Chile sees higher copper, moly output in August

Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Copper production in Chile rose 9.1% year-on-year to 494,600t in August, state copper commission Cochilco said in its latest monthly report.

Compared sequentially, copper output was 5.7% higher from 468,100t in July, while production for the first eight months of the year was down 5.0% to 3.48Mt.

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BHP's Escondida mine, which was hit by a 44-day strike earlier this year, saw output for the first eight months fall 26.0% to 507,100t.

State copper giant Codelco posted a 2.9% year-on-year drop in output to 1.17Mt in January-August. Production at its Chuquicamata-Radomiro Tomic-Ministro Hales complex dipped 8.1% to 527,100t, while output at its smallest mine, Salvador, was down 0.3% to 38,100t, and El Teniente's production dropped 1.6% to 305,500t.

Production at Codelco's Andina rose 20.4% to 147,300t in the eight-month period, while its Gabriela Mistral division (pictured) reported 1.1% growth to 81,300t.

Collahuasi, a JV between Anglo American and Glencore and Chile's second largest copper mine after Escondida, reported a 0.4% drop in output to 331,600t in January-August. Production at Antofagasta Minerals' Los Pelambres fell 3.2% to 229,700t. Output at Lundin Mining's Candelaria was up 21.7% to 100,900t.

Anglo American Sur reported a 0.6% decline to 238,700t, while output at the Zaldívar mine, jointly controlled by Antofagasta and Barrick Gold, rose 0.3% to 68,700t.

El Abra, controlled by Freeport-McMoRan with a 51% stake and 49% owned by Codelco, saw production decline 27.1% to 50,800t. Output at BHP's Spence was up 19.0% to 131,700t, while production at its Cerro Colorado operation was down 21.6% to 44,400t.

Teck Resources' Quebrada Blanca saw output slip 31.4% to 15,700t in the first eight months, while production at Glencore's Lomas Bayas climbed 3.4% to 54,000t.



Chilean molybdenum production was up 17.3% year-on-year to 5,336t in August, Cochilco said in a separate report. Output for the first eight months climbed 11.1% to 41,882t.

Codelco's molybdenum output fell 8.6% to 18,849t in January-August, mainly because of declines at its Chuquicamata, Radomiro Tomic and El Teniente mines, which offset increases at the Salvador and Andina mines.

Los Pelambres produced 6,398t, up 36.3% from January-August 2016. Collahuasi's molybdenum output fell 61.2% to 1,161t, while Anglo American Sur reported an 18.7% drop to 1,448t.

Combined production at the Lumina Copper, Sierra Gorda and Valle Central operations was 14,027t in January-August, up 84.3%.



Chilean gold production decreased 2.9% year-on-year to 3,390kg (108,991oz) in August, while silver output was 4.1% lower at 110,121kg, the state agency said separately.

Gold output for the first eight months was down 14.3% to 23,905kg, while silver production fell 20.6% to 808,963kg.