Antofagasta, a British miner operating in Chile, expects annual copper production to be on the lower end of its 725-755,000mt guidance, citing COVID-19-related shutdowns and planned maintenance as the reasons.
The company pushed forward maintenance of its Los Pelambres mine to this quarter follwing restrictions caused by the COVID-19 pandemic. In 2021, it expects total copper production to rise by a mere 5,000mt if measures to combat COVID-19 remain in place. The rise has been attributed to better grade recovery at the Centinela mine.
In January-September, Antofagasta produced 541,300mt of copper, down by 7.3pc from 584,200mt produced in the same period last year. In the third quarter, output totaled 169,600mt, declining by 4.6pc from 177,700mt a quarter earlier. Sales during this period declined by 9.4pc to 162,100mt.
In Q3 2020, the Los Pelambres mine contributed 85,900mt to the group’s total production while Centinela added 55,200mt, of which 23,100mt was in cathode form. Antucoya provided 17,300mt, while Zaldivar contributed 11,100mt, despite pandemic-related restrictions.