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Jurgen Schuldt of the Pacific University, Lima, writes on how the problems that the so-called Dutch Disease brings to a country's economy have started showing up in Peru. Read all about it here.
Jimmy Page is a very good guitar player. Indeed.
...has just been sent to subscribers, Friday morning an hour or so after the opening bell. A trade.
Today, 2013 World Press Freedom Day, is proudly brought to you by:
Consolidation of Shares
The Corporation has an authorized capital consisting of an unlimited number of common shares without par value and an unlimited number of Preferred Shares without par value, of which 381,984,916 common shares are currently issued and outstanding. This large number of issued and outstanding common shares acts as a damper on the Corporation’s stock price and could restrict the ability of the Corporation to raise equity in the future to fund its business activities, particularly if the Corporation looks for new business acquisitions and the funding of the exploration and development of its properties in Colombia. Accordingly, the Corporation is proposing to consolidate its issued and outstanding common shares on a twenty-five-for-one basis (25:1) (the “Consolidation”), subject to the approval of the TSX and approval of Shareholders by way of special resolution. Management believes that the benefits of the Consolidation include, among other things, that the anticipated higher share price resulting from the Consolidation may meet investing guidelines for certain institutional investors and investment funds that are prevented under such guidelines from investing in the common shares at current price levels. Also, a smaller number of common shares trading at a higher price makes the Corporation more attractive to potential investors, and could further enhance the value of the common shares held by current Shareholders. The name of the Corporation will not be changed in conjunction with the Consolidation.
Maybe. Next couple of months will be watched very carefully. Data from here.
Guatemala government declares State of Emergency around Tahoe Resources (THO.to) (TAHO) mine location
UPDATE Thursday AM: Although expected under the circumstances, it's worth mentioning here that Guatemala local radio is now reporting a big influx of forces of order into the Jalapa region, home to San Rafael las Flores and the THO mine. Army and police personnel amongst those seen arriving.
UPDATE 2: A brief English language report from AP here.
UPDATE 3: Here's a link to photos of the region under army watch today. Mainly grunts patrolling and sitting around. Looks pretty subdued.
We'd all like to thank you, Altan Mehmet. For the laughs.
Here's Bolivia's State News Agency, ABI, with the short note (translated):
La Paz 1 May (ABI): President Evo Morales on Wednesday expelled from Bolivia the United States Agency for International Development (USAID), accusing it of alleged political meddling in rural organizations as well as other social organization and conspiring against its left wing government.
"We have decided to expel USAID from Bolivia, USIAD is leaving Bolivia, I ask the chancellor (David Choquehuanca) to communicate immediately with the United States Embassy", he announced during his speech in homage of the Day of the Worker."
Good stuff in this scoop from Reuters' Mitra Taj and Teresa Cespedes this morning. Here's how the note kicks off, make sure you click through for more
LIMA (Reuters) - Peru's mining minister is winning a crucial cabinet battle by swaying President Ollanta Humala to water down a law that gives indigenous groups more say over new mines and oil projects - and a deputy minister will likely resign in protest.According to half a dozen people with direct knowledge of the internal tug-of-war, Mines and Energy Minister Jorge Merino has prevailed in excluding Quechua-speaking communities in the mineral-rich Andes from being covered by the law.Sources said he fears applying the law throughout the highlands - as the government once said it planned to do - would delay a pipeline of mining investments worth $50 billion.Several people in Merino's office declined repeated requests by phone and email for comment. Continues here
How about this low, as seen on Twitter tonight:
According to the twittermachine this was seen "Stuck to the wall outside Tim Hortons". Oh yes.
UPDATE: There's a Part Deux to the story here
Here's the link, here's the chunk:
The following information summarizes the business experience for at least the last five years of the director who is not standing for re-election:Isac Burstein. Isac Burstein was appointed to the Board of Directors on April 1, 2009. He has served as a member of our Audit Committee and our Compensation Committee since his initial appointment to our Board of Directors. Mr. Burstein is the Vice President of Business Development for Hochschild Mining Plc. (LSE: HOC), a leading underground precious metals producer operating in the Americas and a significant shareholder of our Company. Prior to his current position, Mr. Burstein served Hochschild in various capacities, including as Manager for Project Evaluation, Exploration Manager for Mexico from July 2000 to May 2009 and Exploration Geologist from January 1996 to July 2000. He holds a BS in Geological Engineering from the Universidad Nacional de Ingenieria in Lima, Peru, an MS in Geology from the University of Missouri and an MBA from Krannert School of Management, Purdue University. Mr. Burstein was nominated as a Director by Hochschild and appointed to the Board pursuant to the terms of our strategic alliance agreement with Hochschild. Mr. Burstein has not served on the Board of Directors of any other public companies or registered investment companies during the past five years.
Now, why might that be?
This is what they wrote:
VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwired - Apr 30, 2013) - South American Silver Corp. (SAC.TO)(SOHAF) announced today that its wholly-owned subsidiary, South American Silver Limited ("South American Silver"), has commenced international arbitration proceedings against the government of Bolivia ("Bolivia" or the "Government") under the Arbitration Rules of the United Nations Commission on International Trade Law (UNCITRAL) pursuant to the Agreement between the Government of the United Kingdom and the Government of Bolivia for the Promotion and Protection of Investments (the "Treaty").The arbitration has been commenced as a result of acts and omissions of the Government including the issuance of Supreme Decree No.1308 on August 1, 2012 (the "Decree"). The Decree revoked mining concessions covering the Malku Khota Mining Project (the "Project") held by Compañia Minera Malku Khota S.A. (CMMK), a wholly-owned subsidiary of South American Silver Limited. These measures resulted in the complete expropriation of the Project without compensation. The arbitration claim is for Bolivia's breach of the Treaty and international law. Bolivia has breached the Treaty's requirement to provide full protection and security to foreign investors and their investments, as well as the Treaty's protections against, among other things, expropriation without just and effective compensation, unfair and inequitable treatment, and less favorable treatment than afforded to Bolivian nationals or nationals of third states.Since the Decree, the company has made numerous attempts to open a dialogue with the Government with the aim of reaching an amicable resolution of the dispute, including receiving fair-value compensation. In late February 2013, the company was invited to attend a meeting set for 17th April, 2013 in La Paz, Bolivia. Attorneys representing South American Silver attended the April meeting but no resolution was reached and no compensation offered. The Decree stated clearly that the Bolivian state mining company, Corporación Minera de Bolivia (COMIBOL), would hire an independent firm to carry out a valuation of the investments made by CMMK within a period not to exceed one hundred and twenty (120) business days. However, no such valuation has been carried out, nor has an independent firm been hired to undertake the valuation.Exploration commenced at Malku Khota in 2003 and work on the Project continued through the expropriation in August 2012. After completing a total of 42,700 meters of drilling in 121 diamond core holes, and undertaking metallurgical testwork, process development and engineering design, a Preliminary Economic Assessment (PEA) Update was filed on SEDAR on 13th May, 2011 in a NI 43-101 technical report (News Release NR 11-06 dated 16th May, 2011). The May 2011 PEA Update included economic modeling that indicated pre-tax net present value (NPV) at a 5% discount rate of:
- $704 million at metal prices of $18.00/oz silver and $500/kg indium
- $1.482 billion at $25.00/oz silver and $570/kg indium
After the 2011 PEA Update, the pre-feasibility study (PFS) phase was started in June 2011. The ongoing work program, which was designed to expand mineral resources and enhance project economics, included the development of social and community programs to benefit indigenous communities, baseline studies for the environmental review and assessment program, exploration, metallurgical testwork, flowsheet development, engineering design and preparations to construct a modern 150 person exploration camp near the exploration site. The planned work programs including the PFS were not completed due to the expropriation.Phillip Brodie-Hall, President and CEO of South American Silver said, "It is regrettable that we are forced to resort to international arbitration to resolve this matter. Bolivia chose to expropriate our mining concessions; it must now meet its legal obligations and compensate us for this significant loss. International arbitration gives us the means to pursue our case and we are very confident that it will deliver fair value compensation. We have a first-class team working on the case and, while we are open to dialogue with the Government, we are prepared to go the full distance in arbitration if that's what it will take to get fair value compensation. Our loyal shareholders deserve nothing less."Now that the arbitration has been commenced, the Bolivian Government has thirty days to respond and an arbitration tribunal will be empanelled in the coming months. Thereafter, the tribunal will set a provisional timetable for the arbitration itself including a schedule for submission of a Statement of Claim, Statement of Defense and oral hearings. Unless there is a negotiated settlement of the dispute, it is expected that the arbitration could take up to 2-3 years from commencement of proceedings until rendering of a final award.Bolivia has been involved in over fifteen "nationalizations", the majority of which have taken place after President Morales came to office. A number of the cases have reached negotiated settlements and at least five others are pending. Bolivia's reserves of cash and gold were estimated at $13.62 billion as of December 31, 2012, up from US$3 billion when Morales came to office in 2006. Bolivia's credit rating was upgraded by all three major rating agencies in 2012, the most recent being Fitch Ratings upgrade from B+ to BB- in October 2012. Bolivia has demonstrated that it has ready access to international funding, having had a $500 million 10-year bond offering significantly oversubscribed in August 2012 at an interest rate of only 4.875%. The IMF recently forecast that Bolivia will be one of the fastest growing economies in South America with an expected GDP growth rate in 2013 of 4.8%.Mr. Brodie-Hall went on to say, "It is not a question of whether Bolivia is capable of meeting its obligation to compensate the company for the expropriation; it clearly has the financial capacity."About South American Silver Corp.South American Silver Corp. (the "Company") is a growth focused mineral exploration company creating value through the exploration and development of the large scale Escalones copper-gold project in Chile, the realization of value from the Malku Khota project in Bolivia and the pursuit of new opportunities. South American Silver Limited is a company incorporated in the Bermuda Islands, an overseas territory of the United Kingdom, which through its wholly owned Bahaman subsidiaries: Malku Khota Ltd, G.M. Campana Ltd. and Productora Limited., owns one hundred per cent of the outstanding shares of Compañía Minera Malku Khota S.A., a Bolivian company, holder of the Malku-Khota mining concessions until their nationalization by the Bolivian Government. The Company's approach to business combines the team's track record of discovery and advancement of large projects, key operational and process expertise, and a focus on community relations and sustainable development. Management has extensive experience in the global exploration and mining industry. The Company's shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbol "SAC" and on the OTCQX as "SOHAF". Information related to South American Silver Corp. is available at www.soamsilver.com and on SEDAR at www.sedar.com.Further information regarding South American Silver's arbitration claim can be found on the company's website at www.soamsilver.com.Forward-looking statementsForward-looking statements look into the future and provide an opinion as to the effect of certain events and trends on the business. Forward-looking statements may include words such as "will","pursue", "expect", "creating", "realization" and similar expressions. This release contains forward-looking statements. These forward-looking statements are based on current expectations and various estimates, factors and assumptions and involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors.Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these statements as the Company's actual results, performance or achievements may differ materially from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements if known or unknown risks, uncertainties or other factors affect the Company's business, or if the Company's estimates or assumptions prove inaccurate. Therefore, the Company cannot provide any assurance that forward-looking statements will materialize. Information from the 2011 PEA Update may also be considered forward-looking information. The 2011 PEA Update was prepared to broadly quantify the Malku Khota Project's capital and operating cost parameters and to provide guidance on the type and scale of future Project engineering and development work that would be needed to ultimately define the Project's likelihood of a positive feasibility determination and optimal production rate. It was not prepared to be used as a valuation of the Project nor should it be considered to be a final feasibility study on which a commercial production decision could be made.The criteria, methods and estimates were preliminary and involved a high level of subjective judgment. Factors that could cause results or events to differ materially from current expectations expressed or implied by the forward-looking statements, include, but are not limited to risks of the mineral exploration industry which may affect the advancement of the Escalones project; availability of sufficient financing to fund further required work in a timely manner and on acceptable terms; the political and economic climate in Bolivia including the attitudes and actions of the Bolivian government related to foreign investment in Bolivia and the response of the Bolivian government to the filing of the Notice of Arbitration; the advancement of the international arbitration process in a customary manner; the outcome of the international arbitration process; and other risks more fully described in the Company's Annual Information Form filed and publicly available on SEDAR at www.sedar.com. The assumptions made in developing the forward-looking statements include: execution of the Company's existing plans and further exploration and development programs for Escalones, which may change due to changes in the views of the Company or if new information arises which makes it prudent to change such plans or programs, the ability of the Company to realize value from its investments in Bolivia pursuant to the international arbitration process; the advancement of the international arbitration process in the customary manner; and the availability of new attractive exploration targets at a cost acceptable to the Company. Subject to applicable laws, the Company assumes no obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statement, whether as a result of new information, future events or any other reason. Unless otherwise indicated, forward-looking statements in this release describe the Company's expectations as of April 30, 2013.
- $2.571 billion at the $35.00/oz silver and $650/kg indium.(1)
And this is what it means:
UPDATE: A decent report on the whole shebang here, translation below: Seriously, you have to wonder about THO.to human resources department, hiring people like this:
Guatemala, April 30: Guatemalan security forces today detained Italian national Alberto Rotonda, the head of security at the mine where protests since last Sunday have left one police officer dead and a dozen people injured.
Guatemala's Interior Minister, Mauricio López Bonilla, told reporters that Rotonda had been arrested at the La Aurora International Airport, the main airport in the country, while attempting to escape after a local courtroom had issued an arrest warrant against him.
Rotonda is the head of security at the San Rafael mine, subsidiary of the Canadian Mining Company Tahoe Resources, located in the San Rafael las Flores area of the western department of Santa Rosa.
He is accused by members of the local population of having ordered the guards under his command to fire on a group of neighbours who were walking in front of the mine.
As a result of the attack last Sunday, at least seven people suffered bullet wounds in different parts of their body.
Rotonda is accused of attempted homicide and physical aggression, and was remanded into custody at the 'El Boquerón" prison in Santa Rosa.
Oh this is fun: Some quotes from the (update: link was broken, now fixed to other source) Allied Nevada 1q13 Conference Call, dated April 9th 2013:
Stephen Jones, CFO: "So I know there’s been a lot of discussion about where we are in terms of funding, and I guess I just wanted to make that clear. We have adequate funding in place. We would like to build ourselves some cushion. We’re in no hurry to build that cushion. We have ample time to do so, and we will do that with non-equity funding sources."Then in the Q&A afterwards:
Analyst Question: "Is there a size that you have sort of in the back of your mind as to that buffer? Is it still the $100 million of liquidity? Or is it bigger, smaller, kind of where do you stand on that?"
Stephen Jones, CFO: "Yes. I think it’s — we’re still working our way through that. We definitely want to give ourselves some buffer. We don’t — we’re pretty comfortable with the numbers we’re working with. So we’re not looking to make that buffer too large."
Bob Buchan, Big Head Honcho: "The number is going to be small. It’s not going to be a big number."
And then a little later...
The world's top three silver producing nations in 2012, according to the Silver Institute:
Mexico added 6% to its production last year and sits comfortably on top at 162m oz ag in 2012. China took the number two spot from Peru last year. Peru was number one in 2011 and continues to slip behind. Data here (Spanish).
Violence and protests increasing around Tahoe Resources (TAHO) (THO.to) Escobal project in Guatemala
...gold versus silver, two years, using GLD and SLV as the proxies: