A mixed bag for Anglo American

Anglo American has increased production across its operations despite the…

Anglo American has increased production across its operations despite the planned slowdown of its Kumba iron ore operation in South Africa.

The company welcomed a nine per cent increase in nickel production in the final quarter of 2024 and increased steelmaking coal production by two per cent, with a unit cost of $121 per tonne (/t).

The sale point was $6/t above guidance due to lower production at the Moranbah coal mine in Queensland.

The Minas-Rio iron ore project in Brazil also saw a 15 per cent increase to production on the 2022–23 financial year (FY22).

“Looking ahead, our deliberate prioritisation of value over volume is designed to improve margins and returns,” Anglo American chief executive Duncan Wanblad said.

“We are committed to safely delivering a consistent production performance in a streamlined and more effective organisation with significantly lower costs and capital requirements and that is more resilient through the cycle.

“Our Quellaveco mine in Peru delivered its strongest quarter yet of 93,700 tonnes of copper, while Minas-Rio also delivered its highest ever quarterly volume of 6.6 million tonnes of premium high-grade iron ore.

“Compared to the same period in 2022, fourth quarter volumes reduced by seven per cent, primarily due to the planned Kumba reduction and the current unfavourable ore phase at Los Bronces.”

Production from Anglo’s platinum group metals (PGM) operations was six per cent lower in 2023, mainly due to the planned ramp-down of operations at its now-sold Kroondal mine in South Africa to Sibanye-Stillwater.

The company also saw lower production at its South African Amandelbult PGM operation due to planned infrastructure closures.

Overall production was two per cent higher than in FY22, with Anglo’s 2024 guidance on track.

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