News

A recovery could also see the next generation of graphite producers such as Battery Minerals and Kibaran spring to life. Plus, pending BFS could re-rate Orion shares

Leading graphite stock Syrah Resources (SYR) has been beaten up something shocking ever since it turned on its Balama operation in Mozambique. The fall from grace – it’s down from $2.80 a year ago to $1.07 this week – has a lot to do with teething problems at the concentrate processing plant. But the real issue is that the $US1, 000/t average price for Balama concentrates forecast in the May 2015 feasibility study has proved to be complete nonsense.

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Pilbara Minerals boss Ken Brinsden says the jury is still out as to whether the company will build a downstream processing plant in WA

Pilbara Minerals boss Ken Brinsden says the jury is still out as to whether the company will build a downstream processing plant in WA as part of a proposed joint venture agreement over its Pilgangoora lithium-tantalum project near Port Hedland (reports The West Australian).

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Kibaran Resources has flagged plans for a $US23 million ($33 million) graphite-processing plant at Kwinana representing another lift to the area’s growing reputation as Australia’s Lithium Valley (reports The West Australian). The West Perth-based aspiring graphite producer yesterday announced it had secured a 4ha site for the plant 30km south of Perth as part of a broader strategy of becoming a multi-hub producer of battery-grade graphite, with similar facilities planned for Asia and Europe.

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Plus, Sunstone chief upbeat on porphyry drilling with assays imminent and PolarX validates its exploration strategy with $70m Lundin deal

Pilbara Minerals (PLS) was the big lithium presence at this week’s Resources Rising Stars conference, where there was lots of discussion about Tesla wankers and whether the electric vehicle revolution was real. After braving unusually cold weather on the Gold Coast at a knees up the night before beneath giant tepees erected on the green at the RACV’s Royal Pines resort, Pilbara CEO Ken Brinsden told the assembled throng that it will only be a “matter of time before we all become Tesla wankers”.

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Sentiment in the junior mining space has reached “peak despondency” and could be ripe for a turning point, according to a respected fund manager (reports The West Australian). Delivering the keynote address at the Resources Rising Stars conference on the Gold Coast, Lion Selection Group investment manager Hedley Widdup says a resurgence in M&A activity at the major end of the resources sector could usher in growing interest in the junior end of the market as the big players go looking for growth.

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Plus, investors’ eyes turn to PolarX as the new field season beckons

The Kambalda nickel camp is stirring again some 53 years after WMC (acquired by BHP in 2005) drilled the KD1 discovery hole, with Mincor boss David Southam positioning the company to be in the thick of things. The Vietnam War and prolonged nickel mine strikes in Canada underpinned the nickel price spurt which led to WMC’s breakthrough discovery at Kambalda, 60km south of Kalgoorlie.

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Battery-metal news livened up the Australian market in a week dominated by post-election analysis

Battery-metal news livened up the Australian market in a week dominated by post-election analysis, high iron ore prices, the return of coal to the winner’s circle and the first worrying signs that Dr Copper might be catching a trade-war cold. Five battery-linked events, two in lithium and one in each of graphite, rare earths and nickel, served as a reminder that battery-metals remain a sector with significant growth potential for Australian investors.

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BHP has raised its forecast for the adoption of electric vehicles worldwide (reports The Australian Financial Review).

BHP has raised its forecast for the adoption of electric vehicles worldwide (reports The Australian Financial Review).

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Upcoming Events

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4th - 5th Jun 2019

Gold Coast Conference

The 2019 Resources Rising Stars Conference was held on Tuesday 4 and Wednesday 5 June 2019 at the scenic RACV Royal Pines Resort on the Gold Coast. 

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