First-half earnings fell at Corporación Nacional
del Cobre de Chile (Codelco) due to lower metal prices and
state-owned copper producer posted pre-tax profits of $1.8
billion, down 28 percent from $2.51 billion in the first six
months of last year.
Revenue from copper
sales fell 3.8 percent to $5.84 billion from $6.07 billion in
the same comparison. Copper shipments increased 2.9 percent to
837,000 tonnes, but average copper prices fell 6.9 percent to
$7,539 per tonne ($3.42 per pound) and cash costs increased
16.8 percent to $4.17 billion.
production totaled 843,000 tonnes in the first half, up 5
percent a year earlier.
affected by the weather, particularly at the Andina project,
and a workers strike on April 9," said Ivan Arriagada,
Codelcos vice president of administration and finance.
Lower ore grades at the Chuquicamata and Salvador divisions
also affected production.
Codelco aims to
increase total copper production to 2.5 million tonnes annually
by 2021. The companys main expansion projects are the
170,000-tonne-per-year Ministro Hales siteexpected to
start its production ramp-up by the end of the yeara new
mining level at El Teniente and the construction of an
underground level at Chuquicamata.
In July, the Chilean
government approved a $1-billion earnings reinvestment for
Codelco to support the miners plans. In addition, the
company announced in August a $750-million bond issue to
finance its investments.
A version of this article was first published by AMM sister
publication Metal Bulletin.