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Week Thirteen (03/04/20-09/04/20)
- Caterpillar institutes a freeze on executive base pay increases in 2020 to stave off the worst effects of COVID-19.
- New Gold announces systematic ramp-up of operations at its Rainy River operation in Ontario following completion of a voluntary 14-day suspension to adhere to COVID-19 restrictions.
- Goldsource Mines temporarily suspends drilling and exploration activities at Eagle Mountain for a period of 30 days following COVID-19 policies and guidelines by both Canadian and Guyanese authorities.
- First Quantum decides to place its Cobre Panama operation onto care and maintenance due to COVID-19 concerns.
- Nevada Copper stops copper production at Pumpkin Hollow operation in Nevada, amid government measures and other impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Hecla Mining announces an extension of suspended operations at Casa Berardi until 4 May, to comply with the Government of Quebec's stay-at-home order.
- Coeur Mining announces temporary suspension of operations at its Palmarejo gold-silver complex in Mexico to comply with a government-mandated decree in response to COVID-19, expected to last until 30 April.
- Franco-Nevada Corporation suspends its 2020 guidance; says production at 11 of its 56 producing royalty assets either curtailed or suspended in response to COVID-19.
- Vale extends the care and maintenance period at its Voisey's Bay mine in Canada for up to three months as it monitors the progress of the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Atico Mining reports a substantial increase in first quarter production at its El Roble copper-gold mine in Colombia, despite a reduced workforce and strict protocols in response to COVID-19.
- GoGold temporarily suspends non-essential services at the Parral operation in Mexico following government restrictions in relation to COVID-19 until 30 April.
- Newmont announces ramp-down of operations at the Peñasquito mine in Mexico following the government's implementation of COVID-19 restrictions until 30 April.
- Capstone Mining scales back mining and processing activities at its Cozamin operation in Zacatecas, Mexico, to comply with a government-mandated suspension until 30 April of all non-essential activities as result of COVID-19.
- Yamana Gold announces remobilisation of local workers at Cerro Moro after the Argentine government declared mining an essential service.
- Centamin, operator of the Sukari Gold Mine, announces that it has committed E£10 million (US$635,000), to support Egypt's response efforts to combat COVID-19.
- Anglo American says it's committed to paying the salaries of all 47,000 employees in South Africa during the country's current 21-day lockdown to address the COVID-19 pandemic.
- Kazatomprom expects Kazakhstan's 2020 annual uranium production volume to decrease by up to 4,000 tU from previous expectations (previously 22,750 tU to 22,800 tU on a 100% basis) as a result of COVID-19 restrictions.
- Sandvik withdraws dividend proposal in view of increased economic uncertainty and as a precautionary measure driven by COVID-19.
- Barrick Gold donates US$530,000 to Zambia's government in the fight against COVID-19; announces a US$1.5 million support program to help combat and contain the pandemic in the DRC; contributes US$1.7 million in critical equipment and expertise to help prevent the spread of the virus in Tanzania.
- Perseus Mining says it will donate a total of US$387,500 to assist governments and communities in Ghana and Côte d'Ivoire in their efforts to fight the spread of COVID-19 in West Africa.
- Mali Lithium announces a 20% reduction in board fees, in addition to staff redundancies and a reduction of hours for the remaining senior management amid COVID-19 volatility.
- Resolute Mining advises it has committed more than US$1 million to support African host governments in their response efforts to combat COVID-19.
- Tharisa announces approval by the South African government to recommence mining activities at a reduced rate ahead of lifting the wider lockdown measures.
- Cora Gold suspends current drill programme at the Madina Foulbé Permit in eastern Senegal amid COVID-19 concerns.
- Stanmore Coal's board recommends shareholders take no action regarding a US$256 million cash bid for its shares from Golden Investments; questions remain over whether federal treasurer will stop the takeover under recent foreign investment review guidelines imposed during COVID-19 crisis.
- Ardea Resources' board agree to a 20% director's fee reduction, with full-time staff agreeing to a 20% reduction in working hours and consequent drop in remuneration from 1 April, to help minimise expenditure amid COVID-19 volatility.
- White Rock Minerals' board and management team agree to a uniform 30% reduction in fees during COVID-19 pandemic.
- Newcrest Mining stumps up A$20 million to work on a vaccine for COVID-19 and to boost Papua New Guinea's preparations for and management of the pandemic.
- Alta Zinc directors agree to have cash compensation reduced by 50 per cent for a period of up to six months, with effect from 1 April.
Commodities & market outlook
- Jefferies says voluntary production cuts will be needed to balance the markets in light of price weaknesses during COVID-19 turbulence.
- Roskill downgrades lithium demand amidst COVID-19 pandemic; highlights slow EV sales and weaker global economic performance.
- RBC reports rampant demand destruction courtesy of COVID-19 will far outweigh any supply constraints and could affect metals' pricing for years to come.
Industry bodies, government departments & regulators
- Western Australia hardens its border; stops those from the states and territories to its east entering from April 5; also removes the exemption from the 14-day self-isolation that most interstate fly-in, fly-out workers were granted.
- Queensland cancels the Queensland Mining Industry Health and Safety Conference 2020, previously scheduled to be held from August 23 to August 26, in light of the COVID-19 crisis.
- The Junta de Andalucía regional government clarifies that Atalaya's copper project in southwestern Spain is classed an essential operation; lifts the stoppage ordered by the Spanish government at the end of March.
- The World Gold Council reports gold ETFs listed in all global regions experienced strong inflows during March against the backdrop of COVID-19 uncertainty, which continues to encourage inflows into safe-havens like treasuries and gold.
- The Greenland government waives mineral exploration licence obligations and expenditures through to year end as part of its relief package to the mining sector amid COVID-19.