Mining Industry Profile

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Excerpt from Mining Industry Profile

Companies in this industry develop mine sites; mine and quarry coal, metal ores, and nonmetallic minerals, and prepare extracted materials. Major companies include US-based Freeport-McMoRan, Newmont Mining, and Peabody Energy, as well as Barrick Gold (Canada), BHP Billiton and Rio Tinto (both dually headquartered in Australia and the UK), Coal India, Glencore (Switzerland), Grupo Mexico, Norilsk Nickel (Russia), and Vale (Brazil).

Worldwide, China dominates coal, metals, and nonmetallic minerals production, although Chile and Indonesia lead in global production of copper and nickel, respectively. Mineral and metal production and imports are expected to continue expanding in China, India, and other parts of Asia as growing economies demand more energy and construction materials. China's coal consumption, however, is expected to level off as the country switches to cleaner fuel sources. The US will continue its shift from coal to natural gas as well, but demand in India is expected to offset those declines in coal use, according to the US Energy Information Administration.

The US mining industry includes about 6,000 establishments (single-location companies and units of multi-location companies) with combined annual revenue of about $83 billion.


Demand for coal comes mainly from generators of electricity. Metal ore demand is driven by industrial production. Nonmetallic mineral demand is driven by construction spending and agricultural spending on fertilizers. Large companies can afford to discover and develop new deposits and increase reserves. Small companies typically ...

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