Chile sees higher copper output in September

Wednesday, November 8, 2017

Copper production in Chile rose 3.2% year-on-year to 475,000t in September, state copper commission Cochilco said in its latest monthly report.

However, output was 4.3% lower from 496,200t in September. Production in the first nine months of the year was down 4.0% to 3.96Mt.

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BHP's Escondida mine, which experienced a 44-day strike earlier this year, saw output for the first nine months fall 20.9% to 602,700t.

State copper giant Codelco posted a 3.2% year-on-year drop in output to 1.32Mt in January-September. Production at its Chuquicamata-Radomiro Tomic-Ministro Hales complex dipped 8.0% to 595,400t, while output at its smallest mine, Salvador, was up 2.8% to 43,900t, and that of El Teniente dropped 1.8% to 346,200t.

Production at Codelco's Andina rose 16.8% to 164,200t in the nine-month period, while its Gabriela Mistral division reported 0.4% growth to 92,000t.

Collahuasi, a JV between Anglo American and Glencore and Chile's second largest copper mine, reported a 1.6% growth in output to 379,600t in January-September. Production at Antofagasta Minerals' Los Pelambres fell 3.1% to 260,200t. Output at Lundin Mining's Candelaria was up 23.4% to 116,100t.

Anglo American Sur reported a 0.9% decline to 263,700t, while output at the Zaldívar mine – jointly controlled by Antofagasta and Barrick Gold – rose 2.1% to 77,600t.


El Abra (pictured), controlled by Freeport-McMoRan with a 51% stake and 49% owned by Codelco, saw production decline 25.9% to 57,400t. Output at BHP's Spence was up 17.4% to 147,600t, while production at its Cerro Colorado operation was down 21.2% to 48,800t.

Teck Resources' Quebrada Blanca saw output slip 33.2% to 17,300t in the first nine months, while production at Glencore's Lomas Bayas mine climbed 3.1% to 60,800t.


Chilean molybdenum production was up 17.8% year-on-year to 4,830t in September, Cochilco said in a separate report. Output for the first nine months climbed 11.7% to 46,711t.

Codelco's molybdenum output fell 7.4% to 21,262t in January-September, 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 7,274t, up 40.4% from January-September 2016. Collahuasi's molybdenum output fell 45.0% to 1,696t, while Anglo American Sur reported an 18.1% drop to 1,592t.

Combined production at the Lumina Copper, Sierra Gorda and Valle Central operations was 14,888t in January-September, up 72.6%.



Chilean gold production decreased 11.1% year-on-year to 3,129kg (100,600oz) in September, while silver output was 12.1% lower at 106,572kg, the state agency said separately.

Gold output for the first nine months was down 13.9% to 27,057kg, while silver production fell 19.6% to 917,006kg.