THE haves and have-nots of the Australian Securities Exchange-listed junior exploration company space are likely to become much more visible, one way or another, over the next few months. Kyrgyz Republic-focused Celsius Coal does have cash and a seemingly sound strategy. And its new CFO thinks it could have a lot more going for it too in the “near term”.
CONSULTANTS and contractors and those that backed David Moore and his team at the beginning of the century look the only winners associated with the massive Reko Diq copper-gold project in Pakistan. On the other side of the ledger, the Islamic Republic of Pakistan, Barrick Gold and Antofagasta are the big losers.
DESPITE government measures aimed at reassuring investors in Mongolia, mining firms face operational risks that will likely increase, according to Exclusive Analysis head of Asia forecasting, O Hamid.
FINALLY, finally Manas Resources is almost there. Almost! Construction of a gold project in Kyrgyz Republic that will be a veritable cash machine should be only a quarter away. Should!
SOME earnest boardroom chats got started this week that will help decide the immediate future of the Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold project and with that the fate of the many juniors that have staked their fortunes on Mongolia’s vast mineral wealth.
COMPANIES that hoped nationalistic rhetoric out of Mongolia would stop after elections in late June would be disappointed that calls for contract reviews have continued. Though this petition is not aimed at Western mining companies, according to political risk advice agency Exclusive Analysis, the firm’s head of Asia forecasting believes that miners must get used to the reality that life on the ground in Mongolia is not as easy as everyone would have wished.
CELSIUS Coal (formerly View Resources) got busy on the ground in Kyrgyzstan in the September quarter, with drill programs and a small-scale mining campaign at the Min Teke thermal coal property. HighGrade put some questions to company management, led by experienced mining executive and former managing director of Tianshan Goldfields, Grant Thomas.
A HINT of frustration rings in the voice of Manas Resources managing director Stephen Ross and one can also imagine shareholders of Manas would share the sentiment given the stalled progress at the company’s proposed gold project in Kyrgyz Republic. But there have been some signs in recent weeks suggesting a little more patience could soon(ish) be well rewarded.
THE market value of Mongolian-based copper and gold explorer Kincora Copper has rebounded strongly since national elections in late June, a sign that focus has returned to its promising Bronze Fox asset and recently acquired Tourmaline Hills project, rather than the underlying political uncertainty.
JUNE 13 – Sihayo Gold has cracked the 1.5Moz gold milestone at its Sihayo gold project in Sumatra, Indonesia. In the second resource upgrade in just a week, Sihayo reported a JORC-compliant 17Mt at 2.7g/t.
THE glass-half-full perspective on the current malaise affecting Mongolian mining and exploration plays is the opportunity for companies to finally acquire new assets in a less overheated market.
PRIVATE company Moly World has come up with a maiden resource of more than 200 million tonnes at its Mandal molybdenum project in Mongolia, which has shown early signs it could become a major, low cost producer.
IT IS down to its last few bucks and is capitalised accordingly but underlying this junior with a tight capital structure is a big copper and gold play where resources are on the horizon, plus well located nickel ground featuring drill targets ready to be hit.
MONGOLIA focused Xanadu Mines is looking to cash-in on its thermal coal exposure and concentrate on its copper, gold and coking coal projects in the strongly emerging, highly prospective resource sector destination wedged between China and Russia.
FOUR tenders for Afghani mineral projects went live in London last week as Afghanistan put its foot down on its push to take advantage of its vast mineral wealth and establish an industry beyond its agricultural sector.
SUFFICE to say the inauguration this week of the new Kyrgyzstan president Almazbek Atambayev was rather eagerly awaited by Manas Resources, with the company hoping to expeditiously get the show on the road at its very profitable looking South Kyrgyz gold project once the pro-business Atambayev begins his time in the top job.
SEPTEMBER 13: THE first step for the government of any emerging nation trying to showcase itself to international investors is to spruce up the road between the airport and the CBD. It doesn’t matter if the back streets have potholes the size of elephants, as the average foreign investor is too lazy to bother venturing that far.
A POTENTIAL elephant along Mongolia’s Oyu Tolgoi copper belt was brought back to public life last week, six years after being discarded by Ivanhoe Mines. The 22,000 hectare Bronze Fox copper-gold project is set to receive the exploration and development attention it has long deserved and may become a development site as early as next year.
THE long journey in the vast country that is Kazakhstan is starting to get interesting for Central Asia Resources (CVR), with the company now closing in on first gold and expecting further opportunities to come its way in the wake of production success.
AFGHANISTAN'S mines minister Wahidullah Shahrani doesn’t blink when it’s plainly pointed out to him that his job of selling the war-torn country’s mineral wealth to foreign investors – with something about the need for rapid development in the fine print – must be one of the toughest going around. It’s a Saturday in Perth and the minister has been in meeting after meeting during the previous week.