Rio Tinto sets out growth plan for
Anglo-Australian miner Rio Tinto set out its
vision for the future in December, reiterating that it expects
its minerals business to grow in line with a rising middle
class in China.
The company said that, in the six months to June
2014, it reduced its exploration and evaluation costs in its
diamonds and minerals segment by $627m and its working capital
costs by $271m. Capex was reduced by $541m.
Alan Davies, CEO of the diamonds and minerals
sector, pointed out that the company will continue to invest in
high value projects like the Richard Bay Mineral’s
Zulti South mineral sands offering, which is working towards
its feasibility study.
Zircon, titanium dioxide (TiO2), salt
and refined borates demand is expected to increase to 2030,
driven by a growing middle class in emerging economies. In
terms of percentage, Davies said, the amount of Chinese
upper middle class households is expected to grow from 14% in
2012, to 54% in 2022.
Demand will outpace (existing) supply in
TiO2 from 2015, from 2017 for borates and after
2017 for zircon, Rio Tinto said.
At an investor seminar in London, Rio Tinto
CEO Sam Walsh said: "When you look at EBITDA*
margins, the quality and longevity of resources and reserves,
and potential for expansion and growth, there is no
question our world-class assets will generate
sustainable returns for decades to come."
Cofermin to create two new
Cofermin Group confirmed to IM
that it will be branching out to operate two companies within
its group as of 1 January 2015, with one of the companies
focusing exclusively on Chinese minerals.
MINERALS Gmbh + Co KG will focus on the trading
and distribution of raw materials out of China such as
graphite, bauxite, magnesia and silicon carbide and will work
with Cofermin’s bauxite processing facility,
Cofermin Tianjin, to "focus on broadening our services out of
China," the company said.
Cofermin Chrome GmbH + Co KG will take over and
expand all chrome ore activities of Cofermin Rohstoffe, it
Five new colleagues, unnamed at the time of going
to press, will join Cofermin’s team, which is
headquartered in Essen, Germany.
"Through this addition of raw material experts
our group’s structure will expand and become even
stronger," the company said.
Cofermin runs offices in Katowice in Poland,
Moscow in Russia, Tianjin and Tokyo in Japan. It trades over
100 products worldwide, from alumina to zirconia, to markets
such as foundry, steel, refractories, building materials,
mineral processing, ceramics, glass, fertiliser, welding and
The company supplies Europe, Russia and Asia for
a large number of international raw material and additives
producers. A key area of Cofermin’s activities is
the development of new resources, especially secondary raw
The company was founded in 2000 by four managing
partners - Tim Geldmacher, Pawel Golak, Bernhard Kruger and
Ralf Ossen - all ex Frank&Schulte experts in marketing and
distribution, processing and trading of ores and minerals.
Australia to cancel alumina export tax to
Australia will not impose export taxes on over
85% of its products traded to China, including alumina.
This will be extended to 93% of commodities
within the next four years and 95% after its full
The reform will remove the
present 17% import tax on alumina imports from
Australia to China.
Bosai Minerals reach wage agreement after
The management of Bosai Minerals Group Co Ltd
reached an agreement with trade unions in December after
workers went on strike to demand higher wages in November.
Managers agreed to a retroactive 6.5% wage rise,
Workers went on strike in November to demand
The company initially offered a 6% increase in
salaries, but workers at the bauxite plant in Linden, Guyana,
pushed for a 7-8% rise, before settling on 6.5%.
Bosai Minerals produces brown fused alumina from
two facilities, belonging to its subsidiaries Pinguo Jinshan
Fused Alumina Co. and Guizhou Huangping Fused Alumina Co., with
production capacities of 90,000 tpa and 30,000 tpa,
The group also produces calcined bauxite, with an
annual capacity of 600,000 tpa. It acquired Omai bauxite mine
in Guyana in December 2006, accessing 200m tonnes bauxite
Microdermis iodine-based antiseptic
adopted by US Army in fight against Ebola
Privately-owned life sciences company Microdermis
Corp. has launched a new iodine-based antiseptic product, which
will be deployed by the US Army to help fight the spread of
Ebola in West Africa.
The antiseptic skin product, Provodine, is
applied as a final molecular barrier for healthcare workers and
emergency responders using traditional layers of protective
Speaking to IM, Peter Lentini,
chief science officer, said that testing showed that Provodine
kills the Ebola virus (and everything else it has been tested
against) "rapidly and persistently". Further testing to
document the longevity of kill is underway.
Provodine can also be safely used on the most
sensitive areas of the body, unlike many other branded
antiseptic products, Microdermis said.
Microdermis has now ramped up Provodine
production to meet the needs of the US Army both domestically
and abroad, Lentini told IM.
The company is also positioning manufacturing in
anticipation of increased demand from NGOs and other
governments involved in the fight against Ebola in West
Iodine demand expected to ramp
Following the Japanese nuclear disaster in 2011,
a variety of factors contributed to an increase in the price of
industrial iodine, including the panic buying of iodine
radiation pills and a drop in supply, as some Japanese
production was damaged during the disaster.
According to Lentini, the Ebola situation might
also contribute to an increase in iodine demand.