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  • By Kasia Patel
    Published: 26 Jun 2015

    Predictions of a recovery point in the oil and gas markets vary between the end of 2015 and some point in 2016. So far, oilfield minerals have been relatively resilient. Although ceramic proppants have been the hardest hit, frac sand has gained market share due to its availability, price, and changing trends in fracking. Barite meanwhile remains essential as a weighting agent and prices are holding steady.

  • By Albert Li
    Published: 18 Jun 2015

    Government support coupled with rich domestic resources helped to cement Chile’s position as the world’s leading producer and prospective market entrants have highlighted favourable policies as key to fostering progress in the sector, although the main growth driver will remain demand from new lithium-based technologies.

  • By James Sean Dickson
    Published: 11 Jun 2015

    The worst of the effects of the oil prices on oil exploration and thus industrial mineral demand from drilling activity appears to have passed. With high-cost rigs now removed from the demand equation, the decline in the drill rig count has slowed, a rare positive development in a depressed oilfield minerals market.

  • By James Sean Dickson
    Published: 05 Jun 2015

    Chapter 11 bankruptcy arrangements could be on the cards for Molycorp, the sole US producer of rare earths. However, the company may see its fortunes improve should its highly-leveraged debt structure be reorganised and operational improvements continue.


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