FACTBOX-Foreign investors in Russian metals mining

15 October 2007 | 04:33 Code : 15626 Geoscience events
Russia has welcomed international miners with cash and know-how to unlock its....

  Russia has welcomed international miners with cash and know-how to unlock its mineral wealth, despite tightening Kremlin control of strategic assets seen in sectors such as oil and aviation.A growing number of foreign miners are allying themselves with Russian partners to carve a share of potentially lucrative metals deposits stretching from Arctic Europe to the Pacific.Ownership of many large deposits is structured in order that Russian entities retain majority control. Junior miners are also developing smaller projects across Russia.Following is an updated list of some mining and exploration projects involving foreign mining companies.* BHP Billiton Plc/Ltd and Norilsk Nickel in June 2006 signed a deal to explore for minerals in northwest Russia and western Siberia. Norilsk will hold 50 percent plus one share of any local joint ventures that might result from exploration work.* Rio Tinto Plc/Ltd and Norilsk Nickel in January 2006 formed an exploration and development joint venture, owned 51 percent by Norilsk, that will search for base metals in eastern Siberia and the Russian Far East. Anglo American Plc, the world's third-largest mining group, in October 2006 signed a joint venture with steel maker Severstal to exlore for nickel, copper and zinc in the Republic of Karelia and Murmansk region in northwest Russia. The alliance could later be widened to other regions.* Severstal also owns 29.7 percent of Celtic Resources Plc and had a second takeover bid for the Irish-incorporated miner rejected on Sept. 28. Celtic has a 50 percent stake in a copper and gold project in Chelyabinsk region, an option on a project in the northwestern republic of Karelia, and owns two gold mines and a 50 percent stake in a molydenum mine in Kazakhstan.* Barrick Gold Corp , the world's largest gold miner, owns a 34 percent stake in Highland Gold Mining . London-listed Highland operates the Mnogovershinnoye mine in the Russian Far East and owns development and exploration projects.* South Africa's AngloGold Ashanti Ltd in September 2006 agreed a 50-50 joint venture with Polymetal, Russia's third-largest gold and biggest silver miner, to explore and develop new mines in Siberia and the Russian Far East.* Trans-Siberian Gold is developing a gold mine on the Kamchatka peninsula with mining and stockpiling scheduled to start in 2008 and first gold output in 2009.* Lundin Mining Corp , a Canada-based company with Swedish management, in September 2006 signed a deal with Russia's IFC Metropol investment house to buy a 49 percent stake in the Ozernoye zinc and lead deposit in Buryatia, ranked the world's sixth-largest such deposit by its owner.* Kinross Gold Corp operates the Julietta gold mine in Magadan region and owns 75 percent of the large Kupol project in Chukotka region, due to start production in 2008.* Consolidated Puma Minerals Corp is exploring for platinum and palladium on the Kola peninsula.* Peter Hambro Mining , Russia's second-largest gold miner, operates two mines in eastern Russia and has several exploration projects. Many of the company's managers are Russian and its assets are entirely in Russia.* Aricom Plc is developing titanium and iron ore deposits in the Amur region and the Jewish Autonomous Region in the Russian Far East. It has signed a cooperation agreement with OboronInprom, a division of strategic metals group and state arms exporter Rosoboronexport, to explore new projects.* Amur Minerals Corp is developing a nickel, copper and platinum group metals deposit in the far eastern Russian province of the same name.* London-listed Eurasia Mining Plc is drilling three platinum deposits on northwest Russia's Kola peninsula and plans to start developing alluvial deposits in the Ural mountains. Anglo Platinum Ltd, the world's top platinum producer, is funding exploration.* Canada's High River Gold has an 85 percent stake in Russian gold miner Buryatzoloto , which mines in the eastern Siberian republic of Buryatia. It is also developing separately Berezitovy gold deposit in the Amur region.* Zijin Mining Group, China's second-largest gold miner, has agreed to develop the Kyzyl-Tashtygskoye lead and zinc deposit in Russia's Tuva Republic and could take part in an associated project to build a coal-fired power station.

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