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BEIJING, Aug 23 (Reuters) - Chinese coal imports from neighbouring Mongolia jumped over 30 percent in July from the year before to 2.26 million tonnes, customs data showed on Wednesday.
Cargoes from key supplier Australia rose 4.4 percent to 7.47 million tonnes, according to the data from the General Administration of Customs.
Meanwhile, shipments from Indonesia dropped by nearly 9 percent to 3.03 million tonnes. Imports from Russia fell 1.7 percent to 1.64 million tonnes, the data showed.
(Reporting by Meng Meng and Beijing Monitoring Desk; Editing by Joseph Radford)
When you visit a mining company’s website and click on “projects,” you’ll usually see at least one operating mine and several exploration and discovery projects featured.
Under the “projects” menu for Turquoise Hill Resources (TSX, NYSE, Nasdaq:TRQ), there is a single asset – Oyu Tolgoi.
But what an asset.
In terms of sheer scale and ore quality, the Oyu Tolgoi (which means “turquoise hill” in Mongolian) is expected to be the world’s third-largest copper mine when it reaches peak production, and has an expected mine life of close to a century. Which explains why Turquoise Hill has no other exploration projects in its pipeline.
“If I have the best undeveloped copper project in the world, I don’t necessarily want to go and develop a project – like we’ve been offered in Peru – that’s one-fourth the grade,” said Turquoise Hill CEO Jeffery Tygesen. “Oyu Tolgoi is a Tier 1 asset, and they come by about every 20 to 25 years.”
The massive Oyu Tolgoi copper-gold mine is situated in Mongolia; the man responsible for making it a reality, Robert Friedland, is an American who lives in Singapore; and the majority shareholder of Turquoise Hill, Rio Tinto PLC (NYSE:RTP), is a multinational mining company headquartered in the U.K. But the Oyu Tolgoi is very much a Vancouver mining success story.
The company is still headquartered in Vancouver even though Rio Tinto owns 50% of the company. That’s largely a legacy of Turquoise Hill having been spun out of Friedland’s Ivanhoe Mines (TSX:IVN), which was and still is based here.
Turquoise Hill’s growth since 2012 has earned it fifth place in Business in Vancouver’s list of the 100 fastest-growing companies in B.C. With a market cap of $8 billion, Turquoise Hill is B.C.’s fifth-largest mining company.
The company’s revenue grew 1,943% in four years, from $78 million in 2012 to $1.6 billion in 2016, and its head count has swelled, contracted and swelled again, with the construction phases of an open-pit mine followed by the construction, now underway, of an underground mine.
At the end of 2012, the company employed 4,069 people, a number that dropped to 2,530 in 2016 and hit 6,200 by the end of June 2017.
Almost all of those workers are in Mongolia. The company’s Vancouver head-office staff numbers only about half a dozen.
The mine’s estimated copper reserves are 3.4 billion tonnes – and it’s not just high-grade copper coming out of the ground. Rick Rule, president of Sprott U.S. Holdings Inc., has called the Oyu Tolgoi “a very large gold producer in drag” because it is primarily a copper mine that also has a lot of gold.
In 2016, copper production was 201,000 tonnes, and gold production was 300,000 ounces. The anticipated peak production is 622,000 tonnes of copper and 650,000 ounces of gold. To put that in perspective, the largest open-pit copper mine in Canada – the Highland Valley mine near Princeton, B.C. – produced 152,000 tonnes of copper and molybdenum in 2015.
Oyu Tolgoi not only has high grades of copper and gold, but is also just 80 kilometres from the border with China, which accounts for 50% of global copper consumption.
The property was discovered in the early 1990s, when Mongolia had just shaken off communism and moved to a market economy. Friedland acquired it in 2001, and Rio Tinto became a major partner.
In 2012, Rio Tinto raised its stake to 50%, and Turquoise Hill was hived off from Ivanhoe with the express purpose of building and operating the Oyu Tolgoi mine. Friedland is no longer involved in the company but remains one of the top 10 shareholders.
Rio Tinto has no direct ownership in Oyu Tolgoi. It owns 50.8% of Turquoise Hill. Turquoise Hill owns 66% of the Oyu Tolgoi mine, and the Mongolian government owns 34%.
The company spent $6.2 billion on the first phase of the project, building the open-pit mine, concentrator and associated infrastructure.
“Backing up to construction, when we started, there was nothing in the south Gobi,” Tygesen said. “We had to build the infrastructure. There was no paved road to the border.”
The open-pit mine went into production in 2013. Last year, work began on the mine’s $5.3 billion second phase. The new underground mine is slated for commissioning in 2020 and full production in early 2027.
“When we get to 2025, Oyu Tolgoi will be the third-largest copper mine in the world,” Tygesen said....
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ P.Sergelen, Minister of Food, Agriculture and Light Industry, met Tuesday a delegation headed by His Highness Abdullah Bin Abdulrahman Bin Abdulaziz Al Saud, Prince of Saudi Arabia.
The Minister thanked the Saudi Arabia Prince for visiting Mongolia, and then briefed about the present situation of the agricultural sector in Mongolia and further development.
Mr Sergelen said the government of Mongolia is implementing some programs in the fields of food, agriculture and light industry such as the First Campaign for Meat and Milk, “Industrialization 21:100” and the Third Campaign for Reclaiming Virgin Lands under a slogan “Healthy foods-Healthy Mongolian”. Maximizing the meat export is one of the goals within the First Campaign for Meat and Milk.
The Minister pointed out that Mongolia and Saudi Arabia are possible to cooperate in the agricultural sphere.
“Mongolia has vast reserve of meat and is capable to export meat and livestock. It has been estimated that the country is able to 150.4 thousand tons of meat a year. As of the previous year, the number of livestock reached 61.5 million heads,” Mr Sergelen said. He then put forward a proposal to the Saudi Arabia side to build a joint meat processing factory.
Emphasizing that Saudi Arabia has big consumption of meat, His Highness proposed to set up a working group on establishing the joint factory.
At the end of the meeting, His Highness invited the Minister to pay an official visit to Saudi Arabia.
On August 21, MP and Minister of Foreign Affairs Ts.Munkh-Orgil met with Minister of Natural Resources and Ecology of the Russian Federation, Mr.D.Donskoy in Moscow, exchanging views on bilateral cooperation policy and current issues. They are also heads of Mongolian and Russian parts of the Mongolian-Russian Intergovernmental Commission on Trade, Economic, Scientific and Technical Cooperation.
The parties expressed their appreciation that in the first half of this year, the bilateral trade turnover increased by 32 percent, reaching to USD561 million and underlined that there is great potential to increase trade in chemical, metallurgy, machinery, equipment, and textiles.
During the meeting, the parties agreed to organize the 21st regular meeting of the intergovernmental commission in the second half of October 2017, holding meetings of sub-commissions including agriculture, environment, transportation and regional sub-commissions and working groups in nearest future. The parties talked about collaboration in organizing Mongolian Prime Minister's visit in the fourth quarter of this year.
The preparation works regarding a working visit of the President of Mongolia to the Russian Federation on September 6-7, 2017 and participation in the Eastern Economic Forum were also discussed during the meeting, expressing their views on the agenda of the visit and the documents to be established.
Delegations of the President’s visit will include Minister of Road and Transportation Development D.Ganbat, Minister of Food, Agriculture and Light Industry P. Sergelen. Therefore cooperation issues of those sectors were also touched during the Foreign Minister Ts.Munkh-Orgil’s meeting. For example, they talked about preparations for the supply of vaccines against infectious diseases from RF within the second phase of the "Mongolian Livestock Program" and buying wheat and hay. The sides also finalized the draft of an intergovernmental agreement between Mongolia and RF on “Conditions of Rail freight transportation”, agreeing to seek possibilities to sign the agreement during the Presidential visit.
The sides expressed their satisfaction with the current level of tripartite cooperation and confirmed their interest to set up an Investment projection center in Ulaanbaatar in order to activate the cooperation, within the framework of the program on the establishment of Economic Corridor between Mongolia, Russia, and China.
FESCO Transportation Group (“FESCO”,”Group”) announces launching of FESCO Silk Way Shuttle ‒ scheduled container train at the route China-Europe-China. It is the first FESCO’s inland transit service at this direction.
The first train departed from Chinese city of Zhengzhou to German Hamburg on August 5, it is scheduled to arrive to the destination on August 20. 42 containers with consumer goods, spare parts, equipment and food products were shipped from China to Europe. The train crosses China, Mongolia, Russia, Belorussia, Poland and Germany. The border between Mongolia and Russia will be crossed at Naushki border guard point.
FESCO Silk Way Shuttle will operate on a weekly basis in both directions. First shipment from Germany is scheduled for August 18. The service is oriented first of all on the cargo sensitive to the speed of delivery. Transit time between China and Europe is 13-15 days, which is three-fold shorter than the shipment by deep sea via Suez Canal.
The start of the new service expands geography of FESCO operations, and also the range of services that the Group offers to clients. This is the first FESCO scheduled onshore transit route from China to Europe; it complements the line of intermodal services operated at the Far East. In the long term the Group plans to ramp up volume of transportation of FESCO Silk Way Shuttle, by increasing frequency of shipments up to two trains per week in each direction, and also by organizing new railway services via Naushki railway station.
As recently as 1999, investors seeking a 6 percent yield on a government bond could have bought 10-year U.S. Treasuries. These days they can’t even get that from Mongolia.
Central-bank bond buying has compressed yields in developed markets to unprecedented levels, pushing investors further down the risk spectrum in a hunt for higher returns. Yields on Mongolian dollar bonds maturing in 2021 fell below 6 percent for the first time on record late last month after dropping 3.5 percentage points this year.
Yields on 2019-maturity Ukrainian debt and seven-year Belarussian bonds issued in June have also moved below 6 percent in the past two months. All three former Communist nations have a Bloomberg Composite rating of CCC+, or seven levels below investment grade. In a Bloomberg index of emerging-market sovereign dollar debt, only El Salvador, Barbados and Venezuela are rated lower.
Ulaanbaatar /MONTSAME/ J.Erdenebat, Prime Minister, received Tuesday visiting Mr I.V.Morgulov, Vice Minister of Foreign Affairs of the Russian Federation.
Starting the meeting, the Premier said Mongolia is negotiating with Russia to buy hay and fodder because the country is at risks of losing its harvest this year due to bad weather conditions in most territories. He said Mongolia is talking with Russia about exporting processed meat and breeding livestock.
“These issues as well as some agreements of the St. Petersburg International Economic Forum are expected to be finalized during the Eastern Economic Forum which is in due on September 6-7 in Vladivostok, Russia. Preparation works have been completed at our governmental level. We thank the Russian Foreign Ministry for supporting this matter,” Mr Erdenebat said.
Regional and boundary cooperation is one of the important parts of the Mongolia-Russia relations. The inter-region trade accounts for 70% of the total trade turnover between the countries, so the governmental support from both countries is vital for organizing boundary exhibitions, the Premier said.
Noting that the trade turnover has been increasing in first half of this year although it saw a decline in last two years, the Premier said. He then asked Mr Morgulov to focus attention to a chance of setting up a working group to establish an economic partnership agreement between the countries.
The Russian Vice FM said his country is working to prepare a visit of the Mongolian Prime Minister to be paid in this year.
Ford has said it is in discussions with a Chinese company to create a new line of electric vehicles for the world's biggest market.
Ford said it was exploring a joint venture with electric car maker Anhui Zotye Automobile Co.
The firm is a major manufacturer of small, zero-emissions electric cars.
The move comes as carmakers in China face new rules designed to boost electric car sales, part of the government's effort to fight pollution.
China already has more electric cars on the road than any other country and Ford said it expects sales of all-electric cars in China to reach four million by 2025.
Officials are also working on new rules that would require 8% of car sales to be electric next year and 12% by 2020.
"Electric vehicles will be a big part of the future in China and Ford wants to lead in delivering great solutions to customers," said Peter Fleet, vice president and president for Ford Asia Pacific.
A Ford spokesman said the company hoped to reach an agreement with Zotye by the end of the year. The US company said it would share more information about the joint venture and the car as the deal moves forward.
Zotye, based in Huangshan, Anhui province, specialises in small cars and sold more than 16,000 all-electric vehicles up to the end of July this year, up 56% year-on-year, according to Ford.
"This presents us with an exciting opportunity to leverage each other's strengths in achieving a win-win situation for both parties' growth in the fast-evolving Chinese electric vehicle market," said Jin Zheyong, chairman and president of Anhui Zotye.
Ford said in 2015 it planned to invest $4.5bn on electrification efforts, introducing 13 hybrid and electric vehicles by 2020.
The company also said 70% of all Ford vehicles sold in China would have electrified options by 2025.
The firm, which already has two joint ventures in place in China, has sold more than 600,000 vehicles in China in the first seven months of this year, down 7% from the same period in 2016. Ford has attributed the decline in part to changing government incentives.
NEW YORK (Reuters) - A flurry of departures across the U.S. and Canadian units of Chinese state energy firm PetroChina Co Ltd (601857.SS) have sparked speculation that the oil trader is reducing its presence in North America, even though the company says it is committed to the region.
More than 30 people in its Houston and Calgary offices have left PetroChina since 2016, including heads of desks in crude, financial, natural gas and chemical trading, the company confirmed to Reuters. Sources say that PetroChina had approximately 150 to 200 people at its peak two to three years ago, and now has between 100 and 150.
Nearly a dozen sources in New York, Calgary, Houston and Singapore, including current and former employees, told Reuters the departures suggest a shift in mindset among firm management, and there are concerns about a broad pullback from its presence in North America.
The sources interviewed, which also includes several who do business with the firm, said North American offices may have expanded too quickly.
PetroChina spokesman Mark Jensen said the company is committed to business throughout the Americas. He previously said the company and its subsidiaries have restructured the organization where necessary over the last several months, and that the departures do not represent a change in strategy in the region.
In the last several years, PetroChina built itself into one of the largest oil traders in North America, hiring top talent with the goal to compete with trading giants Vitol SA [VITOLV.UL], Trafigura and Mercuria Energy Group, industry participants said.
The departures have been notable ones, including John Mee, director of financial crude trading; Jie Wang, president in Calgary; and Eric Dixon, domestic head of physical crude onshore, among others.
The company has also lost a number of key staff in other departments, including in legal and accounting. One source said that the company is not currently looking to replace the majority of those positions.
Sources interviewed said management's mindset over the last year has shifted toward tightening credit limits and shifting away from sources of activity common among oil traders operating in North America.
For instance, PetroChina appears to be shifting away from trading volumes on pipelines - which accounts for the lion's share of crude trading in the United States - and favoring more vessel-based cargo trading, two sources familiar with PetroChina said.
In Houston, there are no longer any proprietary traders, according to two of the sources Reuters interviewed. The company did not respond to a specific request for comment regarding the shift to waterborne trading or proprietary trading.
The departures come after major losses in commodities markets in the first half of 2017, as hedge funds and banks saw some of their worst results in years due to a lack of overall volatility and an unexpected sell-off in crude.
The firm has gotten rid of individual bonuses and is now using a team bonus plan across Canada, the United States and China, according to two of the sources spoken to by Reuters. The company did not respond to a request for comment on this.
PetroChina is not set for a full retreat from the region, sources say. The company has certain commitments in the region, including a long-term contract on Royal Dutch Shell Plc's (RDSa.L) Zydeco pipeline through 2019. In addition, PetroChina's parent, China National Petroleum Corp [CNPET.UL], will need to keep its options open to import U.S. crude oil, sources said....
Honda Aircraft Company says its HondaJet has been ranked for the first time as the most-delivered jet in its category in the first half of this year.
The subsidiary of American Honda Motor says that it had delivered 24 aircraft to customers in the United States, Canada, Mexico and Europe between January and June.
Deliveries of the 7-seater HondaJet started in 2015. The US-based company says it has a global market share of 40 percent for jets with 10 or fewer seats.
The maker says customers are pleased with the performance, comfort and superior fit and finish of the jet.
It plans to increase annual production to around 80 from the current 50 planes.