MMG anticipates production of 305,000-315,000 tonnes of copper this year for the Las Bambas mine in Peru, while cautioning that a “high degree of operational uncertainty remains.”
MMG withdrew its 2020 output guidance of 350,000-370,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate for Las Bambas in April, after Peru extended a state of emergency to slow the spread of coronavirus.
Shipments from Las Bambas have returned to normal after nearly a week of disruption, after protesters blocked a road at Tuntuma, 200 kilometers from the mine.
The community had asked the company to pay $277,446 for development projects, according to local news reports.
Las Bambas – the world’s ninth-largest copper mine – produced 84,086 tonnes of copper in concentrate in July-September, up 44% quarter-on-quarter but down 13% year-on-year.
MMG reported total production of 102,469 tonnes of copper and 61,606 tonnes of zinc in Q3.
“I am pleased to report third quarter production of copper and zinc up 33% and 2% respectively, on the previous quarter. The significant improvement in copper production was largely driven by increased workforce stability in Peru as we continue to contend with the ongoing impact of the covid-19 pandemic in the region,” said MMG CEO Geoffrey Gao in a media release.
Las Bamba’s molybdenum output rose 153% year-on-year to 1,180 tonnes.
Dugald River in Australia produced 46,081 tonnes of zinc in zinc concentrate during the period which represents a 6% increase over the June 2020 quarter, the company said. The operation achieved record mining volumes during July and August.
Rosebery underground mine in Tasmania increased its mining and milling volumes compared to the June 2020 quarter after access was restored to areas impacted by seismic activity in 2019. The operation produced 15,525 tonnes of zinc in zinc concentrate for the period.
MMG also said it had decided to temporarily suspend mining activity at its Kinsevere copper project in the Democratic Republic of Congo ahead of the upcoming wet season, but said stockpiles would ensure ore processing would not be affected until mining resumes in the second quarter of 2021.
It therefore maintained production guidance of 68,000-75,000 tonnes of copper cathode for Kinsevere in 2020.