Tuesday, 01 January 2013 18:08
The big boys BHP Billiton, Rio Tinto and Chevron made news in November and December, as did Nathan Tinkler and Fortescue Metals Group.
- BHP Billiton pulls out of the diamond sector after agreeing to sell its Canadian EKATI diamond operation to jeweller Harry Winston for $500 million.
- After a shaky few months Fortescue Metals Group reassures shareholders that the outlook for Chinese demand and iron ore pricing is strong, despite a volatile year of heavy falls in stock value and commodity prices which saw iron ore prices plunge to below US$90 ($86.68) a tonne in September.
- Evidence comes to light of Mexican druglords increasingly moving into coal mining, producing or buying from mines in a coal-rich area along the US border and reselling at massive profits.
- Rio Tinto plans to cut spending and make billion dollar savings in the next few years due to volatile market conditions, targeting a reduction in operating and support costs by more than US$5 billion ($4.81 billion) by the end of 2014.
- The bad news continues for financially troubled wannabe mining magnate Nathan Tinkler as he is forced to sell off his horse racing business at a huge loss, while some of his other companies are wound up and he loses access to his private jet and helicopter.
- Chevron announces a cost blow out at its massive Gorgon LNG project off WA’s North West with an extra $9 billion required (for a total of $52 billion) because of increased labour costs, productivity issues and the strong Australian dollar. Its start-up is now expected in late 2014.
- Fortescue Metals Group says it is looking to sell a stake in Pilbara rail and port assets, to ease its high levels of debt and the company says it is in discussion with a small group of investors over a possible deal.
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