Mining Intelligence: Top copper producers in 2021

The red metal is vital to the transition to an electrified economy, and it is also a barometer of global economic health.

While the copper price has seen some recent turmoil due to fast-rising interest rates and weak economic data, what remains steadfast is how much the world needs copper, as the highly conductive metal is a key component of industrial infrastructure and electric vehicles.

MiningIntelligence data show the top copper producers in the world based on 2021 production and measured in kilotonnes (kt).

#1 Codelco

Coming in at first place is Chile’s state- owned copper Codelco, with 1,728 kt of copper produced in 2021.

#2 Freeport McMoRan

Phoenix, Arizona – based Freeport McMoRan takes second place, with 1,210 kt produced during the year.

#3 Glencore

Swiss commodities giant Glencore is in third place, with 1,196 kt of copper produced. 

#4 BHP Group

Melbourne, Australia based BHP is the world’s biggest miner, but takes fourth place on our list, with 1,045 kt of copper produced in 2021.

#5 Southern Copper

Mexico City’s Southern Copper produced 958 kt in 2021, snagging no. 5 on our list. 

#6 First Quantum Minerals

First Quantum Minerals, based in Vancouver, Canada, is in sixth place, with 743 kt of copper produced for the year. 

#7 KGHM Polska Miedz

Polish miner KGHM Polska Miedz secured seventh place, with 562 kt of copper produced. 

#8 Antofagasta

London, UK based Antofagasta produced 486 kt of copper for the year, taking eighth place in the ranking.

#9 Zijin Mining

Zijin Mining, based in Shanghang, China, is in ninth place with 477 kt of copper produced.

#10 Anglo American

London- listed miner Anglo American rounds out our list, with 463 kt of copper produced in 2021.

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