Archive | Africa Mining

De Beers Unit’s Gigantic Diamond Could Be Third-Biggest Ever – by Mbongeni Mguni (Bloomberg News – June 16, 2021)

(Bloomberg) — Debswana Diamond Co., a unit of De Beers Plc, unearthed a 1,098 carat stone in Botswana on June 1, the largest since the company began operations five decades ago.

Preliminary analysis suggests the stone is the world’s third-largest gem-quality diamond ever after the Cullinan Diamond that was discovered in South Africa in 1905 and the Lesedi la Rona that was found in Botswana in 2015, according to Debswana acting Managing Director Lynette Armstrong.

Valuation by the Diamond Trading Co. Botswana is due in a few weeks and at this point, Debswana can’t say whether the rock will be sold by De Beers or through the Okavango Diamond Co., a state-owned trader that also holds the right to buy Debswana stones, Armstrong said. Continue Reading →

WATCH: Thousands rush to dig for diamonds in South Africa – by Cecilia Jamasmie ( – June 15, 2021)

The South African government has launched a formal investigation into claims made on social media of the existence of massive diamonds within easy reach near the town of Ladysmith, about 360 kilometers (224 miles) southeast of Johannesburg.

The country’s Department of Mineral Resources and Energy ordered people on Tuesday to halt the search as thousands continue to travel from across South Africa to join villagers who have been digging in the area since Saturday.

The Department noted it was sending a team of geological and mining experts to the site to collect samples and conduct an analysis. Continue Reading →

South African ferrochrome furnaces need to regain competitive advantage, warns Roskill – by Simone Liedtke ( – June 15, 2021)

The South African ferrochrome industry has benefitted from recent events in China, which commodity research consultancy Roskill says has removed significant global capacity through the closure of small furnaces.

While higher-cost furnaces in southern China have been able to fill the short-term gap, the demand expectations will require South African plants to remain operational throughout this year.

Taking this into account, Roskill predicts that the benchmark price for the third and fourth quarters of this year will maintain a premium to the South African cost structure. Continue Reading →

Cobalt ‘Bubble’ Will Burst, Ivanhoe Executive in Congo Says – by Michael J. Kavanagh (Bloomberg News – June 14, 2021)

(Bloomberg) — The demand for cobalt is a bubble that will burst as new battery technology reduces the need for the metal, according to the head of the chamber of mines in the Democratic Republic of Congo.

Congo holds more than half the world’s cobalt reserves, but the market’s negative perception of the central African nation’s business climate means companies will soon find alternative ways to create the power needed for the green energy revolution, Louis Watum of the Federation des Entreprises du Congo told a virtual conference on Monday.

“I’m not a fan of cobalt,” said Watum, who is also an executive at Ivanhoe Mines Ltd. and previously ran their Congo operations. “Cobalt is a bubble that is going to burst.” Continue Reading →

‘Get on with your jobs’: Keir Starmer takes aim at Rhodes row Oxford dons after they refused to teach students – by Eleanor Harding (Daily Mail – June 15, 2021)

Sir Keir Starmer has demanded Oxford dons ‘get on with their jobs’ after they refused to teach students in a row over a statue of Cecil Rhodes. The Labour leader told academics it was unfair to punish ‘hard-hit’ students in their quest to remove the colonialist.

He waded into the furore after 150 lecturers threatened to stop tutorials for Oriel College students until the statue is removed from its building.

When asked yesterday if he supported the dons, Sir Keir urged them to end their boycott immediately. He told LBC News: ‘Get on with the job of teaching people. Let’s get our feet back firmly on the ground and teach the students. Continue Reading →

Ganfeng Lithium to buy 50% of Mali mine for $130 million – by Cecilia Jamasmie ( – June 14, 2021)

China’s Ganfeng Lithium, one of the world’s top producers of the commodity used in electric vehicle batteries, is acquiring a 50% stake in a special purpose vehicle that owns the Goulamina hard-rock mine in Mali for $130 million.

Ganfeng, which counts automakers Tesla and BMW among its customers, said the move will grant it at least half of Goulamina’s first-phase annual output, estimated in 455,000 tonnes of spodumene.

Mali’s government can take 10% of the equity free of charge and pay in cash for up to 10% more, the company said. Continue Reading →

Andrew Forrest’s $100b Congo power play – by Brad Thompson (Australian Financial Review – June 13, 2021)

“Fortescue will not work with those who intend to ship in thousands of workers
and ship them out once the project is completed,” he said. “We intend to upskill
the economies that we enter.”

Fortescue Metals Group chairman Andrew Forrest has secured the inside running on developing the world’s largest hydro power project – which alone carries a $US80 billion ($103.8 billion) price tag – and associated port, green hydrogen and green ammonia capability in the troubled Democratic Republic of Congo.

Dr Forrest said Fortescue’s green energy and green hydrogen projects in Africa were not confined to the DRC and included projects in Kenya and Ethiopia, with investors and financiers already indicating a willingness to commit more than $US100 billion.

He put Fortescue’s weight behind the Grand Inga dam project on the Congo on Sunday as part of his ambition to diversify the iron ore miner into a global force in green energy and green hydrogen. Continue Reading →

As Germany Acknowledges Its Colonial-Era Genocide in Namibia, the Brutal Legacy of Diamond Mining Still Needs a Reckoning – by Steven Press (Time Magazine – June 10, 2021)

Steven Press is the author of Blood and Diamonds: Germany’s Imperial Ambitions in Africa, available from Harvard University Press.

Between 1904 and 1908, Germany’s military and leadership oversaw the killing of at least 80,000 Africans in what is now the independent country of Namibia. On May 28, Germany apologized. Declaring his country’s past violence in Namibia “genocidal,” Foreign Minister Heiko Maas also pledged $1.3 billion in aid to Namibians, whose capital, Windhoek, still has a prominent street named after Otto von Bismarck.

The German apology is a commendable step and important precedent. But its parameters are inadequate, and one reason why may be embedded in your family’s heirloom engagement ring.

Millions of carats in diamonds have been exported from Namibia since 1908. These same sparkling stones have a dirty history tied to German colonial rule. Right now, official statements about Germany’s debt to Namibia do not account for those gemstones at all. Continue Reading →

World needs Congo copper to kick fossil fuels, Friedland says – by James Attwood, Erik Schatzker and Michael J. Kavanagh (Bloomberg News – June 8, 2021)

An African nation emerging from decades of conflict and corruption holds the key to greening the global economy.

That’s the view of mining magnate Robert Friedland, whose Kamoa-Kakula venture just started producing copper in the Democratic Republic of the Congo.

After scouring 59 countries over more than three decades, the Canadian billionaire says Congo has the world’s best deposits of the metal used in everything from electric cars to solar panels and power grids. Continue Reading →

Nickel: No longer a forgotten battery metal – by Gerard Peter (Mining Review Africa – June 7, 2021)

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Nickel will be the key beneficiary of electric vehicle (EV) adoption against the backdrop of other battery metals such as lithium and cobalt, supported by its dominant long-range capabilities. Furthermore, a wealth of nickel deposits will position Africa to benefit from an uptrend in prices in the coming years writes GERARD PETER.

These are the key findings of a recent Fitch Solutions report that looks at the opportunities and risks for nickel in the battery revolution.

The basis of the report has been founded on a recent Mining Review Africa webinar titled, Nickel: The Forgotten Battery Metal where Fitch Solutions, Carly Cassidy was a participant. Continue Reading →

Jihadists Massacre at Least 130 in Burkina Faso as West African Violence Surges – by Benoit Faucon and Joe Parkinson (Wall Street Journal – June 6, 2021)

NIAMEY, Niger—The jihadists came at night on motorcycles and surrounded a remote village on Burkina Faso’s eastern border with Niger. By the early hours of Saturday morning, over 130 civilians were confirmed dead by the government—the worst terrorist atrocity in the history of a country that has been plunged into extremist violence in recent years—prompting calls to intensify international counterterror efforts across West Africa.

During the three-hour onslaught on Yagha village, the militants shot indiscriminately, torching homes and a market before lobbing explosives at civilians seeking refuge in gold-mining holes, according to government officials and nongovernmental organizations based in the region.

No one has claimed the killings, but government officials say it was the work of Islamic State’s regional affiliate, the Islamic State in the Greater Sahara, or ISGS, which has killed hundreds of civilians in recent months. Continue Reading →

Macron’s blunt style may harm bid for new African chapter – by Paul Melly ( – June 3, 2021)

French President Emmanuel Macron has once again resorted to outspoken language as a tool of diplomatic strategy, this time targeting the president of the Central African Republic (CAR).

He described Faustin-Archange Touadéra as a “hostage” of Wagner, a Russian military contractor that has been helping the CAR government fight rebels threatening to overrun the capital, Bangui.

Paris is also angered by the anti-French social media messages that emanate from sources close to Mr Touadéra, stirring up resentment against the former colonial power. Continue Reading →

Zimbabwe Threatens to Seize Platinum Concession From Eurasian Resource Affiliate – by Ray Ndlovu and Godfrey Marawanyika (Bloomberg News – May 30, 2021)

(Bloomberg)- Zimbabwe’s mines minister has informed Todal Mining Ltd., a venture controlled by Eurasian Resources Group, that its platinum mining concessions could be seized because no progress has been made in developing them.

The Bokai and Kinonde concessions may be taken over under the “use-it/lose-it principle” which allows the state to repossess idle mining claims, Minister Winston Chitando said in a letter to Todal dated May 28 and seen by Bloomberg. The mines ministry confirmed the veracity of the document.

“I note with concern that over the last few years there have been several changes to the work program to make this project progress to production stage,” Chitando said in the letter. Continue Reading →

Is Ivanhoe’s Western Foreland DRC’s next major copper discovery? – by Chantelle Kotze (Mining Review Africa – May 28, 2021)

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Canadian mining company Ivanhoe Mines’ Western Foreland exploration licences, located to the west of the tier-one Kamoa-Kakula copper project, is a key pipeline asset for the company, which it believes can yield additional high-grade copper discoveries within the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC).

Despite being focused on executing construction and development activities at the Kamoa-Kakula, Platreef and Kipushi projects, the company has exploration in its DNA and company founder and executive co-chair, Robert Friedland, is always in search of the next world-scale discovery, writes CHANTELLE KOTZE.

Having amassed a wealth of geological and related technical information about the Western Foreland region during the discovery and advancement of the nearby Kamoa-Kakula project, Ivanhoe Mines has spent the past two years securing the various exploration licenses that now make up the Western Foreland exploration project. Continue Reading →

Biggest copper mining project in decades begins production – by Cecilia Jamasmie ( – May 26, 2021)

Canada’s Ivanhoe Mines (TSX: IVN) has begun producing copper concentrate at its Kamoa-Kakula project in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) months ahead of schedule as the metal continues to trade close to all-time highs.

Kakula, the first mine planned at the concession, is initially forecast to generate 3.8 million tonnes of ore a year at an average feed grade “well in excess of 6% copper” over the first five years of operation, the company said.

Ivanhoe and partner Zijin Mining said first ore was introduced into the concentrator plant on May 20 to perform initial hot commissioning tests on the ball mills and other processing equipment. Continue Reading →