Engineering, Equipment & Technology, Mining and Heavy Industries

Miners should double as futurists in 2018: Deloitte

Miners will have to embrace automation, robotics and artificial intelligence to survive a disruptive 2018, according to a new report from advisory firm Deloitte.

In its new Tracking the Trends paper, Deloitte says operational realities in mining have shifted “irrevocably” in the face of a digital revolution.

“To thrive in the mining industry’s historical boom and bust cycle, and capitalise on new opportunities, companies must rethink the traditional mining model,” Deloitte’s national mining leader Ian Sanders said.

“Profound change takes time. To change for the better and pave new paths for the future, the mining industry must focus on driving ongoing investments in innovation and digitisation, inspiring their approach to the workforce of the future, manifesting in their commitment to strengthen government and community relations, and guiding their efforts to repair their public image.”

The report also touches on emerging market trends, and their impact on long-term demand for specific commodities.

“Looking back just 20 years, it would have been hard to believe that nickel, lithium, cobalt and graphite would be an affordable way to power batteries,” Deloitte Consulting’s mining leader David Cormack said.

“But, today that is the reality and a potential growth opportunity, particularly with the emergence of electric vehicles. And although asteroid mining for rare metals still sounds like science fiction today, the market potential in the not-too-distant future could be huge.

“If mining companies want to get ahead of the trends, they need to delve deeply into emerging market disruptors.”

Deloitte’s full report is available here.

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