Diversified miner Anglo American boosted copper output by 52% year-on-year to 244,000 tonnes in the fourth quarter of 2022, while its copper total equivalent production was up 10% for the period, the company said in its production report.
“Our production increased by 10% in the fourth quarter compared to the same period in 2021, driven by the ongoing ramp-up at Quellaveco which produced more than 80,000 tonnes of copper,” CEO Duncan Wanblad said.
The company, however, slashed nickel production by 4% year-on year to 10,200 tonnes in the fourth quarter and by 5% to 39,800 in 2022.
Platinum group metals (PGM) and gold production saw a 10% decrease to 990,000 ounces in the fourth quarter and was down 6% to 4,024 million ounces in 2022.
Last year, the company sold copper at an average of USD 3.85/lb and nickel at USD 10.26/lb.
Why it matters:
The fourth quarter ramp-up allowed Anglo American to boost full-year copper output by 3% to 664,000 tonnes.
According to the company’s guidance, the fourth-quarter trends are expected to continue in 2023.
Anglo American expects to ramp up copper production by 26-40% to 830,000-920,000 tonnes this year. Nickel output is seen unchanged or slightly decreased at 38,000-40,000 tonnes.
The company’s PGM and gold production is forecasted to further retreat 1-10% to 3.6-4 million ounces in 2023.
“In 2023, our unwavering focus remains on ensuring a safe and stable platform for strengthened and repeatable operational performance, while progressing towards our sustainability ambitions and advancing our organic growth options,” Wanblad said, recalling that the company sought to achieve carbon neutral operations by 2040.