BHP expects full-year iron ore output near upper end of forecast

Credit: BHP

BHP Group Ltd on Wednesday reported a near 2% dip in third-quarter iron ore production, but said full-year output is expected to be at the upper end of its forecast.

The world’s largest listed miner expects iron ore production at the top end of its 245 million tonnes (Mt) to 255 Mt forecast. Output of the steel-making ingredient from Western Australia on a 100% basis in the three months ended March came in at 66.7 Mt, down from 68 Mt a year earlier.

Commissioning activities at BHP’s $3.4 billion South Flank replacement project in the state’s Pilbara region are set to start in the June quarter, the company said.

BHP said in January that third-quarter production would be impacted by planned ore handling maintenance and tie-in activity between Mining Area C and the South Flank project.

The company results come after Rio Tinto’s iron ore output in the March quarter dropped 2% on an annual basis, and while production at Vale fell 19.5% from the previous quarter.

Iron ore prices jumped more than 4% on Tuesday, extending gains spurred by improved steel profit margins in China and disappointing output figures from Rio and Vale.

(With files from Reuters)

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