16/07/2009 - 00:00

Investors like coal

16/07/2009 - 00:00

Bookmark

Save articles for future reference.

THEY might be dirty words in environmentalists' lexicon, but coal and uranium remain hot property in the mining investment sector.

THEY might be dirty words in environmentalists' lexicon, but coal and uranium remain hot property in the mining investment sector.

There is some irony that, while energy demand underpins both commodities, individually their pricing strength relates to very different forces.

Coal is viewed as the dirtiest player in the energy business, but with the world hungry for power it remains a critical input for the global economy, at least for the foreseeable future.

And while environmentalists hate uranium, nuclear power is gaining ground because of its low impact in terms of CO2 production and its ability to help diversify economies where energy security is most at risk.

With that in mind, there is much news in both sectors.

This week, Perth-based Coal of Africa has executed binding agreements that will deliver it full ownership of a South African company, Limpopo Coal, which owns the Vele coking coal project, near Musina in the Limpopo Province and in which CoAL already holds a 74 per cent interest.

West Perth-based Continental Capital also announced news from South Africa, with its subsidiary there, Continental Coal, acquiring the Chelmsford Coal Asset in Kwazulu Natal.

In other news, Canada's Mega Uranium claims to be on schedule to bring the Lake Maitland uranium joint venture online in 2011 as it upgrades the Western Australian project's resource.

Following an extensive exploration program, the company announced it had increased the contained uranium in the project and upgraded the confidence level of the resource from inferred to indicated.

In June last year, Japan Australia Uranium Resources Development Company (JAURD) and ITOCHU Corporation acquired a 35 per cent interest in Lake Maitland after paying $US49 million.

Rival Canadian group Cameco recently struck its third joint venture deal with Uranium Equities over uranium tenements located close to the Kintyre uranium deposit, which Cameco and Mitsubishi bought from Rio for $US495 million last year.

Another potential near-term uranium development is Toro Energy's Lake Way-Centipede project.

STANDING BY BUSINESS. TRUSTED BY BUSINESS.

Subscription Options