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After the lost decades of the 1980s and 1990s came the mining boom of the past decade and the beginning of the ‘Commodities Super-Cycle’. During this time, the price of industrial minerals and other commodities rose sharply. Needless to say, the mining boom has resulted in the resurgence of mining and has been a boon to many emerging economies, particularly in Africa and South America.
Will the super-cycle continue? If one accepts that the root cause of the super-cycle is China, then the answer is yes and mining has a bright future: China needs minerals to continue its industrialisation and the rollout of modern cities and infrastructure. While its stated objective is to build a modern service-oriented economy, China is at best 10 to 15 years away from transiting out of its current intensive mineral consumption phase. As a result, continued strong demand should sustain prices for the next decade – this is particularly true for metals little found in China. Thereafter, demand should remain strong as the world adds an estimated 2 billion to its population by 2050, most of whom will reside in emerging markets and – if the past is indicative of the future – will want greatly improved living standards.
This book provides business-focused legal analysis on such topics as markets, regulation, licensing, environmental law, and operational and tax considerations, and practical advice on how best to deal with the opportunities and challenges they present.