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Australia is the second largest producer of uranium in the world. Here's a look at the mines that are producing today, and the significant ones that are being developed.
Despite sitting on the largest known recoverable resources of uranium worldwide — 1.69 million metric tonnes in 2019 — Australia uses no part of it for energy. Instead, Australia exports the valuable resource, which accounts for one-quarter of its energy exports.
In fact, Australia was the second largest producer of uranium in 2020, producing 6,203 metric tonnes. It was only beaten by Kazakhstan, which produced nearly 20,000 metric tonnes that year.Australian uranium production has centred around three mines in recent years — Olympic Dam, Beverly Four Mile and Ranger — until the Ranger mine ceased operations in 2021.
Main mines in the country
Here's a closer at these mines and the companies that own them:
1. Olympic Dam owned by BHP Billiton (ASX:BHP,NYSE:BHP,LSE:BHP)
The Olympic Dam complex is built upon one of the world's most significant deposits of copper, gold, silver and uranium. In fact, it's the world's largest known uranium deposit. It has both underground and surface operations and it has a fully integrated processing facility, which means it is capable of extracting, refining and processing mined commodities.
In 2020, BHP Billiton produced 3,000 metric tonnes of uranium oxide (U3O8), which is nearly half of Australia's output and 6 percent of the world's production. In 2021, their uranium segment accounted for US$249 million in revenue.
Although the company produces a significant amount of global uranium, its production of copper, iron ore, coal and petroleum dwarfs its uranium production by a wide margin.
2. Beverly and Four Mile owned by private company Heathgate Resources
Australia's first in-situ recovery mine at Beverly sits on a uranium deposit about 520 kilometres from Adelaide. Owned by Heathgate Resources, a subsidiary of US-based General Atomics, the Beverly mine itself has all been mined out and production exclusively occurs at the nearby Four Mile mine (owned by Quasar, a subsidiary of Heathgate).
In 2020, Heathgate Resources mined 2,130 tonnes of uranium oxide from Four Mile, accounting for 4 percent of the world's uranium production.
3. Ranger Uranium Mine owned by Energy Resources of Australia (ASX:ERA)
Ranger was the longest serving uranium production mine in Australia at 35 years, located 8 km east of the town of Jabiru. The mine officially stopped processing operations in January 2021 after traditional owners of the land did not support extending the Energy Resources of Australia's (ERA) authority in the area. The company had already stopped mining operations back in 2012 and had been processing stockpiled ore since then.
The ERA, whose parent company is Rio Tinto, produced 1,574 tonnes of uranium oxide for 2020 — accounting for 2 percent of the world's uranium production — before shutting the mine down.
According to their 2020 annual report, continuing mining at Ranger in the future is also unviable. A change in legislation would be required and the company states that monitoring the mine in the gap between ceasing and resuming operations would simply add to its cost burden.
While ERA still holds the lease on the nearby Jabiluka orebody, it has been firm that it will not develop the site without the consent of the Mirrar Aboriginal people, and so the Jabiluka development has been indefinitely deferred.
Future mines in Australia
Australia accounts for almost one-third of the world's uranium deposits and there are several future exploration and expansion uranium projects brewing in the country. With 31 known deposits for uranium including the three discussed above, the list for potential new mines or mines being brought back online is long. Here are a few noteworthy ones.
The deposit was discovered in the 1970s, and in 2015 Boss Energy (ASX:BOE) bought Uranium One Australia and acquired the mine as part of the deal. The project is permitted to export up to 3.3 million pounds (1,496 tonnes) per annum and production is expected soon.
2. Mulga Rock
This polymetallic deposit was first discovered by PNC Exploration in 1979 and is now owned by Vimy Resources (ASX:VMY), formerly Energy & Minerals Australia. The deposit is divided into Mulga Rock East and West, and also hosts scandium, nickel and cobalt.
With approvals from both state and federal governments in 2016 and 2017 respectively, the mine can produce up to 1,300 tonnes of U3O8 per year. Vimy Resources intends to start on the Ambassador deposit with open-pit mining with an 85 percent recovery rate.
3. Angela / Bigrlyi / Obagooma / Thatcher Soak
Elevate Uranium (ASX:EL8), formerly known as Marenica Energy, has acquired or bought stakes in several mining projects in the Northern Territory and Western Australia. While there is no clear timeline on start of operations for any project, managing director and CEO Murray Hill was quoted saying that he expects the price of uranium to increase over the next decade, meaning the company would be well-leveraged as it bought assets at a reduced price.
Hill also expects modular reactor technology to improve in the next decade, allowing nuclear energy to be used across the landscape in rural areas and not just the bigger cities.
After suffering low prices after the 2011 Fukushima disaster, the nuclear energy market is expected to pick up, with generation growing nearly 3 percent annually by 2040, according to the World Nuclear Association's Nuclear Report. As the world continues to pivot to net-zero emissions, nuclear energy will find increasing favour from countries looking to shift their energy generation to cleaner sources.
The report states that uranium production will remain stable until the end of the 2020s and then decrease by nearly half from 2030 to 2040, highlighting the need for increased exploration and production in the space to avoid future supply disruptions.
Many projects are at advanced development stages and are only waiting for improved prices from the market.
Don't forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Pallavi Rao, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
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.
Cyprium Metals Limited (ASX: CYM) (“Cyprium” or the “Company”) is pleased to announce further assay results from 28 RC holes (for 7,504m) of the Nifty West drilling program. The drilling programme targeted a lightly drilled area, up-plunge of the former underground mine in the keel area of the Nifty Syncline, below the western end of the Nifty open pit (refer to Figure 1).
- Assay results have been received from a further 28 RC holes drilled at Nifty West, targeting lightly tested areas of copper mineralisation below the former Nifty open pit.
- Confirms continuation of significant copper mineralisation in the keel zone to the west at 80- 100m thick, enhancing a potential large-scale open pit development.
- Significant results include:
Hole 21NRWP018 - 86m @0.57% Cu downhole zone of copper mineralisation including:
- 8m at 0.49% Cu from 170m including:
- 1m at 1.09% Cu from 176m, and
- 9m at 0.81% Cu from 181m including:
- 2m at 1.23% Cu from 182m & 2m at 1.05% Cu from 187m, and
- 18m at 0.96% Cu from 196m including:
- 1m at 2.03% Cu from 197m & 3m at 1.85% Cu from 202m & 1m at 1.36% Cu
from 207m & 2m at 1.29% Cu from 209m, and
- 10m at 0.76% Cu from 215m including:
- 1m at 1.00% Cu from 217m & 1m at 1.41% Cu from 223m, and
- 3m at 1.09% Cu from 226m including:
- 1m at 1.62% Cu from 226m, and
- 12m at 0.52% Cu from 244m including:
- 1m at 2.21% Cu from 245m
Hole 21NRWP020 - 97m @0.47% Cu downhole zone of copper mineralisation including:
- 7m at 0.58% Cu from 153m including:
- 1m at 1.02% Cu from 156m, and
- 5m at 0.60% Cu from 169m including:
- 1m at 1.12% Cu from 170m, and
- 6m at 0.91% Cu from 179m including:
- 3m at 1.30% Cu from 180m, and
- 5m at 0.54% Cu from 187m including:
- 1m at 1.02% Cu from 190m, and
- 15m at 0.70% Cu from 201m including:
- 2m at 1.49% Cu from 207m & 1m at 1.19% Cu from 215m, and
- 4m at 0.75% Cu from 222m including:
- 1m at 1.78% Cu from 223m, and
- 7m at 1.90% Cu from 235m including:
Managing Director Barry Cahill commented:
“We have been very pleased with the drilling results received to date. These assay results continue to confirm the presence of a substantial zone of copper mineralisation which is up-plunge of the former underground mine. We continue to be excited about the receipt of the results of balance of the outstanding assays. It is not often that you have the privilege of getting these widths of mineralisation beneath an existing shallow open pit. The assays will be included in an updated mineral resource estimate that we look forward to releasing during the first half of this year.”
This article includes content from Cyprium Metals, licensed for the purpose of publishing on Investing News Australia. This article does not constitute financial product advice. It is your responsibility to perform proper due diligence before acting upon any information provided here. Please refer to our full disclaimer here.
The wave of initial public offerings that swept Australia’s tech industry in late 2020 is expected to continue well into 2021. The Australian Financial Review reported that a number of Australian tech companies are on the path towards a “likely listing” for 2021.
The wave of initial public offerings that swept Australia’s tech industry in late 2020 is expected to continue well into 2021. The Australian Financial Review reported that a number of Australian tech companies are on the path towards a "likely listing" for 2021.
Our FREE outlook report on the Australian tech market is new for 2021! This INNvestor Report is sure to offer you beneficial and informative data on this exciting market so you’re ready to invest.
Table of Contents
- The Future of Tech in Australia
- Tech Unicorns in Australia
- 5 Best ASX Technology Stocks
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Which ASX technology stocks performed the best in 2021? Here’s a look at the five top ASX technology stocks by share price performance.
The technology sector currently contributes about AU$167 billion to the Australian economy, according to research commissioned by the Technology Council of Australia. This figure has increased by 79 percent from 2016, representing a growth rate that is more than four times that of most industries. In fact, the tech sector is the third largest economic sector in Australia, behind mining and finance/insurance.
Unsurprisingly, many tech stocks on the ASX have performed well in this landscape.
Below the Investing News Network profiles the five best ASX technology stocks in terms of share price performance in 2021. Data for the companies was gathered on December 31, 2021, using TradingView’s stock screener, and all of the best ASX technology stocks listed had market caps above AU$10 million at that time.
Market cap: AU$4.45 billion; year-to-date gain: 659.5 percent
The first of the best ASX tech stocks on this list is battery technology company Novonix (ASX:NVX), which specializes in developing battery testing equipment for the worldwide lithium-ion battery market. The company was spun out from Dr. Jeff Dahn’s lab at Dalhousie University; Dr. Dahn is one of the pioneers of the lithium-ion battery.
While not yet a revenue generator, the company has benefited from the explosive growth expected out of the fast-moving global electric vehicle (EV) industry.
In December, Novonix announced preliminary results from an environmental impact study; they show the company’s synthetic graphite EV and energy storage system (ESS) battery anode product offers an approximate 60 percent decrease in CO2 emissions, potentially making it “2.5 times better for the environment than Chinese synthetic graphite EV and ESS battery anode material,” as per the Market Herald.
2. Oneview Healthcare
Market cap: AU$114.57 million; year-to-date gain: 488.89 percent
Oneview Healthcare’s (ASX:ONE) interactive software platform offers digital tools to healthcare providers, patients and families to improve point of care outcomes.
This past spring, the global healthcare tech company launched its cloud-based care platform. “Deployed on Microsoft Azure, this platform enables health systems to quickly adopt technology for engaging patients, reducing non-clinical demands on care teams and optimising clinical and operational effectiveness,” notes a press release.
Oneview has signed a number of contracts for the use of this platform, including with Omaha’s Children’s Hospital and Medical Center, Northern Health in Melbourne and Kingman Regional Medical Center in Arizona. In late November, Oneview raised AU$20 million in a private placement with plans to use the funds to further product development, scale its cloud enterprise and strengthen its balance sheet.
Market cap: AU$105.86 million; year-to-date gain: 318.48 percent
Emyria (ASX:EMD) is a healthcare technology company that specializes in data-backed drug development and operates a network of medical clinics. Using proprietary clinical evidence, the company develops registered treatments for underserved medical needs.
Emyria’s current drug development programs center on cannabidiol (CBD) medicines for mental health, CBD/THC treatments for irritable bowel syndrome and MDMA treatments for post-traumatic stress disorder.
In late November, one of Australia’s largest private investment groups, Tattarang, made a AU$5 million investment in Emyria, which will help the company further advance its drug development work.
4. PlaySide Studios
Market cap: AU$445.38 million; year-to-date gain: 139.13 percent
PlaySide Studios (ASX:PLY) develops mobile games, virtual reality, augmented reality and PC games. The company’s portfolio consists of 52 titles, including original intellectual property games, as well as games developed with the worlds’ largest studios, such as Disney (NYSE:DIS), Warner Bros and Nickelodeon.
PlaySide Studios is Australia’s largest publicly listed gaming technology company, and following its 2020 initial public offering, it generated revenue of AU$10.88 million for the 2021 fiscal year. In November, the company inked a landmark deal with 2K Games, a label of Take-Two Interactive Software (NASDAQ:TTWO).
In the last weeks of 2021, PlaySide signed a number of deals, including a contract with Shiba Inu Games and a partnership with One True King to co-develop a PC-based game, which will also provide access to One True King's 21 million global followers.
5. Universal Biosensors
Market cap: AU$175.98 million; year-to-date gain: 127.59 percent
Last on this list of best ASX tech stocks is medical device technology company Universal Biosensors (ASX:UBI), which develops, manufactures and commercializes diagnostic testing systems for point-of-care providers and at-home use. It has products for blood glucose monitoring, coagulation testing, immunoassays and molecular diagnostics.
“UBI’s biosensor technology platform has been used to deliver more than 10 billion diagnostic tests to patients worldwide generating billions of dollars in sales,” states a company presentation. “We have licensed and partnered new technology and new biosensors with global applications.”
In November, Universal Biosensors signed a three year master collaboration agreement with Mayo Clinic Biopharma Diagnostics. The deal includes work on Universal Biosensors’ Tn antigen cancer biosensor. In late December, the company entered into a global exclusive license agreement with IQ Science for the commercialization of a SARS-CoV-2 N-protein detection test that will use Universal Biosensors' proprietary electrochemical strip and device technology.
Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time news updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Melissa Pistilli, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
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Looking for the best-performing cobalt stocks on the ASX? Here's a look at the three top gainers of 2021.
Cobalt prices have soared this past year, with investors paying more attention to this battery metal.
A large reason for cobalt’s bullish behaviour is that it is used to manufacture lithium-ion batteries, which power electric vehicles (EVs) — as demand for EVs continues to rise, it's likely cobalt demand will remain strong too.
Currently the future of EVs looks bright — the market is growing quickly and is expected to boom over the next decade. In the first half of 2021 alone, EV sales ballooned by 160 percent, and by the end of the year, a total of 15 countries had announced measures to begin transitioning toward an all-electric future.
The three top cobalt-producing countries worldwide are the Democratic Republic of Congo, Russia and Australia — the last of which is investing in ramping up its production of the metal.
With that in mind, which Australian cobalt miners gained the most value in 2021? Read on to learn more about the three best cobalt companies on the ASX by year-to-date share price gains. All information was obtained on December 30, 2021, using TradingView's stock screener.
1. Jervois Global
Year-to-date gain: 63.89 percent; current share price: AU$0.59
Jervois Global (ASX:JRV) is best known for its Finland operations, which produce cobalt for chemical, catalyst, pigment, powder metallurgy and — most significantly — battery applications. The company is currently in the process of launching its new Idaho Cobalt Operations (ICO) and is on track to become the first US cobalt miner.
On December 15, Jervois announced an update on ICO, saying first ore is expected in August 2022, with sustainable production expected by December 2022. The estimated capital expenditure required to stay on schedule has risen to US$99.1 million, up from US$92.6 million, with mine engineering 64 percent complete.
2. Cobalt Blue Holdings
Year-to-date gain: 177.78 percent; current share price: AU$0.50
Cobalt Blue Holdings (ASX:COB) is a rare cobalt-only company, and defines itself by its planned ethical and sustainable extraction and production processes. The firm's flagship New South Wales-based Broken Hill project is slated to produce an average of 3,500 to 3,600 tonnes per year of cobalt once in operation.
In December 2021, Cobalt Blue Holdings announced it has executed a memorandum of understanding with the State of Queensland, acting through the Department of Resources, to assess opportunities for the recovery of cobalt (as well as any coexisting base and precious metals) from mine waste.
3. Australian Mines
Year-to-date gain: 31.25 percent; current share price: AU$0.21
Australian Mines (ASX:AUZ) is aiming to supply metals to the growing EV industry, with a focus on ethical and sustainable production. Its flagship Queensland-based Sconi nickel-cobalt project boasts a mine life of over 30 years and will be capable of processing 2 million tonnes of ore annually.
In late October, Australian Mines reported on its quarterly activities, including an agreement for Korea-based LG Energy Solution, a top global producer of EV batteries, to buy 100 percent of the Sconi project’s nickel-cobalt hydroxide output over an initial six year term. The future agreement indicates that LG Energy Solution will buy a projected 7,000 tonnes of cobalt from Australian Mines over the six year period.
Don’t forget to follow us @INN_Australia for real-time updates!
Securities Disclosure: I, Isabel Armiento, hold no direct investment interest in any company mentioned in this article.
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