Regional News - Asia June 2017

Macmahon Advances Service Agreement for Batu Hijau

Macmahon and PT Amman Mineral Nusa Tenggara (AMNT) have signed a binding agreement for mining services for the Batu Hijau copper-gold mine in Indonesia. The alliance-type agreement exchanges shares of Macmahon for one of the largest mining fleets in Indonesia. The agreement includes cost-plus payments with upside and downside sharing over the 14-year life-of-mine plan with the potential to extend the scope of work to include significant future development options. Macmahon has successfully operated in Indonesia since 2008 with existing projects at Martabe and Lhoknga, and sees this deal as a game changer for the company.

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Freeport Lays Off Striking Grasberg Miners

PT Freeport Indonesia has reportedly laid off striking miners at its Grasberg operation. On May 1, more than 10,000 miners who are represented by the Chemical, Energy and Mines Workers Union (CEMWU) embarked on 30 days of strike action in protest of the company’s furlough policy. Contractors joined the strike on May 9. The company declared the strike illegal, and announced that striking workers would be considered absent without leave. Any worker absent for five days would lose their job. So far, 178 workers have been terminated.

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Regional News - Asia May 2017

Vedanta Completes Cairn Merger

India’s metal and mineral major, Vedanta is awaiting the final nod from central bank, Reserve Bank of India (RBI) to complete the proposed merger with its energy subsidiary, Cairn India Ltd., to create the fourth largest resource company in the world. Vedanta, the Indian subsidiary of London Stock Exchange (LSE) listed Vedanta Plc has secured all approvals from its shareholders and that of Cairn India Ltd. and India’s National Company Law Tribunal to effect the merger. However, the final regulatory clearance from RBI was necessary as the merger would involve issue of fresh non-redeemable preference shares to non-resident minority shareholders of Cairn.

According to a Vedanta statement, the merger would be effective as soon as the approval for issue of non-redeemable preference shares was received from the Indian central bank. “It is just a matter of a very short time that last of the formalities will be completed and the merger process become effective,” a company source said. The revised target date for completion of the merger had been set for April 2017.

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Kingsgate Commences Claim Against Thailand

Kingsgate Consolidated Ltd. will seek a range of remedies, including compensation, from the Thai Government for the measures taken against the Chatree gold mine in violation of the Australia-Thailand Free Trade Agreement (TAFTA). As a first step, Kingsgate notified the Prime Minister of the Kingdom of Thailand that it wishes to engage in consultations as required under TAFTA.

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Regional News - Asia - April 2017

Alamos Sees Potential in Turkey

Alamos Gold has reported positive results from feasibility studies of its Kirazli and Aği Daği gold projects and from a preliminary economic assessment (PEA) of its Çamyurt gold project, all located in Çanakkale province in northwest Turkey. The Kirazli and Aği Daği projects are separated by a distance of about 25 km and will be developed sequentially as stand-alone projects, with Kirazli to be developed first. The Çamyurt project is located approximately 4 km from Aği Daği, and its ore will be processed at the Aği Daği processing facilities after the Aği Daği deposits have been mined out.

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Kumtor Receives Permit to Raise Tailings Dam

Centerra Gold reported that the Kumtor operation, located in the Kyrgyz Republic, has received the necessary permits from the state authorities to raise the tailings dam to the 3,674-meter (m) elevation. The construction permits enable the mine to commence the 3-year construction program to provide adequate tailings storage capacity for Kumtor’s mill tailings deposition from 2021 through the end of 2024. The tailings dam construction in 2017 is the first such construction required to contain the additional 3.6 million oz of gold reserves that resulted from the KS-13 pit expansion.

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Indian Iron Ore Production to Hit 5-year High

India’s iron ore production is expected hit a five-year high at 180 million mt by the close of the current fiscal year (March 31), riding on gains in international prices, a favorable legislative environment and more mines coming back into production. In FY 2010-2011 India produced 207 million mt.

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Regional News - Asia - March 2017

Freeport-McMoRan Updates Status of Indonesia Operations

Following more than five years of discussions, PT Freeport Indonesia’s (PT-FI) and the government have failed to reach an agreement on concentrate exports and other matters related to its contract of work (COW).


Indonesian government regulations passed in January and February require that PT-FI terminate its COW and convert to a special license (IUPK) in order to export its concentrate production. PT-FI advised the government that attempts to enforce this regulation on PT-FI violates its COW and that it is unwilling to terminate its COW unless replaced by a mutually acceptable form of agreement providing fiscal and legal assurances to support its long-term investment plans in Indonesia.

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Permits Face Cancellation in the Philippines

Philippines Environment and Natural Resources Secretary Gina Lopez announced on February 14 that 75 mineral production sharing agreements (MPSA) for mining sites that are within watershed areas face cancellation.

Lopez said show cause orders have been issued to mining companies to allow them to explain why their MPSAs should not be canceled for threatening watersheds. MPSA holders have seven days to reply, she added.

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