Anglo American Reports Increased Copper Output
Anglo American's copper production surged in Q3, compensating for declines in diamond and coal sectors. However, full-year guidance adjusted due to lower output in Chile.
Anglo American has announced that its copper production in the third quarter has surged, compensating for significant declines in the diamond and coal sectors. However, due to a decrease in output from Chile, the mining company has slightly adjusted its full-year production guidance for copper.
During the third quarter, Anglo American produced 209,000 metric tons of copper, marking a remarkable 42% increase compared to the previous quarter. The rise was driven by a progressive increase in volumes from the Quellaveco mine. Overall, total production rose by 4% on a quarterly basis.
Anglo American remains confident that its Peruvian mine, which holds one of the world's largest undeveloped copper deposits, will yield between 310,000 and 350,000 tons in 2023.
Regrettably, the significant boost in copper production was offset by a considerable decline in rough diamond and steelmaking coal production. Specifically, rough diamond production fell by 23%, while steelmaking coal production declined by 21%.
Several factors contributed to the decrease in copper production from Chile, including unfavorable ore characteristics, an electrical substation fire at the Los Bronces mine, and a geotechnical fault line affecting production at El Soldado. Consequently, Anglo American has lowered its full-year target range for copper production to 830,000-870,000 tons from the initial estimate of 840,000-930,000 tons.
The realized prices for copper saw a moderate increase of 3% to reach 387 U.S. cents per pound. This is an important development for the global energy transition.
In a separate statement, Anglo American Platinum, a subsidiary focused on platinum group metals, reported a 2% decline in production to 1.03 million ounces, while sales saw a 2% increase due to a reduction in refined stock. The unit has maintained its full-year outlook for production and costs.
Anglo American also experienced a decrease in nickel and iron ore production by 7% and 4% respectively. On the other hand, manganese ore output rose by 4%.
"Our primary focus is on delivering our full-year production guidance as planned, with a stronger second half of the year," said Anglo American Chief Executive Duncan Wanblad.
The company has maintained its full-year production guidance and cost projections for all metals except copper.