FNI solidifies 20% stake in China-based ore processor
by Philippine Resources - October 04, 2022
Photo credit: Inquirer
Global Ferronickel Holdings, Inc. (FNI), a diversified Filipino company with interests in nickel ore mining, logistics, cement and steel production, and port operations, on Friday signed the definitive agreement giving it a pivotal 20% stake in Guangdong Century Tsingshan Nickel Industry Co., Ltd. (GCTN) through the purchase of shares in GHGC Holdings, Ltd. (GHL). GHL owns 90% of the GCTN stock portfolio.
GCTN is a nickel alloy enterprise in China operating one of the world’s advanced smelters with RKEF technology in a 33-hectare facility employing over 600 employees. The plant uses a rotary kiln technology that produces about 28,000 tons of pure nickel annually. GCTN caters to customers in Guangdong’s Economic and Technological Development Zones and abroad.
“The acquisition is expected to create reliable and consistent synergies between FNI as a nickel ore supplier and GCTN as a value-added processor, and support our ongoing diversification projects to boost profitability,” said FNI President Dante R. Bravo.
This initiative will help manage risks, optimize value to stakeholders, and develop downstream integration of the value chain.
To complement its expansion targets, the Company continues to pursue investments in high-growth firms and industries that can enhance operational and cost efficiencies.
FNI counts Platinum Group Metals Corporation (PGMC) as a subsidiary and Ipilan Nickel Corporation (INC) as an affiliate. PGMC is a leading nickel ore producer, while INC has just conducted its maiden shipment of nickel ore to China.
Article courtesy of the Philippine Stock Exchange
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Philippine Resources - August 16, 2022
Global Ferronickel Holdings, Inc. records net income of P417.4 million in the first half of 2022
Photo credit: Global Ferronickel Holdings Global Ferronickel Holdings, Inc. (FNI) recorded a consolidated net income of ₱417.4 million for the period ended June 30, 2022. The results are driven by the April to June mining operations of Platinum Group Metals Corporation (PGMC) in Surigao del Norte, with incremental contributions from PGMC International Limited (PIL), a wholly-owned subsidiary established to facilitate relations with Chinese customers for the trading of mineral products. PGMC is the second-largest value exporter of nickel ore in the country. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary of FNI. Net income for H12022 is down 34.9% compared to the ₱640.8 million in the same period last year. Revenues also slid 15% to ₱2.21 billion for the period ended June 30, 2022 compared to the ₱2.61 billion posted during the same period last year due to lower volume of ore shipped. The Group encountered more rainy days this period totaling 128 rainy days compared to 105 rainy days during the same period in 2021. The Group only managed to complete 19 shipments of nickel ore totaling 1.035 million wet metric tons (WMT) during the six-month period ended June 30, 2022, compared to 32 shipments totaling 1.740 WMT during the same period last year. “We are hoping for better weather in Q3, during the peak of PGMC’s mining season that normally delivers more than 60% of FNI’s revenues for the year,” said FNI President Dante R. Bravo. Despite the fewer volume sold for the period ended June 2022, the Group benefited from the higher average realized foreign exchange rate this year at ₱52.60 compared to the prior period’s ₱48.24, augmenting revenues by a total of ₱177.1 million. Nickel ore prices are also higher this year with an overall average realized nickel ore price at US$39.21 per WMT, compared to last year’s period at US$31.10 per WMT, topping up revenues by ₱405.0 million. The resulting sales mix was 79% low-grade ore and 21% medium-grade ore in 2022 in contrast to the previous period’s mix of 84% low-grade ore and 16% medium-grade ore. These shipments comprise 0.816 million WMT low-grade nickel ore and 0.219 million WMT medium-grade nickel ore compared to 1.465 million WMT low-grade nickel ore and 0.275 WMT medium-grade nickel ore of the same period in 2021. “We have adjusted our 2022 shipment target to 4.0 million WMT but we still look forward to a productive and remarkable season due to the strong demand from China and favorable market conditions,” said Mr. Bravo. Article courtesy of the Philippine Stock Exchange
Philippine Resources - September 20, 2022
FNI’s Ipilan Nickel Project marks major milestone with maiden shipment of nickel ore
Photo credit: Global Ferronickel Holdings Ipilan Nickel Corporation (INC), an affiliate of Global Ferronickel Holdings, Inc. (FNI), announces the successful completion of its maiden shipment of ore today from its mine site in Brooke’s Point, Palawan. With 54,700 Wet Metric Tons of medium-grade nickel ore loaded aboard M/V He Sheng Nan Fang, INC declared anchors aweigh for its first export en route to Guangdong Century Tsingshan Nickel Industry Co., Ltd in China (GCTN). A long-standing customer of FNI’s Surigao-based Platinum Group Metals Corporation (PGMC), GCTN is looking forward to building a solid relationship with INC. “After years of careful planning and regulatory compliance, this inaugural shipment is a remarkable milestone for our Group and bodes well for the country’s economic and social governance goals at this critical time. Target for the year is 500,000 WMT, with increased production in the coming years, as we begin year-round operations,” said FNI Chairman Joseph C. Sy. Under its Mineral Production Sharing Agreement (MPSA) with the government, INC is authorized to engage in the exploration, development and utilization for commercial purposes of nickel and other mineral deposits in the Municipality of Brooke’s Point, Palawan, with an area of 2,835 hectares. Estimated mine life is at least ten years, with an annual production rate of 1.5 million WMT of medium- to high-grade nickel ores. INC employs more than 1,300 personnel, mainly from the local community and nearby areas. “We are proud of this development because it sets the tone for the optimal pursuit of our social development and environmental protection objectives. INC can now roll up the score in community engagement with various socio-civic initiatives in place from the beginning of our operations,” added Mr. Sy. These projects include support for education, wellness, and livelihood development through scholarship grants, donation of school supplies, rice harvesters, fishing boats and implements, a brand new ambulance, medicines and other health essentials, construction of covered courts, daycare center, and health facility, allowances for teachers, barangay health workers and a community doctor, feeding programs, medical missions, livestock and rice farming assistance, and installation of solar dryers. INC has also tagged infrastructure as its primary focus with the establishment of a mini-hydro power plant and farm-to-market roads. During calamities, INC came in as one of the first responders, allotting over two million pesos worth of food and water supplies to those affected by Typhoon Odette and 12 million pesos more in medical equipment and sacks of rice at the height of the pandemic. Article courtesy of Global Ferronickel Holdings
Philippine Resources - November 27, 2022
FNI posts higher nine-month net income of P2.13 billion
Photo credit: Global Ferronickel Holdings Global Ferronickel Holdings, Inc. (FNI), a diversified Filipino company with interests in ferronickel ore mining and processing, logistics and port operations, and cement and steel production, recorded a net income of P2.13 billion in the nine-month period that ended September compared to the P1.86 billion it posted during the same period last year. The results are driven by the Group’s flagship mining project in Surigao del Norte operated by Platinum Group Metals Corporation (PGMC). FNI's revenues on the sale of medium-grade nickel increased on the back of favorable forex rates and higher average realized price, while shipment volumes reel from inclement weather and a lower price for low-grade ore. The sale of nickel ore for the nine-month ended September 30, 2022 slides to 3.150 million wet metric tons (WMT), lower by 1.078 million WMT or 25.5%, compared to 4.228 million WMT of nickel ore in the same period last year. The Group only completed 58 nickel ore shipments against 78 shipments during the same period last year due to erratic weather conditions registering 161 rainy days to 137 last year. The resulting sales mix was 78% low-grade ore and 22% medium-grade ore in 2022 versus the previous period’s blend of 81% low-grade ore and 19% medium-grade ore. Shipments consisted of 2.450 million WMT low-grade nickel ore and 0.700 million WMT medium-grade nickel ore compared to 3.424 million WMT low-grade nickel ore and 0.804 WMT medium-grade nickel ore in the same period in 2021. The average realized nickel ore price for the period ended September 30, 2022 is USD28.89/WMT lower by USD1.89/WMT or 6.1% compared to last year’s USD30.78/WMT. Low-grade ore is USD25.49/WMT lower by USD4.30/WMT or 14.4% against last year’s USD29.79/WMT. On the other hand, medium-grade ore stands at USD40.79/WMT higher by USD5.80/WMT or 16.6% versus last year’s USD34.99/WMT. The average realized Peso over USD exchange rate for the Group’s export revenues is P54.87 compared to P49.22 in the same period last year, higher by P5.65 or 11.5%. “Overall outlook for FNI looks reassuring. With the opening of our Palawan mineral project, we expect healthier returns for our stakeholders. Although weather conditions have not been permissive, we have continued to improve our operations and pursue our expansion plans,” said FNI President Dante R. Bravo. FNI recently disclosed its 20% stake in China's Guangdong Century Tsingshan Nickel Industry Co. Ltd (GCTN) to enhance synergies between FNI with its nickel ore mines and GCTN as an ore processor and provide a steady value-adding enterprise for the Group. As a testament to its growth and core policy to strengthen systems and processes, PGMC has received ISO certifications for its Quality Management System (ISO 9001:2015), Occupational Health and Safety Management System (ISO 45001:2018), and Environmental Management System (ISO 14001:2015) as an Integrated Management System (IMS). The certification applies to all activities in the mining operations of nickeliferous laterite ore and other associated minerals from planning to ore production, hauling, loading and port operations.
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Philippine Resources - May 23, 2023
MEMORANDUM OF AGREEMENT SIGNED WITH TVI RESOURCE DEVELOPMENT (PHILS.) INC.
Photo credit: TVI Resource Development The Board of RTG Mining Inc. is pleased to announce that a comprehensive settlement of all outstanding issues with the Villar Family controlled Sage Capital and TVI Resource Development (Phils.) Inc. (“TVIRD”) has been reached and a binding Memorandum of Agreement signed. On execution of the final documents, expected in the next month, all litigation that RTG had launched will be withdrawn as part of an agreed restructuring of the Mabilo Project. The Villar Family is one of the most prominent families in the Philippines and RTG is pleased to partner with them in the development of the Mabilo Project, which is a significant mining project for the country. The key terms of the agreement for RTG include the following: RTG (through SRM Gold Limited) will retain a 40% interest in Mt. Labo Exploration and Development Corporation (“Mt. Labo”) with the project also developed by Mt. Labo, in line with Philippine regulatory requirements, with Sage Capital (which is owned by TVIRD) holding the remaining 60%; RTG will have a 2% net smelter royalty (“NSR”); RTG’s debt together with interest, currently in the order of US$27M (subject to audit) will be repaid out of the proceeds of Stage 1 of the project, the Direct Shipping Operation subject to customary requirements to address liquidity and ongoing operations of Mt. Labo; Funding arrangements for the project as between the major shareholders of Mt. Labo have been successfully renegotiated, (relieving RTG of a sole funding obligation) and replaced with a pro-rata funding obligation, together with a disproportionate funding obligation of Sage Capital, as set out below; With debt repayments in full and the NSR, RTG will be entitled to approximately 57% of the proceeds of Stage 1, the Direct Shipping Operation; RTG will be entitled to 40% of the operating cashflow of the project, together with the 2% NSR and repayment of its debt, which is currently in the order of US$27M; The first US$5M of expenditure for Mt. Labo (or 12 months of expenditure, whichever occurs the earlier), will be funded pro-rata between the two shareholders (ie RTG will provide 40%) and thereafter, Sage Capital/TVIRD will sole fund the next US$5M of expenditure, with all additional funding thereafter to be provided on a pro-rata basis; All parties are required to act in the best interests of the project and not compete; A shareholders’ agreement will be finalised which will provide typical minority interest protection clauses including reserve matters for voting including annual budgets and appointments of key personnel; Any disputes will be resolved by the Singapore International Arbitration Centre; and On completion of final signed documents, all litigation matters will be withdrawn and settled in full. With the restructuring of the Mabilo Project now agreed, over the balance of this year, the remaining permitting matters and financing plans will be finalised, a review of the 2016 Feasibility Study will be completed, together with finalising the acquisition of surface rights, following which, a commitment to development will be formalised by the Board of Mt. Labo. RTG is pleased with the outcome of the discussions and the co-operative and constructive approach adopted by the Villar Family representatives. RTG believes they can be a strong and positive partner to work with to take the Mabilo Project forward, with both a near term development and future exploration activities to expand the project, which will start to unlock the value of the project for all stakeholders, not only the local communities but for the country as a whole.
Philippine Resources - May 22, 2023
Mining Operational Excellence Through Digital Transformation
Part 1: Mining Operation Challenges and Mine Operations Management Domains 1 & 2. By Mae Ann Cabasag, EM Mining companies encounter numerous challenges throughout their operations. However, initiatives to mitigate these challenges and improve efficiency are often limited. Most of these limitations emanated from a common factor: the challenge of “poor visibility” in mining operations. A viable solution is to adopt digital transformation in mining operations by incorporating available real-time data into an integrated system— capable of ensuring automatic updates and reliable source of information. Through this, mining companies not only understand simulations and plans developed but also anticipate potential outcomes. Various mining industry analysts have found that using non-digital methods in the mining operations can lead to a 27% reduction in production time and 25% increase in data inaccuracy. For a mining company to remain competitive in an industry susceptible to operation challenges, i.e. production processes, workers’ and equipment performances, ore quality and quantity, compliance to regulations, and inter-departmental collaboration, it needs to embrace digital transformation. Dassault Systèmes Mine Operations Management provides transformative digital solution for mining companies to achieve excellence in their operations. Mine Operations Management (MOM) equips mining companies with an integrated system for their mining operations, enabling them to achieve efficient plan and schedule. This system integrates entire operation data into a single repository source of information, known as the “single source of truth”, ensuring complete transparency of the company’s processes from mine to port. By leveraging MOM, we can address the following global mining industry challenges: Maintaining competitiveness amidst market volatility. Eliminating waste materials, poor communication, and error duplication. Improving site productivity and efficiency. Utilizing assets and sharing best practices across the value chain. Ensuring an utmost level of safety. Reducing environmental impacts and achieving sustainable operations. The transformative digital solution, Mine Operations Management, is composed of eight work packages, split across four domains, namely: Data Management, Material Reconciliation, Operational Control, and Assets Performance. These domains help generate valuable insights from integrated operational data for rapid and informed strategic decision-making. The Data Management consists of Master Data Model and Integration Framework packages essential for material tracking, stockpile management, task and workforce management, machine performance, and asset maintenance. It enables users to manage master data objects such as Site, Material, Location, Equipment, and Operator through manual data entry or third-party source systems. With this, mining companies can ensure efficient and integrated management of critical data required for seamless operations. Material Reconciliation, on the other hand, consists of Material Tracking and Stockpile Management packages. Material Tracking enables us to track material movements across different stages, i.e. from the least accurate grade estimated in geological model to the most precise information on shipped material quantity and quality, to account for any inaccuracies. While in the Stockpile Management, users not only can calculate daily stockpile balance, add Survey or Sampling data, analyze inventory levels and trends, create graphical representation of the stockpile balances and movements, calibrate stockpile using volumetric survey and sampling, enables comparison of different models, track movement genealogy and review stockpile slices for stockpiles with LIFO and FIFO calculation type but can create a different type of analysis such as actual vs plan vs model. In the upcoming article, we will explore the two remaining domains of Mine Operations Management to where assigning operational tasks, tracking compliance to plan, monitoring equipment down to workers’ performance are feasible in the mining operations. To know more about MOM, mining innovations and solutions, contact Dassault Systèmes Value Solutions Partner: Paramina Earth Technologies Inc. through email@example.com References: Make it happen for mine execution excellence: Dassault Systèmes®. MEGATrends. (n.d.). https://events.3ds.com/make-it-happen-for-mine-execution-excellence Dassault Systèmes. (2021, August 12). Digging deeper: The virtual solution for Mining Operational Excellence. Dassault Systèmes. https://discover.3ds.com/virtual-mining-operational excellence dassault3ds. (2022, June 16). The mining industry needs to adapt, but how? Dassault Systèmes blog. https://blog.3ds.com/brands/delmia/the-mining-industry-needs-to-adapt-but-how/
Philippine Resources - May 22, 2023
Customer’s First Choice: Sandvik Philippines Delivers 11th and 12th Pantera DP1500i Drills to Filminera Resources Corporation
Sandvik Philippines has successfully commissioned and delivered to loyal customer Filminera Resources Corporation (“Filminera”) their 11th and 12th Pantera DP1500i Top-hammer Surface Drills last 25 January 2023 at the Masbate Gold Project (MGP) located in Masbate Island, Philippines. Photo shows Sandvik Technician Larry Lugnas (second from left) and Service Operations Manager Jorge Cabello (third from left) handing over the drills to MGP representatives. Located 360 km southeast of Manila, the Masbate Mine is operated by Filminera, the Philippine subsidiary of TSX- and NYSE-listed B2Gold with headquarters in Vancouver. In 2022, the mine produced a record-setting 212,728 oz of gold out of 7.93M tonnes of ore milled at an average grade of 1.11 g/t. B2Gold also operates the Fekola Mine in Mali and the Otjikoto Mine in Namibia. Their projects under development include the Anaconda Area in Mali and the Gramalote JV Project in Colombia. The Masbate Mine started operating in 2008 initially using 4 x Atlas Copco ECM660 Drills owned and operated by the erstwhile mining contractor, Leighton. When the opportunity for re-fleeting came about in 2012, Sandvik succeeded in winning the tender which came packaged with a full maintenance contract for 24,000 service meter hours of five years. Ironically, the said maintenance contract almost led to the cancellation of the order for the first 4 x DP1500i due to a dispute with the rates. Eventually, both Leighton and Sandvik were able to arrive at a mutually acceptable arrangement, and Sandvik ran the service contract for five years without incurring penalties in the availability guarantees. The contract was so profitable, Sandvik even had to share some of the residual profit at the end with Filminera under the pain-and-gain proviso of the contract. The next re-fleeting opportunity came in 2017, with the Masbate Mine. This time, there was no service contract attached to the equipment and Leighton was no longer the mining contractor; the mine has shifted to owner-miner operation. Sandvik managed to secure the repeat order for another batch of 4x DP1500i, banking on the proven performance and reliability of the first four. That brings the total to 8 units. Drill numbers 9 and 10 were ordered in July 2020 and delivered in 2021. Numbers 11 and 12 in the photo above were ordered in January 2022 and are now handed over to the customer. Filminera ordered two more DP1500i’s in November 2022; these machines are now awaiting completion in Tampere, for delivery later this year. That should bring the total to 14 x DP1500i units spread over 11 years for our most loyal Pantera DP1500i customer in the Philippines – Filminera Resources Corporation!
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