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27 Jan 2022 | 08:01

Anglo-american Q4 production flat: Flags higher copper output

(Sharecast News) - Mining giant Anglo American reported flat fourth-quarter production as higher diamond output was offset by a fall in copper. Copper production fell 4% in the three months to December. After producing 647,200 tonnes of copper last year Anglo now expects 680,000 - 760,000 tonnes for this year, as its new Quellaveco copper mine in Peru comes onstream.

However, Anglo warned of potential Covid-related disruptions and water shortages in Chile, which is its largest copper producing area.

"(At Quellaveco) We are on track and within budget, we mined our first ore in October 2021, and we are expecting our first production of copper concentrate in the middle of this year," said chief executive Mark Cutifani.

The miner expects Quellaveco to produce between 120,000 and 160,000 tonnes in 2022, followed by an average of 300,000 tonnes per year for the first 10 years at full production.

In the three months to December, rough diamond production rose by 15% year on year mostly on increased output from Botswana and Namibia to meet renewed consumer demand.

Fourth quarter Iron ore production fell 7%, due to unplanned maintenance at its Brazilian Minas-Rio mine, but was up 3% for the year at 63.8m tonnes.
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