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The agreement with Heavy Metals Exploration includes an option to acquire 25 percent of the project for a cash payment of AU$150,000 and AU$200,000 worth of ordinary shares.
Australia-based Eastern Iron (ASX:EFE) has entered into a call option agreement with Heavy Metal Exploration to acquire an interest in the Mount Cobalt Corridor project in Queensland, the company announced on Tuesday (August 28).
“The project is in one of the few areas globally with a history of high grade primary cobalt production,” the company said in a statement.
According to the company, previous works in the region were mainly for copper and gold. However, cobalt mineralization was identified and cobalt production of about 800 tonnes (t) at Mt Cobalt occurred in two periods: 1919 to 1943 (778 t) and 1996 to 1997 (21.5t).
Before Eastern Iron can complete the deal to acquire an interest in the copper-cobalt sulphide project, it will have to pay a call option fee of AU$10,000 by September 11.
The agreement will include an option to acquire 25 percent of the project for a cash payment of AU$150,000 and the issue of AU$200,000 worth of ordinary shares.
The deal also considers an option for Eastern Iron to buy 100-percent interest in the asset by launching a farm-in agreement with Heavy Metals and agreeing a royalty payment.
The farm-in agreement will include a stage 1 period, in which the company must spend AU$650,000 on the project within the first 24 months to acquire an additional 35-percent interest in the asset.
To be able to buy the remaining interest, in stage 2, Eastern Iron must spend an extra AU$1.5 million on the project within 3 years after stage 1 is completed.
Meanwhile, Eastern Iron will negotiate a royalty payment, which will include a 0.5 percent net smelter return royalty for Heavy Metal on all the copper produced at the project, capped at 30,000 t and as long as copper prices stay above US$6,000 per tonne.
The deal is expected to close 30 days after receiving shareholder and government approvals.
Aside from Mount Cobalt Corridor, Eastern Iron is evaluating and exploring a number of mineral projects in the eastern states of Australia, including the Nowa Nowa iron and copper project in Victoria.
On Wednesday (August 29), shares of Eastern Iron closed at AU$0.008.
Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Resource for real-time updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Priscila Barrera, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
Highlights: – Former Xstrata plc executive, Mr. Ian Woolsey, has joined Jervois as Group Manager Information Technology – Mr. Woolsey will lead the IT integration of Freeport Cobalt in Finland, Idaho Cobalt Operations in the United States and the São Miguel Paulista nickel-cobalt refinery in Brazil – Mr. Woolsey joins Jervois after more than 10 years with Glencore Xstrata where he led the IT integration of major …
– Former Xstrata plc executive, Mr. Ian Woolsey, has joined Jervois as Group Manager Information Technology (“IT”)
– Mr. Woolsey will lead the IT integration of Freeport Cobalt in Finland, Idaho Cobalt Operations in the United States and the São Miguel Paulista nickel-cobalt refinery in Brazil
– Mr. Woolsey joins Jervois after more than 10 years with Glencore Xstrata where he led the IT integration of major cross-border transactions including the Xstrata acquisition of MIM Holdings, Falconbridge and the Xstrata-Glencore merger
TheNewswire – 8 September 2021 – Jervois Global Limited (“ Jervois ” or the “ Company ”) (ASX:JRV) (TSXV:JRV) (OTC:JRVMF) is pleased to announce Mr. Ian Woolsey has joined as Group Manager (“ GM ”) – Information Technology (“ IT ”).
Mr. Woolsey has over 30 years of global experience across IT Strategy and Planning, ERP Program Management, Chief Information Officer and Chief Technology Officer roles across the Resources and Government sectors, including a decade of CIO / IT leadership experience with Glencore Xstrata. He has a proven track record in:
– Global ERP strategy and implementation;
– IT transformational change, including post-M&A integration for rapid delivery of synergies; and
– Executive management of the IT function with significant resources and expenditure, across diverse functions, cultures, and geographies.
Mr. Woolsey joined Xstrata plc in 2003 as the Global IT Projects Manager, responsible for the implementation of standard IT infrastructure across 10 business units in 7 countries. He transitioned to Toronto, Canada in 2006, with responsibility for delivering the successful IT integration of the newly acquired Falconbridge business. In 2008, Mr Woolsey transferred to Xstrata Nickel as General Manager Business Services, where he led the successful deployment of an integrated SAP solution for Xstrata Nickel’s global operations, across 7 sites in 4 languages.
This included coverage for Xstrata’s Integrated Nickel Operations, which included the custom feed and intermediate purchasing and recycling division, Xstrata Nickel International Limited, ran by current Jervois commercial executive Mr. Klaus Wollhaf.
Mr. Woolsey returned to Australia in 2012 as General Manager Business Systems and Integration for Xstrata Coal, then led IT integration efforts across Glencore Copper following the sale of Xstrata to Glencore in 2013.
Prior to Xstrata, Ian was an Associate Partner with Accenture, working across Australia and Asia for more than a decade, and began his career with IBM Australia.
Since 2014 when he left Glencore, Mr. Woolsey has continued to focus on delivering ERP-enabled transformation initiatives for Mining and Public Sector organisations. He holds a Bachelor of Engineering (Electrical) and Master of Commerce (Economics) from the University of New South Wales, Australia.
Jervois is pleased to welcome an operating executive of Mr. Woolsey’s caliber as it implements the requisite IT systems, reporting and governance controls across its expanding portfolio of operating assets.
On behalf of Jervois Global Limited
Bryce Crocker, CEO
For further information, please contact:
Investors and analysts:
Chief Financial Officer
Mob: +61 420 582 887
This news release may contain certain “Forward-Looking Statements” within the meaning of the United States Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995 and applicable Canadian securities laws. When used in this news release, the words “anticipate”, “believe”, “estimate”, “expect”, “target, “plan”, “forecast”, “may”, “schedule”, “expected” and other similar words or expressions identify forward-looking statements or information. These forward-looking statements or information may relate to integration of businesses into the Jervois group and certain other factors or information. Such statements represent Jervois’ current views with respect to future events and are necessarily based upon a number of assumptions and estimates that, while considered reasonable by Jervois, are inherently subject to significant business, economic, competitive, political and social risks, contingencies and uncertainties. Many factors, both known and unknown, could cause results, performance or achievements to be materially different from the results, performance or achievements that are or may be expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements. Jervois does not intend, and does not assume any obligation, to update these forward-looking statements or information to reflect changes in assumptions or changes in circumstances or any other events affections such statements and information other than as required by applicable laws, rules and regulations.
Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.
Copyright (c) 2021 TheNewswire – All rights reserved.
News Provided by TheNewsWire via QuoteMedia
AustralianSuper announces that it acquired 47,534,965 ordinary shares in the capital of Jervois Mining Limited on 27 October 2020 and a further 13,120,773 Shares on 3 December 2020 such that immediately following the second acquisition, AustralianSuper held a total of 108,450,700 of the issued and outstanding Shares in Jervois. The Shares were acquired pursuant to private placements by Jervois to institutional and …
AustralianSuper announces that it acquired 47,534,965 ordinary shares (“Shares”) in the capital of Jervois Mining Limited (ASX: JRV) (TSXV: JRV) (“Jervois”) on 27 October 2020 and a further 13,120,773 Shares on 3 December 2020 such that immediately following the second acquisition, AustralianSuper held a total of 108,450,700 (or approximately 13.71%) of the issued and outstanding Shares in Jervois.
The Shares were acquired pursuant to private placements by Jervois to institutional and sophisticated investors. The average purchase price per Share was AUD0.305/ CAD0.29 for an aggregate total purchase consideration of AUD18.5 million/ CAD17.6 million .
The head office of Jervois is located at Suite 508, 737 Burwood Road, Hawthorn East, Victoria , 3123, Australia .
AustralianSuper acquired the Shares for investment purposes in the normal course of its business and not with the purpose of influencing the control or direction of Jervois. AustralianSuper may in the future, subject to market conditions, make additional investments in or dispositions of Jervois’ securities for investment purposes.
This news release is issued by AustralianSuper pursuant to National Instrument 62-104 Take-Over Bids and Issuer Bids of the Canadian Securities Administrators. AustralianSuper will file a report in respect of its acquisition of Shares with the applicable securities commission or securities regulator in each Canadian jurisdiction in which Jervois is a reporting issuer. A copy of the report may be obtained from Janine Cooper (phone: +61 3 8677 3203) at Level 33/50 Lonsdale Street Melbourne , Victoria , 3000, Australia . AustralianSuper has also made the necessary disclosures on the Australian Stock Exchange (ASX).
AustralianSuper is Australia’s largest superannuation fund and is regulated by the Australian Prudential Regulation Authority. AustralianSuper manages more than A$200 billion of members’ retirement savings on behalf of more than 2.3 million members from around 333,000 businesses as at 30 November 2020 .
View original content: http://www.newswire.ca/en/releases/archive/January2021/06/c5867.html
News Provided by Canada Newswire via QuoteMedia
Australia is the world's third biggest producer of cobalt, and as companies look for ethical cobalt sources outside the DRC, the country's role will continue to grow.
Cobalt prices have been trending up this past year, with analysts remaining bullish on the key raw material, which is used in electric vehicle (EV) batteries. Demand is soaring as the electronics industry comes to rely on cobalt, and its use will only increase as the world continues to digitise and electrify.
EV sales are on the rise, and these vehicles require lithium-ion batteries to run. Typically around 9 kilograms of cobalt are used to manufacture each battery, and one battery alone can have as much as 20 kilograms. As long as demand for EVs continues to go up, so too will demand for cobalt — and the EV boom has only just begun.
Cobalt is also key in several different alloys with a variety of uses, including in gas turbine engines and magnets. Particularly tough cobalt alloys, such as tungsten carbide and chromium-cobalt, can be used to cut and drill steel.
So where should keen investors look for exposure to this promising metal? The Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) has long been the top producer of cobalt worldwide; according to the US Geological Survey, it accounted for about 70 percent of cobalt production in 2021.
However, the DRC’s mining industry is known for unsustainable mining practices and unchecked labour abuses, including child labour. The country cannot maintain its current level of production indefinitely, and many conscious investors are seeking more ethical alternatives.
Australia is one such alternative. Australia contains about 18 percent of global cobalt reserves, but is currently responsible for only about 3 percent of global cobalt output. Between the country’s sustainable mining practices and its de-risked ventures, Australia is a great pick for shrewd investors interested in the cobalt-mining industry.
Cobalt in Australia: The history of cobalt mining
Cobalt has been used since antiquity for its bright blue colouration, but the metal was only officially discovered in 1742 by Swedish chemist Georg Brandt.
Up until 1874, European mineral deposits were the primary sites of cobalt production. That year, Europe was overtaken by New Caledonia, and in 1905 Canadian deposits pulled ahead. Since around 1920, the DRC has been a major global producer of cobalt, and its cobalt-mining legacy has continued to this day. Another contemporary cobalt behemoth, China, has only made its mark as a leading producer within the last couple of decades.
In the early 20th century, cobalt’s primary application began shifting away from cosmetic purposes and toward technological pursuits. For example, in 1930, cobalt alloys containing a mixture of cobalt, aluminium, nickel and iron were first used to make high-powered permanent magnets. Other alloys were soon discovered to have varied uses for building electrical equipment and electronic devices.
Cobalt is mainly found in compounds, such as cobalt arsenide, cobalt sulfarsenide and hydrated arsenate, and it is predominantly used for alloy production. Generally, cobalt does not come from cobalt mines — in fact, 98 percent of global cobalt is a by-product from nickel and copper mines. Copper mines account for about 60 percent of global cobalt output, and nickel mines around 38 percent.
Cobalt in Australia: The Australian landscape
According to Australia’s 2020 list of critical minerals projects, there are 68 cobalt-focused projects across Australia.
The largest is Glencore’s (LSE:GLEN,OTC Pink:GLCNF) Murrin Murrin nickel-cobalt mine, which launched in 1998 and is located in the Northeastern Goldfields region of Western Australia. The mine produces an impressive 66.7 percent of the country’s cobalt. Unlike other mines, many of which suffered a decline in cobalt output during the pandemic, Murrin Murrin experienced an uptick in production, which rose 14 percent year-over-year in 2020.
Murrin Murrin uses conventional open-pit mining for its resource extraction, and it processes and refines cobalt ore on site. In 2021, the mine produced about 30,100 tonnes of nickel, alongside 2,500 tonnes of cobalt by-product.
In 2021, Glencore produced a total of around 31,300 tonnes of cobalt between all of its operations, including those in the DRC. In addition to production, the company also processes and recycles cobalt-containing materials.
Another notable cobalt project in the country is the Broken Hill cobalt project, a new mining endeavour owned by Cobalt Blue Holdings (ASX:COB,OTC Pink:CBBHF). This project is unique for its emphasis on cobalt production — cobalt will be directly produced on site, rather than extracted as a by-product of nickel.
The Broken Hill project is anticipated to have an output of around 4,000 tonnes of cobalt annually over a 20 year mine lifespan. Broken Hill’s cobalt production process will include concentration, leaching, calcining and project recovery, and the site expects annual sulphur output of 300,000 tonnes, which will hike up the project’s value.
Importantly, Broken Hill will both produce and refine its cobalt — a welcome change from sending the raw material to another country, most often China, for refinement. This practice will reduce the unethical labour practices along the chain of production.
Many other top cobalt-producing companies have active sites in Australia, including Panoramic Resources (ASX:PAN,OTC Pink:PANRF), Australian Mines (ASX:AUZ,OTCQB:AMSLF) and Clean TeQ Holdings (ASX:CNQ). These ventures are all top nickel miners and strong producers of cobalt as a by-product.
Cobalt in Australia: The future down under
The Australian government is enthusiastic about the country’s move toward mining critical minerals, establishing a Critical Minerals Facilitation Office in January 2020 as part of a push for its burgeoning minerals sector.
Currently, Australia is the third biggest producer of cobalt worldwide, at 5,600,000 tonnes in 2021.
According to a 2020 report by Fitch Solutions, cobalt mining in Australia continues to look up. It predicts that the next decade will see a spike in Australian cobalt production, with expected average output growth of 5.3 percent per year from 2021 to 2029, as compared to average output growth of only 2.4 percent between 2010 and 2020.
Moreover, despite the fact that Australia is the third largest cobalt producer worldwide, it has the second largest reserves of cobalt. This means that the country has the potential to scale up its production slowly and sustainably, situating itself as a major world player.
Between the exploding EV market and the continued trend toward electronics sales and digitization, cobalt will likely remain a hot commodity in the mining world for years to come. Investors should be paying close attention to cobalt production, and particularly to cobalt mining in Australia, where strong cobalt output, new mining ventures and sustainable extraction practices are setting the country up for long-term success.
This is an updated version of an article first published by the Investing News Network in 2021.
Don't forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Melissa Pistilli, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
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HIGHLIGHTS: -James May becomes Jervois’ CFO after almost 15 years in leadership roles with Rio Tinto -Mr May’s most recent role in Rio Tinto was as Interim Vice President, Sales and Marketing for the Energy & Minerals portfolio, based in Singapore -Mr May was also previously the CFO of Energy Resources of Australia Limited, an ASX-listed uranium miner, majority owned by Rio Tinto -Mr May also worked in various …
-James May becomes Jervois’ CFO after almost 15 years in leadership roles with Rio Tinto
-Mr May’s most recent role in Rio Tinto was as Interim Vice President, Sales and Marketing for the Energy & Minerals portfolio, based in Singapore
-Mr May was also previously the CFO of Energy Resources of Australia Limited, an ASX-listed uranium miner, majority owned by Rio Tinto
-Mr May also worked in various business development and finance roles with Rio Tinto and prior to that commenced his career with Deloitte in the United Kingdom
25 November 2020 – TheNewswire – Jervois Mining Limited (” Jervois ” or the ” Company “) (ASX: JRV) (TSX-V: JRV) (OTC: JRVMF) announces the appointment of James May as Chief Financial Officer (” CFO “) / Executive General Manager (” EGM “) Finance, as it advances the financing and construction of its Idaho Cobalt Operations (” ICO “) in the United States and restart of the Sao Miguel Paulista (” SMP “) refinery in Sao Paulo, Brazil .
Mr May joins Jervois with more than 20 years of experience in the global resources industry. He began his career with Deloitte in London within its energy and resources division, before joining Rio Tinto in 2006.
At Rio Tinto, Mr May spent time in a variety of global positions of increasing seniority, culminating in the role of Interim Vice President – Sales and Marketing, for the Energy and Minerals sales portfolio, based in Singapore. The role is responsible for commodity sales generating more than US$2 billion of revenue annually. Mr May was also responsible for new business initiatives and marketing projects for the portfolio, including the evaluation of commercial opportunities in lithium and other battery metals.
Prior to moving to Singapore in 2018, Mr May spent four years in Darwin as Chief Financial Officer of Energy Resources of Australia Limited, an ASX-listed uranium miner majority owned by Rio Tinto. In this role he was responsible for leadership of all finance, commercial, business development and governance activities.
Mr May also spent time in corporate roles with Rio Tinto as part of the group business development team focused on corporate strategy, M&A and related projects, and in roles with group finance.
Mr May is an outstanding executive to join Jervois, and his financial, commercial, and marketing experience will be of enormous value to the Company. He will be based in Melbourne, Australia, and will start on 1 March 2021.
Mr May will be supported by a new Group Controller, Craig Morrison. Mr Morrison is currently Group Financial Controller for an Australian agriculture business with revenues approaching A$200 million, where he oversees all finance and accounting operations. Previously, Mr Morrison was Group Financial Reporting Manager based in London, United Kingdom, for a NASDAQ-listed LNG midstream infrastructure company with a market capitalization of approximately US$1 billion. Mr Morrison will also be based in Melbourne, Australia.
From 1 March 2021, Jess Birtcher will relinquish his position as Acting CFO and pass these responsibilities to Mr May, which will allow Mr Birtcher to focus on his ICO Finance Manager role ahead of a restart of construction activities on site in Salmon, Idaho, in Q2 2021.
On behalf of Jervois Mining Limited
Bryce Crocker, CEO.
For further information, please contact:
Investors and analysts:
Chief Executive Officer
Mob: +61 420 582 887
“Neither TSX Venture Exchange nor its Regulation Services Provider (as that term is defined in policies of the TSX Venture Exchange) accepts responsibility for the adequacy or accuracy of this release.”
Copyright (c) 2020 TheNewswire – All rights reserved.
News Provided by TheNewsWire via QuoteMedia
Blackstone Minerals is pleased to announce the completion of the PFS for the development of a Downstream Refinery in Northern Vietnam.
Downstream Pre-feasibility Study (PFS) confirms technically and economically robust hydrometallurgical refining process to upgrade nickel sulfide concentrate to produce battery grade Nickel: Cobalt: Manganese (NCM) 811 Precursor for the Lithium-ion battery industry.
- Base Case
Post-tax NPV8 of US$2.01bn and internal rate of return (IRR) of 67%
- Spot Case
Post-tax NPV8 of US$3.51bn and internal rate of return (IRR) of 98%
Base Case Economics
- Upfront Project Capital of US$491m paid back in 1.5 years from first production
- Life-of-Operations revenue of US$14.0bn and operating cash flow of US$4.5bn
- Average annual operating cash flow of US$451m
- Average annual post-tax cash flow of US$365m
- Life-of-operations All-in Cost of US$11,997/ t NCM811 as compared to study weighted average forecast price on sale of NCM811 of US$16,397/ t NCM811 and current Shanghai Metals Market (SMM) spot price of US$19,559/t NCM811
Base Case Physicals
- Refinery capacity of 400ktpa
- 10-year life-of-Operations aligned with the Ban Phuc Disseminated orebody and availability of known third party concentrate feed (3PF)
- Average annual refined nickel output of 43.5ktpa
- Average annual NCM811 Precursor Production of 85.6ktpa
- First production currently targeted in 2024 and ramp up to steady state operations currently forecast to be achieved in CY 2026
- 3.9Mt of concentrate feed with average Ni in concentrate grade of 11.5%, Co in concentrate grade of 0.3% and Cu in concentrate grade of 1.1%
- Average annual copper by-product of 4.1ktpa
Blackstone Minerals (ASX:BSX, OTC:BLSTF) (“Blackstone” or the “Company”) is pleased to announce the completion of the PFS for the development of a Downstream Refinery in Northern Vietnam (“Ta Khoa Refinery Project”, “TKR” or the “Project”).
The PFS is a critical milestone for the Company and reiterates the competitive advantages of nickel sulfide projects and adding value via an integrated downstream processing strategy. The PFS demonstrates that a very low capital intensity is required for the TKR to produce Class I nickel at a scale that would make Blackstone a globally significant producer.
The PFS considers a refinery design to process up to 400ktpa (Base Case) of nickel concentrate, confirming a technically and economically robust flow sheet to upgrade nickel sulfide concentrate to produce battery grade NCM811 Precursor for the Lithium-ion battery industry.
Blackstone’s development strategy is supported by using 3PF to supplement nickel concentrate supply from the Ta Khoa Nickel Project. Concentrate feed from Blackstone’s Ban Phuc Disseminated Sulfide (DSS) orebody forms part of the overall concentrate blend. With ongoing drilling and further exploration success Blackstone believes the Base Case Refinery has the potential to be fed entirely by feedstock from the Ta Khoa Nickel Project.
The Company’s decision to proceed with the development of the Ta Khoa Refinery is contingent upon a number of factors including but not limited to future exploration success at Blackstone’s flagship Ta Khoa Mine, the ability to secure offtake for 3PF and consumer demand for battery grade NCM811 Precursor. Indicative quantum and concentrate specifications have been received from all 3PF concentrate Blackstone has included in this PFS for the Base Case TKR. Based on current and confidential discussions, BSX believes it can secure sufficient supply to meet the demand for the Base Case TKR.
The Company intends to develop and fund the construction of the TKR via a collaborative
partnership-based model. Blackstone’s intention is to retain a significant interest in the TKR and expects that its portion of funding will be met through a combination of debt, equity, and offtake financing.
Blackstone has commenced funding discussions with multiple potential partners, including NCM consumers and concentrate suppliers to jointly participate in the funding of the proposed refinery. Further, Blackstone has been approached by a number of financial advisors interested in supporting Blackstone’s funding strategy.
The Company is immediately progressing approval to commence the next phase of Definitive Feasibility Studies and pilot plant testing (in Vietnam) and is currently targeting a Final Investment Decision (FID) in CY2022.
Blackstone Managing Director Scott Williamson said the Company’s strategy to build a
downstream refinery in Vietnam is amid a very supportive ESG, macroeconomic and fiscal
backdrop. The electric vehicle revolution has accelerated demand for green nickelTM and the delivery of the PFS is an important milestone towards achieving Blackstone’s vision to integrate lithium-ion battery supply chains and enable a green solution from mine to consumer.
“The Base Case PFS financial outcomes are compelling based on an NCM811 Precursor price forecast that is conservative compared to current observable market rates. The internal rate of return on capital invested is exceptional for the Base Case, owing to very low capital intensity, a significant premium available when upgrading nickel sulfide concentrates into battery grade NCM811 Precursor and the competitive operating advantages in Vietnam, which include access to low-cost renewable hydro power.”
“Blackstone is very pleased by the level of collaboration with the Vietnamese Government to
progress the Company’s downstream refinery. As part of the PFS Blackstone completed a
location study to identify preferred Refinery locations, with each of the shortlisted potential
Refinery locations offering significant corporate tax incentives. The corporate tax incentives
offered are a strong signal for the Vietnamese Government support for Foreign Direct Investment and Blackstone’s downstream refinery strategy.”
“The Base Case Refinery represents Management’s view of the scale of operations that could over time, through exploration success, be supported by the Company’s existing nickel sulfide mineralised landholdings. Economics have been presented assuming a ten-year life-of operations, aligned with known and desired life-of-mine for 3PF concentrate sources that
Blackstone aims to secure offtake. Management considers the more likely scenario is that the Refinery life will extend beyond ten years.”
Read the full article here.
Interested in gold in Australia? Here's a brief overview of what investors should know about where the yellow metal is found in the country.
With gold in focus due to Russia's invasion of Ukraine, some experts are expecting its price to reach all-time highs as investors seek traditionally safe-haven investments.
If you’re interested in investing in gold right now, you may want to turn your attention to Australia, which is currently the second largest gold-producing country in the world.
Read on for a breakdown of gold in Australia, including a look at how each state and territory contributes.
Gold in Australia: Australia's place in the world
As mentioned, Australia is currently the second largest gold-producing country globally, just behind China. Gold production in the country reached a high of 330 tonnes in 2021, up from 328 tonnes the previous year.
“There are three countries that combine the rule of law with significant gold production: Canada, the US and Australia. Outside of these three, there’s not much gold, or there’s not much protection for individual investors and companies,” Kevin McElligott, managing director of Australia at Franco-Nevada (TSX:FNV,NYSE:FNV), explained to the Investing News Network in a 2019 email interview.
According to the Office of the Chief Economist, Australian gold mine production is forecast to rise at an average annual rate of 8 percent from 2020 to 2021 and 2022 to 2023. Anticipated production of 374 tonnes by 2022 to 2023 will be propelled by both production from new mines and existing mine expansions.
Western Australia is the centre of gold exploration activity in the country, accounting for 70 percent, or AU$1.07 billion, of total gold exploration expenditure. In 2022, the Fraser Institute named Western Australia the best mining jurisdiction in the world. Its Pilbara region is a big part of why the state is attracting attention.
In recent years, Pilbara exploration activity has seen renewed interest and helped increase the country’s consistent gold output. Covering more than half a million square kilometres, the region has attracted major miners like Rio Tinto (ASX:RIO,LSE:RIO,NYSE:RIO) and BHP (ASX:BHP,NYSE:BHP,LSE:BHP).
Western Australia accounts for the bulk of the country's gold output, and the geology of the Pilbara Craton has been compared to South Africa’s Kaapvaal Craton and Witwatersrand Basin. Witwatersrand is home to the Earth’s largest known gold reserves and is responsible for over 40 percent of worldwide gold production.
Both the Pilbara and Witwatersrand are similar in age and composition, sitting on top of the Archean granite-greenstone basement. The Pilbara area hosts numerous small mesothermal gold deposits containing conglomerate gold — mineralization known to hold large, high-grade gold nuggets.
Gold in Australia: Production by region
Click through the links below to learn more about gold mining in Australia's states and territories. The data used is from Geoscience Australia, and the 2018 gold production numbers are the latest available.
As mentioned, Western Australia is a gold powerhouse, and its output stands well above that of its fellow Australian states and territories, measuring at 211 tonnes in 2018.
New South Wales has a long history with gold, being the home of the first Australian gold rush in the mid-1800s, which helped kickstart the then-colony’s burgeoning economy. Gold found in Central New South Wales triggered an obsession with mining that burned for decades. In 2018, the state's production was 39 tonnes.
Queensland may be best known for its coal exports, but the state is dotted with active mines, with a modest collection that produce gold. It put out 18 tonnes of the yellow metal in 2018.
Gold in Australia: Northern Territory
The Northern Territory produced only 15 tonnes of gold in 2018, but over its lifetime more than 20 million ounces have been pulled out of the ground in the region. The Pine Creek, Tennant Creek and Tanami goldfields are the primarily places where this metal has been extracted.
Victoria also has a strong gold-mining history, although today it's a smaller-scale producer. In 2018, 13 of the 315 tonnes of gold mined in Australia came from Victoria from seven active mines — most of which are located within regions known for vast historical output of the yellow metal
South Australia isn't a major gold miner, although it accounts for over a quarter of the country’s gold resources — in 2018, just 8 tonnes of gold were mined in the state. However, the area has potential, with a major geological region — the Gawler Craton — identified by the government and mineral explorers as being of extreme interest.
Gold in Australia: Tasmania
Tasmania is geologically diverse with a number of major operating mines, but it is not a significant gold producer. Its output of the precious metal clocked in at only 1 tonne in 2018.
This is an updated version of an article originally published by the Investing News Network in 2019.
Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Matthew Flood, currently hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
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Wondering about the future of hydrogen in Australia? Here's an overview of investing in hydrogen in the country.
Thanks to technological advances and massive new investments made by the public and private sector, the industry is now making the critical transition towards clean "green" hydrogen — in other words, hydrogen that is produced via zero-carbon and low-carbon energy sources.
Australia, like most western nations, is determined to decarbonise its economy as part of the global transition toward renewables. Many industries now face strict targets for reducing emissions as part of the drive to lessen the carbon footprint left by Australia's steel and coal industries.
Although hydrogen is generally seen as a long-term investment play given the many years it takes to build new plants and add capacity in the market, last year saw investors rush to get in on the ground floor of the rapidly expanding Australian green energy market as smaller players began to make their mark.
In 2021, the ASX hydrogen sector saw some exponential gains in the share prices of several up-and-coming players, including Province Resources (ASX:PRL), Pure Hydrogen (ASX:PH2), Sparc Technologies (ASX:SPN), Environmental Clean Technologies (ASX:ECT) and QEM (ASX:QEM). These five companies led the way in driving interest in the kind of opportunity that the Australian hydrogen industry represents, both in the short and long term. Several key public/private partnerships also played a role in stimulating market interest.
Hydrogen investing in Australia: What is hydrogen and how is it used?
Hydrogen is the most abundant element on Earth. It is a colourless gas that can be burned to generate electricity, or alternatively can be combined with oxygen atoms in fuel cells. Hydrogen can be produced in gas or liquid form, and has the ability to replace fossil fuels in household heating, transportation and industrial manufacturing processes like steelmaking, which consumes massive amounts of power.
As a fuel, the great advantage of hydrogen is that it produces no carbon emissions, only water as a by-product. First discovered 250 years ago by English physicist Henry Cavendish, hydrogen was initially used in combination with oxygen to power internal combustion engines, hydrogen gas blowpipes and hydrogen gas lamps. It was later used in the construction of hydrogen-lifted airships and German Zeppelins until passenger service was abandoned after the tragic 1937 explosion of the Hindenburg Zeppelin in New Jersey, which killed 36 people.
Currently, the hydrogen market is valued at over US$100 billion, with the material being used widely as an industrial chemical, mainly by the petroleum industry for the production of ammonia, a principal ingredient in the manufacturing of nitrate fertiliser.
There is also growing demand for hydrogen by companies anxious to harness its properties as an effective means of storing power. But none of these applications for hydrogen compare to its extraordinary potential as a viable clean energy fuel for transportation ― particularly in trucks, airplanes and ships.
These essential means of transportation are difficult to decarbonise due to the weight of batteries and their inability to hold sufficient charge for long-haul trips. Hydrogen, however, offers a much lighter alternative as a clean-burning fuel that would go a long way to eliminating carbon emissions in the transport sector.
Hydrogen investing in Australia: Big players and government investment
Aside from the smaller-cap companies mentioned above, several major Australian energy companies, including Fortescue Metals Group (ASX:FMG,OTCQX:FSUMF), Origin Energy (ASX:ORG,OTC Pink:OGFGF) and Wesfarmers (ASX:WES,OTC Pink:WFAFF), are now rapidly expanding their investment in the hydrogen sector.
Clearly, if hydrogen is now in the process of realizing its potential as a replacement for oil- and coal-generated electricity, the leading steel, coal and gas producers may be well-positioned to bring about this shift in the energy mix. They possess the requisite financial might and technological/engineering expertise to become dominant players in the hydrogen sector as they assume their role in the transition from fossil fuels to renewable energy.
Aiding this growth in Australia's hydrogen industry is government support. The EU, for example, paid nearly half of the US$23 million cost of Shell’s (LSE:SHEL,NYSE:SHEL) Rhineland project, while Queensland has partnered with Fortescue on a AU$1 billion hydrogen project in Gladstone.
Last year alone saw a doubling in the number of newly announced large-scale hydrogen projects to over 500, as per a Hydrogen Council report. Nearly 75 percent of these long-term plant, port and pipeline projects are expected to be completed by the end of the decade, with 40 percent already funded or under construction.
Meanwhile, the Australian government is in the process of investing AU$1.4 billion in its domestic hydrogen industry as part of a growing global drive towards net-zero emissions. Australia's National Hydrogen Strategy intends to grow this industry and position Australia as a major player by 2030.
Aside from that, Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison has set out an Australian technology roadmap that intends to pour a total of AU$20 billion into clean hydrogen, energy storage, low-emission steel and aluminium, carbon capture and storage and solar.
In June 2021, Morrison announced a joint hydrogen development program with Germany under which Australia will gain access to highly advanced German hydrogen technology, strengthening Australia's ambitions of becoming a leading hydrogen exporter. This will help Australia build up its capacity to export significant quantities of hydrogen to Germany as part of the European country's policy to reduce reliance on fossil fuels.
Australia will also be partnering with Japan (to develop new hydrogen fuel cell technology and establish the world's first clean liquefied hydrogen export pilot project), Singapore (to accelerate low-emission technologies) and Korea (to collaborate on hydrogen supply chain research and low- and zero-emission technology).
Hydrogen investing in Australia: Long-term outlook
The promise of Australia's hydrogen market is strong — indeed, the Australian Renewable Energy Agency believes the space could be worth up to AU$10 billion annually by 2040, at which time the country would be putting out over 3 million tonnes of renewable hydrogen on a yearly basis.
But putting matters into perspective, proposed long-term investments in transitioning towards hydrogen are still dwarfed by Big Oil's average annual expenditure on developing new fields.
In today's early stages, investors looking to enter Australia's hydrogen space have plenty of choices, whether they want to start with the larger players or try their hand at determining which earlier-stage stocks will be successful.
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Securities Disclosure: I, Harold Von Kursk, currently hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
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