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By John Helmer in Moscow A new IMF report reveals for the first time where Tajikistan’s aluminium revenues are going. The International Monetary Fund (IMF) has issued a report that is sharply critical of the Tajikistan Aluminium Company (Talco), the leading enterprise of the Central Asian republic run by President Emomali Rahmon; and has ordered […]

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By John Helmer in Moscow The Udokan copper contest has been won, but by whom? In April, Mineweb reported that Russia’s biggest copper contest was going to be a very private affair. Even if there are just two, possibly three contenders — we said at the time — predicting who will win over the next […]

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By John Helmer in Moscow In antique legend, Icarus was the boy who, ignoring his father’s prudential warning, flew too close to the sun, melting the wax from his wings, and plummeting to his death as a consequence. In W.H. Auden’s modern reflection on the incident, noone witnessing the plunge cared much, while “the expensive […]

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By John Helmer in Moscow BHPB’s Russian relationship hostage to Canberra uranium threat as Australian govt invokes Caucasus war to stir uranium sale opposition. A threat last week by Australian politicians to revoke a year-old agreement for Australian uranium concentrate to be processed into fuel in Russia has been met with calm in Moscow, where […]

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By John Helmer in Moscow If anyone needed convincing, the paper which British Petroleum (ticker BP:LN) signed yesterday with Mikhail Fridman and his Russian shareholding partners proves that defying the law of gravity is unlikely to succeed for long; even if the world’s weakest prime minister, Gordon Brown, and his foreign minister David Miliband, have […]

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By John Helmer in Moscow Vladimir Kirillov, the new chief of Russia’s mine licence inspectorate, Rosprirodnadzor, has tried to fire Oleg Mitvol, his independent deputy, this week — after failing to oust Mitvol for the past seven months. In the annals of the federal Ministry of Natural Resources, Mitvol’s resistance is unique; as is the […]

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By John Helmer in Moscow Anti-Russian allies fail to cook on hot air. Russia demonstrated on Tuesday that it retains the backing of the major Central Asian gas producers and exporters to Europe – despite public calls from UK Prime Minister Gordon Brown and American figures that alternative, non-Russian supplies of Europe’s gas should be […]

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By John Helmer in Moscow The IMR takeover of Shaft Sinkers is the second major asset purchase in SA for a trio of Kazakh businessmen. THE decline in mining stocks and metal prices is unlikely to hurt SA’s specialist in shaft and tunnel excavation for mines, Shaft Sinkers MD Rob Schroder says. Johannesburg-based Shaft Sinkers […]