Journal of the Southern African Institute of Mining and Metallurgy
On-line version ISSN 2411-9717
Print version ISSN 0038-223X
This paper highlights several management practices from the oil and gas industry to support the proposition that financial performance in the finite, non-renewable resource business relates more to upstream rather than downstream activities. Based on the analysis of nine oil and gas companies, this study supports a previous study involving fourteen mining companies that showed reserves growth is one of the main levers of value creation in mining. Interestingly, this study also finds that the oil and gas industry has been historically more profitable than mining. The reason, it is argued, is that oil and gas companies count on management practices that focus primarily on the upstream segments of the business, compared to the traditional downstream focus of mining. This paper delves into these ideas to conclude that what mining may need to improve its competitive advantage is a new organizational framework. Another conclusion is that the upstream management focus is vital not only for strategy formulation in the resource business, but also for policy formulation in economies based on the export of finite, non-renewable resources.
Keywords : Value creation; mining; value chain; mineral resource management; resource business; non-renewable resources; oil and gas; mine planning; mining value chain.