One thing resource miners have in spades is optimism. Take South Africa’s latest digger, Neo Energy Metals, which is hoping to build a uranium mine in the Northern Cape. Dubbed yellowcake, the mineral has been out of vogue for more than a decade. But prices have been heading north for the past three years, and in October they hit levels last seen in 2011.

According to the World Nuclear Association, global uranium demand is forecast to reach 83,840t in 2030, from 65,650t now, while supply falls 50%. A doubling in the development pipeline is needed to avoid a major supply deficit, the association says...

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