Iamgold’s growing investment in Burkina Faso – by Geoffrey York (Globe and Mail – April 14, 2012)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

ESSAKANE, BURKINA FASO – This is a dangerous land. Just across the border are the Sahara wastes where Islamist terrorists and separatist rebels roam free. Inside the country are gangs of bandits and the occasional violent riot by drunken soldiers.

Yet it’s also a land where Canadian miners are eagerly investing hundreds of millions of dollars. The gold belt of northern Burkina Faso, like other regions of West Africa, has emerged as a new favourite haunt for Canadian mining companies, despite a vast array of security risks.

Less than four years after its arrival, Toronto-based Iamgold Corp. (IMG-T12.55-0.13-1.03%) has become the biggest private employer in Burkina Faso with 2,200 employees. It plans to invest a further $600-million over the next three years to expand its mine and double its processing capacity.

Like many other Canadian investors, the company sees its future in West Africa’s fast-growing mining sector, rather than in the older mines of South Africa, even though the South African industry is still bigger.

Read more

Bonanza gold grades at Upper Canada, Monster Lake – by Marilyn Scales (Canadian Mining Journal – April 11, 2012)

Marilyn Scales is a field editor for the Canadian Mining Journal, Canada’s first mining publication. She is one of Canada’s most senior mining commentators.

Like most CMJ readers, I get a shiver up my spine at the thought of bonanza gold grades. So it was with excitement I read that Toronto’s Queenston Mining (Queenston.ca) had intersected 42.4 g/t Au at its Upper Canada property in Kirkland Lake, ON. Better yet, that was the grade over 5.5 metres.
Not all the grades at Upper Canada were as high. There was also 22.9 g/t over 6.6 metres, 13.2 g/t over 5.5 metres, 4.47 g/t over 37.2 metres and 4.40 g/t over 26.2. These results came for diamond drilling in the Upper L zone as well as the H, M & Q zones. Queenston says the results expand both the underground and pit potential of a large gold system.
A few high grade drill intersections do not a gold mine make, but Queenston has already outlined 1.96 million tonnes averaging 2.38 g/t Au in the indicated resource (uncapped) and 5.38 million tonnes at 4.55 g/t Au in the inferred category (uncapped). Together the resource contains an estimated 937,000 oz of gold that will be recovered by both open pit and underground mining.

Read more

Gold production hit high in 2011 – by Peter Koven (National Post – April 12, 2012)

The National Post is Canada’s second largest national paper.

Global gold production continues to rise, bringing new supply into the market. But as long as investor demand for the yellow metal remains skyhigh, it may not matter.

Gold consultancy GFMS launched its 2012 gold survey on Wednesday, and it took a bullish stance on prices despite a recent correction and a couple of worrying trends in the market.

One of them is that supply keeps going up. The survey showed that mine production hit a record high in 2011, rising 3% year-over-year to 2,818 tonnes (or almost 100 million ounces). It is the second straight year that production reached a new high, defying the “peak gold” theory that some commentators have thrown about.

Neil Meader, research director at Thomson Reutersowned GFMS, said the trend of rising production should continue in the short and medium terms.

Read more

Swiss village in Alpine valley votes to turns its back on $1.2 billion goldmine – by Nick Squires (The Telegraph – April 8, 2012)


Villagers almost anywhere in the world would be celebrating if more than a billion dollars of gold was found under them. But not in Switzerland. It was not a question many villagers will ever have to face – and theirs was an answer that even fewer would probably give.
But when residents of a remote Alpine valley were offered a share of a fortune that would have brought them tens of millions of pounds, they said “No”.

Swiss banks may be bulging with gold ingots, but the inhabitants of a cluster of villages in the Medel Valley have shown themselves less than keen to dig the stuff out of their own mountains.

After months of anguished debate, the villagers voted in a referendum last week to stop a Canadian mining company prospecting for the estimated $1.2 billion worth of gold ore believed to be lie in seams beneath the surrounding snow-capped mountains.

Read more

The Gold Rush – Charlie Chaplan (Mining Movie – 1925)


This information is from Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Page

The Gold Rush is a 1925 silent film comedy written, produced, directed by, and starring Charlie Chaplin in his Little Tramp role. The film also stars Georgia Hale, Mack Swain, Tom Murray, Henry Bergman, Malcolm Waite.

Chaplin declared several times that this was the film that he most wanted to be remembered for.[1] Though a silent film, it received an Academy Awards nomination for Best Sound Recording (see re-release below). In 1953, the film entered the public domain (in the USA) due to the claimants failure to renew its copyright registration in the 28th year after publication.[2] MK2 Editions and Warner Home Video currently holds DVD distribution rights. A Blu-Ray edition has been recently announced by The Criterion Collection.


The Tramp (Charlie Chaplin) travels to the Yukon to take part in the Klondike Gold Rush. Bad weather strands him in a remote cabin with a prospector who has found a large gold deposit (Mack Swain) and an escaped fugitive (Tom Murray), after which they part ways, with the prospector and the fugitive fighting over the prospector’s claim,

Read more

NEWS RELEASE: Rainy River Resources Signs Participation Agreement with Rainy River Area First Nations


TORONTO, ONTARIO–(Marketwire – April 3, 2012) – Rainy River Resources Ltd. (“Rainy River” or the “Company”) (TSX:RR) and the Naicatchewenin First Nation, Rainy River First Nations, Mitaanjigamiing First Nation, Couchiching First Nation, Lac La Croix First Nation and Seine River First Nation (together, the “First Nations”) are pleased to announce the signing of a Participation Agreement (“PA” or “Impact and Benefits Agreement”) with respect to the development and operation of the Company’s Rainy River Gold Project, located in Northwestern Ontario. The PA is the culmination of negotiations initiated by the parties pursuant to a Memorandum of Understanding entered into in May of 2010.

The PA was developed together with the First Nations, each of which is a member of the Fort Frances Chiefs Secretariat, in order to define their participation in the development and operation of the Rainy River Gold Project. The agreement identifies key project milestones and ways to work together with the First Nations, as the Company initiates mine environmental assessment and permitting in 2012.

The PA sets out a schedule of benefits that the First Nations communities will receive, including employment and business opportunities, funding to support skills development, occupational training and education, as well as equity participation. The PA reflects the Company’s continued commitment to environmental stewardship, respect for First Nations’ traditional culture and values and the need for economic sustainability.

Read more

Still waiting for Nunavut’s mining boom – by Julie Gordon (Mineweb.com – April 2, 2012)


While mineral opportunity abounds, a lack of infrastructure, crippling cold and the challenge of attracting and retaining an adventurous workforce have dimmed the prospects of a mining boom in Canada’s Arctic territory.

TORONTO (Reuters)  –  The prospects of a mining boom in Canada’s Arctic territory of Nunavut – once as bright as the Northern Lights – are fading fast as costs in the inhospitable region spiral higher, forcing writedowns on two major gold projects there.
The sparsely populated territory has gained a reputation as one of the most promising regions in Canada for exploration, with prospectors promoting discoveries ranging from gold to uranium. But getting the ore out of the ground is a different story entirely.
While climate change has made it easier to find mineral deposits in Nunavut, the task of mining is complicated by a lack of roads and other infrastructure, the still-crippling cold and the challenge of attracting and retaining an adventurous workforce.
Agnico-Eagle Mines, which owns the only working mine in Nunavut, recently booked a partial writedown on changes to the mine plan at Meadowbank, while cash costs at the gold mine have risen to more than $1,000 per ounce.

Read more

Bullion miners lament cost and tax pressures – by Euan Rocha (Calgary Herald – March 28, 2012)


Agnico, which taps miners in Quebec, is facing cost pressures on the labour front
 Reuters – TORONTO – Rising labour costs, surging oil prices and higher tax rates are eating into profits of precious metals miners and raising the cut-off bar on new projects, making it much more difficult for them to replace reserves and boost production.
High precious metal prices are prompting governments to raise taxes and royalties on miners, industry executives say, while giving little thought to the level of risk and the amount of investment required to develop these mammoth projects.
“Countries want to impose super taxes – well, where are the super profits?” Gold Fields chief executive Nick Holland said at the Reuters Global Mining Summit this week.
“If we do want to sustain the gold industry where it is – never mind grow it – we are going to need to spend money. And to spend that money we are going to need to provide returns for shareholders,” Holland said, explaining the conundrum facing global mining companies.

Read more

Cost overruns, write downs leave Kinross Gold priced for takeover – by Pav Jordan and Euan Rocha ( Mineweb.com – March 19, 2012)


With the miner’s stock having fallen by nearly half since September, bankers see it a target for bigger players who are always on the hunt for deposits to replenish their reserves.

TORONTO (Reuters) – Cost overruns and a massive writedown have knocked Kinross Gold’s stock so low that some bankers see it as Canada’s biggest potential takeover play, though obstacles to a bid for the senior gold producer may be too big to surmount.
Kinross, the world’s seventh-largest gold miner, owns some huge, largely unexploited assets spread across four continents, making it an appealing target for bigger players who are always on the hunt for deposits to replenish their reserves.
Despite a huge reserve base its stock, which traded for nearly C$19 at the start of 2011, closed at C$9.90 on Friday as mounting concerns about the cost of developing its flagship project sapped investor confidence.

Read more

China consolidates position as World No. 1 gold miner – by Lawrence Williams (Mineweb.com – March 14, 2012)


China’s annual gold production continues to grow comfortably maintaining its position as the world’s biggest gold miner assuming official statistics tell the full picture – which they may not!

LONDON –  The most recent  figures from China’s Ministry of Industry and Information Technology note that China, already the world’s No. 1 gold miner since 2007, continued its dominance in world gold production with output rising last year by 5.89% to  360.95 tonnes.  The most recent statistics also show that the country’s gold mining sector continued to expand in January with a rise of about 3.69% from the same month a year ago, suggesting that we may well see further annual gold mine output growth in 2012.
China’s ever-increasing gold output though is still nowhere near the country’s huge appetite for consuming gold which rose to perhaps some 800 tonnes in 2011, although such figures tend to be speculative in nature as the officially reported statistics may not show the true picture.  There does seem to have been a fall-off in demand however at the end of last year and in the first two months of 2012 with official figures for imports through Hong Kong – the main import route – seeming to show a significant decline over the same period a year ago.

Read more

Masterminds – Fool’s Gold [Bre-X Mining Fraud] (Mining Documentary – 2009)

This information below is from Wikipedia, the Free Encyclopedia: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Main_Page

Bre-X was a group of companies in Canada. A major part of the group, Bre-X Minerals Ltd. based in Calgary, was involved in a major gold mining scandal when it was reported to be sitting on an enormous gold deposit at Busang, Indonesia (on Borneo). Bre-X bought the Busang site in March 1993 and in October 1995 announced significant amounts of gold had been discovered, sending its stock price soaring. Originally a penny stock, its stock price reached a peak at CAD $286.50 (split adjusted) in May 1996 on the Toronto Stock Exchange (TSE), with a total capitalization of over CAD $6 billion.[when?] Bre-X Minerals collapsed in 1997 after the gold samples were found to be a fraud.

Read more

Conflict, confusion over provincial mining claims -(CBC Thunder Bay – March 1, 2012)

This article is from CBC Thunder Bay website: http://www.cbc.ca/thunderbay/

Ontario’s mining act being updated to address relations between exploration industry and First Nations

Last year, the exploration industry spent close to a billion dollars looking for minerals in Ontario. But some prospectors say the rules are not clear when it comes to staking claims — particularly on First Nation traditional territory.
That’s resulting in conflict and court cases. Mining companies or prospectors are granted exploration claims through the province.
But, traditional land surrounding First Nation territory is not marked on the province’s mining map — because the province can’t actually pin it down.
Clive Stephenson, a provincial mining recorder with the Ministry of Northern Development and Mines, said traditional territory is a relative term.

Read more

Gold, Silver Juniors Should Shine in 2012: Mark Raguz – by Brian Sylvester (The Gold Report – February 24, 2012)

This interview is from The Gold Report website: http://www.theaureport.com/

After a tough 2011, Mark Raguz and his colleagues at Pinetree Capital are looking at the junior resource sector with renewed optimism. In this exclusive Gold Report interview, he names some of the plays that are fueling that sentiment, from gold names in Northern Ontario to silver names in Mexico.

The Gold Report: Mark, what do you think will determine Pinetree Capital Ltd.’s (PNP:TSX) success in 2012, especially regarding the junior resource sector?

Mark Raguz: What we need to see is the embracing of less risk aversion and the desire of investors to move further along the liquidity curve toward the junior resource space. There are signs this is starting to happen. In the meantime, we believe we can add value by drawing on our expertise in the resource sector and filtering out the best names, whose value might be realized over time.

TGR: How do you determine the best names?

MR: We see things very early and we look at a lot of different names. Finding the gems becomes a lot easier as we have a lot of experience in this area and a lot of comparables to use because of the amount of companies we look at. My goal is to draw out the best management teams with the best assets, given our exposure to most of the names in the space.

Read more

The new Canadian gold rush [Detour Lake, Northern Ontario] – by Renata d’Aliesio (Globe and Mail – February 25, 2012)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

COCHRANE, ONT.— Scott Ulvstal had pretty much given up on the idea of settling down in his hometown in northeastern Ontario. He left with his girlfriend, Rosanna, a decade ago, hitting the road in a rented U-Haul truck after finishing his studies in graphic design.

There were few job prospects to keep them in Cochrane, a small blue-collar town surrounded by rugged wilderness, the last stop on a 755-kilometre rail line from Toronto. And the young couple were looking for adventure somewhere west.

Visits home over the years offered Mr. Ulvstal little hope of moving back. Shutdowns and layoffs at the sawmill and plywood plants had become routine. Grocery stores, restaurants and clothing shops closed as the community’s population dwindled. The town’s once-grand winter carnival had faded to a small gathering of residents.

“It was like a ghost town down there,” Mr. Ulvstal recalls of Cochrane’s main street. “I didn’t think there would be any work for us here.”

Read more

How a novice miner survived a summer in the Klondike – by Jason Unrau (Globe and Mail/Report on Business Magazine – February 24, 2012)

The Globe and Mail is Canada’s national newspaper with the second largest broadsheet circulation in the country. It has enormous influence on Canada’s political and business elite.

Twin turboprops roaring, our 40-seat plane begins its descent to Dawson City Airport. The clouds give way to reveal a pockmarked heritage landscape: the Klondike gold fields.

This is where, a hundred-odd years ago, a stampede of desperate men moiled—and sometimes died—for gold. Today the soaring price of gold has made Dawson a boom town again, a place that attracts, as in 1897, all sorts of slightly at-loose-ends types. Like me. I’m out of shape and out of dough—my paltry small-town newspaper salary having failed in a Sisyphean struggle to erase $10,000 of debt—and a season of mining sounds like the perfect corrective, or at least the most perfect corrective I’ll find in the Yukon.

For the next four months, Schmidt Mining Corp.’s Quartz Creek camp, tucked in the Indian River valley about 50 kilometres southeast of Dawson City, is where I’ll live and work.

Thankfully, I only have to fly in from Whitehorse. My antecedents risked it all, traversing mountain passes on foot and sailing down the Yukon River in makeshift boats to reach the Klondike.

Read more