Mining

Mining

Philippine Resources - May 24, 2022

Celsius Resources confirms multiple high-grade copper positions at MCB-037

Photo credit: Celsius Resources Celsius Resources is pleased to announce its Philippine subsidiary Makilala Mining Company, Inc. has received further positive assay results from the ongoing drilling program at its flagship MCB copper-gold project. The results have confirmed and expanded a number of high-grade intercepts which are an important part of the early mine plan at MCB as defined in the recently completed scoping study. The high-grade positions are interpreted to exist over near to horizontal trends which extend away from multiple mineralised faults and breccia bodies which are the main conduits for the fluids that are coming up from a genetically related Tonalite intrusion. The confirmed presence of multiple high-grade zones now appears to extend further than previously defined, and is a positive and important outcome from what has now been discovered in both drill holes MCB-036 and MCB-037. The Company will now modify the next set of drill holes to focus around the additional shallow high-grade copper-gold mineralisation as it will have a positive impact on potential future production options in the mine schedule. To read more, click here.

Mining

Philippine Resources - May 23, 2022

Body formed to study revision that lifted SoCot mining ban

Photo: South Cotabato Gov. Reynaldo Tamayo Jr. Photo from the South Cotabato provincial government Facebook page The South Cotabato government has created a Technical Working Group (TWG) to study the Sangguniang Panlalawigan's (SP) amendment to the province's environment code that lifted the open-pit mining ban. In an interview Friday, South Cotabato Governor Reynaldo Tamayo Jr. said his decision on whether to veto or not the lifting of the open-pit mining ban will depend on the TWG’S recommendations Tamayo said he has yet to receive the amended ordinance. Within 15 days, the governor can veto or approve the amendments to the province’s environmental code before it lapses into law. “An Ordinance Providing for the Environment Code of the Province of South Cotabato” was passed on June 9, 2010. “For now, I cannot say because I don’t want to preempt the decision and findings of the TWG, but I assure you that we are looking at what is good for everybody,” Tamayo said. In a meeting Thursday with Bishop Cerilo Alan Casicas of the Diocese of Marbel, who supported the open-pit mining ban, the governor said the provincial government must consider several issues and concerns before arriving at a decision. “Quarrying is part of an open pit, and what the SP approved in Lake Sebu is also an open pit. It will be contradicting if the open-pit mining ban will not be lifted,” Tamayo said. “We will sit again together with the Bishop and Sagittarius Mines, Inc.  (SMI) to talk about what is right or wrong, and it is important that I can come up with the decision two days before the deadline,” he noted. Meanwhile, Casicas said he hopes the governor will decide "based on the wisdom of the majority" of South Cotabato residents. During Thursday's meeting with the governor, the bishop led a group of some 3,000 protesters to the provincial grounds. “The most important factor is the wisdom of the people more than our voices and SMI,” Casicas said. Meanwhile, Board Member Ester Marin Catorce, an anti-mining advocate, denied the amended ordinance was recalled by the SP majority group. On Monday, 11 of 15 SP members approved the measure to lift the 12-year-old open-pit mining ban in the province. The SMI has been pursuing the Tampakan gold project in the province for years amid stiff opposition, primarily from the local Catholic diocese. By Roel Osano   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

Mining

Philippine Resources - May 20, 2022

Tampakan copper-gold project to benefit locals: solon

Photo credit: Sagittarius Mines Inc. Senator Francis Tolentino said the Tampakan copper-gold project being pushed to resume by Sagittarius Mines Inc. (SMI) in Tampakan, South Cotabato will be beneficial to local residents. Tolentino said on Thursday the Tampakan copper-gold project will be "cost-effective" and safe. "Cost effective yung extraction ng open-pit mining kasi mababaw lang ang paghuhukay niyan eh, makukuha agad yung mina (The open-pit mining extraction is cost effective because the excavation will be shallow and the mine will be easily extracted)," he said in "Sa Ganang Mamamayan" program of Net25. Tolentino, however, said the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) should see to it that the rehabilitation plan will be properly implemented. "Ang nakikita ko lang dito, ganon din siguro sa mga outlying communities, sundin yung rehabilitation plan kung meron man yung DENR. I-monitor naman ng DENR, huwag pabayaan ng DENR. Dapat nakatutok lagi sila. (What I can see here, just like maybe the outlying communities, follow the rehabilitation plan if DENR has. DENR should monitor, DENR must not ignore. They should always focus)," he said. After the Tampakan copper-gold project halted four years ago, President Rodrigo Roa Duterte signed in April 2021 the lifting of the moratorium on open-pit mining. The South Cotabato Provincial Board also lifted its ban on open-pit mining giving the SMI a go-signal to proceed with its stalled USD5.9-billion project. DENR Acting Secretary Jim Sampulna vowed they will ensure that SMI will comply with its rehabilitation obligations and environmental protection, assuring that the environment will not be sacrificed. "We will also require SMI to invest in equipment and manpower to ensure mitigation in case of any adverse impacts from the mining operation,” Sampulna said. According to SMI, the Tampakan project is noted as one of the largest untapped copper and gold minefields in Southeast Asia. The mining company expects the project to yield an average of 375,000 tons of copper and 360,000 ounces of gold per year. By Wilnard Bacelonia   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

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Mining

Philippine Resources - May 18, 2022

DENR Issues DAO on Enhancing Biodiversity Conservation and Protection in Mining Operations

Photo credit: Apex Mining On March 4, 2022, Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Acting Secretary Jim O. Sampulna signed the DENR Administrative Order (DAO) No. 2022-04 entitled “Enhancing Biodiversity Conservation and Protection in Mining Operations”.  The Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB) and the Mines and Geosciences Bureau (MGB) jointly drafted the said policy to provide adequate measures for responsible mining towards ensuring biodiversity conservation and protection including progressive and final rehabilitation of mined-out areas. It also aims to minimize negative impacts on biodiversity, thereby promoting the sustainable development and utilization of the country’s natural and mineral resources for the benefit of present and future generations. The said policy emanated from the 13th Meeting of the Conference of Parties (CoP) to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD) in December 2016, wherein it was identified that aside from agriculture, forestry, fisheries, aquaculture and tourism, other sectors such as energy, urban and regional planning, infrastructure, manufacturing industry and mining also negatively impact biodiversity.  Hence, as a commitment of the Philippines to the CBD and in response to the Strategic Plan for Biodiversity 2011-2020, the country developed various plans such as the Philippine Biodiversity Strategy and Action Plan (PBSAP) and included priority strategies in the Philippine Development Plan (PDP) to address the issue.  On December 9-10, 2020, the MGB and BMB jointly organized a two-day virtual consultation with large-scale and small-scale mining companies regarding the then-proposed policy. Various stakeholders of the mining industry participated in the said two-day virtual consultation composed of representatives from the Chamber of Mines of the Philippines; Philippine Nickel Industry Association; Philippine National Coalition for Small-scale Mines; DENR Regional Offices, BMB, MGB Central Office, and Regional Offices. A total of 187 and 54 participants attended during the two-day virtual consultation with large-scale and small-scale mines across the country, respectively. In addition, the said policy goes to a series of deliberation with the BMB, MGB, and DENR Policy Technical Working Group in 2021.  Accordingly, DAO No. 2022-04 identifies and recommends specific biodiversity-related measures that shall be undertaken in all stages of on-shore and off-shore mining operations. The following are the salient features of DAO No. 2022-04: Biodiversity measures shall be integrated in all stages of mining operations, including exploration, development, and utilization, and closure, decommissioning, and rehabilitation; Detailed guidelines on integrating biodiversity in small-scale mining shall be jointly prepared by BMB and MGB within one (1) year upon issuance of this Order; Mining companies shall integrate biodiversity conservation and protection in the Social Development and Management Program (SDMP); The Contingent Liability and Rehabilitation Fund Steering Committee (CLRFSC), Mine Rehabilitation Fund Committee (MRFC), and Multipartite Monitoring Team as per DAO No. 2010-21 shall include Biodiversity Management Bureau (BMB) and Ecosystems Research and Development Bureau (ERDB), and their regional counterparts as members; BMB, in consultation with MGB, shall subsequently develop modules and instructional materials on the integration of biodiversity in the mining sector; BMB and the Conservation and Development Division of DENR Regional Offices shall undertake annual monitoring and evaluation using compliance monitoring tools to be developed by BMB; and Mining Contractors, Permit Holders, and Permittees shall include biodiversity measures in their respective Environmental Work Programs, Environment Protection and Enhancement Program, Final Mine Rehabilitation and/or Decommissioning Plan, and Social Development and Management Program. DAO No. 2022-04 was published in The Manila Times and registered in the Office of National Registry on April 21, 2022. The full version of DAO No. 2022-04 can be accessed through this link: https://apidb.denr.gov.ph/infores/uploads/DAO-2022-04.pdf   Article courtesy of the Department of Environment and Natural Resources

Mining

Philippine Resources - May 17, 2022

SoCot OK lifting of open-pit mining ban

Eleven of 15 members of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan of South Cotabato approved Monday the lifting of the ban on open-pit mining in Tampakan town. The copper and gold mine project in Tampakan is touted as the largest in Southeast Asia. (Photo courtesy of SP South Cotabato) The majority of the Sangguniang Panlalawigan (SP) members approved Monday the amendments to the environment code of South Cotabato province, particularly the provision on the lifting of the ban on open-pit mining in Tampakan town. Voting for the ban's lifting were SP board members Glezel Trabado, who acted as presiding officer in the absence of Vice Governor Vicente de Jesus, Larry de Pedro VI, chairman of the Environment Committee, Dardanilo Dar, Noel Escobillo, Antonio Fungan, Eamon Gabriel Mati, and Henry Ladot. Also backing the move were Indigenous Peoples’ Mandatory Representative (IPMR) Edgar Sambong, Sangguniang Kabataan (SK)Federation president Alaisa Marie Fale, Association of Barangay Captains (ABC) president Rolando Malabuyoc, and Philippine Councilors League (PCL) South Cotabato Chapter president Grace Achura. Board Member Ester Marin Catorce, who opposed the amendment and was designated by the Department of the Interior and Local Government (DILG) as acting governor, was absent during Monday’s regular session. “None of them objected, as acting governor by the rule of succession I cannot attend the session. Governor Tamayo is out of the country while Vice Governor Vicente De Jesus, who underwent an operation, was not present,” Catorce said. Catorce said she asked a colleague to defer the deliberation of the amendment because of the many issues that still need discussion. Her request, she said, was not granted. SP members Ellen Grace Subere-Albios and Jinky Avance-Samodal, who also both opposed the open-pit mining operation, were also absent in the regular session. Ordinance 04, Series of 2010, entitled “An Ordinance Providing for the Environment Code of the Province of South Cotabato,” was passed on June 9, 2010. In 2015, SP filed a resolution affirming the open-pit mining ban in the province. Pro-mining groups earlier said the open-pit mining ban in South Cotabato hampered the development of the copper and gold mine project in Tampakan, touted as the largest in Southeast Asia. Anti-mining groups, however, said the project endangered not only the environment but also the lives of residents. Sagittarius Mines Inc. has been pursuing the Tampakan gold project for years. By Roel Osano

Mining

Philippine Resources - May 16, 2022

APEX MINING RECORDS GROWTH IN 1 ST QUARTER OF 2022

Photo credit: Apex Mining Apex Mining Co., Inc. finished the first quarter of 2022 with consolidated revenues of P2.2 billion, a growth of 46.11% yoy. The growth comes from increased milling tonnage of 23.3% and increased gold grades of 19.7%, as well as, a 7% increase in selling prices. The ramp up in production volume is part of the planned increase from 2,000 tpd to 3,000 tpd. The mine and mill operation is ahead of budget production rate of 2,250 tpd for the year and has encountered better grades than expected. Net income for the first quarter stood at P645.5 million, a 131% increase yoy. Translated to earnings per share this is equal to P0.114 vs previous year’s number of P0.049. Meanwhile, the Mines and Geosciences Bureau Region 11 conferred the Safety Milestone Award to Apex Mining for recording 7,549,768 man-hours without lost time accidents between 11 March 2021 and 20 March 2022. Apex Mining also earned the Compliant Tenement Holder for CY 2021. Both honors were conferred to Apex Mining at the Stakeholders Forum held at the Grand Regal Hotel in Davao de Oro on 08 April 2022. The forum’s theme was, “Harnessing Disaster Resiliency Through Responsible Mining”. Also in March this year, Apex Mining’s fully owned subsidiary, Itogon-Suyoc Resources, Inc. (ISRI) received the Safety Seal from the Department of Labor and Employment-Cordillera Administrative Region (DOLE-CAR) — the first mining company in CAR to get the seal.   Article courtesy of the Philippine Stock Exchange 

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Mining

Philippine Resources - May 09, 2022

NICKEL ASIA CORPORATION ANNOUNCES 80% INCREASE YOY IN ATTRIBUTABLE NET INCOME FOR FIRST THREE MONTHS OF 2022

Nickel Asia Corporation recently announced its unaudited financial and operating results for the three-month period ended March 31, 2022 with an attributable net income (net of minority interest) of P1.05 billion, an 80% increase from P584 million net income reported during the same period last year. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) amounted to P2.20 billion, a 30% increase compared to P1.69 billion in the prior year. “The global nickel industry continues to labor under a record deficit – with an even larger projected deficit this year as compared to the previous year”, remarked Martin Antonio G. Zamora, President and CEO of Nickel Asia Corporation (NAC; PSE: NIKL). “Coupled with continued strong demand for stainless steel and the accelerating trend in demand in the electric vehicle market, these factors have been beneficial to our metals and mining business”, he added. Although nickel ore sales volume decreased by 10%, from 2.65 million wet metric tons (WMT) in the first quarter last year to 2.39 million WMT in the same period this year, revenue from the sale of nickel ore increased 17% year-on-year, from P2.85 billion in 2021 to P3.32 billion in 2022, as the weighted average realized price of ore sold increased 22% from $22.21 per WMT last year to $27.03 per WMT this year. Breaking down the ore sales, the Company exported 651 thousand WMT of saprolite and limonite ore to Japanese and Chinese customers at the weighted average price of $46.90 per WMT in the first three months of the year, compared to 845 thousand WMT at $45.60 per WMT in the same period last year. Likewise, the Company delivered 1.74 million WMT of limonite ore to the Coral Bay and Taganito HPAL plants, the prices of which are linked to the LME, and realized an average price of $11.80 per pound of payable nickel. This compares to 1.81 million WMT at $7.96 per pound of payable nickel in 2021. Expressed in US Dollar per WMT, deliveries to the two HPAL plants generated $19.58 and $11.29 in the first quarter of 2022 and 2021, respectively. Furthermore, as a result of higher LME prices, the Company recognized gain from its equity share in its investments in the two HPAL plants in the amount of P305 million in the first quarter of 2022, a 166% increase compared to P115 million gain in the same period last year. The realized Peso to U.S. Dollar exchange rate for ore sales was P51.51 compared to P48.38 in the prior year. Total operating cash costs increased by 8% year-on-year to P1.67 billion from P1.55 billion in 2021. On a per WMT of ore sold basis, total operating cash costs increased to P701 per WMT compared to P583 per WMT last year. On the Company’s foray into the renewable energy business through Emerging Power, Inc., Mr. Zamora had this to say: “We remain on track to complete Phase 3B of the Subic Solar Project, which would bring its total capacity to 100MW by May of this year, and expect to begin work on Phase 4 towards the latter part of the year, leading to a total capacity of 200MW by 2024. Further, we have made significant headway with respect to our 1,000MW renewable energy pipeline.” Mr. Zamora added, “We continue to monitor extraneous factors such as the lockdowns in China that may affect the global supply chain and impact our businesses as well.”   Article courtesy of the Philippine Stock Exchange

Mining

Philippine Resources - May 04, 2022

OCEANAGOLD REPORTS FIRST QUARTER 2022 FINANCIAL RESULTS

Photo credit: Bilyonaryo OceanaGold Corporation reported its financial and operational results for the quarter ended March 31, 2022. Details of the consolidated financial statements and the Management Discussion and Analysis are available on the Company’s website. Gerard Bond, President and CEO of OceanaGold, said “OceanaGold has started the year strongly with the first quarter safely delivering record quarterly revenue and EBITDA and significant Free Cash Flow. This strong Free Cash Flow generation allowed us to achieve a 29% reduction in net debt and reduce our leverage ratio to 0.40 times. Our stronger balance sheet puts us in a solid financial position from which we can invest in attractive growth projects to create value for our shareholders.” “This quarter’s performance was underpinned by record quarterly gold production at our Haile operation in the United States and a very strong first quarter of full production at our Didipio operations in the Philippines. At Haile, we are continuing to see the benefits of operational and productivity improvements that began in mid2021. At Didipio, the operation achieved full underground mining rates at the end of the first quarter, ahead of schedule by nearly one quarter.” “Though there is a lot to celebrate in the quarterly results, we also know that there is a lot of work ahead of us to fully optimise the potential of the business. At Waihi, poor grade reconciliation at Martha underground had an impact on its quarterly performance. A grade control drill programme is currently underway to deliver improved resource definition and allow for more optimal mine planning and stope sequencing, which we expect will improve the performance of this orebody and mining operation overall.” “We also have a pipeline of organic growth projects that have the potential to create additional value for shareholders. Once we commence development of the underground mine at Haile, we believe we will begin to unlock the true upside potential of this orebody. Looking further ahead, Wharekirauponga (“WKP”) has the potential to be a significant, high-grade mine within our portfolio.” “We remain focused on safely and responsibly delivering on our production guidance for 2022, maximising Free Cash Flow generation and progressing the attractive growth options in our portfolio.” said Mr Bond. Operations The Company produced 134,035 ounces of gold and 3,510 tonnes of copper in the first quarter of 2022, representing a 26% increase in gold production compared to the previous quarter and a 61% increase when compared to the first quarter of 2021. The stronger quarterly production was driven by record quarterly production at Haile and a solid quarter of production at Didipio, partially offset by decreased production at Waihi. On a consolidated basis, the Company recorded an AISC of $1,084 per ounce on gold sales of 129,191 ounces and copper sales of 3,711 tonnes. AISC was 18% lower quarter-on-quarter with the benefits from a full quarter of operations at Didipio partially offset by increased sustaining capital investments. The Company’s AISC decreased 14% when compared to the first quarter of 2021, also due primarily to the inclusion of a full quarter of operations at Didipio. Haile delivered 60,249 ounces of gold, representing a record quarter for production. This represents an increase of 42% quarter-on-quarter and was mainly driven by increased mill feed, higher head grade and better gold recoveries. Year-on-year, this represents a 36% increase in production, resulting from higher mill feed, grade, and recovery. The higher grades were driven by ore sourced from Ledbetter Phase 1. First quarter AISC at Haile was $1,070 and cash costs were $567 per ounce sold. The Company expects the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (‘SEIS’) Final Record of Decision and receipt of subsequent operating permits to occur in the second quarter of 2022. The permits are necessary to allow underground mine development and expansion of the operating footprint to accommodate the construction of future PAG waste storage facilities and to allow increased water discharge rates. As previously guided, the ongoing delay in the receipt of the SEIS decision and associated permits continues to impact productivity at Haile, where mining rates are limited by additional material and water re-handling, reducing output and increasing costs. Upon receipt of the necessary permits, the Company expects an improvement in operational efficiencies and lower mining unit costs to be delivered progressively over a two-year period. An updated National Instrument (“NI”) 43-101 Technical Report for Haile was released 31 March 2022. The recently completed technical review assumed receipt of the necessary permits related to the SEIS by the end of the second quarter of 2022. Didipio produced 29,446 ounces of gold and 3,510 tonnes of copper, reflecting a 98% increase in gold production and 51% increase in copper production quarter-on-quarter. This represents the first full quarter of operations since the restart of production in November 2021. The underground mine achieved full mining rates at the end of the first quarter, ahead of schedule. Didipio’s first quarter AISC and cash costs were $40 per ounce sold and $26 per ounce sold respectively. An updated NI 43-101 Technical Report for Didipio was released 31 March 2022. Macraes produced 37,588 ounces of gold in the first quarter, a slight increase quarter-on-quarter and a 9% increase from the first quarter of 2021. Relative to the prior quarter, production increased on higher average head grade that was partially offset by lower mill feed and reduced gold recoveries. Macraes’ first quarter AISC and cash costs were $1,394 and $1,005 per ounce sold respectively. Waihi produced 6,752 ounces of gold in the first quarter, 43% lower quarter-on-quarter and 56% higher than the first quarter of 2021. The quarter-on-quarter decrease in production was attributed to lower ore tonnes and grade mined from Martha Underground, where mining was in areas of the resource with low resource definition and under-reconciled to the resource model in both grade and tonnes of ore. The Company estimates the under reconciliation accounted for approximately half of the negative impact during the quarter, with poor ground conditions in parts of the orebody and reduced workforce availability due to COVID-19 isolations also contributing factors. Results from the accelerated grade control drill program continued to update the resource models currently being used for mine planning. Grade control drilling to support mining for the remainder of 2022 and 2023 is expected to be completed progressively across the second and third quarters of 2022. This program is expected to better inform the detailed mine planning and design process, optimise the stoping sequence, reduce ore loss and deliver improved performance. Preparation for the lodgement of a consent application for the Waihi North Project, inclusive of WKP, continued to progress with environmental assessments nearing completion. The Company expects to lodge its formal consenting application, inclusive of stakeholder feedback, in the second quarter of 2022. The critical path for first production from the Waihi North Project remains the consenting process. Financial The Company reported record quarterly revenue of $285.7 million, reflecting a 37% increase quarter-on-quarter. The Company reported record quarterly EBITDA in the first quarter of $158 million, reflecting a 78% increase quarter-on-quarter on stronger gold sales volumes from Haile, Didipio and Macraes and higher average gold and copper prices received and lower unit costs, partially offset by lower sales at Waihi. First quarter 2022 EBITDA was 155% higher than the first quarter of 2021 related to resumption of operations at Didipio and increased gold prices. First quarter 2022 adjusted earnings after tax were $81.8 million or $0.11 per share which compared to $29.3 million in the fourth quarter of 2021 and $17.3 million in the first quarter of 2021. Cash flows from operating activities for the first quarter of $143.8 million exceeded the comparative quarters, driven by stronger EBITDA though partially offset by unfavourable working capital movements. Operating cash flow per share before working capital movements was $0.22 in the first quarter. The Company generated $63.2 million in free cash flow during the first quarter. As at the end of the first quarter Net Debt including equipment leases was $168.4m, which was $69.5m or 29% lower than at the end of December 2021. The Company had immediately available liquidity of $224.7 million, including $194.7 million in cash.   Article courtesy of Oceanagold Corporation

Mining

Philippine Resources - May 04, 2022

Atlas Mining attained Php1.22 billion Net Income in Q1 2022

Photo credit: Bilyonaryo Atlas Consolidated Mining and Development Corporation (“Atlas Mining”) reported another record net income of Php1.22 billion for the first quarter of 2022 compared to the net income of Php420 million for the same period in 2021. Higher production and higher metal prices sustained the strong performance of Atlas Mining. The increase in metal prices continued in the first quarter this year where copper price increased by 16% from $3.93/lb to $4.56/lb and gold price from USD1,797/ounce to USD1,885/ounce compared to the same period last year. Atlas Mining’s wholly-owned subsidiary, Carmen Copper Corporation, reported higher copper production and shipments in the first quarter of the year compared to the same period last year due to higher tonnes of ore milled and higher realized grades. In the first quarter of 2022, copper metal production increased by 26% from 15.93 million pounds to 20.01 million pounds, due mainly to the 8% increase in milling tonnage from 4.22 million tonnes to 4.57 million tonnes and the increase in copper grades by 12% from 0.215% to 0.241%. Gold production increased quarteron-quarter by 22% from 5,346 ounces to 6,015 ounces while gold grades decreased from 5.77 grams/dmt to 5.34 grams/dmt. Accordingly, shipments were higher by 27% from 17.02 million pounds of copper metal in 2021 to 21.69 million pounds in 2022. Higher production and shipments supported by higher prices, pushed revenues to soar by 54% to Php5.49 billion from Ph3.57 billion. Cash costs increased by 50% from Php1.97 billion to Php2.94 billion, due to the increase in volume of shipments and production. Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortization (EBITDA) was Php2.60 billion, 55% higher compared to Php1.68 billion in the same period of 2021. Core income was Php992 million in the first quarter of 2022 compared to Php579 million, 71% higher compared to the first quarter of 2021. Cash generated from operations enabled additional repayment of debt of US$45 million in the first quarter. With the partial repayment of certain loan, an accounting gain of Php464 million was recognized in the first quarter. According to Atlas Mining President, Adrian Ramos, “With sustained production, Atlas Mining continues to benefit from a strong metals market. We remain focused on keeping our operations resilient and efficient to ensure sustained and optimized earnings even under emerging challenging situations.”   Article courtesy of the Philippine Stock Exchange

Mining

Philippine Resources - May 04, 2022

SMPC completes mine rehab of largest open pit in PH

Integrated energy company Semirara Mining and Power Corporation (SMPC) has completed its backfilling operations in Panian, once the largest open-pit mine in the Philippines. SMPC spent 11.5 million man-hours to fill the pit with over 452 million bank cubic meters (bcm) of earth material, which is enough to fill 217,000 Olympic-size swimming pools. “We are mindful of our twin role as stewards and government contractor. What we accomplished in Panian is proof of that,” said SMPC president and COO Maria Cristina C. Gotianun. Located in Semirara Island, Panian mine spans 400 hectares with topographic elevations that ranged from 300 meters below sea level (mbsl) to 30 meters above sea level (masl) during its mine life. 300 meters is roughly the height of a 90-story building. SMPC fully covered the pit in six years, way ahead of the original 10-year mine rehabilitation plan. Mine rehabilitation refers to the repair of land that was disturbed by mining activities. The company is now developing a science-based plan to reforest and restore the biodiversity in the area. Panian had a mine life of 16 years and generated P12.7 billion in royalties for the government and SMPC host communities. Of the total amount, P7.6 billion went to the national government while the Municipality of Caluya and Brgy. Semirara received P2.3 billion and P1.8 billion, respectively. P1 billion went to the Province of Antique. In September 2021, SMPC won in the ASEAN Energy Awards (Special Submission category) for its accelerated rehabilitation of South Panian pit, which is considered as the fastest of its kind and scale in the Philippines. SMPC completely filled North Panian with earth material last January, four months ahead of its committed date to the Department of Energy.

Mining

Philippine Resources - May 02, 2022

PHILEX CORE NET INCOME CLIMBED 25% TO Php 676 MILLION FOR 1Q2022 VS. 1Q2021

Photo:  Philex Mining Corporation (the “Company” or “Philex”), one of the oldest and largest gold and copper producers in Southeast Asia, and a leader in right and principled mining, generated Php676 million Core Net Income and EBITDA of Php1.182 billion for 1Q2022 due to higher operating revenues on account of higher sustaining Gold and Copper realized prices, stable production and managed operating cost and expenses. Production level in 1Q2022 was within plan and, coupled with higher realized prices for Gold and Copper, lifted operating revenues to Php2.720 billion, higher by 7.5% versus the same period in 2021. Blended realized Gold and Copper prices peaked in March at $1,887 per ounce and $4.59 per pound respectively, driving operating revenues in March to Php1.075 billion, the highest since January. Operating costs were almost the same level as in 1Q2021 at Php1.655 billion. Production Tonnage milled for 1Q2021 was 10% lower at 1.822 million tonnes from 2.025 million tonnes in 1Q2021 mainly attributed to unscheduled breakdown of mill equipment. Ore grades for Gold continue to be at the same level as in 1Q2021 while ore grades for Copper showed improvement over the same period in 1Q2021, mitigating the impact of lower tonnage in Copper production. Gold output for 1Q2022 was 9.8% lower at 12,097 ounces versus 13,413 ounces in 1Q2021. On the other hand, Copper output for 1Q2022 was 8.7% lower at 6.18 million pounds versus 6.77 million pounds in 1Q2021. Operating expenses and ebitda Total operating costs and expenses for 1Q2022 at Php1.655 billion were almost at the same level for the same period in 1Q2021 at Php1.647 billion. The increases in the purchase costs of materials and supplies as well as equipment parts were offset by the continued implementation of work programs in operations, leading to efficiencies in the usage of power and supplies. EBITDA generated for 1Q2022 at Php1.182 billion was 17% higher than the Php1.011 billion in 1Q2021. The Company continue to accumulate cash surplus at a level programmed to partly finance the development of Silangan project by way of additional and fresh cash equity infusion into its wholly owned subsidiary, Silangan Mindanao Mining Co. Inc. Outlook The current global commodity outlook points to sustained prices of Gold and Copper in the near to medium term. These sustained metal prices provide the Company with the ability to implement exploration and studies geared towards funding additional mineral resources/reserves within the current ore body and vicinity of the Padcal Mine. The Company continues to work with its financial advisors for the completion of the fund raising exercise to start the Silangan Project, subject to approval of relevant government and /or capital market regulators. The successful and timely conclusion of the funding exercise will pave the way for the timely development and start of commercial operations of the Silangan project by early 2025. The Company is set to actively commence the development of Silangan as soon as the funding sources would have been finalized and completed, which will be in the form of a rights offer, possibly debt and fresh capital infusion out of the cash reserves of the Company. “The first quarter of the year bore much promise that the mining industry, like the economy, was well on its way to full recovery with the tapering off of the global threat of COVID-19 and the relaxation of stringent quarantine and lockdown guidelines,” according to Philex president and CEO Eulalio B. Austin Jr. “The country, it seemed, was back in business and Philex continued to ride on the strength of sustained production and revenue levels, and took full advantage of the wave of increase in global metal prices. However, the current situation in Ukraine and its impact on the global supply chain and commodity markets makes us tread cautiously towards the remaining months of the year. We are still hopeful that the conflict in Europe will end soon enough. We move with caution and continue to assess and re-assess our plans and our strategies.” “We view the current global situation with guarded optimism,” according to Philex Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan. “Though there are gains to be realized with the spike in the prices of gold, copper, and even nickel, the current tension that is unfolding in Ukraine might impact the country’s and the industry’s pursuit of recovery post-pandemic. If the conflict pushes inflation upward, it could affect the country’s economic growth.”   Article courtesy of the Philippine Stock Exchange

Mining

Philippine Resources - April 22, 2022

Platinum Group Metals Corporation’s first shipment underway and targets 5.5M WMT for 2022

Photo credit: Global Ferronickel Holdings, Inc. Global Ferronickel Holdings, Inc. (FNI) is off to a strong start as Platinum Group Metals Corporation (PGMC) begins its shipment to customers in China with 53,700 WMT of low-grade nickel ore bound for Guangdong Century Tsingshan Nickel Industry Co., Ltd. (GCTNICL). PGMC is the second-largest value exporter of nickel ore in the country. It is a wholly-owned subsidiary of FNI. “We are upbeat that our mining operations at PGMC have been running seamlessly from the get-go. Weather permitting, we might be able to exceed this year’s target of 5.5 WMT consisting of 60% low-grade ore and 40% medium-grade ore,” said FNI President Dante R. Bravo. Around half of PGMC’s shipment target for 2022 has been slated for, and the rest will be open to other customers. PGMC has a general nickel ore supply contract with GCTNICL and Baosteel Resources International Co. Ltd. for 20 and 30 shipments, respectively. Prevailing market prices for all customers will be determined at the time of their individual order confirmation. “We remain bullish as demand from China continues to be strong, and nickel prices have been rising in recent years. And with current global events adversely affecting oil prices, there is a greater appreciation for electric vehicles, which use nickel for their rechargeable batteries,” said Mr. Bravo.   Article courtesy of the Philippine Stock Exchange

Mining

Philippine Resources - April 19, 2022

Caraga's mineral testing lab fully operational by 2024

Photo: The Caraga Mineral Testing and Research Laboratory, the only mineral testing lab in the region, is expected to be fully operational by 2024. The facility is envisioned to provide highly equipped, accessible, and affordable analytical testing for mining companies in the region. (Photo courtesy of DOST Caraga Director Noel Ajoc) Despite being inaugurated last April 5, the Caraga Mineral Testing and Research Laboratory is not expected to be fully operational until 2024, an executive said Monday. "We are still in the process of acquiring equipment for the facility. If we (could) get the funds for this in 2023, it will fully operate in 2024. Environment-related tests would at least start in January 2023," Department of Science and Technology (DOST) Caraga Director Noel Ajoc told the Philippine News Agency in an interview. The equipment will be funded through the General Appropriations Act, and the requested budget for the equipment cost was PHP40 million. The PHP15-million facility was funded by the Department of Public Works and Highways-Caraga, according to Ajoc. "Once completed, this is the only mineral testing lab in Caraga. Caraga is number one in the country's mining industry," he said, citing Philippines Statistics Authority data. The facility, Ajoc said, will provide analytical services like metal content analysis in support of the mineral industry in Caraga. Mineral processing and metal extraction research will also be conducted in this facility. "We will do analytical tests on nickel and cobalt content of ores, gold content processed by small miners, and environment-related tests like heavy metals content. Once the equipment are acquired, extraction of metals like nickel, cobalt, chromium, gold, and copper from ore can also be done at the lab," Ajoc said. DOST Caraga will do the analytical services. Research and development (R&D), on the other hand, will be conducted by the DOST, higher education institutions, and student researchers. Meanwhile, in a taped report, DOST Secretary Fortunato de la Peña said the establishment of the Caraga Mineral Testing and Research Laboratory aims to provide highly equipped, accessible, and affordable analytical testing for mining companies in the region. "It is also envisioned to serve as a facility for the conduct of R&D related to the mining industry, including mining wastes and wastewater management," De la Peña said. The facility is located at the DOST regional office in Ampayon, Butuan City. By Ma. Cristina Arayata   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency 

Mining

Philippine Resources - April 18, 2022

NegOcc, MGB ink pact to devolve mining papers issuance functions

Photo: Negros Occidental Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson (2nd from right) and Mines and Geosciences Bureau-Western Regional Director Raul Laput (right) sign the memorandum of agreement for the transfer of functions on the processing and issuances of two mining documents to the provincial government. Witnessed by Provincial Administrator Rayfrando Diaz II (2nd from left) and Provincial Environment Management Office head Julie Ann Bedrio, the signing rites were held during the Governor’s Permit Holders Forum and Dialogue held at the Negros Residences in Bacolod City on Tuesday (April 12, 2022). (Photo courtesy of PIO Negros Occidental) The province of Negros Occidental has entered into a memorandum of agreement (MOA) with the Department of Environment and Natural Resources (DENR) Mines and Geosciences Bureau-Western Visayas (MGB-6) for the transfer of mining documents issuance functions to the provincial government. The signing rites, led by Governor Eugenio Jose Lacson and MGB-6 Regional Director Raul Laput, were held during the Governor’s Permit Holders Forum and Dialogue held at the Negros Residences here on Tuesday. “To everyone present, including the national government agencies, may the good Lord give us the wisdom to find better ways on how we can work together for the furtherance of responsible mining practices,” Lacson said in his keynote message before some 170 permit holders. The MOA provides for the transfer of functions on the processing and issuances of the certificate of environmental management and community relations record (CEMCRR) and social development and management program (SDMP), which are part of new policies affecting sand and gravel as well as quarry extraction in the province. This is based on Executive Order 138 issued by President Rodrigo Duterte on June 21, 2021 or the “Full Devolution of Certain Functions of the Executive Branch to Local Government Units, Creation of Committee on Devolution, and for other Purposes”. Laput said the mining industry is considered a major driving force in the country’s local and national economy. “This is a very important meeting of our permit holders and our government agencies to share relevant information, give updates, share concerns and exchange ideas on how we can address issues affecting the industry,” he added. The CEMCRR is issued as proof of a good record of accomplishment of a company or permit holder in terms of community relations while the SDMP is a community development tool required of permit holders to ensure that the host and neighboring communities benefit from the project in terms of livelihood, education, infrastructure, medical and other social development programs. Both documents are part of the requirements for permit applications for quarry, small-scale mining and sand, and gravel for commercial and industrial use. Local issuance of quarry, sand, and gravel for areas below five hectares and small-scale mining permits is a devolved function under the Local Government Code of 1991. Lacson said he has been informed that some applicants and permittees are circumventing the law by applying multiple applications when the ordinance provides that a qualified person may only be granted one permit in any local government unit at any one time. “I want to be forthright with you, always remember that the permit given to you is a privilege, a privilege to use our resources judiciously, not to exploit our limited natural reserves. We are not supposed to do indirectly what is prohibited directly,” he told the permit holders.   Article courtesy of the Philippine News Agency

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Mining

Philippine Resources - April 06, 2022

OCEANAGOLD PRESIDENT AND CEO GERARD BOND COMMENCES TENURE

Photo credit: Mining Journal - Gerard Bond OceanaGold Corporation is pleased to announce that Gerard Bond has commenced his role as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Company. Mr. Bond will initially be based in Melbourne, Australia and in the coming weeks will travel to visit all operations and meet with shareholders and other key stakeholders. Mr. Paul Benson, Chairman of the Board, said “Gerard’s start with OceanaGold marks a new chapter for the Company. His wealth of commercial and industry experience and proven track record of driving performance and delivering on business potential will be instrumental in unlocking the Company’s full value, and the Board is looking forward to working with him. I would also like to take this opportunity to thank Scott Sullivan for stepping in as Acting President and CEO. His leadership has been instrumental over the past few months, and he will continue to be a key member of OceanaGold’s executive team in his role as Chief Operating Officer.” Mr. Bond added, “I am looking forward to leading OceanaGold through what I believe will be a transformational period for the business, our shareholders and stakeholders. I am inheriting a solid foundation with a highly talented workforce, a suite of high-quality assets, one of the most exciting growth pipelines in the industry, and a tremendous shareholder register of supportive long-term minded investors.” “We will focus on delivering long-term value to shareholders by safely and responsibly optimising all of our operations and maximizing cash generation. This will allow us to reduce our debt, return to paying dividends to shareholders and invest in high-return projects such as the Wharekirauponga Mine in New Zealand and the Haile Underground Mine in the USA. We have a lot of opportunity ahead of us and are focused on safely delivering the full value potential of this business.”   Article courtesy of Oceanagold

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