Codelco H1 copper output down 6.4% year-on-year
The Chilean copper miner has cited "a drop in ore grades, harder rock and deeper deposits" as adverse operational factors that precipitated the output drop.
SANTIAGO (Reuters) -
The world's top copper producer, Chile's Codelco, said on Friday it produced 767,000 tonnes of copper in the first half of the year, down 6.4 percent year-on-year due to lower output at its Chuquicamata, Salvador and Radomiro Tomic mines.
Codelco cited "a drop in ore grades, harder rock and deeper deposits" as adverse operational factors that precipitated the output drop, which was somewhat offset by production increases at the Gaby, El Teniente and Andina deposits.
The state-run miner said profits before tax and extraordinary items fell 39 percent during the January-June period from a year earlier to $2.391 billion. Cash costs in the period reached $1.477 per pound, up 27 percent compared with the same period of 2011.
Codelco has said it expects to produce 1.708 million tonnes of copper this year. The miner is implementing an ambitious investment plan to boost copper output at its massive but ageing mines to more than 2 million tonnes.
Codelco and its finance partner Mitsui recently bought a 29.5 percent stake in global miner Anglo American's coveted central-south Chilean properties, ending an acrimonious 10-month brawl over the assets.
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