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Chile’s copper output rises;molybdenum, gold, silver fall

Keywords: Tags  Chile, copper, molybdenum, gold, silver, precious metals

SÃO PAULO — Chile’s copper output rose 2.5 percent in the first half of 2012, according the country’s national statistics institute INE. But molybdenum, gold and silver production all fell in the same period.

Chile’s copper production totaled 2.64 million tonnes in the first six months of the year, up from 2.58 million tonnes in 2011. June’s output rose 5.6 percent year-on-year to 452,690 tonnes.

Larger producers posted higher growth figures than smaller ones, the institute noted. Companies with more than 400 workers posted an average production increase of 5.8 percent in 12 months. Companies with 80 to 400 workers and those with fewer than 80 workers grew by 2 percent and 2.3 percent, respectively.

Meanwhile, Chilean output of molybdenum concentrates fell 19.9 percent year-on-year in the first half on lower-grade metals.

INE reported a molybdenum preliminary volume of 15,473 tonnes in the first six months of 2012, compared with 19,316 tonnes in the year-ago period.

In June, output fell 30.4 percent year-on-year to 2,471 tonnes.

Chilean gold and silver production also fell in the first half, dropping by 1.5 percent and 21.1 percent year-on-year, respectively. The institute did not include production volumes for any of the precious metals in its report.

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