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Reuters US News - June 19, 2019
(The opinions expressed here are those of the author, a columnist for Reuters.) * Imports of select critical minerals: By Andy Home LONDON, June 19 (Reuters) - The United States has laid out its strategy to rebuild collapsed domestic supply chains for metals and minerals deemed “

The United States has laid out its strategy to rebuild collapsed domestic supply chains for metals and minerals deemed "critical" to its defence and manufacturing sectors…"A Federal Strategy to Ensure Secure and Reliable Supplies of Critical Minerals", released earlier this month by the Department of Commerce, includes 61 recommendations, ranging from revamping mine permitting rules to stimulating recycling activities to forging alliances with "friendly" suppliers such as Canada and Australia. China's growing control of metals at the heart of the electric transport revolution such as lithium and cobalt represents a second front in the looming raw materials war…Moreover, the report's authors make the important point that just building new mines is only a small part of the answer to reducing import dependency…The key takeaway is that this is not just about mining but rather the entire supply chain from mine to processing plant to end-use product…"If China or Russia were to stop exports to the United States and its allies for a prolonged period - similar to China's rare earths embargo in 2010 - an extended supply disruption could cause significant shocks throughout U.S. and foreign critical mineral supply chains," the report notes…Canada and Mexico, on the other hand, "supply all or part of U.S. consumption for many critical minerals". "Working with them to develop their critical mineral deposits can help improve the security of U.S. supply," it adds…The United States is redrawing the minerals map of the world…We might be heading for the metallic equivalent of the Cold War with the world divided into competing producer blocs. .."Some Federal Government actions outlined in this strategy can be taken in the short-term, such as stockpiling and improving reliable trade options," according to the report…However, "other actions, such as catalyzing exploration, designing and constructing new mines, and re-establishing domestic downstream manufacturing supply chains take longer to implement."

Metal Bulletin - June 19, 2019
US tariffs on a number of Chinese minor metals and ferro-alloys have been increased to 25%, affecting shipments of material from China from...
-silicon, ferro-manganese, vanadium pentoxide, titanium, cobalt sulfate, cobalt metal and cobalt tetroxide. Tariffs of 10% were originally

US tariffs on a number of Chinese minor metals and ferro-alloys have been increased to 25%, affecting shipments of material from China from today, Friday May 10…Minor metals and ferro-alloys affected by the latest tariffs include: bismuth, cadmium, gallium, germanium, germanium dioxide, selenium, tellurium, silicon, magnesium, mercury, arsenic, rhenium, hafnium, ferro-tungsten, ferro-vanadium, ferro-silicon, ferro-manganese, vanadium pentoxide, titanium, cobalt sulfate, cobalt metal and cobalt tetroxide. Tariffs of 10% were originally introduced in September...

EVs & Energy Storage
Power Technology - June 19, 2019
Introducing the individual battery modules into the rotary table. Credit: AKASOL AG...
has control of around 85% of global supply of cobalt, a key component in lithium-ion batteries. “China was smart by securing battery mining

Along with the European Commission (EC), the German government is racing to accelerate large-scale battery production in Germany and wider Europe, with a €1bn fund available to German companies and an additional €500m to support research into both existing and next-generation EV batteries…German Economy Minister Peter Altmaier, has said he hopes battery cells could roll off the manufacturing line by 2021. However, with Asian countries such as South Korea, Japan and China already dominating lithium-ion battery production and supply of the necessary raw materials, many believe Europe is mobilising too late…The lithium-ion battery – the most technologically advanced to date – was originally invented by German-born John Goodenough at Oxford University in the 1980s and later commercialised by Japanese manufacturer, Sony…Today the technology – sales of which are expected to grow exponentially in the coming decade – is predominantly produced within Asia via Japan’s Panasonic, South Korean Samsung SDI and LG Chem, and China’s Contemporary Amperex Technology (CATL)…The Alliance hopes Europe can capture a battery market of up to €250bn a year from 2025 onwards; covering EU demand alone requires at least ten to 20 large-scale battery cell production facilities…Securing Raw Materials…China in particular, has been lapping up the supply of key minerals in line with its national aim to have 12% of all cars produced by local manufacturers electric by 2020. The country currently has control of around 85% of global supply of cobalt, a key component in lithium-ion batteries…“China was smart by securing battery mining resources very early; we could have done the same in Europe,” says Normark… “We have started to build and increase our access to the raw materials, though it takes time,” says Normark…Similarly, European automotive companies have also been scrambling to source supply of key minerals..However, another route to battery cell production for Europe, says Normark, is to develop a recycling sector…“From our point of view, electrification will be one of the biggest transformations over the next decade and in Europe we need to have a strong battery industry…However, he adds that: “If we don’t get our act together in Europe there is a risk China won’t just sell batteries but complete vehicles.”

Bloomberg - June 18, 2019
Shift comes as electricity demand increases 62%, BNEF says The transition has sweeping implications for markets, climate

Nearly half the world’s electricity will come from renewable energy by 2050 as costs of wind, solar and battery storage continue to plummet…That titanic shift over the next three decades will come as electricity demand increases 62% and investors pump $13.3-trillion into new projects, according to a report released Tuesday by BloombergNEF…Wind, solar and batteries are poised to enable the power sector to meet its share of emission cuts required under the Paris climate agreement, at least until 2030, according to BNEF…Since 2010, the cost of wind power has dropped by 49%, and solar has plummeted 85%, according to BNEF. That makes them cheaper than new coal or gas plants in two-thirds of the world. Battery storage costs, meanwhile, have dropped 85% since 2010.

Bloomberg - June 19, 2019
Bill triples solar power, adds 9 gigawatts of offshore wind Also calls for 100% emissions-free electricity by 2040
Among other things, the act as proposed: Supports 3 gigawatts of energy storage capacity by 2030. Allocates funding for housing, workforce

New York's Senate has passed the state's own version of the Green New Deal -- a climate bill that will set the most aggressive clean energy target in the country, more than triple the state’s solar capacity and unleash wind power off the coast. The legislation, which was approved 41-21 and is expected to clear the Democratic-led Assembly as soon as Wednesday, would boost the amount of solar power in New York to 6 gigawatts by 2025 from about 1.7 gigawatts currently. It also calls for 9 gigawatts of offshore wind power by 2035. None of the state’s electricity currently comes from offshore wind. The bill codifies New York’s goal of getting all of its electricity from emission-free sources by 2040, putting the state ahead of all others that have set clean-energy standards -- even progressive California, which has targeted 100% clean power by 2045…The measure does give New York’s regulators a blueprint that may lead to stricter pollution limits for power plants and incentives to phase out oil and natural gas from home heating systems…A growing chorus of cities and states have already set 100% clean power targets. Puerto Rico passed legislation in April. California, Hawaii and New Mexico have made similar legislative pledges.

Yahoo!7 Finance - June 18, 2019
1 / 2 Raw cobalt at a processing plant in Lubumbashi. Demand for the mineral, especially in China, has sparked a surge in illegal mining...
been deployed on a dissuasive mission against artisanal miners to get them to leave TFM's mining concessions voluntarily," army spokesman

Democratic Republic of Congo's army has sent a battalion of troops to oust illegal miners from land worked by a majority-owned Chinese company, the military said Tuesday…One of the largest cobalt and copper producers in the DRC, Tenke Fungurume Mining (TFM) has frequently protested at incursions into its holdings by subsistence miners…It says "more than 10,000" illegal miners are at work on its concessions in Lualaba province, in the far south of the sprawling country…"This mission will last until July 2. After that, the army will use force to dislodge the illegal miners," he warned…A battalion in the DRC armed forces is between 600 and 800 men…TFM says that illicit exploitation and sales have hit revenue from the concessions, which extend over 1,437 square kilometres (555 square miles) in all…"The deployment of troops, if not well managed, risks turning into uncontrolled violations of human rights, which could undermine the reputation of the company and the chain of supply of Congolese cobalt."...China Molybdenum has a majority stake in TFM, which is named after two communities living in the mining region…It has access to high-grade cobalt and copper reserves expected to last for decades…The Chinese firm bought shares in TFM from US company Freeport-McMoRan for $2.6 billion (2.3 billion euros) in May 2016.

Yahoo! News Philippines - June 18, 2019
Hundreds of thousands of people have fled inter-ethnic violence in northeastern areas of the Democratic Republic of Congo in the past two...
main city in Ituri. Ituri is not the only part of DRC wracked by unrest. The country counts an estimated 4.5 million internally displaced

The UN refugee agency voiced deep concern over a flare-up in violence in DRC's volatile Ituri Province, which it said had seen "multiple attacks" involving the Hema and Lendu groups since early June…Agency spokesman Babar Baloch told journalists in Geneva the violence had forced more than 300,000 to flee their homes, voicing fears "this escalation could engulf large parts of the province"…Local officials last week said at least 50 people had been killed in a matter of days in Ituri, while other sources put the death toll from the inter-ethnic violence at over 70…The cause of the latest flare-up was not immediately clear, but it occurred in a region where tens of thousands died in clashes between the Hema and Lendu ethnic groups between 1999 and 2003…Ituri is not the only part of DRC wracked by unrest…The country counts an estimated 4.5 million internally displaced people…Ituri and North Kivu province, just to the south, are also trying to roll back a major epidemic of Ebola that has claimed more than 1,400 lives since last August. Both provinces sit on DR Congo's eastern border with Uganda.

For further information about the NICO Project and its Mineral Reserves, please refer to the Technical Report on the Feasibility Study for NICO, entitled "Technical Report on the Feasibility Study for the NICO-Gold-Cobalt-Bismuth-Copper Project, Northwest Territories, Canada", dated April 2, 2014 and prepared by Micon, which has been filed on SEDAR and is available under the Company's profile at


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The materials appearing in this email contain forward-looking information. This forward-looking information includes, or may be based upon, estimates, forecasts, and statements as to management’s expectations with respect to, among other things, the size and quality of the Company’s mineral resources, progress in permitting and development of mineral properties, timing and cost for placing the Company’s mineral projects into production, costs of production, amount and quality of metal products recoverable from the Company’s mineral resources, anticipated revenues, earnings and cash flows from the Company's mineral projects, demand and market outlook for metals and coal and future metal and coal prices. Forward-looking information is based on the opinions and estimates of management at the date the information is given, and is subject to a variety of risks and uncertainties and other factors that could cause actual events or results to differ materially from those projected in the forward-looking information. These factors include the inherent risks involved in the exploration and development of mineral properties, uncertainties with respect to the receipt or timing of required permits and regulatory approvals, the uncertainties involved in interpreting drilling results and other geological data, fluctuating metal and coal prices, the possibility of project cost overruns or unanticipated costs and expenses, the possibility that production from the Company's mineral projects may be less than anticipated, uncertainties relating to the availability and costs of financing needed in the future, uncertainties related to metal recoveries and other factors. Mineral resources that are not mineral reserves do not have demonstrated economic viability. Inferred mineral resources are considered too speculative geologically to have economic considerations applied to them that would enable them to be categorized as mineral reserves. There is no certainty that mineral resources will be converted into mineral reserves. Readers are cautioned to not place undue reliance on forward-looking information because it is possible that predictions, forecasts, projections and other forms of forward-looking information will not be achieved by the Company. The forward-looking information contained herein is made as of the date hereof and the Company assumes no responsibility to update them or revise it to reflect new events or circumstances, except as required by law.