Resource exports face $40bn hit

Original article by Jared Lynch
The Australian – Page: 13 & 16 : 28-Sep-20

Australia’s resources and energy exports rose to a record $290bn in 2019-20, driven by a rally in the iron ore price. However, the Department of Industry’s latest Resources and Energy Quarterly report forecasts that the nation will export just $256bn worth of commodities in 2020-21. The total value of resources and energy exports in 2021-22 is forecast to be $252bn. The Department expects a pullback in the iron ore price to around $US85 a tonne by the end of 2020-21; iron ore shipments are expected to fall to $80bn, after reaching a record $102bn in 2019-20. Meanwhile, gold export earnings are forecast to reach a record $31bn in 2020-21.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF INDUSTRY, SCIENCE, ENERGY AND RESOURCES

BHP moves to protect heritage sites in Pilbara

Original article by Paul Garvey
The Australian – Page: 15 & 20 : 18-Sep-20

BHP’s Australian head of minerals Edgar Basto has appeared before a parliamentary inquiry into Rio Tinto’s destruction of ancient rock shelters at Juukan Gorge. He said the resources giant is engaging with traditional owners with regard to its $US3.4bn ($4.7bn) South Flank iron ore project in the wake of the incident. BHP was given approval under Western Australia’s Aboriginal Heritage Act to destroy 40 Aboriginal heritage sites just days after Rio Tinto’s blasting at Juukan Gorge in May. However, BHP has already agreed to change its plans for South Flank to protect at least 10 of the sites.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO

Rio Tinto condemned by shareholders for seeking legal advice before blowing up Juukan Gorge

Original article by Lorena Allan
The Guardian – Page: Online : 8-Sep-20

James Fitzgerald from the Australian Centre for Corporate Responsibility says the behaviour of Rio Tinto "beggars belief". He was commenting on the revelation that the mining company hired lawyers to prepare for a possible injunction against the destruction of ancient rock shelters in Juukan Gorge in Western Australia, just three days before they were destroyed in May. Fitzgerald says the attitude of Rio since the shelters were destroyed appears to be that their destruction was just a tragic mistake, but the revelations regarding its hiring of lawyers suggests otherwise.

CORPORATES
THE AUSTRALIAN CENTRE FOR CORPORATE SOCIAL RESPONSIBILITY, RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO

Fortescue to deliver Forrest record pay-out

Original article by Peter Ker
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 13 : 24-Aug-20

The consensus of analysts polled by Bloomberg is that Fortescue Metals Group will post a record underlying profit of $US4.7bn ($6.6bn) for 2019-20, and a final dividend of $0.90 per share. Fortescue founder Andrew Forrest is set to receive more than $1bn in dividends for the second half, and about $1.85bn for the full year. This compares with a total distribution of $1.24bn in 2018-19. Forrest and his wife are significant donors to a range of philanthropic causes via their Minderoo Foundation.

CORPORATES
FORTESCUE METALS GROUP LIMITED – ASX FMG, MINDEROO FOUNDATION

Northern Star’s path brightens

Original article by Brad Thompson
The Australian Financial Review – Page: 25 : 20-Aug-20

Northern Star Resources has posted a 2019-20 net profit of $258.3m, which is 67 per cent higher than previously. EBITDA rose from $479.7m previously to a record $745.4m. Shareholders will receive a final dividend of $0.095 per share, while executive chairman Bill Beament attributes the special dividend of $0.10 a share to the mid-tier gold producer’s strong financial position and growth outlook. Meanwhile, Saracen Mineral Holdings has reported net income of $189.7m for the financial year and revenue of $1.07bn.

CORPORATES
NORTHERN STAR RESOURCES LIMITED – ASX NST, SARACEN MINERAL HOLDINGS LIMITED – ASX SAR

Rio in Pilbara royalties scandal

Original article by Nick Evans
The Weekend Australian – Page: 19 & 22 : 8-Aug-20

Rio Tinto has advised directors of the Gumala Aboriginal Corporation that royalties from the Yandicoogina iron ore mine in the Pilbara have been underpaid for a number of years. The resources giant has paid the GAC some $40m plus interest to cover the underpayments, but the GAC is said to have requested a full audit of Rio Tinto’s royalty payments and access to the underlying data that it uses to calculate regular payments. The Yandicoogina land use agreement was signed in 1997.

CORPORATES
RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, GUMALA ABORIGINAL CORPORATION

Miners urged to resist dividends

Original article by Nick Evans
The Australian – Page: 15 : 27-Jul-20

Scott Grimley of EY says Australian mining companies should reinvest in their business using ‘windfall’ profits from the rising price of gold and iron ore. He cites the need to invest in technological innovations in particular, noting that a report from EY in 2019 concluded that implementing new technologies could boost productivity by 9-23 per cent. Grimley has emphasised the importance of growth as the economy recovers from the coronavirus pandemic.

CORPORATES
ERNST AND YOUNG, BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, RIO TINTO LIMITED – ASX RIO, FORTESCUE METALS GROUP LIMITED – ASX FMG

Miners should be at the top of their game with soaring gold price, says Evolution’s Klein

Original article by Nick Evans, Lachlan Moffet Gray
The Australian – Page: 16 : 24-Jul-20

Evolution Mining has advised that its gold production increased by 31.8 per cent in the June quarter, to 218,104 ounces. Evolution’s gold output for 2019-20 totalled 746,463 ounces, at an all-in sustaining cost of $956 per ounce at its Australian mines. Executive chairman Jake Klein expects the gold price to remain high in the medium-term, citing factors such as the federal government’s stimulus measures. Rival gold producer Northern Star Resources has reported output of 267,361 ounces for the June quarter, at an average realised gold price of $2,487 an ounce.

CORPORATES
EVOLUTION MINING LIMITED – ASX EVN, NORTHERN STAR RESOURCES LIMITED – ASX NST

China iron ore drive delivers $9bn boost

Original article by Geoff Chambers
The Australian – Page: 4 : 24-Jul-20

Finance Minister Mathias Cormann says the federal government has maintained "cautious and conservative assumptions" regarding the outlook for the iron ore price. The steel input is trading at around $US110 per tonne, but the government now expects it to be fetching $US55 a tonne by the end of 2020. It had forecast in December that the iron ore price would fall to $US55 by the end of June. Cormann stresses that the resources sector has been a major contributor to the domestic economy’s resilience during the coronavirus pandemic.

CORPORATES
AUSTRALIA. DEPT OF FINANCE

Iron ore war rages as BHP ramps up

Original article by Nick Evans
The Australian – Page: 13 & 19 : 22-Jul-20

BHP has advised that production at its Pilbara iron ore mines rose to a record 281 million tonnes in 2019-20, while shipments totalled 283.3 million tonnes. BHP has forecast that its iron ore shipments for 2020-21 will be within the range of 276 to 286 million tonnes. BHP’s average realised price for iron ore rose by 16 per cent in 2019-20 to $US77.36 a wet metric tonne, excluding shipping costs. Meanwhile, Brazilian rival Vale has reported iron ore output of 25.1 million tonnes for June, and it still expects full-year production of between 310 and 330 million tonnes.

CORPORATES
BHP GROUP LIMITED – ASX BHP, VALE SA