Mining Explorers 2011: BHP Billiton Group


Last updated 11/6/2011 at Noon


Ceo: Marius Kloppers, PhD

Cfo: Alex Vanselow

President, Diamonds

and Specialty Products: Tim Cutt

BHP Billiton Group is a diversified global natural resources company that operates nine industry groups: petroleum, aluminum, base metals (including uranium), diamonds and specialty products, stainless steel materials, iron ore, manganese, metallurgical coal and energy coal.

The major said greenfield exploration in 2011 has continued on copper targets in South America, Mongolia and Zambia; nickel and copper targets in Australia and diamond targets in Canada.

For the 2011 fiscal year ended June 30, Billiton spent US$683 million on minerals exploration.

North of 60 in North America, the company focused primarily on diamond production and exploration.

In 2011 the miner spent US$54 million on diamond exploration in the Northwest Territories and Nunavut.

That's more than double the US$21 million it spent on comparable projects in the same region in fiscal 2010.

A notable exploration project is Billiton's joint venture activities with Peregrine Diamonds Ltd. which is aggressively exploring the Chidliak and Qilaq diamond projects 120 kilometers (75 miles) northeast of Iqaluit, the capital of Nunavut.

The major contributed about C$9.03 million in 2011 to the C$17.7 million exploration budget for Chidliak.

In May Billiton said it would initiate a pushback of the existing Misery open pit project at the Ekati Diamond Mine in the Northwest Territories.

Billiton mined the Misery pit from 2001 to 2005.

The estimated capital expenditure required to complete the execution phase of the project is US$323 million (BHP Billiton 80 percent share).

Of that amount, US$29 million of pre-commitment capital was approved in 2010 to enable long-lead equipment to be brought in on the 2011 winter road.

The company said it expected to begin stripping operations in October, with ore production anticipated in late 2015 and final output from Misery in mid-2017.

Cash and short-term deposits:

US$10.1 billion (at June 30, 2011)

Working Capital: US$10.0 million

(at June 30, 2011)

Market capitalization: US$70.47 billion

(at Sept. 2, 2011)

180 Lonsdale Street

Melbourne Victoria 3000

Ph: (61) 1300 55 47 57 • Fax: (61 3) 9609 3015


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