Tag Archives: mining events

PDAC 2022 Convention returns to Toronto in person and online

The international mineral exploration and mining industry is once again gearing up for the annual Prospectors & Developers Association of Canada’s (PDAC) Convention in Toronto, following its first virtual convention in 2021.

This year signifies the return of the in person event from June 13-15, as well as an online portion from June 28-29. This is the first time in the PDAC Convention’s 90 years that it will be offered as a hybrid event, and a fitting way to honour the milestone, event organisers say.

“The pandemic has had us on a rollercoaster over the past couple of years and the feedback we are consistently hearing from our stakeholders is that they want to get back to doing business in person, and for anyone connected to the mineral exploration and mining industry, that means getting together face to face for the PDAC 2022 Convention,” Alex Christopher (pictured), PDAC President, said. “While the pandemic created challenges, it also demonstrated the resilience of the sector as it navigated health and safety, accessibility and supply chain obstacles, while conversations turned to the security of precious metals and the industry’s role in the transition to a low carbon future.

“We have watched precious metals and gold prices soar to record highs, applaud conversations recognising the industry’s critical role in the clean energy transition and, throughout the pandemic, have watched companies offer support to Indigenous and remote communities where it may otherwise have not existed.”

He added: “This is just a small glimpse into the importance of the minerals industry and, as the world reopens, professionals – including analysts, executives, geologists, prospectors, investors, students and government officials – need timely and relevant programming and short courses that can be tailored to their needs, and the PDAC 2022 Convention offers exactly that.”

The PDAC Convention provides a platform for experts to connect and talk, learn and collaborate about the opportunities and challenges faced by the industry, event organisers say.

Topics such as Capital Markets, Indigenous, Student & Early Career, Sustainability and Technical will return to in-person and online programming, along with Short Courses, the seventh annual International Mines Ministers’ Summit, Events & Networking, and a newly expanded Keynote Program for experts to present on commodities, the mineral outlook, innovation and new discoveries.

More than 800 exhibitors will display their expertise and latest core samples in Core Shack, Investors Exchange, Prospectors Tent and Trade Show, they said.

It is not limited to the in-person only event though, with a line-up of programming scheduled for the online portion.

“It is important that we can offer the online portion of PDAC 2022 for a very important group of stakeholders across the world who want access to information directly from their home or office, and we are excited to be able to give them that,” Lisa McDonald, PDAC Executive Director, said. “But it is the in-person element that is being craved this year and we can’t wait to welcome the world’s mineral exploration and mining industry to PDAC 2022 after all this time, we’ve certainly missed everyone.”

For the latest information on #PDAC2022 head to www.pdac.ca/convention

International Mining is a media sponsor of the PDAC 2022 Convention

ASX mining movers showing signs of green shoots

Before the Year of the Tiger roared into life on February 1, 2022, more than A$8 billion ($5.8 billion) was changing hands daily on the ASX as cheap debt, low cash rates and soaring stock markets bolstered investor confidence.

As of December 31, 2021, a whopping 240 companies listed on the ASX via Initial Public Offerings (IPOs), with the dollar value of those deals topping more than A$329.2 billion between Q1 (March quarter) 2021 and Q3 (September quarter) 2021, which is close six times more, year-on-year, and smashes the previous annual record of A$139 billion in 2007, the organisers of IMARC say.

Record mineral exploration spends saw a seasonally adjusted increase of 4.5% to A$925.9 million in Q3 2021, which was underpinned by a 15.8% rise in iron ore spending of A$174 million and a bullish outlook on battery metals.

For companies participating in Australia’s biggest mining conference, the International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC) in 2022, seizing opportunities in the Year of Tiger is critical.

In 2022, more than 70 ASX companies will partake in IMARC including stock gainers such as Core Lithium.

Tyros burst onto the ASX

The ASX welcomed 240 companies to its ranks in 2021, which is the highest number of new companies since 2014. A staggering 60% of those stocks were linked to the mining and resources sector, and the money is flowing in, according to IMARC organisers.

In 2021, new ASX listings generated more than A$12 billion – the greatest number of listings in 14 years.

For EMR Capital Executive Chairman, Owen Hegarty OAM, 2021 was underpinned by strong commodity prices against a backdrop of cautious market sentiment and COVID-19 volatilities.

EMR Capital, which spun out copper player 29Metals (ASX: 29M) on July 2, 2021, was one of the most successful and biggest resource company floats of 2021. Additionally, 29Metals was one of the most successful listings in 2021, with a share price of A$3.09 (at the time of writing), which is up 50% from A$2.05/share.

“It was one of the biggest IPOs in Australia in about 10-15 years, but certainly not by design,” Hegarty said. “It got away very well. We raised quite a lot of money from the market and put a lot of stock out there. And we retained 45% of the company.

“We were able to use the funds in two directions, to return capital to our shareholders, and to inject good capital into 29M.

“Now, it’s in terrific shape to go forward in terms of its developments and growth trajectory. It has multiple projects in addition to lots of exploration that we wouldn’t have been able to fund through a private equity firm.”

Boom or bust for iron ore

Iron ore peaked at $233/t in May 2021, with majors like BHP and Rio Tinto shelling out record dividends. But, on December 12, 2021, the iron ore price tumbled to $103/t, as Beijing tightened its grip on monetary policy to shrink the output of its steel mills.

However, at the time of writing, iron prices recovered to $126/t, which proves that digging the key steel ingredient out of the ground is still a very profitable exercise.

Hegarty says Australia’s relationship to China as the producers and sellers of coking coal and iron ore, will clearly play a huge part in the future of the key export commodity.

“We’ve got this inflationary environment, you’ve got disruptions, and so on and so forth,” he said. “You’ve got China, which is very dependent on Australian iron ore. They’ve been disrupted by Mongolia and their local suppliers and so on.

“China will continue to increase its demand, and to reduce its dependency on Australia or any one source. So, that decreasing reliance on Australian iron ore and competitive pressure from other countries, means the current iron prices can last forever.

“Iron ore is a very solid commodity and has been a tremendous source of revenue for the country.”

The new commodities super cycle

While the jury might still be out on the short-term future of iron ore, Hegarty is optimistic about the promise of battery metals. Hegarty says despite all COVID-19’s challenges, the world has done quite well since the pandemic hit in 2020.

“When you look back two years ago, people were predicting half the world going to hell in a handbasket,” he said. “Here we go again, it’s another GFC. What’s it going to be, what’s the recovery going to be? Is it going to be the bell-shape, J shape, W shape, inverse square root shape? The price of everything went south.

“But the economy came back very strongly. The leading indicators indicated that this isn’t as bad as the GFC. You know the world has responded very quickly. The whole technological revolution has given us the ability to know what’s going on all the time everywhere.”

Part of the COVID-19 recovery stems from the optimism surrounding battery metals. Following many years in the doldrums, the tide seems to be turning in the electric vehicle market, as policies championing the use of clean energy and the production of electric vehicles is driving a surge in demand for a range of commodities.

Since January 2021, copper, nickel and rare earth metals more than doubled in price, while the lithium juggernaut shows no signs of slowing down, with the spot price at $37,000/t as of January 13.

The path to electric vehicle uptake and electrification point towards a new battery metals super cycle, which analysts predict could bring sustained growth opportunities for decades to come.

Hegarty is also bullish on battery metals and Australia’s potential to play a key role in the energy transition.

“For 2022, our outlook is that, as the world grows, there will always be more demand for those commodities, so you’re going to see that sort of multi-decade growth,” he said.

“Now, you know, on top of all that, and what you would usually describe as normal, is the whole transition towards decarbonisation and net zero.

“Whether you want to characterise it as greening the economy or responding to climate change, it will increase the demand for battery metals.

“Australia is going to dominate because its base resources are here, its people are here, and its base technologies are here.

“Fifty years ago, we were just starting some of these things, but now we have built a world-class competitive advantage.”

So, which battery metals are flying under the radar and should be front-of-mind for investors keen to catch the next wave?

Hegarty said graphite, manganese and vanadium are key commodities to watch in 2022.

“Those companies which have some form of application to electric vehicles or the energy transition, are the winners,” he said.

Golden opportunities

In December, Omicron sent another shockwave into the global economy, serving as a stark reminder that we are still at the mercy of COVID-19, despite the growth and optimism of 2021. So, it comes as no surprise that Hegarty gives gold pride of place as a safe haven asset for the savvy, diversified investor.

“Our view on gold is the same as it has been for 20 years and that is; it’s a commodity, it’s a currency, it’s a store of value, it’s a hedge against all sorts of things,” he said. “It’s got multiple demand factors on it.

“Silver will come and go because it’s also a precious metal, but cryptocurrency is also up and coming and they, too, will come and go as substitutes. But gold will always stand out really because it’s still precious, it’s still rare.”

2022: the year of opportunity

2022 is off to a precarious start domestically and globally. But, Hegarty says 2022 is shaping up to be a year of opportunity for investors and mining and resource companies.

“I think it’s just an amazing time now, accentuated by the fact that you’ve got this volatility and increased demand from net zero commitments,” he said.

“It’s a double whammy. It’s not just more commodities, it’s an impetus to make discoveries in Western Australia, Queensland, or parts of Africa and the Middle East and so on.

“We’re going to be looking for more commodities, and guess who’s got the best technical capabilities?

“We have the opportunity to put more and more resources into ensuring that we can do what we need to do to encourage people to continue joining the sector.

“Taking advantage, I suppose, is the point. Taking advantage of our competitive advantage.”

EMR Capital’s Owen Hegarty will be sharing further insights on new and emerging commodities at the upcoming International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC) on October 17 to 19, 2022.

International Mining is a media sponsor of IMARC

IMARC rescheduled to October 17-19, 2022

Beacon Events have today announced the rescheduled dates for the International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC), to be held in Melbourne, Victoria, from October 17-19, 2022.

With international borders set to reopen in Australia in the coming weeks, there is an expectation that by October 2022 there will be greater travel freedoms globally, allowing for the conference to attract a large domestic and international audience in-person once again, the organisers said.

Isuzu, Newtrax Technologies, Murray Engineering, Australasian Metals have already confirmed their support and participation for IMARC in October 2022, in addition to major sponsors Caterpillar, Toronto Stock Exchange and Sandvik.

“We expect that, with a nearly sold-out event being moved to October 2022, IMARC will near double its footprint with over 400 exhibitors,” IMARC Managing Director, Anita Richards, said.

Leading into October 2022, CEOs that were due to speak within the conference plenary in January will take part in a series of virtual interviews and keynote presentations as part of a brand new IMARC Insights series, organisers said. This, they said, would provide an opportunity for attendees to stay up to date with the latest announcements and industry changes.

International Mining is a media sponsor of IMARC

Beacon Events to reschedule IMARC on rising COVID-19 cases around Australia

Due to the significant rise of COVID-19 cases around Australia, Beacon Events, the organisers of the International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC), has announced the eighth edition will be rescheduled.

IMARC Managing Director, Anita Richards, said the health, safety and wellbeing of attendees and employees remained the organisers’ number one priority, and rescheduling the event originally planned for January 31 to February 2 is the responsible action to take in the current circumstances.

The IMARC team is currently getting in touch with the hundreds of companies confirmed to sponsor and exhibit, and thousands of attendees that were confirmed to participate to advise of this and discuss the dates for reschedule.

IMARC expects to announce new dates within the coming weeks.

IM is a media sponsor of IMARC

The smart miners putting people first

We’ve all heard about the sustained pressures mining companies are facing from stakeholders when it comes to changing the way they do business, with the use of new technology often touted as the way to transform the sector for the good of the industry and society.

Yet, as the COVID-19 pandemic has reinforced, these technologies can only work with the right suite of people to design, install, operate and maintain them.

The onset of machine learning and artificial intelligence in the mining space is expected to remove manual tasks in the exploration, development, production and maintenance processes of miners, but the real benefits come with freeing up skilled personnel to concentrate on more ‘transformative’ processes.

The same could be said for the automation of equipment and processes at mine sites, with contractors and mine owners able to use skilled workers across multiple operating stations above ground or at remote operations centres instead of being bogged down on one piece of kit on the mine site.

Keeping humans at the “centre” of this technology evolution is one of the underlying themes of the 2021 edition of the Smart Mining Conference (SMC2021), hosted by the Institute for Advanced Mining Technologies of RWTH Aachen University (AMT) and VDMA Mining, according to Aarti Sörensen, Scientific Research Assistant at AMT.

“Technology is an enabler, but you need to know what you actually want to achieve with any of these projects to be a success,” Sörensen told IM.

Aarti Sörensen, Scientific Research Assistant at AMT

A focus on this human centre transcends just the people on the mine site, or the neighbouring communities; it includes the wider society that interact, judge and rely on the outputs of mining.

Elisabeth Clausen, Professor & Director of AMT, told IM: “One aspect that is really important for the mining industry is how to deal with the public perception of the industry. All miners are lacking the talent they need to continue to grow. We have seen this come through in the numbers of university students we are educating. While every student currently looks like getting a job upon graduation, there are not enough people coming through the system with the skills required and the appetite to work in the mining sector. That is not only in disciplines like mine engineering, but also machine learning, automation, big data analytics, etc. Mining is not currently viewed as an attractive workplace when compared with the likes of Google and Amazon.”

The introduction of more ‘carbon neutral’ operations, improved safety procedures and flexible work practices will go some way to changing the perception and, to make the required leaps, collaboration will prove key.

This is a topic Sörensen and Clausen know well given the number of industry research projects the AMT is currently working on.

NEXGEN SIMS, the next generation of the EU-backed SIMS project, is a great example here.

Involving Epiroc, Ericsson, Boliden, Agnico Eagle Finland, KGHM Polska, K+S, OZ Minerals, Mobilaris MCE, AFRY, KGHM Cuprum, LTU Business, Luleå University of Technology and AMT, NEXGEN SIMS (the Next-Generation Carbon-Neutral Pilots for Smart Intelligent Mining Systems) aims to develop autonomous, carbon-neutral mining processes.

While more innovation networks are gaining traction across the globe – in Canada, the Canada Mining Innovation Council or the Centre for Excellence in Mining Innovation, and Expande, in Chile, provide examples here – Clausen said there is still some reluctance in the mining community to commit to large-scale collaboration and collaborative innovation.

“Companies see the need but have some hesitation where it involves large-scale collaboration,” she said. The dilemmas of data sharing, IP rights and the need to provide individual companies with a list of competitive advantage benefits remain.

Elisabeth Clausen, Professor & Director of AMT

“It all hinges on openness and trust,” Clausen said. “Openness can only be generated by trust.”

Sörensen said the ‘sweetspot’ for miner collaboration often comes from the mid-tier sector – those companies big enough and agile enough to commit funds and resources to projects, but not so big that they can develop their own technology in-house.

“They often open up their mine sites for demonstrations and are more open to collaboration,” she said.

“The collaboration dynamic between suppliers and miners is also changing, with miners now driving the technology development and putting their requirements to suppliers, instead of the other way round. Some miners have also built key relationships with research institutions and start-ups to come up with solutions to their problems, building collaboration or innovation ecosystems around their companies.”

Collaborations such as NEXGEN SIMS are seeing all parts of the mining ecosystem converge to help decarbonise the sector, as well as change the perception of how mines are operated. The use of 5G communication networks, battery-electric and automated machinery could see operators track equipment from a city centre in real time, without the need to even step on site.

What is clear is that more collaborations like this will be needed to decarbonise the industry, make it more appealing to younger people considering their career options, and change the ‘dirty’ and ‘dangerous’ connotations that are often associated with the word ‘mining’.

This represents a challenge as well as an opportunity, but, like all technology developments/transformations, it requires the ‘buy-in’ of people to be a success.

Clausen concluded: “We are convinced that the benefits of all the technologies and innovations can only be fully leveraged if we have the right people in place. Putting people at the centre of all activities is of utmost importance to change and challenge the perception of mining.”

SMC2021 will bring business leaders, policy makers and researchers together to discuss what ‘smart mining’ means against such a backdrop.

IMARC welcomes IWIMRA as First Nations partner

In what it says is an Australian first, the International Mining and Resources Conference (IMARC) has welcomed the Indigenous Women in Mining and Resources Australia (IWIMRA) as its First Nations Partner.

The partnership will foster stronger connections between First Nations communities and the minerals and resources sector, as well as continue to raise the profile of First Nations people working in the industry globally, IMARC says.

IMARC, which is due to take place in Melbourne, both in-person and online from October 25-27, is partnering with IWIMRA to promote the importance of inclusiveness of First Nation women and men in the industry and the IMARC program, it said.

IWIMRA was founded in 2017 to create a stronger connection amongst Indigenous women in Australia’s mining and resource sector. Through lived experiences, and the narrative of Indigenous intersectionality, it is its priority to ensure the visibility, voice, and quality participation across the spectrum of the mining and minerals sector, the IWIMRA says.

IMARC takes place on the lands of the Wurundjeri Woi Wurrung people of the Kulin nations. IMARC says it wishes to acknowledge them as the traditional owners of the lands and waterways and pay their respects to their elders, past and present, and emerging.

As the first resources event in Australia to have a First Nations Partner, IMARC Managing Director, Anita Richards, said that IMARC is committed to improving Indigenous presence at the event and across broader industry.

“This partnership enhances our commitment to promoting equality, diversity and inclusion across all areas of the mining and resources industry as part of our Balance for Better Program where diversity and inclusion are a key focus of the conference and associated events,” Richards said.

She said that IMARC will also highlight the impact and achievements of women in mining while reflecting the strides being made industry-wide to be more gender balanced and showcase the industry-wide benefits of diversity and inclusion.

In practical terms, the partnership between IMARC and IWIMRA will see additional Indigenous speakers and dedicated sessions across the conference program, additional Indigenous women delegates in attendance at the event as well as including an “exciting welcome” to country at the start of the conference, IMARC said.

“This is just the first of what we see as many opportunities to partner with IWIMRA as our values and objectives are very much aligned,” Richards said.

IWIMRA Co-Founder and CEO, Florence Drummond (pictured), said that the partnership with IMARC is a great fit, as IWIMRA aspires to lead with clarity and purpose and to work with industry to build solutions-driven, cross-culture influential relationships that will continue to contribute towards our sustainable future.

“We are so excited to be formalising this partnership with IMARC and it’s only now that we are starting to recognise how truly impactful it will be,” Drummond said. “There are the obvious benefits of participating at IMARC, such as IWIMRA having a physical presence with an exhibition booth, hosting panel sessions and speaking as part of the conference, however there is so much more to be gained beyond the transaction.

“This partnership, which has been progressing over the past three years, is truly transformational for IWIMRA. It means that we have action and commitment from a major global resources conference and that we have recognition, reconciliation and a real seat at the table.”

IWIMRA will be bringing 30 women from mining operations across Australia to IMARC to provide them with the kind of global mining exposure that will enable them to return to their own sites and continue to influence meaningful changes.

“From our history of compounded disadvantage and continued systemic challenges, it is understandable that many of our people are fatigued and frustrated at yet another mechanism for change,” Drummond said. “However, we have worked hard to agree on what shared value is in this context and to deliver this significant opportunity for all stakeholders. Based on trust, we plan for our 30 delegates to be a part of the conversation and to ask the hard questions so that they can be the spark or the catalyst for change back in their home communities. It is our priority to ensure this is a safe space for this.”

Drummond will further discuss this First Nations Partnership on Day 2 of IMARC, as part of the plenary conference program, before later interviewing the Development Partner Institute’s Executive Director, Wendy Tyrrell, about Indigenous engagement and how the industry can better attune with indigenous participation across the supply chain.

The day will conclude with an all IWIMRA line up within the METS Arena for a panel discussion on ‘The intersectionality of Indigenous women in the mining and resources sector, further explore our perspective of where we fit in a decarbonising industry’ before the AusIMM Diversity & Inclusion Networking Reception, where all 30 women will be in attendance to meet with attendees at the event.

International Mining is a media partner of IMARC

Jeffrey Dawes looks forward to a sustainability-focused MINExpo 2021

As the world’s largest mining event, MINExpo INTERNATIONAL is used as an industry barometer for the health of the sector. While this year’s event will be a little different given the impacts of COVID-19, the anticipation continues to build for an in-person gathering that will highlight the biggest and best mining has to offer.

Ahead of this year’s event, sponsored by the National Mining Association (NMA) and due to take place on September 13-15, in Las Vegas, IM put some questions to Jeffrey Dawes, MINExpo INTERNATIONAL 2021 Chair. Dawes is also VP of Komatsu’s Global Mining Business Division and President and CEO of Milwaukee-based Komatsu Mining Corp.

IM: How will this MINExpo be different to previous editions? How are companies planning to ‘open up’ their exhibits and presentations to the widest audience possible considering COVID may restrict some of the in-person international attendance seen in previous years?

JD: MINExpo offers the mining industry the unique opportunity to experience, in person, the newest mining equipment and talk directly with the technical experts behind the most innovative technology and solutions. NMA has done a great job adapting plans this year as COVID restrictions have evolved, so they were prepared for a very different experience if need be, but fortunately it looks like we will be able to have a fairly normal show experience, albeit from a North American perspective – we will be missing some of our international friends who cannot join this year’s event. Part of what has always made our industry great is a strong sense of community, so it will be great to be able to get together in person after such a long time.

To accommodate our friends and colleagues who won’t be able to make the show in person, exhibitors this year have plans to utilise the latest in virtual technology to showcase what will be at the show. Exhibitors will also be able to upload product information, videos and other materials to the online directory, which will be available and open to anyone for a year after the show. Finally, the Opening Session will be live streamed.

Jeffrey Dawes, MINExpo International 2021 Chair

IM: What will be the big innovation themes at the event and what do these themes say about the future direction of the mining industry? 

JD: Digitalisation, electrification and automation will be the big innovation themes this year. Full enterprise optimisation can only be achieved by connecting tasks, processes, systems and people across the value chain. Solutions that leverage digitalisation, electrification and automation are the key to that full enterprise optimisation. They also play a crucial role in creating sustainable systems that support society’s growing needs in the most environmentally responsible ways.

IM: In a general sense, what positive impacts do you think COVID has had on the mining sector’s innovation/technology uptake? Has it accelerated the rate of innovation through necessity (remote working, increased HS&E considerations, shift to cloud-based network infrastructure, etc)? Is this likely to shine through at MINExpo in terms of what companies are showcasing and talking about?

JD: COVID really gave the mining industry a chance to reflect on its goals and take a deeper look at the tools now available to help it reach those goals. I think it also helped us gain a better understanding of the importance of aligning our business objectives – to extract the minerals needed by society – with society’s need for us to do that in the most sustainable, efficient and least intrusive ways possible. I’m certain that the products and solutions presented by the exhibitors at MINExpo this year will centre on the innovations and technology available now and in the near-term future that will help mines meet both their own and society’s needs.

IM: How do you see Komatsu’s contribution shaping/influencing the event? Are your solutions likely to be the ‘talk of the show’?

JD: We think so, yes. This year at MINExpo, Komatsu will focus on the power of smart technology and connected systems, the freedom of interoperability on an open platform, and the equipment and solutions that will help our industry move forward toward a more sustainable future. I’m particularly looking forward to sharing our newest haulage concepts, which are designed to help meet our customers’ needs for autonomy and the drive toward zero emissions. We’re also excited to give attendees their first in-person look at our newest surface blasthole drill, with 122,000 lb (55,338 kg) of pull-down force, the ZR122. Also, our newly branded WE1850 Gen3 wheel loader with switched-reluctance hybrid drive technology, with a bucket capacity of 60 tons (54 t), and our latest offerings for underground hard-rock and soft-rock operations.

Ultimately, at Komatsu we believe in providing our customers with the technology, solutions and flexible support they need for the lifecycle of their equipment and mining operations. Our customers need a reliable partner they can trust with whom to invest for the future of mining. We aim to be that partner.

IM: Aside from being a topic of discussion on the stands and in the conference rooms, how will sustainability be on show at MINExpo? Will this be the most ‘sustainable’ MINExpo yet in terms of organisation, emissions, etc?

JD: Mining has always been an essential part of keeping modern society moving forward. As we say, if it’s not grown, it’s mined. As an industry we have to focus on how to evolve to continue to meet those needs sustainably. The mining industry is already finding new ways to extract the minerals needed to meet the requirements of the world’s more energy conscious and environmentally friendly future. I am sure that many of the exhibits at this year’s show will showcase those new sustainability-focused solutions.

IM: Are you able to provide any preliminary expectations of attendee numbers?

JD: Varying country restrictions – and the US’ own restrictions – are obviously making this a year unlike any other, placing unusual limitations on attendance. However, we were pleased to have nearly 90% of our 2020 planned exhibitors re-book for this year and new exhibitors are booking space every day. We’re looking forward to welcoming representatives from 32 countries as both exhibitors and attendees. We hope to see even more attendees register as vaccination rates continue to rise, case numbers fall and an increasing number of countries lift travel restrictions as evidenced by recent changes in Canada.

International Mining is a media sponsor of MINExpo INTERNATIONAL 2021

From compliance to commitment: a key opportunity for the global mining industry

In the lead up to the AusIMM Underground Operators Conference in March, Roy Slack, immediate past President of the Canadian Institute of Mining, Metallurgy and Petroleum (CIM) and Underground Operators keynote speaker, has shared his insights on the future of underground mining and the positive impact technology can have on safety.

With 35 years of global experience in mine construction, design and development, Slack is passionate about securing the mining industry’s place as a global leader for change.

“Our industry is on a journey from compliance to commitment,” he said. “From a state where we strive to just meet regulatory requirements, to a place where we meet and far surpass those requirements – not because we are legally required to do so, but because it is a moral imperative.”

Slack discusses how young professionals have an exciting opportunity to build the future of underground mining.

“Today’s youth are entering the industry, or have the opportunity to enter our industry, at a time of great change,” he said. “Change in technology, change in how we deal with people, change in the overall business model that is mining.”

As the mining industry rapidly transforms with new technologies and exciting innovations, Slack believes the whole sector needs to get on board with a fresh way of thinking.

“We need people that thrive on change, that embrace and know what to do with it.”

After such a challenging year, Slack is confident in the resiliency of the mining industry.

“What we continue to see during this pandemic is our industry recognised as an essential service, and mining companies taking the lead when it comes to establishing protocols to protect their people from the virus,” he said.

The industry’s reaction to COVID-19 displayed its agility in adjusting to circumstances, Slack says.

“Productivity did not suffer, and employees were able to better deal with work and home needs.”

Slack has been active in numerous safety initiatives over the years, as well as being appointed to the Province of Ontario’s first Prevention Council, advising the government on workplace safety. He also chairs the CIM Safety Committee.

He says new technologies will create a real sense of support and safety in the workplace for all professionals.

“I am excited about the huge potential of emerging technologies to make our workplaces not just safer, but safe,” he said. “Technology has always been an important part of safety, but the more recent applications of the technology available to us add a whole new perspective on our journey to zero injuries.”

Slack looks forward to the positive and safer benefits technology can create for on-site workers, with the pandemic in some cases speeding up the implementation of automation, remote operations and more.

Ultimately, Slack sees best practice in safety as a three-part equation: “Process, culture and technology; together protecting our people and ultimately achieving a safe workplace,” he said.

AusIMM’s Underground Operators Conference will be held from March 15-17, 2021, via a hybrid format, which offers an opportunity for delegates to attend face-to-face in Perth, Australia or online.

Find out more at https://www.ausimm.com/conferences-and-events/underground-operators

International Mining is a media sponsor of the event

EXPOSIBRAM expo and congress moves online

One of the most relevant and well-attended business-promoting events for the Latin America mineral sector will be going 100% online this year.

EXPOSIBRAM – Expo & Congresso Brasileiro de Mineração 2020 will be held from November 24-26, with free registration available for the virtual event.

In addition to its renowned Brazilian Mining Congress, another attraction of the event will be the online business meeting function, which will enable large mining companies and suppliers from various sectors to connnect.

EXPOSIBRAM will also hold space for technical lectures and short courses, all guided by the Brazilian Mining Institute (IBRAM).

Mining companies already confirmed to attend the event include sponsors Vale, Mosaic Fertilizantes, Anglo American, Kinross Paracatu, CMOC Brasil, Horizonte Minerals, Mineração Usiminas and Serabi Gold.

To find out more information on the event and register, click here.

International Mining is a media sponsor of EXPOSIBRAM 2020

Austmine welcomes BHP as key sponsor for 2021 innovation event

BHP is backing Austmine’s next mining innovation conference, to be held in Perth, Western Australia, from May 25-27, 2021.

Austmine CEO, Christine Gibbs Stewart (pictured at the 2019 event), said the conference theme, ‘Harnessing Intelligence’, will explore the importance of optimising the interaction between people, processes and technology, further positioning Australia as the global hub for mining innovation.

“Given its importance to the Australian economy and continuing global demand, the mining industry has been able to weather the global pandemic relatively well,” Gibbs Stewart said. “While the pathway forward might be uncertain, the need for innovation and technology in areas such as automation, remote monitoring and advanced communications, has been accelerated.”

She continued: “The Australian mining equipment, technology and services (METS) sector has always been a leader in the creation and adoption of new technologies. We have a unique opportunity to continue to lead in this area, particularly as other mining nations look to us for guidance in the new COVID world.”

Austmine 2021 is set to bring together executive-level leaders and thinkers to showcase how they are using innovation to lead change in a more competitive, sustainable and efficient way, into the future.

The 2021 conference might be one of the first major opportunities for the industry to come together, since COVID-19 restrictions were put in place, Gibbs Stewart said.

“As a community, we will be hungry to collaborate to build a resilient, future-focused industry,” she said. “There are many brilliant, innovative minds in mining and METS and, when we work together, we can only move our industry forward.”

Gibbs Stewart said she was thrilled to welcome BHP as Austmine’s principal sponsor, which is part of the two companies’ strategic partnership to advance the interests of the METS sector and fast-track technology adoption in mining.

“Through this partnership, Austmine 2021 will deliver an exciting and cutting-edge event, with a high calibre conference program and valuable networking opportunities for delegates and exhibitors alike,” Gibbs Stewart said.

Held every two years, the Austmine Conference is one of the leading, global mining innovation events. It features more than 50 mining innovation and technology experts across a two-day conference program and interactive pre-conference workshops. The event is underpinned by a series of educational and networking opportunities, including a trade exhibition featuring live demonstrations, the collaborative Ideas Exchange, Meet the Miners and the social highlight, the Austmine Industry Leaders’ Dinner and Awards.

To find out more about the event go to: www.austmineconference.com.au

International Mining is a media sponsor of Austmine 2021