Gloomy outlook for mining in 2015

In early 2015 the global mining industry is under intense pressure as falling commodity prices force all miners into cash preservation and cost cutting measures. These have resulted in mass lay-offs, write downs and projects being stalled or cancelled. Even for resource-rich countries like Australia the days of basking in the triumphs of the mining boom are well and truly over and 2015 will see more of the ‘batten down the hatches’ mindset.

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China’s policies not to be feared

AS details of China’s Air Pollution Prevention and Control Action Plan (APPCAP) evolve, concerns have been raised that continual re-thinking of targets is creating uncertainty for energy suppliers in the Asia-Pacific. In a report assessing the impact of China’s environmental policies, Wood Mackenzie concludes that within the energy, resources and mining sectors, the policies broadly continue to encourage expansion of natural gas. However, it says coal demand will be supported and remain China’s dominant energy fuel.

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Resilience in difficult times

DURING these very difficult times for the global mining industry, the word resilient has a number of appropriate definitions. As a noun resilience is a description for all those who are surviving the tribulations despite poor prices, higher costs, lack of capital, increasing ant-mining sentiment and declining demand while as an adjective resilient defines the capability of companies to keep afloat, or in shape, despite being bent, stretched or deformed. Other words that can be used to describe the qualities of the mining industry and companies battling to stay in front, whether they be exploring, developing, mining, supplying or investing, are determination, innovation and common-sense.

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One step forward and two steps back

As the mining industry struggles to overcome the impact of low metal prices, high capital and operating costs, depressed share markets and severe lack of equity, another government is going down the path of seeking more revenue from mining by way of increased taxation. Just as the Philippines starts to show signs of finally starting to reach its much talked-about mining potential, the government is considering a ‘revenue sharing scheme’ which would equate to a 10% tax on gross revenues or 55% share of the adjusted net mining revenues.

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John Miller, Editor

John Miller, Editor, The ASIA Miner
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Editor, ASIA Miner and Australian Editor, E&MJ
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Based in Melbourne, Victoria, Australia, John Miller has been working as a mining journalist for The ASIA Miner for the past seven years, focusing on mining developments throughout Asia and Australia. He was promoted to editor, The ASIA Miner, during July 2010, is editor of Coal Age Indonesia and has responsibility for E&MJ Australian coverage. John has more than 30 years experience as a journalist. He is also an author with more than five historical books published and a biography published. He has also served his community as a city Councillor and was mayor of Orange from 2002 to 2004.