News briefs

  • You will come across the word “strategic” frequently in the present issue of the MMJ, especially on the pages in Mongolian. One reason for this is that this issue covers various aspects of the law regulating foreign investment in strategic sectors. Another is that we begin in this issue a comprehensive introduction to the 39 deposits listed as strategic. Our editor,N.Ariuntuya, has covered 13 deposits to begin with, giving their location, licence ownership, nature of minerals held, and whether their shares are traded on international bourses. The report will be continued in the July issue.
  • China’s state-run aluminium giant Chalco last month announced a second deal in its pursuit of Mongolian coal, despite signs that the country’s government is seeking to derail an earlier deal. While Mongolia has opened its doors to foreign investors over the past decade and has willingly sold coal to China, Chinese companies have found it hard to access Mongolia’s vast copper and coal mines directly due to Mongolia’s historic mistrust of its giant neighbour.
  • A high level of uranium has been detected in the groundwater in the Mongolian capital, report local media.The finding was made in a deep-well water research programme conducted by a joint U.S.-Mongolian team last July to determine the arsenic content.The team extracted water samples from 129 deep wells in the seven districts of Ulaanbaatar and sent the samples to the US for analysis.
  • Germany’s ThyssenKrupp Uhde and the Mongolian Government have signed two Memoranda of Understanding relating to the development, engineering and construction of a coal-to-liquids plant and also a heat recovery coke making plant. Feasibility studies for the two projects had already been prepared. The result of the coal-to-liquids study was presented at the Mongolian CTG Project Conference in Ulaanbaatar in June 2008, and the heat recovery coke making plant study based on ThyssenKrupp Uhde’s proprietary heat recovery coking technology was presented in December 2011.
  • Khan Resources has filed an appeal in an Ontario court challenging a March decision that upheld Atomredmetzoloto JSC’s appeal to stop Khan Resource’s lawsuit against the Russian miner.Khan Resources claims that ARMZ, which is a government-owned company, interfered with its uranium interests in Mongolia, and is seeking damages of USD 302.8 million. The company was seeking to, among other things, restore a prior order of the Superior Court of Justice that validated service of the statement of claim on ARMZ, which the Russian government has since refused to serve on the company.
  • The last session of the current Parliament is in its last days. For the first two years of its term, Mongolia received support from international financial organizations as a developing country, but thereafter, its credit rating was upgraded and it is no longer in the list of developing countries. Business loans are now easier to get, and national companies have been getting huge amounts as investment loans from international banks and financial organisations.
  • Mining Journal and Beacon Events are pleased to introduce the Asia Mining Awards for the first time at the 5th Annual Mines and Money Hong Kong.  The awards, announced at a black tie Gala Dinner on 22th March 2012, were received by some of the top executives and companies in the exploration, mining, mining finance and investment areas with Australia and Mongolia the big winners.
  • Boroo Gold LLC recently hosted a seminar on the use of geo membrane materials to explain its heap leaching technology to miners and also to promote it among the public. The emphasis was on the environmental and economic benefits of the technology that was first studied and tested by Boroo Gold in 2006, with pilot operations being completed in 2009.
  • Announcing an agreement to sell its thermal coal property, the TsagaanTolgoi Deposit, to Modun Resources, SouthGobi Resources has said it intends to facilitate the sale through the transfer of a wholly-owned subsidiary holding one mining licence and one exploration licence pertaining to that deposit. Under the transaction, subject to certain terms and conditions and expected to be completed by June 1 this year, SouthGobi expects to receive US$30 million of total consideration.
  • G.Battsengel, Executive Director of Energy Resources LLC, told the Coal Mongolia 2012 forum that the present state of Mongolia’s infrastructure was responsible for Mongolia’s mining industry failing to fulfil its potential. While Mongolia has made no progress in expanding its railway, Russia is building new tracks to help sell its own coal.
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