Many tin mine projects are based in developed nations, that have a mining heritage, such as Australia and Canada and
vario...
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The Tin Mine of Tomorrow: Defining the Geological and Economic Parameters - Dec 2012 - John P. Sykes & Peter Kettle - ITRI / Greenfields Research / University of Western Australia / Curtin University

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The Tin Mine of Tomorrow: Defining the Geological and Economic Parameters - Dec 2012 - John P. Sykes & Peter Kettle - ITRI / Greenfields Research / University of Western Australia / Curtin University

  1. 1. Many tin mine projects are based in developed nations, that have a mining heritage, such as Australia and Canada and various countries in Europe. Clearly when it comes to costs developing nations have a big advantage in labour rates, which underlies much of the theory behind globalisation and the rebalancing of the world economy. However as we previously discussed alluvial operations aren’t really affected much by labour rates, its fuel that is key. It is the hard rock operations that are more vulnerable to labour costs. As such the geographical element of the analysis focuses on not only how quickly grades are declining in Asia, compared to resource grades at potential hard rock projects in the developed world. But also how quickly fuel prices are rising in the developing world compared to how quickly labour costs are rising in the developed world. The GFC means that labour rates (except perhaps Australia) in the developed world are likely to be fairly stagnant, however fuel prices seem likely to continue rising. For the hard rock artisanal miners in South America, it is more an issue of developing world labour rate increases versus developed world labour rate increases. Whilst the developing world operations are currently much cheaper, costs will rise faster, and this will only be compounded by falling grades in these regions. This is also a critical factor for the hard rock production in China, which we see as stalling rather than growing partly due to these cost increases and partly due to government policy to reduce the amount of mining and increase imports in general.

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