News Archive

Southern Copper eyes US$6.7B investment in Peru copper mines

The copper producer plans to invest US$6.7 billion developing the Tia Maria, Los Chancas and Michiquillay projects which would together add 500,000 tonnes a year of annual capacity. Last year, the company’s Cuajone and Toquepala mines produced 281,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate.

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Highland Gold buys another Russian gold mine

The assets include the operating Valunisty gold mine and 31,000 ounce per annum processing plant and two large licence areas, Kanchalano-Amguemskaya Square (KAS) and Kayenmivaam.

At January 1, the JORC proven and probable ore reserves of Valunisty and KAS were 3.4 million tonnes at 5.1g/t gold equivalent and their indicated and inferred mineral resources were 17.6Mt at 3g/t Au equivalent.   

Millennial Lithium building Grandes plans

Millennial Lithium building Grandes plans

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Zinc project galvanises White Rock

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Cardinal advances Namdini

Kingston commences major drilling program at 2.8Moz Misima Gold Project

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Around $78.7 million of the total will comprise of 38.6 million ordinary shares, with the $12.3 million balance assumed as net debt.

The purchase is expected to be completed by the end of 2018 and is subject to approval from shareholders, Russia’s Federal Antimonopoly Service and the Foreign Investment Advisory Council.

CEO Denis Alexandrov said the acquisition added a fourth operating mine to the company’s portfolio and upside potential in the KAS licence area, with both in a familiar region with existing infrastructure.

Highland already owns the Kelura and Klen development projects in the Chukotka region.

“The transaction is structured in such a way as to be immediately value-accretive to the benefit of all our shareholders,” he said.

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Colgate’s sales disappoint, shares fall

(Reuters) – Colgate-Palmolive Co’s (CL.N) quarterly sales just met analysts’ estimates on Friday as demand in emerging markets including Latin America was below its expectations, sending its shares down 3 percent in premarket trading.

FILE PHOTO: Colgate brand toothpastes are seen at the Safeway store in Wheaton, Maryland February 13, 2015. REUTERS/Gary Cameron/File Photo

Growth in organic sales slowed in the first quarter from the previous quarter, even as the company spent more on advertising and cut prices to spur demand.

“The first quarter was a challenging one as category growth remained soft in many markets around the world,” Chief Executive Officer Ian Cook said in a statement.

The company said organic sales increased 1.5 percent due to flat unit volume growth in emerging markets.

Net sales rose 6.4 percent to $4 billion, compared with the average analyst estimate of $4.02 billion, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Net income rose to $634 million, or 72 cents per share, in the first quarter ended March 31, from $570 million, or 64 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding certain items, the company earned 74 cents per share. Analysts on average had expected 72 cents.

Reporting by Vibhuti Sharma in Bengaluru; Editing by Bernard Orr and Saumyadeb Chakrabarty

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Exclusive: U.S. considers tightening grip on China ties to Corporate America

NEW YORK (Reuters) – The U.S. government may start scrutinizing informal partnerships between American and Chinese companies in the field of artificial intelligence, threatening practices that have long been considered garden variety development work for technology companies, sources familiar with the discussions said.

So far, U.S. government reviews for national security and other concerns have been limited to investment deals and corporate takeovers. This possible new expansion of the mandate – which would serve as a stop-gap measure until Congress imposes tighter restrictions on Chinese investments – is being pushed by members of Congress, and those in U.S. President Donald Trump’s administration who worry about theft of intellectual property and technology transfer to China, according to four people familiar with the matter.

Artificial intelligence, in which machines imitate intelligent human behavior, is a particular area of interest because of the technology’s potential for military usage, they said. Other areas of interest for such new oversight include semiconductors and autonomous vehicles, they added.

These considerations are in early stages, so it remains unclear if they will move forward, and which informal corporate relationships this new initiative would scrutinize.

Any broad effort to sever relationships between Chinese and American tech companies – even temporarily – could have dramatic effects across the industry. Major American technology companies, including Advanced Micro Devices Inc, Qualcomm Inc, Nvidia Corp and IBM, have activities in China ranging from research labs to training initiatives, often in collaboration with Chinese companies and institutions who are major customers.

Top talent in areas including artificial intelligence and chip design also flows freely among companies and universities in both countries.

The nature of informal business relationships varies widely.

For example, when U.S. chipmaker Nvidia Corp – the leader in AI hardware – unveiled a new graphics processing unit that powers data centers, video games and cryptocurrency mining last year, it gave away samples to 30 artificial intelligence scientists, including three who work with China’s government, according to Nvidia.

For a company like Nvidia, which gets a fifth of its business from China, the giveaway was business as usual. It has several arrangements to train local scientists and develop technologies there that rely on its chips. Offering early access helps Nvidia tailor products so it can sell more.

The U.S. government could nix this sort of cooperation through an executive order from Trump by invoking the International Emergency Economic Powers Act. Such a move would unleash sweeping powers to stop or review informal corporate partnerships between a U.S. and Chinese company, any Chinese investment in a U.S. technology company or the Chinese purchases of real estate near sensitive U.S. military sites, the sources said.

“I don’t see any alternative to having a stronger (regulatory) regime because the end result is, without it, the Chinese companies are going to get stronger,” said one of the sources, who is advising U.S. lawmakers on efforts to revise and toughen U.S. foreign investment rules. “They are going to challenge our companies in 10 or 15 years.”

James Lewis, a former Foreign Service officer with the U.S. Departments of State who is now with the Center for Strategic and International Studies, said if the emergency act was invoked, U.S. government officials including those in the Treasury Department could use it “to catch anything they want” that currently fall outside the scope of the regulatory regime.A White House official said that they do not comment on speculation about internal administration policy discussions, but added “we are concerned about Made in China 2025, particularly relevant in this case is its targeting of industries like AI.”

Made in China 2025 is an industrial plan outlining China’s ambition to become a market leader in 10 key sectors including semiconductors, robotics, drugs and devices and smart green cars.

Last month, the White House outlined new import tariffs that were largely directed at China for what Trump described as “intellectual property theft.” That prompted Chinese President Xi Jinping’s government to retaliate with sanctions against the United States.

FILE PHOTO: The People’s Republic of China flag and the U.S. Stars and Stripes fly on a lamp post along Pennsylvania Avenue near the U.S. Capitol during Chinese President Hu Jintao’s state visit, in Washington, D.C.,U.S., January 18, 2011. REUTERS/Hyungwon Kang/File Photo

(For a graphic, click

Those moves followed proposed legislation that would toughen foreign investment rules overseen by the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States (CFIUS), by giving the committee – made up of representatives from various U.S. government agencies – purview over joint ventures that involve “critical technology”.

Republican and Democratic lawmakers who put forth the proposal in November said changes are aimed at China.

Whereas an overhauled CFIUS would likely review deals relevant to national security and involve foreign ownership, informal partnerships are likely to be regulated by revised export controls when they come into effect, sources said.

To be sure, sources said the Trump administration could change its mind about invoking the emergency act. They added that some within the Treasury Department are also lukewarm about invoking the emergency act as they preferred to focus on passing the revised rules for CFIUS.


Chinese and U.S. companies are widely believed among analysts to be locked in a two-way race to become the world’s leader in AI. While U.S. tech giants such as Alphabet Inc’s Google are in the lead, Chinese firms like Internet services provider Baidu Inc have made significant strides, according to advisory firm Eurasia Group.

As for U.S. chipmakers, few are as synonymous with the technology as Nvidia, one of the world’s top makers of the highly complex chips that power AI machines.

There is no evidence that Nvidia’s activities represent a threat to national security by, for instance, offering access to trade secrets such as how to make a graphics processing unit. Nvidia also said it does not have joint ventures in China.

In a statement, Nvidia said its collaborations in China – including training Chinese scientists and giving Chinese companies such as telecom provider Huawei Technologies Co Ltd early access to some of its latest technology – are only intended to get feedback on the chips it sells there.

“We are extremely protective of our proprietary technology and know-how,” Nvidia said. “We don’t give any company, anywhere in the world, the core differentiating technology.”

Qualcomm did not respond to requests for a comment, while Advanced Micro Devices and IBM declined to comment.

FILE PHOTO: U.S. President Donald Trump and China’s President Xi Jinping shake hands after making joint statements at the Great Hall of the People in Beijing, China, November 9, 2017. REUTERS/Damir Sagolj/File Photo

Nvidia is far from being the only U.S. tech giant, much less the only chipmaker, that lends expertise to China. But it is clearly in the sights of the Chinese. When the country’s Ministry of Science and Technology solicited pitches for research projects last year, one of the listed objectives was to create a chip 20 times faster than Nvidia’s

“Five years ago, this might not be a concern,” said Lewis, “But it’s a concern now because of the political and technological context.”

Additional reporting by Diane Bartz in WASHINGTON; Editing by Lauren LaCapra and Edward Tobin

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Amazon ad sale boom could challenge Google-Facebook dominance

SAN FRANCISCO/NEW YORK (Reuters) – Inc’s expanding business of selling space on its site to merchants helped it double profits on Thursday, and some see the move as a step toward taking advertising dollars from Google and Facebook Inc.

FILE PHOTO: The logo of Amazon is pictured inside the company’s office in Bengaluru, India, April 20, 2018. REUTERS/Abhishek N. Chinnappa/File Photo

With $2 billion or less of advertising revenue, Amazon is dwarfed by Alphabet Inc’s Google and Facebook, often called an internet duopoly, but it is growing fast, may be outselling ads on Twitter Inc and Snapchat, and it has advantages that other contenders lack.

Amazon has users’ purchase data and knows what shoppers need, said Jason Damata, founder of Fabric Media, which advises companies on marketing and business strategy.

Google knows what people are searching for, while Facebook only knows “what you want your friends to think you like,” Damata said.

Some of his clients began directing their ad budgets to get customers to buy their products on Amazon, Damata said, and saw sales jump as a result.

Amazon does not break out ad sales alone. It says advertising sales are the majority of its “other” section, which hit $2.0 billion in the first quarter. After adjusting for accounting changes, that is a 72 percent increase from a year earlier, Amazon said.

Chief Financial Officer Brian Olsavsky called the ad sales business “a multibillion dollar program and growing very quickly.” Advertisers of all sizes were interested in sponsored product ads “to drive brand awareness, discovery or hopefully, purchase,” he said.

Internet research firm eMarketer last October forecast Amazon would hit $3.19 billion in net U.S. digital ad revenues by 2019, or 3.0 percent of digital ad spending.

Established advertising firms also have taken notice. Martin Sorrell, the founder of the world’s largest advertising company WPP, who stepped down in mid-April, last month saw Amazon in “head-to-head” competition with Google and Facebook. Sorrell added that WPP had directed $200 million of its clients’ ad budgets to Amazon in 2017 and predicted that number would rise to $300 million this year.

“Amazon is coming over the hill. Amazon certainly poses a big threat on search and advertising,” he said, adding that its voice assistant, Alexa, would make it an even stronger competitor.

Reporting by Jeffrey Dastin and Sheila Dang; Writing by Peter Henderson; Editing by Greg Mitchell and Lisa Shumaker

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Airbus cuts A330 output, first quarter profit capped by engine delays

PARIS (Reuters) – Airbus (AIR.PA) announced a 17 percent drop in planned 2019 deliveries of its most successful wide-body jet on Friday following a series of order defeats to rival Boeing, while blurring near-term production plans for the much healthier A320.

An employee walks in front of an Airbus A380 at the final assembly line at Airbus headquarters in Blagnac near Toulouse, France, March 21, 2018. REUTERS/Regis Duvignau

Europe’s largest aerospace group is simultaneously juggling a drop in demand for its A330 wide-body jet – the only one of its class on which it currently makes a profit – against record demand for bread-and-butter models like the A320.

Airbus said it was reducing deliveries of the 250-300-seat A330 to around 50 aircraft in 2019, compared with 67 last year and 60 planned for 2018. That comes after an upgraded version due to enter service this year failed to sell as it had hoped.

The production slowdown came as Airbus posted a slender – though better than expected – core profit in the first quarter after delays in engine deliveries for its smaller A320neo.

Together, the A320 and A330 families generate most of the cash and income needed to support future developments and other activities at the maker of airplanes, rockets and fighters.

  • Airbus says aims to cut CSeries costs, sell ‘big volumes’
  • No read-across to Airbus from Rolls engine problems on Boeing 787s: Airbus CFO
  • Airbus gets first European export credit since probes started

While the narrowbody A320neo remains a best-seller, with Airbus recently unable to produce the jets fast enough due to engine supply problems, the upgraded A330neo has been losing ground to the newer Boeing (BA.N) 787 at carriers like American Airlines and Hawaiian Airlines.

“We knew (the first quarter) was going to be grisly – and it is,” said Jefferies analyst Sandy Morris in a note.

“The A330 going down to 50 (a year) is overtly bad news, but we have suspected for some time the A330’s slow sales could mean A350 production moves up at some point,” he added.

Slideshow (2 Images)


Shares in Airbus dipped just over 1 percent on the results, which came days after Boeing beat forecasts after improving deliveries and turning the corner on 787 costs.

Airbus reported an adjusted quarterly operating profit of 14 million euros ($17 million) after a restated year-earlier loss of 19 million. Revenues fell 12 percent to 10.12 billion euros.

Airbus reaffirmed full-year forecasts, however, predicting that A320neo deliveries would speed up later this year after a two-month break in some deliveries due to engine snags.

Analysts were on average expecting a 23.9 million euro quarterly operating loss on revenues of 10.21 billion.

Airbus said it saw continued strong demand for narrowbody jets like the A320, allowing it to explore future production rates of “70 or 70-plus” a month, up from around 55 a month now.

But it softened recent indications that it planned to accelerate its goal in the short term, after an Airbus spokesman earlier this week confirmed a report it planned to increase output to 63 a month in 2019, instead of 60.

Finance Director Harald Wilhelm said Airbus was only asking for “surge capacity” of that level and the only commitment was for 60 aircraft a month, while redefining the goal as a delivery target rather than a production figure.

This is a change from the usual practice for high-volume aircraft program, where manufacturers typically announce monthly production rates that hold steady while deliveries can fluctuate from month to month. For the year as a whole, they tend to focus on deliveries, which drive revenues and cash.

Airbus is keen to lock in a recent advantage over Boeing in narrowbody jets by speeding up the rate at which it turns orders into deliveries, but faces pushback from its engine suppliers.

The head of France’s Safran (SAF.PA) this week warned against hasty production increases as suppliers work through an unprecedented speed-up plan already in motion.

Germany’s MTU Aero Engines (MTXGn.DE) said on Wednesday it too was cautious, because of tight supply chains.

Additional reporting by Sudip Kar-Gupta, Victoria Bryan, Sarah Young; Editing by Richard Lough and Mark Potter

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OceanaGold board shuffles

The company has appointed Ian Reid to the board as a non-executive director. He is currently a non-executive director at Canadian Western Bank, Stuart Olson and Associated Engineering and Voice Construction, as well as chairman of Fountain Tire.

Reid previously held several senior management positions at Caterpillar distributors and became president of Finning in Canada from 1997 until he retired in 2008.

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Meanwhile, non-executive directors Dr Diane Garrett, William Myckatyn and Jose Leviste Jr have decided to leave the board after the next annual general and special meeting on June 1.

Garrett had been a director since 2015 and Myckatyn sat on the board for eight years. Leviste joined in 2007 and has agreed to remain with OceanaGold as a consultant.

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Bezant sells Choco to Auvert

The company had previously assessed the overall potential contribution to the company’s performance, looking at project financing, joint venture and disposal opportunities, and decided that the disposal was the best option for shareholders.

It only started commercial production at Choco in mid-August last year.

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“Bezant will now pursue a strategy focussed on building value from its copper-gold assets comprised of the Mankayan project, Philippines and the Eureka project, Argentina,” it said.

The proceeds of the sale will be used to progress the cpmpany’s copper-gold strategy and for general working purposes.

Bezant noted that, with the sale, it would save an estimated ongoing cost related to non-mining activities at Choco of $400,000 per annum.

The loss attributable to the 100%-owned subsidiary owner of the Choco project was expected to be £1.5 million (US$2.1 million) for the year ended December 31, 2017.

Bezant CEO Laurence Read said the Mankayan project was an advanced, major copper asset which already had an option by an unnamed industry major, while the Eureka project was in a prospective copper district with historic mining present at surface.

“The $500,000 disposal of Choco to Auvert, a company specialising in alluvial mining, allows Bezant to focus on a series of assets in two commodities likely to be subject to significant supply shortfalls,” he said.

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Central Asia Metals continues c-suite revamp

The AIM-listed dump leach retreatment play bought the Sasa zinc and lead mine last year as a way to diversify its revenue base.

Last month, CAML announced Nick Clarke would drop the ‘executive’ from his chairman title and those duties would go to CFO Nigel Robinson as the CEO. 

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Gavin Ferrar was promoted to CFO in his place. 

Yelland has been at Shanta since 2015 and was promoted from New Luika general manager to COO last year.

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