The historical evolution of predominantly these three companies has been of great interest to me, especially concerning how they have chosen to develop each of their respective underground hard rock capabilities (Base and Precious metals). However, even more interesting is the truly staggering indirect flow on benefits these "managed" evolutions have had on their companies, the mining industry and the global economy as a whole.
An original concept shows that SACC may have (over decades) restricted faster underground hard rock mining techniques, thus increasing the costs of underground mining. This significantly increases global commodity prices that benefit them many times over when it comes to surface mining and exploration machinery sales.
Global commodity prices may have been increased 2-3-4 fold or more, due to this supply restriction method.
Do SACC know that their development path leads them to far greater profits and mining industry control?
In addition, are major mining companies allowing, protecting or funding this slow underground product evolution to increase their commodity prices and margins?
Here is a link to a new publication that describes the issues with the current mining system, how to fix them and justifications for their changes. It is a comprehensive and somewhat technical publication. But with what is at stake for commodity and manufacturing industry investors, along struggling economies, it is very much worth the read.
Sandvik and Atlas Copco's Mining divisions make up a large part of their profits. A period of uncertainty may fall over this part of their businesses, as their methods will have to adapt as changes are required.
Caterpillar Mining would also go through a period of uncertainty. However, because Caterpillar's mining business is a much smaller portion of its company, the impact is estimated to be less or even negated by the increase in global economic confidence and how this may help their construction sales.
A period of uncertainty may also fall over the global mining industry, as mining companies adjust to the new economic model of a much lower cost structure.
Global manufacturing may regain the confidence to invest in expansion and innovation again, as the costs for metal commodities may fall considerably over the next two years.
These outcomes represent a long view.
An Independent International Enquiry Committee should be set up to ensure economic confidence is returned to the global economy. This is a major global economic event.