Tungsten: Brazilian project eyes 2021 start-up on new results

Brazilian tungsten mine developer Mineração Pará Tungstênio (MPT) is targeting a large-scale operation of up to 1.2ktpy WO3 (950tpy contained W) at its project in Rio Maria, Pará state, with scope to increase capacity further depending on exploration results. MPT estimates a high-grade ore of 0.4-0.5% WO3 could be produced,… Read more

Refractories: Chinese production down 25% in Q1 2020

China Association of Refractories has released a figure of 4.1Mt for Chinese refractory production in Q1 2020, 25% less than the Q1 2019 figure of 5.5Mt. Much of the decline was due to COVID-19 measures which led to closures of capacity in the main refractory production hubs, including in those… Read more

Automotive: How regulation will determine what EV scenario develops after Covid-19

The EU Commission is considering a further strengthening of its support for clean transportation as part of the “green recovery plan” after the Covid-19 crisis. The resulting incentive package would involve: An EU-wide purchasing facility for clean vehicles amounting to €20Bn for the next two years (assuming a reasonable €5,000… Read more

Macroeconomics: Mining equity values rally despite COVID-19

Mining equity valuations have shown a significant recovery in May with the ASX 300 Australian Mining index rising by 18% so far this month, to within a whisker of its start-year level. The index is also now within 10% of its 3-year high. Whilst valuations in the gold sector have… Read more

Rare earths, graphite: US ORE Act aims to reduce dependence on China

The On-shoring Rare Earths (ORE) Act was introduced earlier this month in a bid to end US dependence on China for rare earth elements and other critical minerals used in the manufacture of domestic defence technologies and high-tech products. It hopes to do this by encouraging a supply chain for… Read more

Tin: AETI expects Indonesian output to rise in spite of COVID-19 cuts

The Indonesian Tin Exporters Association (AETI) expects Indonesian refined tin production to increase by 6% y-o-y in 2020, despite the country’s major refiner announcing cuts in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. PT Timah previously stated it would reduce refined tin output by 20–30% per month in 2020 while it gauged… Read more

Vanadium: Saudi-German JV to manufacture vanadium redox flow batteries

German technology company Schmid Group and Saudi Arabian investment company Nusaned Investment, have closed the transaction for their planned joint venture (JV) under which they plan to set up a manufacturing facility with 3GWh of production capacity for vanadium redox flow batteries (VRBs) in Saudi Arabia. To be the world’s… Read more

Tungsten: Sandvik sells stake in Chinese JV GESAC

Swedish-headquartered cemented carbide tools maker Sandvik Machining Solutions is to sell its 10% stake in Xiamen Golden Egret Special Alloy (GESAC) to majority owner Xiamen Tungsten. The purchase price is RMB 0.49Bn (US$69M), and the divestment is expected to close in Q2-Q3 2020. Roskill View In its announcement, Sandvik noted… Read more

Vanadium: Largo Resources announces expiration of its vanadium off-take agreement

Largo Resources’ off-take agreement with Glencore International expired as of May 2020.  Largo’s relationship with Glencore helped the company move from a start-up project in Brazil to an established vanadium producer amidst a volatile period for the vanadium market. The offtake deal helped Largo to obtain debt funding for project… Read more

Chromium: A very reduced ferrochrome capacity restart after the COVID-19 lockdown

In South Africa, Merafe Resources has announced that its joint venture with Glencore’s South African chromium assets – the Lion ferrochrome smelter and chromite mines, located in the eastern Bushveld – have recommenced after COVID-19 lockdown. Meanwhile, the Boshoek, Rustenburg, Wonderkop and Lydenburg smelters, and the Kroondal mine, will remain… Read more