Industry experts say mining’s future shines

by Dave

Peru, Chile and Brazil are in the sweet spot.
San Jose Mercury News

Every segment of the mining industry and the companies that support it continue to enjoy great success with no end in sight despite trouble on Wall Street, industry leaders said Monday at a national conference and trade show.

Much of the optimism can be attributed to the unprecedented demand from China and India, said Harold Quinn, president and CEO of the National Mining Association.

“The boom in worldwide mining activity and the equipment to bring those products to market has arguably been the biggest economic success story of the year,” he said at MINExpo International 2008, which opened Monday in Las Vegas. He expects the gathering to be the largest ever with more than 35,000 attendees—twice as many as the last such expo in 2004.

Timothy W. Sullivan, president and CEO of equipment manufacturer Bucyrus International Inc. and chairman of MINExpo 2008, said the record size of this year’s exhibition is an indication of the strong market conditions for mining and mining equipment.

“We’ve had an unprecedented run over the last few years, thanks largely to the developing world’s powerful and sustained demand for copper, gold, iron ore, coal and other products of mining,” he said. “We see nothing near term to dampen the bullish outlook.”
Gary Goldberg, president and
CEO of Rio Tinto Minerals, said gold, copper, uranium and other metals
will remain strong markets, “even as commodity prices moderate from
unprecedented highs.”

Gold passed the $1,000 an ounce threshold in March and has vacillated between $750 to $990 since then.

Copper
took an even deeper plunge, but Goldberg believes the metal will
rebound “thanks to a tight supply” and the demand from China and India.

Uranium demand is expected to increase dramatically as more
nations turn to nuclear energy. Today the world demand hovers at 150
million tons. By comparison, 325 million tons will be required by 2025.

Also, the demand for potash, sulfate and chloride “will climb by 2 percent or better annually,” Goldberg said.

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