i g g i n g S ma r t e r , Not H a r d e r

put enough detailed thought and planning into the concept and the feasibility stages of projects. This has not only resulted in cost overruns and delays but completed projects have then failed to live up to their expectations, and of course the financial expectations of shareholders,” said Waller. “We are committed to learning from other industries and from our partners to embed 3D use in planning or, what is otherwise known as, smart or “digital” constructability and we are steadily moving towards building into our planning the ability to virtually

construct and deconstruct buildings, plants and mines and the associated infrastructure many times over before we break ground. High fidelity imagery is an important part of this, enabling a detailed analysis of conditions remotely and testing this data—a process that has traditionally taken two to three weeks, can now be done in 20 minutes. As an industry, we must restore our shareholders’ confidence in our ability to deliver what we have set out to, on time and on budget.” Automation, which has long been a part of the mining industry, is another aspect FutureSmart™ looks

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O p e r at i o n s to advance. Anglo has partnered with various companies, including Atlas Copco and ASI Solutions, to transform underground mining and fleet management through automation, and in some cases, robotics. “We have been able to successfully operate the first multi-OEM automation solution, improving safety and reducing costs by two thirds—compared to purchasing a manufactured automated new heavy vehicle. This is by no means a one-size fits all approach, and will ultimately depend on the operating and labor conditions in a given location,” said Waller. “In the area of robotics, we are currently trial testing technology to detect cracks behind rock faces, sending low profile vehicles, instead of our people, into deep tunnels to record grades, rock formations and faults on a single pass, significantly reducing the safety risks of manual labor in these types of environments and saving an enormous amount of time and energy.” Roadmap for the future For Anglo’s FutureSmart™ initiative, the icing on the cake is collaboration. According to Waller, the program 12

May 2015

draws on the expertise of the company’s diverse stakeholders, including employees, partners in academia and civil society, and peers in the mining and parallel industries to focus specifically on global challenges around mining, processing and sustainability. “These will be ‘think tanks’ open to stakeholders, each focused on carving out a road map to the industry’s most complex challenges in the areas of mining, processing and sustainability. We want to be able to facilitate genuine learning from some of the best. Often,


A n g l o A m e r i c a n : D i g g i n g S ma r t e r , Not H a r d e r

“We have been able to successfully operate the first multi-OEM automation solution, improving safety and reducing costs by two thirds (compared to purchasing a manufactured automated new heavy vehicle).” – Donovan Waller creating solutions to our own specific challenges need not start from scratch. Mining companies will form part of this collective, but there will be many other groups and industries involved, who will also stand to benefit. We will have access to each other’s intellectual property, without sharing sensitive information of course, which provides the access and the momentum we need to reach solutions with greater speed and efficiency.” The plan for open forums is to bring together different perspectives to reframe grand challenges and

deliver a vision and route for Anglo American going forward. Integrated thinking and broad collaborative partnerships will assist in driving rapid progress from idea to application, thus unlocking the infinite opportunities for the mining company. “Mining is on the cusp of game changing innovation that will move the industry forward in leaps and bounds. At Anglo American, we’re determined not only to be ready for this innovation, but to lead the way in creating it,” concluded Waller.

13


Finance

Canada’s Resurgence The fight to boost Ontario’s mining sector continues Writ ten by: Robert Spence

14 May 2015


C anada ’ s R e s u rg e nc e

Ontario is one of the top mining jurisdictions in the world. In recent years, the jurisdiction has been in a downturn. The province, which is home to more than 40 operating mines, is the largest producer of gold, nickel, copper and platinum metals in Canada. Ontario’s mineral production is valued at $9.2 billion with more than $4 billion annually invested in research and development (R&D), exploration, construction and equipment. In a recent article by NorthernLife. ca, industry stakeholders agreed that Ontario is falling behind as a mining jurisdiction. The article spotlights that while the province has shifted its focus to the Ring of Fire, which many believe is moving slower than anticipated, key figures see the government neglecting other parts of the province. “All we hear about is the Ring of Fire. Let me explain something about the Ring of Fire. It’s not the only thing going on in this province. I’m sick to death of it,” said Gino Chitaroni, president of the Northern Prospectors Association. “We have a lot of projects out there that could be economic very shortly, but we have to

encourage them,” Chitaroni said. “I don’t see it happening.” To learn how Ontario is challenging the situation, we interviewed Michael Gravelle, Ontario Minister of Northern Development and Mines to discuss how Ontario is working to improve its current situation and reestablish itself as the powerhouse mining jurisdiction we all know. Fall from grace According to the Fraser Institute Annual Survey of Mining Companies: 2014, Ontario ranked #23 internationally for investment attractiveness, falling nine spots from last year. The province ranked #9 among the top 10 attractive mining jurisdictions in Canada despite being one of Canada’s geographically larger jurisdictions. The survey, which was comprised of 122 jurisdictions worldwide, included comments such as: “Revision of the Mining Act to include near-veto powers against exploration of First Nation traditional land use areas contrary to treaty assurances.” “Provincial regulations different from federal regulations. Government 15


Finance

entities not addressing First Nations consultation issues.” “Lack of transparency, extreme conflict over land use with First Nations groups, high costs of permitting and new poorly organized regulations.” “Poor decisions on infrastructure and lack of provincial First Nations agreements related to developments in the Ring of Fire.” “Abandoning the mining industry and forcing it to deal directly with native groups, and providing support to native groups for negotiations, but 16 May 2015

not to junior mining companies.” While Canada’s overall scores improved significantly in 2014, by almost 10 points, Ontario remained in the bottom category. One of the biggest problems for the province, especially with junior miners, has been raising capital. “Globally, the junior exploration sector is experiencing difficulty raising capital because of a decline in investments resulting from lower commodity prices,” said Garry Clark, executive director of the Ontario Prospectors Association.


C anada ’ s R e s u rg e nc e

He continues, “While Ontario remains the top exploration jurisdiction in Canada, exploration spending in Ontario is down. Spending totaled $600 million in 2013 and $507 million in 2014, compared with $962 million in 2012.” In addition, Ontario’s two largest mineral exports, gold and nickel, endured some of the most volatile commodity prices in recent years. Despite the disappointing rankings, no other mining jurisdiction in

Looking forward The mining sector for Ontario has been off to a great start in 2015. Earlier this year, the province announced its intentions to renew its mineral development strategy, which was first established in 2006. Needless to say, it couldn’t have come at a better time. “Since I was re-appointed Minister of Northern Development and Mines in 2013, we have focused much effort on putting the necessary building blocks in place to foster private

‘Despite the disappointing rankings, no other mining jurisdiction in the world has the level of mining expertise found in Ontario’ the world has the level of mining expertise found in Ontario. “It is important to understand the significance of the mining industry to Ontario’s economy,” said Gravelle. “There are 42 operating mines right now, and more people employed in the mining sector than there were 10 years ago. The mining supply and service sector employs 50,000 people. Nearly 25 percent of all exploration in Canada is done in Ontario.”

sector investment and secure future economic opportunity for First Nations and Northern Ontario,” said Gravelle. The province’s Ring of Fire project, which is located in Northern Ontario, has dealt with lingering issues including a lack of infrastructure commitments from industry or government. Global engineering firm Hatch sees the Ring of Fire as one of the most exciting areas of opportunity for the company in Ontario. 17


Finance “There are many challenges presented by the geography, lack of infrastructure and social licensing which require new ways of thinking, and that makes it so exciting,” explained Jan Kwak, Hatch’s managing director of mining and minerals processing. “For instance, a construction strategy would probably require starting in the winter when the ground is frozen and it is easier to transport materials to the site. During the winter, we would need to create an island of solid ground where we can set up camp, store material and equipment, and use as a base to expand from when the ground thaws in summer.” To combat this, the government has established the ROF Infrastructure Development Corporation to provide $1 billion for investment in everything from infrastructure, signing of the landmark Framework Agreement with Chiefs of the Matawa First Nations as well as supporting education, training and health care initiatives for the First Nations. According to Gravelle, Ontario’s government has taken important steps to modernize the province’s Mining Act to maintain a vibrant and competitive 18 May 2015

mineral development sector. “Ontario’s clear laws and updated mining regulations are part of our commitment to promote mineral exploration and development, while respecting Aboriginal and treaty rights as well as the environment. Since updated regulations became mandatory we’ve worked closely with industry to guide them as they adapt to the process. I believe our province provides operational certainty for industry, just one reason why we have remained a leader in exploration spending.” Another important aspect for


C anada ’ s R e s u rg e nc e

Ontario’s recovery is incentives. The need to support companies at different stages of the industry cycle is vital for Ontario’s resurgence. “We have flow-through share financing of public companies which serves as a permanent tax credit for individual investors as well as a tool for junior exploration companies to raise funds,” said Gravelle. “Our government also works with industry associations to support mineral development and exploration activities with grants to prospectors through the Ontario Exploration Corporation. Not to mention, the

Ontario Geological Survey has world class open data sets which make valuable geological information easily accessible to industry as they work to identify mineral exploration targets.” The future One of the many bright spots for Ontario is its innovation in new technologies. The province has been actively involved in newer technologies in the mineral sector that are being used globally to make mines safer, green and more efficient. “The mining supply and services sector in Ontario is of enormous 19


Finance economic significance, generating a direct economic impact of $6.6 billion in gross output value,” said Gravelle. “Our government recognizes the value of maintaining our position as a global leader in mining sector innovations. That’s why we’ve committed in excess of $4.5 million in the past five years to support mining supply and services companies in expanding their export capacity and increase sales to international markets.” According to Gravelle, to maintain its competiveness, Ontario needs to maintain a business climate

20 May 2015

that attracts investment “I certainly recognize that it is vital that Ontario maintain a business climate that attracts investment and I believe we’re doing just that. For example, one of the most important indicators of investment attractiveness is exploration spending and, from this measure, it’s clear that Ontario remains a leader.” He added, “We are the top jurisdiction in Canada and among the top jurisdictions in the world. In fact, the size of Ontario’s provincial mineral industry is comparable


C anada ’ s R e s u rg e nc e

to the mineral industry of entire countries around the world.” It’s true. In 2003, exploration expenditures in Ontario were $193 million; in 2014, that figure was over a half billion dollars. The mineral production side reached $11 billion in 2014, up from $7.1 billion ten years ago. “I believe our province is very well positioned for a bright future

gold districts opening up in Ontario, including an array of new mines set to open in the next two years. “As Minister and most importantly, as a Northerner, I have a deep appreciation of the tremendous economic potential of the vast resources that are located primarily in the Northern part of the province. Our government has been driving economic development

‘Our government has been driving economic development in Ontario with a major focus on the mining sector—an industry of tremendous significance to our economy’ – Michael Gravelle, Ontario Minister of Northern Development & Mines in mineral development. To ensure that our large, industrial partners continue to be competitive globally, we announced on April 7, 2015 that the Northern Industrial Electricity Rate (NIER) program, a $120 million program to reduce electricity costs for large, industrial companies, would be permanently funded,” Gravelle said. Moving forward, Ontario is expected to improve greatly. There are a significant amount of new

in Ontario with a major focus on the mining sector—an industry of tremendous significance to our economy,” said Gravelle. “My mandate is to increase the prosperity of Northern Ontario and lead a mineral sector that is healthy, competitive and sustainable. And I’m proud to say that we are succeeding—Northern Ontario is well positioned as a world class destination for investment.” 21


TOP 10

Iron Ore Producers Break down of the top iron ore producers in the world based on 2015 guidance W r i t t e n b y : R o b e rt S p e n c e

Prices for iron ore are plunging at record speeds. The steel making ingredient is currently trading at $47 per ton, down from $120 per ton in 2013, and there appears to be no floor. Some companies are contemplating prices for the metal to drop as low as $35 per ton. Despite the doom and gloom for iron ore, these companies continue to push forward. Find out who the top producing iron ore companies will be in 2015.


23


top 10

BC Iron

10

According to BC Iron’s 2015 guidance, the company is expected to produce 5.6 million tons of iron ore in 2015. www.bciron.com.au

Mount Gibson Mining Iron Ltd According to Mount Gibson Mining’s 2015 guidance, the company is expected to produce 5.2 million tons of iron ore in 2015. www.mtgibsoniron.com.au

08

09 Atlas Iron Due to declining iron ore prices, Atlas Iron has suspended all operations. www.atlasiron.com.au


Iron Ore Producers

Arrium Mining

07 Cliff Natural Resources

According to Arrium Mining’s 2015 guidance, the company is expected to produce 10 million tons of iron ore in 2015. www.arrium.com

06

According to Cliff Natural Resources’ 2015 guidance, the company is expected to produce 33 million tons of iron ore in 2015.. www.cliffsnaturalresources.com

05

Anglo American According to Anglo American’s 2015 guidance, the company is expected to produce 62 million tons of iron ore in 2015. www.angloamerican.com

25


top 10

BHP Billiton

03

According to BHP Billiton’s 2015 guidance, the company is expected to produce 225 million tons of iron ore in 2015. www.bhpbilliton.com

Fortescue Metals Group According to Fortescue Metals Group’s 2015 guidance, the company is expected to produce 160 million tons of iron ore in 2015. www.fmgl.com.au

04 26 May 2015


Iron Ore Producers

02

Vale According to Vale’s 2015 guidance, the company is expected to produce 340 million tons of iron ore in 2015. www.vale.com

Rio Tinto According to Rio Tinto’s 2015 guidance, the company is expected to produce 3450 million tons of iron ore in 2015.

01

www.riotinto.com

27


New Gold Inc.

Maximising Assets at Peak Mines in Australia

New Gold’s Peak Mines General Manager Greg Bowkett d company’s unique approach to optimising Peak Gold Mine opportunities, refining management and company culture, looking to improve. Written by: Robert Spence Produced by: Nate Zeke


discusses the es by maximising , and continuously


New Gold Inc.

Peak Gold Mine

H

eadquartered in Vancouver, Canada, New Gold Inc. is an intermediate gold mining company with a focus on environment and social responsibility. The company has a growing portfolio consisting of four producing assets — the New Afton Mine in Canada, the Mesquite Mine in the United States, the Peak Mines in Australia and the Cerro San Pedro Mine in 30

May 2015

Mexico — and three development projects in Canada and Chile. Peak Gold Mines has inspired the Canadian miner to do more with less, which includes integrating new systems to optimise overall production and performance. Under this formula, Peak Mines has turned strategy into action by harnessing the creativity and passion of its team while introducing business processes


AUSTRALIA

that are lean and continuously improved. The Peak Mines in Australia has been a shining example of the success that incurs from these processes being put into place. Maximising opportunities Located in the Cobar Gold Field of New South Wales, Peak Mines is a medium-sized gold and copper mining operation,

comprised of five commercially active underground mines and a copper-gold processing plant. The mine produces gold dore for sale at the Perth mint and copper concentrate that is sold to markets in Asia. Although New Gold has historically been focused on copper and gold, there is potential to maximize new opportunities at Peak Mines, according to w w w. n e w g o l d . c o m

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The History of Raisebore Australia and New Gold from 1996 to the Present Raisebore Australia Pty Ltd (RBA) is a private company, wholly owned by its founder and Managing Director, Mr Rod Bertram. The company was registered in March 1995 and excavated its first raise for Peak Gold Mines in February 1996 which was an uphole raise. This was the very first box hole raise excavated in Australia by a raiseborer and followed the innovation of down reaming at Mt Isa a year earlier. RBA has excavated in excess of 125,000 metres of shafts within Australia, Ghana, Portugal, Vietnam, Hong Kong and New Zealand many of which have been for New Gold and the other mines in the Cobar area where RBA has been the pre-eminent raiseboring Contractor since 1995. In fact we understand that we have carried out in excess of 99% of all raiseboring requirements of Peak Gold since the initial box hole in 1996. Our fleet of six specialised small diameter raiseborers has the capability to box hole, down ream and excavate conventional slot raises as well as escape ways. Our fleet of seven mid-range and large diameter raiseborers has excavated numerous underground raises for New Gold as well as a number of surface shafts up to 781 metres in depth which was completed in 2011. Currently RBA is still servicing Peak’s raiseboring requirements with a low profile raiseborer drilling slot raises whilst a large diameter machine is completing a new ventilation circuit for the mine both from surface and underground locations. RBA is proud of its achievements and in particular its 19 year association with Peak Gold, which would not have been possible without its dedicated workforce and a loyal client. Raisebore Australia Pty Ltd will continue to offer unparalleled service to the industry whilst maintaining our responsibility for the safety of personnel, to the environment and act as a responsible corporate citizen. Website: www.raisebore.com.au/


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New Gold Inc. managing director of Peak Mines, Greg Bowkett. “We have a couple ore bodies with lead zinc that affect the current concentrate and we have to pay penalties because of this. So one of the things we are exploring is whether we could potentially reconfigure the circuit to produce a saleable lead or zinc product to turn this from a cost to a benefit.” Though it is early in the evaluation phase this could enable the mine to access new parts of different ore bodies, which aligns with its strategy of maximising opportunities. “Should this prove viable, this would add to our current operations and would give us the opportunity to maximise the whole asset instead of just the parts of it we are currently focused on,” Bowkett added. Refining management and culture For Peak Mines, structured communication has been instrumental in changing the company’s management style.

AUSTRALIA

The mine has enlisted the help of Quest Worldwide, a global change management consultancy that works with organisations to improve their business performance. The partnership focuses on three fundamental areas: operational excellence, strategy execution and people management. “Quest Worldwide is a global change management consultancy,” said CEO Mark Pinchen. “We operate from regional bases in Australia, Europe and the United States. We work with our clients to engage their people in deploying their strategies and realising significant, sustainable improvements to their organisations and cultures, delivering real bottom-line impact.” “Quest has been vital in getting the different departments of our mine to understand our processes so we can achieve our goal. It’s been monumental for the people management aspect of our business,” Bowkett said. “Quest has helped to engage our people, get them out of their comfort zones and to start thinking at

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involve people in this way but it pays dividends.” The partnership has aided Peak Mines in creating a highperformance culture that is focused on improving customer relations while continuously driving improvements. “We value integrity, commitment, innovation, employee development and teamwork,” said Bowkett. “We believe our business can be run through these values and we’re committed to implementing a positive change.” Quest works with project

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New Gold Inc. leaders to implement a coordinated approach to improve project effectiveness with a twoway communication style. “Instead of our company only being driven by the general manager or CEO, we actually want it to be integrated,” said Bowkett. “We want our company to be driven by the leadership side and the workforce side so we can produce the best product possible. Another component to refining the Peak Mines’ commitment to employees and company culture has been the assistance of the Workplace Health and Safety

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AUSTRALIA

Committee (WHS), a safety group comprised of key employees, including a member from every department in the organisation. It has been crucial in strengthening the company’s safety culture and getting Peak Mines to look at the bigger issues. “WHS has helped change the culture of our people to be more proactive in recognising safety issues,” said Bowkett. “The committee really helps to align our focus on the values, teamwork, and development and training of employees to ensure they understand how we view safety

Quest Worldwide

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New Gold Inc. and what is needed to achieved it as a team.” Operational excellence With a new approach, Peak Mines has also been able to streamline processes and optimise results. The company’s newly adopted management approach to maintenance, which incorporates the lean manufacturing model, helped Peak Mines cut its maintenance costs by USD $1.3 million in 2014. “The improved management approach is making a tremendous difference in how we operate and

AUSTRALIA

conduct business,” said Bowkett. “The results speak for themselves. The lean model has given us a goal for our bottom line, which helps us know exactly how many people we need to run this operation successfully, and profitably.” Peak Mines has reduced its maintenance cost on its loaders from USD $120 per hour to $50 per hour. The company was then able to increase its jumbo uptime from 60 percent to 85 percent. In addition, Peak Mines commissioned the help of KepnerTregoe to assist with a wide range of business improvements such

Peak Gold Mine Workers w w w. n e w g o l d . c o m

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New Gold Inc.

Peak Gold Mine

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AUSTRALIA

as increased operational efficiency and overall equipment effectiveness. “Kepner has helped us select the best locations for equipment to give us maximum capacity,” said Bowkett. “The company has essentially given us more opportunities with what we have.”

Company Information Industry

Mining headquarters

Vancouver BC, Canada founded

1980 employees

1757

The next chapter Along with additional exploration projects lined up, New Gold will continue to evaluate opportunities associated with the lead and zinc or at Peak. “Right now we’re focused on mining at the rate that’s optimal for us, while continuing to keep our employees safe,” Bowkett said. “Our Penalty for Profit initiative is another aspect we’re going to focus on moving forward.”

revenue

N/A products/ services New Gold is an intermediate gold mining company. The company has a portfolio of four producing assets and three significant development projects. The New Afton Mine in Canada, the Mesquite Mine in the United States, the Peak Mines in Australia and the Cerro San Pedro Mine in Mexico, provide the company with its current production base. In addition, New Gold owns 100% of the Rainy River and Blackwater projects, both in Canada, as well as 30% of the El Morro project located in Chile. New Gold’s objective is to be the leading intermediate gold producer, focused on the environment and social responsibility.

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Joy Global Inc. Shifting into Overdrive

With a major acquisition under its belt, Joy Global is forging ahead to expand horizons and establish a clear presence in its latest market Written by: Robert Spence Produced by: Bobby Meehan


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Joy Global Inc.

A Joy Global Service Center in Minnesota.

As a leading provider of worldclass service and equipment, Joy Global is one of the biggest names in the mining equipment sector. The U.S.-based company specializes in high-productivity solutions for surface and underground mining. Its machinery is used extensively for the mining of coal, copper, iron ore, oil sands, gold and other minerals. And while Joy Global has already established itself among the most innovative equipment manufacturers in the world, the company isn’t finished yet. With a major acquisition under its belt, Joy is forging ahead to 46

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expand horizons and establish a clear presence in a new market for the company: hard rock. The company’s vision for the endeavor includes a central focus on operational excellence coupled with a refined approach to safety and environmental stewardship. Entering a new market Last year, Joy Global acquired the underground hard rock mining assets of Mining Technologies International Inc. (MTI), including all assets associated with MTI’s hard rock drilling, loaders, dump trucks, shaft sinking and raise bore


CANADA

A Joy Global employee stands in front of an LT-650.

product lines. The $51MUS acquisition set the stage for Joy Global’s move into the underground hard rock mining sector. “The acquisition provides a unique blend to our broad portfolio of products and it’s a substantial entry point into this market,” said Josh Wagner, Joy Global’s general manager of hard rock underground equipment. Joy Global also recognized it needed to secure the most important part of MTI’s success: its employees. “From day one we knew we needed to get those people on

board,” said Wagner. “Thankfully we were able to hire the necessary staff and everyone has been very responsive to us. They understand we’re investing in them and where we want to take this business.” By combining MTI’s range of complementary products with Joy Global’s proprietary technology and global direct service, the acquisition represents an exciting opportunity for the company to make a significant impact in a new market. Immediately after the acquisition, Joy Global began working to upgrade MTI facilities and improve conditions. w w w. j o y g l o b a l . c o m

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CASTLE METALS

Castle Metals has a rich heritage dating back to 1890 in the Chicago area. Today, Castle operates from more than 50 facilities throughout the world. Castle is a leading distributor of specialty metal products, value-added services and complex supply chain solutions. Castle Metals’ broad range of products includes carbon, alloy, stainless steel, nickel alloys and aluminum. Operating in North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia, we work with international OEMs to better serve their multi-location production requirements and delivery needs. We also leverage our long-standing metals experience and focus on processing and other value-added services to meet the unique requirements of industries such as mining, oil and gas, power generation, heavy equipment, aerospace and defense. By expanding our capabilities and services, A. M. Castle is growing to serve the more complex requirements of customers who are outsourcing non-core functions. Our highly regarded H-A Industries, a state-of-the art bar processing facility, provides an extensive range of thermal treating and finishing services. In addition, we offer a comprehensive range of valueadded processing services for plate, sheet, tubing and bar products from many locations throughout our network. Today, A. M. Castle is continuing to expand. Our business has grown in Mexico, Europe and Asia through organic growth and A.M. Castle continues to make targeted acquisitions. To accommodate this accelerated growth in products, services and customer support, we are continuing to expand and strengthen our infrastructure. This work includes improving and enlarging our processing capabilities, broader inventory stocks, investments in systems, and focusing on continuous improvements across the company. Most importantly, A. M. Castle continues to focus on developing the strongest service team in our industry. We are committed to developing our people to ensure that we have the right talent, with the capabilities and experience needed, to provide our customers with best-in-class service and support. Website: www.amcastle.com


Joy Global Inc.

CANADA

“We needed to inject some capital to get the two facilities up to a manageable, workable level,” said Wagner. “As we start growing, all those values and opportunities will drive our industrial footprint going forward.” “What we’re doing now is getting everything ready to set the stage for things to come,” said Wagner.

Global. “It’s a cultural approach and it’s ingrained into our employees on a daily basis.” Based on a lean philosophy, the company is focused on eliminating waste and streamlining current processes. According to Maki, the company strives to simplify and automate processes and keep people safe. “One of the things we noticed in Vision for excellence our service centers is the potential Joy Global has a clear vision for its to eliminate waste and make things hard rock business. more efficient. We wanted to clean The company is currently rolling that up—rearrange and reorganize— out its Joy Global Business Systems to ensure we are operating as (JBS) operational excellence lean as possible. Our goal is to be initiative, a program dedicated running as efficiently as we can, to ensuring operations in every internally and externally.” department run as smooth and Although still in the beginning efficient as possible. stage of integrating the new hard “We’re introducing new practices rock division, Joy Global is already to improve the organization as a implementing its JBS initiative into whole,” said Evelyn Maki, Marketing the process. Communication Director for Joy

“Our goal is to be running as efficiently as we can, internally and externally.” – Evelyn Maki, Marketing Communication Director for Joy Global. w w w. j o y g l o b a l . c o m

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Joy Global Inc.

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“One of the things we stand by today is taking our curriculum and lessons learned elsewhere at Joy Global and applying them to part of the integration process,” said Wagner. “We want to take this approach to our customers and help them run their mines to maximize production, while achieving zero harm. This essentially feeds into our goal of delivering world-class performance and operating at the best level possible.” Another important component of achieving Joy Global’s vision for the future is its Environmental Health Safety (EHS) program. The company is committed to an incident-free culture and believes that EHS is a key indicator of organizational excellence and sustainability of its business. “Starting the process post-acquisition, we wanted to identify, evaluate and assess our current situation in terms of overall environmental health and safety metrics,” said Wagner. “We started from square one. We implemented our key initiatives with a focus on getting out in front of identifying lead indicators.” According to Wagner, production, quality and EHS are among the most important goals for the company. “We launched our recording field-level risk assessment program about five months ago and it’s already provided 300 lead indicators. It really provides a lot to our employee base and allows them to take a step back and understand all the risk associated with performing their tasks.”

Ted Doheny, President and CEO

Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer

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Joy Global Inc.

A Joy Global employee (yellow hat) checks in on equipment at an underground mine in the UK.

In addition, employees perform an array of safety initiatives before starting a job. The most notable is the company’s Safe Start initiative, which takes place before each and every shift and project. The purpose of the initiative is to ensure 54

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employees assess their current working situations and engage in discussions of potential hazards for the job. “The program is critical to helping employees from a situational awareness aspect,” Wagner said.


CANADA

When incidents do occur, Joy Global is quick to address the situation and implement new focus and training courses for employees. “We try and learn from every situation,” said Wagner. “As things pop up, we tailor new programs to address aspects that may have been lacking before.” Wagner added, “We also strive to empower our employees to speak up and record safety hazards. We want our people to be heard and able to voice their opinions in regards to safety.” The next chapter Joy Global’s move into the hard rock sector is part of its evolving focus on markets and service. The company is built on a history of providing high-performance equipment, but its goal is bigger than that: to solve mining’s toughest challenges in a variety of markets through a variety of means. New methods will include a greater reliance on data and automation, to help customers maximize production while keeping people out of harm’s way. Through its established direct service network and smart, connected products, Joy Global is partnering with its customers to adapt quickly to change, reduce downtime and drive results. “We want to enhance our products and services through our JBS op-ex program, and then grow beyond our traditional markets,” Wagner said.

Company Information Industry

Mining and Metals headquarters

100 East Wisconsin Avenue, Milwaukee, Wisconsin, USA, 53202 founded

1884 employees

15,000 revenue

Not Disclosed products/ services

Mining and Metals

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Nyrstar Langlois Success is a team effort

Though construction began much earlier, it wasn’t until the Nyrstar team acquired the Langlois mine in 2011 that the northwest QuÊbec property began to reach its full potential. Written by: Cutter Slagle Interviewed by: Robert Spence Produced by: Bobby Meehan


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Pumping station at tailings ponds for reclaim water

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o anyone who has been paying attention, the Langlois mine has come a long way since initial construction in 1994—and this is clearly due to the involvement of Nyrstar, an integrated mining and metals business with operations throughout the world. In the Beginning . . . It was a rough start for the mine which experienced a number of obstacles throughout the years. After being purchased by Breakwater Resources Ltd. in May 2000, the project actually reached commercial production in July 58

May 2015

of that same year only to have operations suspended a mere 4 months later due to problems that were associated with the main orepress system and low zinc prices. The cost of this hiccup? The call for a complete rework of the mine’s design and overall plan—and a few years’ time. It wasn’t until 2005 that Breakwater once again announced the Langlois mine would officially be developed. Once again, effort, time and countless resources were expended, including extensive engineering, metallurgical testing, re-design work and exploration,


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Precious metal assay in the Assay Lab

and production commenced in late 2006, with commercial production announced in July 2007. Unfortunately, operations were again suspended in November 2008 due to the decline in commodity prices and the general deterioration of the economic outlook globally.

“The success of the Langlois mine is a team result” – Yves Desrosiers, General Manager

Time for a Change Enter Nyrstar. After acquiring the mine in 2011, operations resumed during the first half of 2012—but only after many changes were implemented. The mine was successfully revamped through various stages of rehabilitation, and the mine’s surface infrastructure was greatly improved; however, the greatest change had nothing to do with the structure at all—the entire strategy changed, as w w w . n y r s t a r. c o m

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N y r s ta r L a n g l o i s the main motive behind the Langlois mine quickly became the desire to deliver consistent production results while continuing to streamline operating costs. Nrystar’s general manager Yves Desrosiers spoke exclusively with Business Review Canada, and when asked to explain the success of the mine post-purchase, Desrosiers did not hesitate: “It’s mainly strategy. We talked to people, involved them in the process of improvement and kept

them included in the process [as it continued].” As the mindset of management began to change, achieving specific goals became a priority—and although earning a profit has always been a top goal, the approach to doing so was also an important factor. “Production goals were put into place that could be achieved with hard work,” Desrosiers explained. “We put the energy into achieving these goals.”

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In order for these production goals to work, action plans were given to each department. Particularly, the end result or the desired result was given to each department. Maintenance and Recovery Plans When asked about the new maintenance plan, Desrosiers first talked about the triumph of taking the availability for the mining fleet equipment from forty-seven percent up to seventy-eight percent. Then, a program was put into place according to suppliers recommendation on maintenance program of the equipment, followed by a strict rule regarding the maintenance of the equipment. “If we are supposed to do maintenance on Wednesday, it should be on Wednesday,” Desrosiers said. It’s very important for equipment to be taken to maintenance when it’s scheduled to do so—not after. This plan of action has been completely organized with the maintenance superintendent so that they are fully aware of all service dates. Furthermore, the five worst pieces of equipment were removed from the fleet, allowing mechanics to focus all efforts on repairing or maintaining only the best pieces of machinery in the fleet. As a result, less time is now needed for maintaining the equipment. With the new maintenance plan intact, along with the hiring of “talented and seasoned people,” production has already increased by thirteen percent from last year. Nyrstar has hopes for

“Good employees are the best asset we have” – Yves Desrosiers, General Manager

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N y r s ta r L a n g l o i s

Precious metal assay in the Assay Lab

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Langlois to increase production another ten percent this year. Changing the mentality of employees during production has also been accredited to the increase. In short, the staff is able to have fun while working. Specifically, Desrosiers called the turnover rate from twenty-three percent to six percent a “huge improvement.” He also touched upon the importance of communication and implementing field visits. In particular, getting management involved and in the field allows for employees to ask questions. “We’re all in the same game,” he stated. When discussing the new recovery plan, Desrosiers briefly stated how mill operators are now left to do the job in which they were trained to do; operators are trusted to make any necessary changes they see fit. With the assistance of the recovery plan, improvements to the mine are now at ninety-four plus percent. Future investments are now looking to development and exploration. Bringing the conversation full-circle, Desrosiers ended the interview by again touching upon the importance of the Langlois mine’s employees. Reaching heights never imagined a few years ago, the success of the mine has been credited to the hard work of the staff: “The success of the Langlois mine is a team result,” Desrosiers concluded.

Company Information In d u s t r y

CANADA headquarters

Route 1000, Km. 42 C.P. 6000 Lebel-sur-Quévillon Québec J0Y 1X0 Canada Year acquired

2011 employees

265 revenue

Not Disclosed products/ services

Mining and Metals

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Ministry of Mineral Resources, Greenland Elements from the Arctic Written by: John O’Hanlon Produced by: James Pepper


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M i n i s t ry o f M i n e r a l R e s o u r c e s , G r e e n l a n d

Greenland is on the brink of a new era as it seeks to diversify its economy, traditionally dependent on fishing, and build a mining industry for the benefit of all its 56,000 inhabitants

A glacier in Greenland

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reenland is a country the size of Western Australia and though 80 percent of its area is locked under the Greenland ice sheet, up to three kilometres deep, more than 400,000 square kilometres of ice free coastal land has the great advantage of accessibility by sea, and in the south, proximity to established transatlantic shipping routes. Deep fjords create ideal natural harbours. The world’s largest island has basically the same geology as Canada – if you look at the map it is easy to see how they were once a single land mass – and contains the same minerals. Iron and its alloys (iron, nickel, molybdenum, titanium, vanadium) and base metals such as copper, lead and zinc are present in commercial deposits, as is uranium and rare earth elements (REEs), gemstones and gold. Investors can be sure of a positive response from the government. Neither


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Bjoerneoen

should they be put off by preconceptions about Greenland’s accessibility and infrastructure. With a total business volume of DKK 2.74 billion, The BANK of Greenland is only a small financial institution internationally. In Greenland, however, it is the largest bank and the only physically available full service bank. With more than 45 years of close cooperation with Greenlandic industries and public institutions it’s the leading partner for the Greenland mineral resources industry. And when it comes to accessibility and logistics they will find Royal Arctic Line, which uniquely has a market share of 100 percent within the core service of freight to, from and within Greenland, and Air Greenland with its

Citronen Fjord The Citronen Zinc-Lead Project in northern Greenland represents one of the world’s largest undeveloped zinc-lead resources with a resource in excess of 13 billion pounds of contained zinc and lead metal. Australian company Ironbark could begin construction in 2016 with first production two years later. However Citronen Fjord is at the northernmost tip of Greenland and deep within the Arctic Circle so shipping access will be seasonal.

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M i n i s t ry o f M i n e r a l R e s o u r c e s , G r e e n l a n d

Isukasia The Isukasia iron ore project is located at Isua approximately 90 miles to the north-east of Nuuk. In 2013 UKbased London Mining was granted a 30-year licence to build and run a giant iron ore mine. At the time the company said the mine was expected to yield 15 million tonnes a year of “very high quality iron ore concentrate to the global steel industry.” In January the Greenland government approved the sale of London Mining Greenland, the owner of the Isukasia project, to General Nice Development, a Hong Kong-based company with its main operational centre in Tianjin City, China.

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comprehensive scheduled and charter capability, are geared up to support them Last year’s elections in Greenland resulted in the re-election of the left-of-centre Siumut Party which went on to form a coalition government under with the Demokraatit and Atassut Parties. The new Prime Minister Kim Kielsen was quick to emphasise the government’s commitment to resource extraction and creation of a stable investment environment in Greenland: “The coalition will ensure a more stable and continuous mining policy to attract foreign investors,” he promised. The Prime Minister also pledged not to return to the policy of ‘zero tolerance’ of mining radioactive elements, which was abandoned in October 2013. That was a landmark decision, placing Greenland on the path to becoming a uranium producer like Canada and, and thereby opens up coincident resources of rare earths and other elements to exploitation. The zero tolerance policy was associated with the stance taken by Denmark on nuclear power generation before Greenland attained self-government status in 2009. Denmark still doesn’t want to contemplate nuclear power, and Greenland has not had to because it has abundant potential for hydro-electric generation. However thinking has shifted over the last couple of decades, said Henrik Stendal who has headed up the MMR’s Geology Department for the last seven years and now assists the new Ministry of Mineral Resources (MMR) led by Minister Andreas


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Uldum. “We needed to come to terms with the presence of rare earth elements (REE), for which demand has been increasing rapidly. Often REE are associated with uranium and in Greenland one of the big deposits is Kvanefjeld and that is associated with uranium.” The Ilimaussaq intrusive complex at the southernmost extremity of Greenland, contains huge REE deposits, big enough to end China’s near monopoly in the world market for rare earths that are essential to making cellphones, wind turbines, hybrid cars and many other products. However the problem there has been the presence of uranium and another radioactive

“We needed to come to terms with the presence of rare earth elements (REEs), for which demand has been increasing rapidly.” – Henrik Stendal

Evighedsfjorden

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M i n i s t ry o f M i n e r a l R e s o u r c e s , G r e e n l a n d

“The largest uranium deposits in the world are in Canada where the geological environment is exactly the same as in the Thule region of Greenland.” – Henrik Stendal

Finkenaesset

Rubies in rock

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element, thorium, in the same deposits these sought-after elements – you can’t separate them without processing the uranium as well, and that was not allowed. Greenland has 58 percent of the world’s REE outside of China and 65 percent of the ‘heavy’ rare earths, which are in shorter supply. GME’s Kvanefjeld resource and the adjacent Tanbreez project, which is not associated with uranium,


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Tanbreez This private Australian company has spent $5 million developing its kakortokite-hosted REE resource on the southern edge of the Ilimaussaq intrusion, probably the largest rare earth deposit in the world especially of the heavy rare earths such as dysprosium. The mining project consists of: an open mine pit; a processing plant; a port (including a helipad); a mine camp; a tailings deposit; and internally connecting roads. It is estimated to have a production life of several generations.

make up the world’s largest deposit of rare earth minerals. Now that the ban has been lifted GME can proceed with obtaining an exploitation licence and permission to process both rare earths and uranium, selling the latter into the many markets where nuclear power stations are being built. Uranium will be a by-product of Kvanefjeld, though an important one. Greenland’s uranium can now be exploited

Finkenaesset

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airgreenland.com

Greenland Mining & Minerals

We know the drill

With decades of experience acquired from Arctic operations, Air Greenland is your reliable and dynamic partner for exploration. You will benefit from the fact that we are part of the Greenlandic society. We have the advantage of a broad network. We know the local requirements and we have an infrastructure in the form of hangars and aircraft all over the country. We aim to provide a high level of service and this means that every single job is specifically tailored to suit the customer’s requirements.

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Our twelve robust AS-350 helicopters are versatile and sturdy helicopters – perfect for Greenland’s harsh environment. It is the ideal helicopter for sling operations, with our experienced and competent long-line sling pilots. Our eight Bell 212s with their versatile and spacious cabins, are effective in mobilizing your exploration camp. We are simply your sustainable choice in Greenland. You just have to ask.

Air Greenland Charter, Tel. +299 34 34 34, e-mail: glcharter@airgreenland.gl, www.airgreenland.com/charter


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for its own sake and, with 70 new plants under construction round the world and 183 planned within the next decade, it will be needed. The country is centrally located between North America and Europe, both home to important uranium importers. “We know more about the geology of southern Greenland than about the north-west, in the area around the American air base at Thule for example, where more work needs to be done,” said Stendal, “but the largest uranium deposits in the world are in Canada where the geological environment is exactly the same as in the Thule region of Greenland.” Stendal is emphatic that Greenland has the ability to make a significant mark on the global market for critical minerals. The presence of uranium stood in the way of other minerals than

supplier profile

True North Gems Likely to be the first producing mine of Greenland’s new mining era, True North Gems’ Aappaluttoq Ruby Project is coming on stream at the right time for the ruby market, which is worth $2.1 billion annually. The mine is now fully permitted. True North was awarded an exclusive 30 year exploitation (mining) licence effective March 10 2014. The mine is currently under construction.

AIR GREENLAND

Air Greenland has over 50 years of experience in flying in the Arctic. We operate a versatile fleet from the large Airbus-A330 to the small AS350 helicopter. For us, it is routine to work in remote regions where there is a sketchy infrastructure and a challenging climate. When you charter from Air Greenland, you not only get aircraft that are optimized for Arctic conditions, and pilots that know every corner of this vast country. You get more. As an Air Greenland customer you will also benefit from the fact that we are part of the Greenlandic society. www.airgreenland.com/charter

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Greenland Mining & Minerals

North American Nickel The Maniitsoq nickelcopper-PGE property in Greenland hosts numerous high-grade nickel-copper sulphide occurrences and initially was the largest exploration property ever granted in Greenland. Drilling has identified very high grade deposits. The drill programme will continue throughout 2015. In April 2015 the company announced an agreement with Minelco AS, a subsidiary of Swedish iron producer LKAB Minerals that will allow it to proceed with the acquisition of the Seqi Port on the southwest coast of Greenland.

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Nuuk

rare earths, he points out. “The Motzfeldt deposit, also in the south, contains significant quantities of niobium and tantalum. Both are critical minerals for world industry, but these deposits do contain uranium so the lifting of the ban will positively help them as well.” And there’s a high grade niobium deposit at Sarfartoq near the international airport at Kangerlussuaq in west Greenland. This deposit, which also contains rare earths, has been stalled since its discovery in the 1980s by the presence of uranium but could now be developed he says. Conversely, uranium is not the only radioactive


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element in the periodic table. The south-west Greenland carbonatite intrusions nearly all contain thorium which, though not as highly radioactive as uranium, would have influenced rare earth development within these areas, says Stendal. “When people talk about the ban they always think of uranium but no one takes thorium into account. Yet it is associated with nearly all these deposits.” The decision to raise the ban did not mean mining could go ahead from that date. Greenland has current regulations for exploitation of minerals within the Minerals Act. The regulatory framework to cover the mining, storage, transportation or exportation of radioactive material needs to be in place before exploitation of radioactive minerals can launch. It will take a couple of years to get it in place. There is plenty of best practice on which to benchmark, notably in Canada and Australia, however the International Atomic Energy Authority (IAEA) in Vienna will have to be given oversight of the new regime. There will be a lot of red tape in the process of establishing a new industry, and if only to reassure its own population Greenland is determined to see that all activities are certified safe. Finally, the change in legislation regarding uranium and other radioactive elements should be seen in the context of the large-scale mining act, passed in December 2012 and amended earlier in 2013. The act aims to ease the path for large projects the bill set the threshold for a project to qualify as “large-scale” at DKK 5 billion,

Greenland Minerals & Energy (GMEL) Focused on delivering a world-class production centre for speciality metals from the Ilimaussaq complex in south Greenland the company is setting up a pilot plant and beneficiation circuit. Kvanefjeld is recognised as one of the world’s largest resources of rare earth elements, as well as containing substantial resources of uranium and zinc. The company has signed MoUs with Chinese industrial conglomerate NFC, whose subsidiary Guangdong Zhujiang Rare Earths Company is recognised globally as a leader in rare earth separation technology.

Nuuk Lake

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M i n i s t ry o f M i n e r a l R e s o u r c e s , G r e e n l a n d

White Mountain Hudson Resources is a Canadian based mining company focused on the Naajat (White Mountain) anorthosite (calcium feldspar) project in Greenland. The White Mountain resource is unique in its size and purity. Processing is simple and no chemicals are involved. Hudson plans to start construction this year and start producing by the end of 2016, targeting initially the e-glass market (optic fibre) for which anorthosite is a better and more economic option than kaolin. 76

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($724,000,000), and the project’s need for labour in carrying out the construction activities must exceed the suitable, available and accessible workforce in Greenland. To the debate on the need to mine nuclear materials in the first place will be added a fear that the country will be flooded by Chinese and other low cost foreign workers. These fears are nowhere near as well grounded as people fear, Henrik Stendal believes. The revision of the bill tightens the regulation of minimum wages considerably. No legal basis for nonfixed minimum hourly wages pursuant to foreign collective bargaining agreements is now to be


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found in the act. “Before a company is allowed in it has to offer a certain level of Greenlandic jobs, suppliers and subcontractors. They can’t come in if they are not competitive, and able to bring with them the necessary skills.” Naturally, Greenland wants to secure as many jobs for its own people as it can, and establish an indigenous skills base to support its new industries. However with a population a little over 56,000 it will need help, especially if it is to preserve its traditional fishingbased way of life. Its great opportunities are attended by equally great challenges. The government of Greenland’s objective is to license the opening of three to five mines on an environmentally and socially sustainable basis over the next five years. This is a realistic goal. The first mine to open will be the ruby-sap¬phire mine on the south-west coast of Greenland, about 160 kilometres south of the capital Nuuk. Permitting has been a good process as the government attempts to balance the economic, environmental and social imperatives. For many years, there has been broad political agreement in Greenland to grow the mineral sector into a principal industry and diversify the economy. Now with the new government in place and the global mining industry preparing for recovery Greenland will be increasingly seen as a good place to invest in. The commitment of General Nice Group may well prompt the cautious institutional and corporate investors in London, Vancouver and Toronto to look afresh at Greenland.

Government Information Industry

Mining headquarters

Nuuk, Greenland founded

1998 employees

30 revenue

Not Disclosed products/ services

Government

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General Nice Development

Northern minerals for eastern applications

Written by: John O’Hanlon • Produced by: James Pepper

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General Nice development

General Nice Development Ltd, the new owner of the Isua iron ore project in Greenland is on a mission to move forward the country’s mineral resources to meet future demand from China and other rapidly urbanising world markets

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ack in October 2013 the Greenland government awarded UK-based company London Mining a 30 year licence to build and run a giant iron ore mine at Isukasia in Western Greenland. At the time it was described by Greenland’s Industry Minister as the largest commercial project in the island nation’s history. Greenland is an autonomous territory still administered by Denmark, however it is moving towards greater independence, and sees the development of a strong mining industry as the strategy that will give it the economic clout to do so. That ambition has been clouded somewhat over the last few years by the weakening of commodity prices on the international exchanges, however the fundamentals remain strong. In particular global steel demand is expected to recover as China’s economy continues to grow.

A team from Sichuan Xinye Investment Corporation of Mining & Exploration, and Sichuan Bureau of Metallurgical Geology & Exploration visit Isua site.

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May 2015


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General Nice headquarters at Tianjin

The Isua deposit, as it is known, is wellplaced for exploitation. Just 150 kilometres north west of the capital Nuuk, it is a similar distance from international airport at Kangerlussuaq, and lies 110 kilometres from the coast where the construction of a deepwater port is proposed which will pipe the ore as slurry. The deposit holds a banded iron formation (BIF) measuring between 180 metres and 440 metres in thickness and extends over a strike length of more than two kilometres. It is open at both sides and outcrops at the centre of deposit. Towards the north and south of the deposit, the BIF is overlain by a sheet of ice that ranges in thickness up to 130m, however the ore can be extracted using open pit methods.

“We are reviewing the potential of other projects in the Nordic region generally, Greenland included” – Jenny Yang , Vice President of General Nice Development

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General Nice development

The exploration site

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May 2015

Just before the election of a new government in November 2014 London Mining went bankrupt and was placed into receivership after incurring heavy losses at its Sierra Leone mine due to the Ebola crisis. However its Greenland subsidiary, London Mining Greenland AS, was bought by General Nice Development Ltd, a major commodity trader and investment company incorporated in Hong Kong in 1992 and headquartered at Tianjin, China.


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The project has attracted intense interest and a level of participation from major Chinese companies since it was launched in 2011. Under London Mining’s ownership, SNC-Lavalin completed a bankable feasibility report (BFS), with the support of major Chinese companies including China Communication and Construction Corporation and Sinosteel Corporation. In addition Sichuan Xinye Investment Corporation, a subsidiary of Sichuan Metallurgical Bureau

Mr. Cai Sui Xin - The Chairman of General Nice Group

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General Nice development

Loading a tipper

“We are reviewing the potential of other projects in the Nordic region generally, Greenland included” – Jenny Yang

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May 2015

carried out a detailed study on the Isua project toward a capital investment of $2.35 billion and Mr. Liu Yikang, the senior advisor with China Mining Association has discussed Greenland’s natural resources, including Isua, at various events. These included presentations to the Ministry of Land and Resources during a high level official visit to Greenland in 2013 and to Chinese investors and mining companies during the past few years. Now the Chairman of General Nice Development Mr. Cai Suixin is keen to set up the Nordic Development fund (NDF) to promote long term development in the region, as a way of sharing various infrastructure demands. “We very much believe in the potential that exists to open up


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the natural resources that are locked up in these unexplored areas. This will be of real benefit to all the stakeholders of course, but most particularly to the people and communities of Greenland,” he said. Vice President Jenny Yang explained the state of play following the acquisition: “We are working on an optimisation plan for the Isua project, and a thorough review its economic value. Meanwhile we are reviewing the potential of other projects in the Nordic region generally, Greenland included. We will consider joint ventures as well as acquisitions as a way to build a portfolio, and have already entered discussions with investors and EPC contracting firms that specialise in mine construction from a number of countries including China, Canada and Denmark. In addition, we are working closely with the Danish and Greenlandic governments and a number of banks.” The Ministry of Mineral Resources is bullish about the involvement of General Nice Development. The work related to the project can now continue, it has said, though before construction and operation of a mine can begin, a number of licensing issues need to be addressed. Details of the exploitation and closure plans as well as technical approvals are currently being finalised and London Mining Greenland AS, the government and the municipalities Qeqqata Kommunia and Kommuneqarfik Sermersooq are negotiating an Impact Benefit Agreement (IBA), to be concluded before any new development in Greenland can go ahead. These procedures are all expected to be finalised soon, the Ministry says.

Company Information Industry

Exploration headquarters

Hong Kong, China founded

1992 employees

12,000 (group figure for General Nice Resources (GNR)) revenue

$10 billion (GNR group) products/ services

Mining, minerals

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Profile for Mining Global

Mining Global Magazine - May 2015  

Mining Global Magazine - May 2015  

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