Resources round-up: Cove, Minera, Gulf Keystone

Also covered by the round-up: SGS Mineral Services and London Mining.

Cove Energy has reported that the government of Mozambique has consented to the indirect transfer of Shell Exploration and Production's 8.5 per cent participating interest in Rovuma Offshore Area 1 which would arise if Royal Dutch Shell goes ahead with the planned takeover of Cove.

Minera, a Latin American gold miner, has seen a 1.3% rise in its first quarter revenue, up year-on-year from $10.9m to $11.1m, while profit after tax came in at $1.7m, 35% higher year-on-year (2011 $1.3m). Although gold sales fell 17% from 7,883 ounces to 6,515 ounces, this was offset by a 22% rise in the average realised gold price from $1,389 per ounce to $1,699. Cash levels remained stable at $30.3m (2011: $30.7m).

Gulf Keystone has responded to what it calls the "continued and unfounded speculation" on various social media sites regarding an alleged planned placing of the company's shares at 160p per share, saying that while it would not usually comment it "feels it must respond" and is currently seeking legal advice on the matter. In a statement the firm said: "Gulf Keystone is pleased to confirm categorically that it has no current intention of undertaking an institutional fundraising. We will not tolerate malicious attempts to damage the company's reputation and share price. We have instructed the company's lawyers to use all means necessary to protect our shareholders from this malicious and unfounded attack."

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SGS Mineral Services has upped its predictions for both its nickel and copper recovery, from 75.9% to 77.8% and from 72.9% to 90.4%, respectively, from its Kun-Manie licence area. The cobalt recovery was increased from 57% to 68.6%, platinum from 51.1% to 73.9% and palladium from 40.8% to 82.4%. The results follow three studies of the metallurgical character and response to the ore at various grades throughout the drilled reserve areas, as well as mineralogical analyses of the ores.

London Mining has posted a rise in quarterly production of iron ore from just 20,000 wet metric tonnes (wmt) to 315,000 wmt from the Maramopa mine in Sierra Leone. During the period the firm sold 244,000 wmt, of which more than 65% was iron. 232,000 dry metric tonnes were shipped in five vessels, of which four went to China and the fifth to Europe. "Our pricing reflects our premium quality product and we expect to increase margins following the commissioning of our transhipment platform in Q2 2012," the company said.