The Group’s production decreased compared to the previous year due to the drought that affected the activities of Minera Los Pelambres and the lower degrees of Centinela.
Antofagasta minerals – mining area of the Luksic Group – reported having achieved a production of 138,800 tons of copper up during the first quarter of the year, with a net cash cost of US $ 1.75 per pound, which although it is in line with the group estimates mean a decrease compared to the previous period.
“As we had already pointed out, this decrease in production compared to the previous year it is the result of a prolonged drought who lives in the Coquimbo region, where Minera Los Pelambres is located; and a drop in degrees in the Minera Centinela sulphide line, ”explained Iván Arriagada, executive president of Antofagasta Minerals.
In the case of Minera Los Pelambres, the company specified through a declaration that the Complementary Infrastructures (INCO) project has reached 73% completion. At a cost of $ 2.2 billion, consider the construction of a desalination plantwhich will be launched in the second half of 2022. That way you can do it “normalize its production capacity even if the drought conditions extend to the rest of the year”.
As for the grades below Centinela, which also affect the production of gold and molybdenum, the mining plan believes that “they will recover in the coming months”.
“For this reason, the Group maintains its production target for the year of 660,000 – 690,000 tons of copper, at a net cash cost of US $ 1.55 per pound,” said Iván Arriagada. Furthermore, he commented that the Group maintains its expectations of investing $ 1,900 million during this year.
As for the world markets, the executive has indicated this “Copper, gold and molybdenum performed well during the first quarter and we expect this to continue, as the structural balance between supply and demand is reflected in a very tense physical market ”.
At the same time pointed out that the Mining Group keeps its focus on cost controltake care of the profitability of its investments and, above all, protect the health and safety of its workers, collaborators and communities close to its activities and projects.
“This first quarter has been very challenging as we are facing conditions that affect our production, just as we expected. However, these are transitory conditions, which we are facing thanks to the work and investments that we are already carrying out and which continue to advance according to our plans ”, concluded Arriagada.