Anglo American lowers 2023 copper production guidance

Quellaveco copper mine in Peru. Image from Anglo American.

Global miner Anglo American on Tuesday lowered its 2023 production guidance for copper on curtailments at its Chilean operations, even as its output of the metal rose 42% in the third quarter.

Anglo expects to produce between 830,000 and 870,000 metric tons of copper this year, lowering a previous forecast of 840,000 to 930,000.

Its copper output rose to 596,000 tons in the first nine months of 2023, underpinned by the ramp-up of its Quellaveco mine in Peru, from 420,000 tons a year earlier, it said.

Copper demand for use in products such as solar panels and electric cars is set to increase sharply in the coming years as the world moves toward green energy and electrification.

Anglo’s share price, which has fallen 37% this year, opened up 1.6% in London.

“Anglo shares have been very weak versus peers recently and we continue to see the portfolio, bolstered by the Quellaveco cash flow flip as the mine ramps up and potentially less downside from PGMs (platinum group metals) and diamond prices from here,” said Tyler Broda at RBC Capital Markets.

The London-listed company posted a double-digit fall in steelmaking coal and diamonds output in the quarter ended Sept. 30.

Production of rough diamonds fell 23% year-on-year to 7.4 million carats. Demand for diamonds has fallen this year in major consumer China, where an economic slowdown curbed appetite for luxury items.

Iron ore production decreased by 4% in the third quarter, Anglo said. Sales at its South African unit Kumba continue to be weighed down by lack of rail to ship the material to ports.

Stockpiles at Kumba swelled to 9 million tons in the three months to September compared with 4.6 million tons in the same quarter in 2022.

(By Clara Denina and Felix Njini; Editing by Jason Neely and Robert Birsel)


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