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COMMENT: In case you missed it …

Many of us have enjoyed a bit of vacation as the mining industry wound down on 2013. That doesn't mean nothing happened in the sector, just that we might not have noticed.



Many of us have enjoyed a bit of vacation as the mining industry wound down on 2013. That doesn’t mean nothing happened in the sector, just that we might not have noticed.

Allow me to bring three stories that broke near the end of last month to the attention of CMJ readers who might have missed them.

Toronto-based Barrick Gold has agreed to sell its Plutonic gold mine in Western Australia to Northern Star Resources of Val d’Or, QC, for A$25 million. High all-in sustaining costs – US$1,110 per ounce – may be the reason Barrick is selling the mine. A couple million ounces remain: 200,000 oz in proven and probable reserves, 800,000 oz in measured and indicated resources, and 1.0 million oz in inferred resources.

Sherritt International Corp., also headquartered in Toronto, announced a new focus on its core business and the sale of its coal assists for $946 million. A group led by Altius Minerals Corp. of St. John’s, NL, has agreed to pay $481 million for Sherritt’s entire royalty portfolio and interests in coal development projects. Westmoreland Coal of Englewood, CO, will acquire Sherritt’s operating mines (the Prairie and Mountain operations) for a total of $465 million ($312 million in cash and the assumption of capital leases values at $153 million).

No Canadians made it onto the list of the world’s 10 richest mining tycoons as compiled by Forbes. For the record, here they are: No.1 Alberto Bailleres Gonzalez of Mexico ($18.2 billion); No.2 Iron Fontbona of Chile ($17.4 billion); No.3 Georgina “Gina” Rinehart of Australia ($17.0 billion); No.4 German Larrea Mota-Velasco of Mexico ($16.7 billion); No.5 Eike Bastista of Brazil ($10.6 billion); No.6 Iskander Makhmudov of Russia ($8.7 billion); No.7 Andrew “Twiggy” Forrest of Australia ($5.7 billion); No.8 Beny Steinmetz of Israel ($4.1 billion); No.9 Anil Agarwal of India ($3.4 billion); and No.10 Patrice Motsepe of South Africa ($2.9 billion).

Happy New Year to the billionaires and to all of Canadian Mining Journal‘s faithful readers. We look forward to another year of bringing you the news of this country’s mining industry.