This Morning in Metals: Rio Tinto commits $10M toward low-carbon steelmaking research partnership with Baowu

low carbon steel
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This morning in metals news: Rio Tinto has committed $10 million toward its research partnership with China’s Baowu Steel Group; meanwhile, Freeport McMoRan completed the sale of an undeveloped project in the Democratic Republic of the Congo; and, lastly, copper remains at an over seven-year high.
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Rio Tinto commits $10M investment toward low-carbon steelmaking research

Miner Rio Tinto has announced a commitment of $10 million toward its low-carbon steelmaking research partnership with Chinese steelmaking giant Baowu Steel Group.
“Rio Tinto’s investment will fund the joint establishment of a Low Carbon Raw Materials Preparation R&D Centre, which will initially prioritise the development of lower carbon ore preparation processes,” Rio Tinto said in a release Wednesday. “This will include creating two ore preparation pilot plants, one to use biomass and the other exploring using microwave technology. The investment will also support work on carbon dioxide utilisation and conversion at the China Baowu Low Carbon Metallurgical Innovation Centre, which is a Baowu-led open platform for advancing metallurgical technologies to support the low-carbon transformation of the steel industry.”

Freeport sells DRC project for $550 million

Elsewhere, miner Freeport-McMoRan sold its undeveloped Kisanfu project in the Democratic Republic of the Congo to China Molybdenum Co., Ltd. The sale comes at a price tag of $550 million, with $415 million in after-tax net cash proceeds.
“The Kisanfu project, located in the Democratic Republic of Congo, is a large, undeveloped cobalt and copper resource discovered by Freeport’s exploration team,” Freeport McMoRan said in a release. “Following Freeport’s sale of its interest in the adjacent Tenke Fungurume mine in 2016, the Kisanfu project was no longer strategic to Freeport’s long-term strategy.”

Copper price remains elevated

Lastly, the LME three-month copper price closed Tuesday at $7,775 per metric ton. Since mid-November, the price is up 9.08% month over month.
Furthermore, copper remains at its highest level since Q1 2013.
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