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Robotics is an area of investing that is growing in Australia ― but is it a sector worth investing in?
The global robotics industry is expected to grow at a compound annual growth rate of 7.8 percent through 2028 according to the Global Industrial Robotics Market Analysis 2020. Robotics is an area of investing that is growing in Australia ― but is it a sector worth investing in?
Broadly speaking, robotics is the design and construction of robots. This can include core automation and production, industrial software, robot technology and integration of robotics. From drones to self-driving cars to toys ― robotics is a growing industry that is beginning to permeate our daily lives.
The distinction between robotics and AI can be a little confusing, but essentially think of robotics like the body and AI like the brain. Both can exist separately, and they are powerful when combined. The goal of a robot is to complete a task faster and more efficiently than a human.
What does the market look like?
The COVID-19 pandemic has seen technology sectors such as robotics accelerate as businesses have faced global challenges. Robotics has been able to help keep spaces safer by replacing humans with robots on factory lines, in eCommerce warehouses or on healthcare frontlines taking temperatures or disinfecting spaces.
What is Australia doing to support the robotics sector?
In early 2020, the Robotics Australia Network was formed to accelerate growth of the domestic robotics industry. The network aims to strengthen global competitiveness and cement Australia as a global leader in robotics.
How does the Australian robotics sector stack up?
According to the International Federation of Robotics, in a ranking of the world's most automated countries it's not even in the top 10. Number one is Singapore, followed by South Korea then Japan.
The investment space for pure robotics companies is relatively small, with greater opportunities to invest in more broader technology, AI and automation stocks.
Who are the big players in robotics stocks?
Robotics stocks in Australia are companies with a strong crossover to other technology sectors like artificial intelligence and virtual reality.
Vection Technologies (ASX:VR1)
Market Cap AU$77.56 million
Vection is a multinational software company with offices in Western Australia as well as Subiaco and Casalecchio di Reno in Italy. The company uses robotics technology as well as 3D, virtual reality, augmented reality, industrial IoT and CAD solutions. The business is split into two sections: IT development and outsourced services. The company also collaborates with Autodesk Technology Centers, the Microsoft Mixed Reality Team and Cisco Systems Italy.
Bill Identity (ASX:BID)
Market Cap AU$52.97 million
Previously known as BidEnergy, Bill Identity is a series of bill management solutions leveraged using robotic process automation, which helps clients increase efficiency. The company serves customers across Australia, New Zealand, the UK, the US and Europe. Bill Identity had a strong year, with total operating revenue growth of 55 percent year-on-year to US$14.6M in FY21.
What are the other ways to invest in robotics?
Another way to get into the robotics sector is investing in robotics exchange traded funds (ETFs), a popular choice that offers exposure to the industry of robotics and artificial intelligence rather than a single company. Two major ETFs in the robotics sector are:
- BetaShares Global Robotics and Artificial Intelligence ETF (ASX:RBTZ)
- The ROBO Global Robotics and Automation ETF (ARCA:ROBO)
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Securities Disclosure: I, Ronelle Richards, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
The Board of Titan Minerals Limited (ASX: TTM) (Titan or the Company) is pleased to present the following update on surface exploration at its Linderos Project in Southern Ecuador. The focus of these programs has been the two main prospects currently known to exist at Linderos being the Mesta Gold Prospect and the Copper Ridge Prospect located <1km to its south. Some very exciting assay results from surface works are beginning to filter through with the key highlights so far being:
Meseta Gold Prospect
Assays received to date from the first 144 rock chips of 227 samples shipped for assay in the current mapping campaign, returned best results of:
- 64g/t gold with >1,500g/t silver (overlimit silver analysis pending) and 26.9g/t gold with 715g/t silver from exposed veins located 500m east of the closest previous drill hole.
- 61g/t gold with 103g/t silver and 42g/t gold with 9g/t silver located on current western margin of Meseta Gold Prospect
- 13g/t gold with 16g/t silver and 7.3g/t gold with 11g/t silver on veining discovered 2.3km southeast of Meseta Gold Prospect
Copper Ridge Prospect
A zone of outcropping quartz stockwork and altered porphyritic granodiorite averaging better than 0.2% copper over 360m wide has been identified in channel sampling. Assay results received for the first 28 of 47 channel samples have returned highly anomalous copper and gold results with the following highlights:
- 42m @ 0.31% copper and 0.12g/t gold including 12m @ 0.39% copper and 0.15g/t gold
- 42m @ 0.29% copper and 0.08g/t gold including 8m @ 0.53% copper and 0.11g/t gold
- 90m @ 0.26% copper and 0.13g/t gold
- 96m @ 0.21% copper.
GTI Resources Ltd (GTI or Company) is pleased to advise that the acquisition of Branka Minerals Pty Ltd and the vendor placement of $600,000, as advised to ASX on 18 August 2021, have now both been completed.
Settlement of the acquisition and completion of the vendor placement are the final milestones of a transformative period of corporate activity for the Company and positions GTI to commence exploration drilling in Wyoming prior to Christmas.
Executive Director Bruce Lane said:
"Preparation for our maiden drilling campaign in Wyoming has proceeded according to plan and settlement of the acquisition has put us in a great position to commence drill testing before the end of the year. The Company is now well funded after raising in excess of $5 million during the last 2 months and the market context for investing in ISR uranium exploration appear to be increasingly positive. We look forward to applying the funds we have raised in recent weeks to drive the creation of shareholder value in Wyoming's Great Divide Basin".
As previously advised, GTI is on track to commence ISR uranium drilling during December with the bonding process underway and drilling contractor bids received.
The Company will provide further updates in due course.
Read the full article here.
The mining and resources sector now sets its sights on Australia’s largest mining investment forum, Mines and Money @ IMARC, co-located with IMARC from January 31, 2022, to February 2, 2022, at the Melbourne Showgrounds.
It was gold price, lithium demand and China’s appetite for copper that dominated much of the discussion at Mines and Money Online Connect @ IMARC this week at the virtual event running from the 19th to the 21st October.
Mines and Money Online Connect saw 90 mining companies, 600+ investors and more than 2,000 participants log-on to hear mining executives and analysts discuss the next big thing for savvy investors in 2022.
Time to Strike Gold?
‘Frustrating’ sums up the 2021 gold price according to Commodity Discovery Fund Founder and Chief Investment Officer, Willem Middelkoop. Middelkoop spruiked gold’s glittering upside during the Mines and Money Gold Outlook Panel Discussion.
The panellists suggested that with the gold price soaring to record highs, a gold correction was inevitable. Historically, gold price is linked to market volatility and the much of new money printed in the United States.
In 2022, panellists expect plenty of market volatility and money printing, with an overinflated US dollar set to weaken in value, and subsequently drive up the price of gold. Through the Commodity Discovery Find, Middelkoop has studied the gold price in relation to increased money supply over the past decade.
“If you look at the current graph, the gold price needs to move back toward over US$2,000, and it should move toward US$8,000-$10,000 dollars to be in line with money growth. If you look at that statistic, there is so much upside,” said Middelkoop.
“A doubling of the gold price within 12 months is easily possible,” said Middelkoop.
The Need for Speed
The US has the need for speed with car manufacturing adopting electric vehicles (EVs) at an accelerating rate. The rising demand for EVs, which is expected to surge to 10% in global sales by 2025 according to Bloomberg New Energy Finance, will require startling quantities of lithium.
The price of lithium hydroxide continued to soar in 2021 and shows no sign of slowing down in 2022. Prices topped US$23,375 per tonne at the time of writing, which is up from a US$6,300 average per tonne in the September quarter 2020.
During the Mines and Money Battery Metals Session, Piedmont Lithium President and Chief Executive Officer, Keith Phillips, said the EVs market is fuelling the demand for lithium hydroxide. “I’ve always had the view that the market would speak, and the time would come, and it will,” said Phillips.
Phillips said Ford’s Blue Oval City required 125,000 tonnes per year of lithium hydroxide to service its three battery plants, which surpasses the production capacities of all lithium projects currently planned in the United States.
“Tesla has been a leader here, but LG and General Motors are making big commitments. “Everyone is talking about bringing more capacity to the US, which we desperately need, and even if we all succeed, we are still going to be short, and require lots of material from outside the US,” said Philips.
China’s Quiet Copper Rush
Copper was the metal of the hour during the China Commodities Supply and Demand Outlook 2022 Panel at Mines and Money. Companies from Australia’s biggest trading partner are digging for strategic commodities to enhance diversification and survival in an uncertain marketplace.
Gold Mountains General Manager, Maggie Huang said sourcing and developing copper mines was critical to not only Gold Mountains, but to the Chinese economy. “We see copper as a highly strategic metal for China, we are the largest consumer in the world. We consume half of all output of copper but produce only 20 to 25% of what we actually use,” said Huang.
Huang pointed out that whilst Australia and Canada represented stable and mature investment destinations in the past, “an investment is an investment,” and Chinese companies are now seeking new opportunities in other mining destinations.
As Africa and South America mature as mining destinations, Huang said emerging opportunities in Africa and South America could be more profitable and signify a more attractive investment than Australia or Canada.
As Mines and Money Online Connect @ IMARC concludes with positive outlooks on gold, lithium and copper, the mining and resources sector now sets its sights on Australia’s largest mining investment forum Mines and Money @ IMARC co-located with the International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC) from the 31st January to 2nd February 2022 at the Melbourne Showgrounds.
The International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC) is where global mining leaders connect with technology, finance, and the future. Now in its 8th year, it is Australia’s largest mining event, bringing together over 8,000 decision makers, mining leaders, policy makers, investors, commodity buyers, technical experts, innovators, and educators from over 130 countries for three days of learning, deal-making and unparalleled networking. IMARC is developed in collaboration with its founding partners the Victorian State Government of Australia, Austmine, the Australasian Institute of Mining and Metallurgy (AusIMM) and Mines and Money.
For more information, please visit https://imarcglobal.com/
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Following international pressure, the Australian government has promised to reach net zero emissions by 2050.
In a last-minute commitment after months of debate, the Australian government has promised to reach net zero emissions by 2050, expecting to meet the goal largely through technology development.
The move comes following international pressure as Australia had previously refused to join countries in pledging to meet the target ahead of the United Nations' COP26 climate conference in Glasgow.
However, the plan unveiled on Tuesday (October 26), which includes a government investment of AU$20 billion, does not strengthen the target set for 2030, with Prime Minister Scott Morrison saying Australia is on track to beat its Paris Agreement goal, cutting emissions by 30 to 35 percent by that decade.
"We will do this the Australian way," Morrison said ahead of a press conference, announcing investments in new energy technologies like hydrogen and low-cost solar.
An Australian hydrogen industry could be worth more than AU$50 billion in 2050, according to the government. Meanwhile, expanding production and processing of metals like lithium, nickel, copper and uranium could together be worth around AU$85 billion in exports in 2050.
That said, Australia will continue to be heavily dependent on fossil fuels as the plan will not shut down coal or gas production. The country is a major coal player, with the third largest reserves in the world, but its reliance on coal-fired power makes it one of the world's largest carbon emitters per capita.
"We want our heavy industries, like mining, to stay open, remain competitive and adapt, so they remain viable for as long as global demand allows," Morrison said. "We will not support any mandate — domestic or international — to force closure of our resources or agricultural industries."
Australia's desire to achieve net zero emissions by 2050 is a step in the right direction, Prakash Sharma, Wood Mackenzie's Asia Pacific head of markets and transitions, said.
"Our analysis shows that Australia can reach net zero emissions by 2050," he said. The country's major trading partners — China, Japan and South Korea — are already in transition towards that goal.
According to Wood Mackenzie, nearly 83 percent of Australia's power generation will come from solar and wind by 2050, as compared to about 20 percent last year. Natural gas, bio energy, geothermal and small modular reactors will supply the remaining 17 percent in power output. Coal into power is expected to be phased out by 2035.
"Although the pathway requires complete transformation of its traditional energy and export sectors, there are significant opportunities to capitalise on and protect future revenues," Sharma said.
"This will require Australia to become a significant player in low-carbon hydrogen trade as well as being able to offer carbon storage and offset services."
Meanwhile, the Australian Conservation Foundation has welcomed the prime minister's commitment to reach net zero by 2050, but said the mid-century goal is only meaningful with deep cuts to climate pollution this decade.
"Unless the government sets the wheels in motion to cut our emissions in half by 2030, it is making climate change worse and turning its back on the opportunities," said Chief Executive Kelly O'Shanassy.
"Australia can become a global clean energy superpower in the next decade by replacing coal and gas with renewable energy," she added. "We have abundant clean energy, tools and talent, but we cannot delay any longer."
Don't forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Priscila Barrera, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
There are at least five companies mining silver in New South Wales right now. Learn more about silver stocks in this key Australian state, as well as its rich history with the precious metal.
New South Wales is where silver mining began in Australia, and where the modern company known as BHP (ASX:BHP,NYSE:BHP,LSE:BHP) has roots dating back more than a century.
Silver was discovered at Broken Hill in the west of New South Wales in 1883. Two short years later, the Broken Hill Proprietary Company was floated, and from there the rest is history.
Broken Hill Proprietary, now known simply as BHP, rapidly became the largest mining company in Australia, and then the world, by diversifying, acquiring, merging and spreading its reach so that it had assets and interests on four continents — and it all began with the discovery of silver in New South Wales.
New South Wales' strong silver-mining history
BHP doesn't have silver operations in New South Wales today, but the legacy of silver continues in the state.
Australia has a reputation for being a desirable mining jurisdiction, but as an investment prospect, New South Wales is one of the country's less attractive areas, ranking fifth out of seven among its states and territories.
Globally, however, New South Wales is a safe bet, outranking Chile in mining investment attractiveness, according to the Fraser Institute's latest survey of mining companies.
There are at least five companies currently mining silver in the state, as per government data — though many of them are private. Publicly traded entities are accessible through the Australian Securities Exchange (ASX).
Overall, Australia is ranked among the top global producers of silver, sharing the title of fifth largest producer with Chile and Poland in 2020. It put out 1,300 tonnes of the precious metal that year.
It's worth noting that the amount of silver mined in Australia used to be much higher. Going back through US Geological Survey reports, the country enjoyed a spike in silver mining around the turn of the millennium, when annual production hovered around 2,000 tonnes per year. Since then, it's slowly fallen away to where it sits now.
For its part, New South Wales produced 128 tonnes of silver in the 2015/2016 financial year — a number that is fairly consistent year-on-year due to the number of operational mines located there. Within the region, silver is mined as a by-product at each operational mine, all of which are in the central part of the state.
ASX-listed silver stocks in New South Wales
As mentioned, quite a few of the companies mining silver in New South Wales are private, while others are public, but not listed on the ASX. Examples include China Molybdenum (OTC Pink:CMCLF,HKEX:3993) and Nonfemet.
Of course, public entities are busy in the state too. Read on for a look at some of the ASX-listed operators focused on silver in New South Wales. And if you're interested in jumping into the market, tools to learn how to invest on the ASX are freely available online through the ASX website — here's a little starter to make it even easier.
1. Newcrest Mining (ASX:NCM)
Market cap: AU$20.23 billion; current share price: AU$24.73
True to form, silver is produced as a by-product by the top mining company with silver operations in New South Wales — Newcrest Mining's Cadia operation is actually mainly centered on copper and gold. Even so, for the 12 months ended June 30, 2021, Cadia put out 643,000 ounces of the white metal, accounting for the vast majority of the company's overall silver production globally (945,000 ounces overall in the latest annual period).
2. Aeris Resources (ASX:AIS)
Market cap: AU$461.58 million; current share price: AU$0.21
Another company with interests mainly in copper and gold, Aeris Resources is the owner and operator of the Tritton copper operation. Silver plays so little a role in the company's profile that it doesn't list its output of the metal, but it has been hitting some silver mineralization in exploration works at Tritton over the last few months, with holes drilled at the Constellation deposit yielding results as fancy as 28.6 grams per tonne silver.
The company has also reported silver mineralization at the nearby Avoca Tank exploration project.
3. Silver Mines (ASX:SVL)
Market cap: AU$261.49 million; current share price: AU$0.21
Silver Mines is the owner of the Bowdens silver project in Central New South Wales, and the company describes it as one of Australia's largest undeveloped silver resources. The company also has interests in another two silver projects in the state: Conrad and Webbs, both located in the north.
The company's goal is to become one of Australia's preeminent silver companies.
A feasibility study for Bowdens was completed in 2018, and envisions a maiden ore reserve of 29.9 million tonnes at 69 grams per tonne silver, 0.44 percent zinc and 0.32 percent lead for a 16 year mine life initially. Since 2018, the company has fine tuned the proposed mine, and recently began a scoping study on underground mining.
Don't forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Scott Tibballs, currently hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.