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Anglo American Q4 production up 7 %

Global Mining conglomerate, Anglo American closed 2018 on a high note registering significant growth in production during the last quarter of year.

Anglo operates and owns significant stakes in all major mineral business interests across the world. The company’s flagship mines are in Africa, Canada being another host of key revenue generating business for the over 100 years mining giant. For the last 3 months of 2018 the Group which is listed in various stock markets including Botswana Stock Exchange reported a 7% increase in total production on a copper equivalent basis excluding the effect of the stoppage at Minas-Rio.

According to a report released by Anglo this week, the company’s diamond production basket De Beers, world’s leading diamond outfit increased its production output during the period under review by12% to rake in 9.1 million carats bringing total production for the year 2018 to 35.3 million carats. Anglo says the growth is attributable to a planned production increase at Orapa mine, although this was in the lower half of the production guidance range of 35-36 million carats.

A closer look at Debswana, De Beers‘s flagship rough diamond miner, indicates that production increased by 15% to 6.3 million carats. Production at Orapa grew by 20% to 3.6 million carats predominantly driven by planned favorable grade and higher plant utilization. At Jwaneng, the world’s richest diamond mine by value, production output went up by 9% following an increase in tonnes treated. Debswana is a leading rough diamond producer accounting for over 60 percent of De Beers total rough diamond output.

Namdeb Holdings, a 50-50 venture between De Beers and Namibian Government also registered growth in production, dispatching a 3 percent increase  to  close the quarter a 0.5 million carats. According to the JSE listed mining giant growth at Namdeb was driven by the Mafuta crawler vessel at Debmarine Namibia spending fewer days in port. “This was partly offset by the land operations following the transition of Elizabeth Bay to care and maintenance,” reads the report.

At the De Beers business in South Africa, rough diamond production increased by 7% to 1.2 million carats as a result of planned higher grade ore at Venetia while in Canada production increased by 5% to 1.0 million carats due to higher grades at Victor as it reaches the end of its life. Anglo says the 5 % growth registered in Canada was partially attributable to planned lower grades at Gahcho Kué.

In total volumes, rough diamond sales ended the period under review at 9.9 million carats mirroring 9.3 million carats on a consolidated basis from three sales cycles, compared to 8.2 million carats, 7.5 million carats on a consolidated basis for same number of sales cycles during the equivalent period in 2017.

Anglo American copper production increased by 23% to 183,500 tonnes, registering the highest tonnage since Q4 2013, with production increases at all operations and record copper in concentrate production at Collahuasi. Production from Los Bronces increased by 31% to 99,000 tonnes, driven by continued strong mine and plant performance and planned higher grades.

 For Platinum mines, one of Anglo American’s traditional money spinning mineral interests, production increased by 3% to 602,300 ounces while palladium production increased by 3% to 386,600 ounces, due to improved operational performances across the majority of the portfolio. Own mined platinum production decreased by 12% to 307,500 ounces and palladium production decreased by 7% to 234,800 ounces due to the sale of Union mine on 1 February 2018, after which its production was purchased as concentrate.

For refined platinum, production output registered 7% growth up to 770,900 ounces, while palladium production was flat at 493,800 ounces. “Platinum sales volumes  which excluding refined metal purchased from third parties increased by 8% to 776,900 ounces due to higher refined production, supplemented by a draw down in refined platinum stocks,” explains the report.

Anglo further reports that its IRON basket shrunk by 13%   bringing production volumes to   10.2 million tonnes as planned to offset elevated stock levels at the mines resulting from Transnet rail constraints. “Plant yields remained slightly lower, in line with the strategy of producing higher quality products, to maximize the value of tonnes railed to port and to benefit from the strong demand for high-grade ore” explains Anglo. The Mining giant also says as a result of this decline, full year production of 43.1 million tonnes was at the lower end of the guidance range.

Under the coal segment, metallurgical coal production increased by 15% to 5.6 million tonnes, with productivity improvements at Moranbah offsetting the impact of a long wall move at Grasstree, which started in December 2018. “Grosvenor production also increased year-on-year, but was significantly lower than in Q3 2018 due to a longwall move, which was completed in late December 2018.”

Export thermal Coal production from Anglo’s South African outfits decreased marginally by 2% to 4.5 million tonnes, as operations continue to transit between mining areas. Domestic thermal coal production decreased by 54% to 3.3 million tonnes due to the completion of the sale of the Eskom-tied operations. Export thermal Coal Colombia production from Cerrejón decreased by 19% to 2.4 million tonnes as a result of high rainfall in Q4 2018.

Anglo America Chief Executive Officer Mark Cutifani said expenditure for the fourth quarter increased by 19% to $80 million compared to the same period of 2017. He further notes that exploration expenditure decreased by 6% to $29 million largely driven by adverse weather and delays with access. “Our continuing focus on efficiency and productivity improvements across the business resulted in another strong quarter, adding to our consistent track record of delivery,” he said.

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China’s GDP expands 3% in 2022 despite various pressures

2nd February 2023
China’s Gross Domestic Product (GDP) expanded by 3% year-on-year to 121.02 trillion yuan ($17.93 trillion) in 2022 despite being mired in various growth pressures, according to data from the National Bureau Statistics.

The annual growth rate beat a median economist forecast of 2.8% as polled by Reuters. The country’s fourth-quarter GDP growth of 2.9% also surpassed expectations for a 1.8% increase.

In 2022, the Chinese economy encountered more difficulties and challenges than was expected amid a complex domestic and international situation. However, NBS said economic growth stabilized after various measures were taken to shore up growth.

Industrial output rose 3.6% in 2022 over the previous year, while retail sales slightly shrank by 0.2% data show that fixed-asset investment increased 5.1% over 2021, with a 9.1% hike in manufacturing investment but a 10% fall in property investment.

China created 12.06 million new jobs in urban regions throughout the year, surpassing its annual target of 11 million, and officials have stressed the importance of continuing an employment-first policy in 2023.

Meanwhile, China tourism market is a step closer to robust recovery. Tourism operators are in high spirits because the market saw a good chance of a robust recovery during the Spring Festival holiday amid relaxed COVID-19 travel policies.

On January 27, the last day of the seven-day break, the Ministry of Culture and Tourism published an encouraging performance report of the tourism market. It said that domestic destinations and attractions received 308 million visits, up 23.1% year-on-year. The number is roughly 88.6% of that in 2019, they year before the pandemic hit.

According to the report, tourism-related revenue generated during the seven-day period was about 375.8 billion yuan ($55.41 billion), a year-on-year rise of 30%. The revenue was about 73% of that in 2019, the Ministry said.

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Jewellery manufacturing plant to create over 100 jobs

30th January 2023

The state of the art jewellery manufacturing plant that has been set up by international diamond and cutting company, KGK Diamonds Botswana will create over 100 jobs, of which 89 percent will be localized.

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Investors inject capital into Tsodilo Resources Company

25th January 2023

Local diamond and metal exploration company Tsodilo Resources Limited has negotiated a non-brokered private placement of 2,200, 914 units of the company at a price per unit of 0.20 US Dollars, which will provide gross proceeds to the company in the amount of C$440, 188. 20.

According to a statement from the group, proceeds from the private placement will be used for the betterment of the Xaudum iron formation project in Botswana and general corporate purposes.

The statement says every unit of the company will consist of a common share in the capital of the company and one Common Share purchase warrant of the company.

Each warrant will enable a holder to make a single purchase for the period of 24 months at an amount of $0.20. As per regularity requirements, the group indicates that the common shares and warrants will be subject to a four month plus a day hold period from date of closure.

Tsodilo is exempt from the formal valuation and minority shareholder approval requirements. This is for the reason that the fair market value of the private placement, insofar as it involves the director, is not more than 25% of the company’s market capitalization.

Tsodilo Resources Limited is an international diamond and metals exploration company engaged in the search for economic diamond and metal deposits at its Bosoto Limited and Gcwihaba Resources projects in Botswana.  The company has a 100% stake in Bosoto which holds the BK16 kimberlite project in the Orapa Kimberlite Field (OKF) in Botswana.

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