By Jaime Llinares Taboada

 

Anglo American PLC on Thursday reported broadly flat production for the fourth quarter. Here's what the mining major had to say:

 

On 4Q production:

 

"Our production was broadly flat compared to 4Q of 2020, with our operating levels at approximately 95% of normal capacity through the year, largely due to the ongoing Covid related effects on the operating environment."

 

"Production in the fourth quarter benefited from higher rough diamond production at De Beers, a return to pre-Covid production levels at our open cut metallurgical coal mines and improved mining performance at Amandelbult which resulted in higher metal in concentrate production from our PGMs business. At our copper operations, Collahuasi's production increased as a result of strong plant performance and planned maintenance in the comparable period of 2020."

 

"Rough diamond production increased by 15%, principally from Jwaneng in Botswana as well as in Namibia, reflecting planned higher production in response to strong consumer demand."

 

"Our Platinum Group Metals (PGMs) operations more than doubled refined production in the quarter, and resulted in a record full year refined production of 5.1Moz. This has substantially reduced work-in-progress inventory, and resulted in a 62% increase in co-product nickel production for the full year to 22,300 tonnes. Together with our primary nickel output, group total nickel production reached 64,000 tonnes in 2021, a 12% increase year-on-year."

 

"Metallurgical coal production increased by 5%, reflecting an increase in production at the Dawson open cut operation, partially offset by Moranbah which continues to be affected by areas of challenging geology."

 

"Our copper operations' full year production was in line with the prior year, mitigating the ongoing water challenges from the severe drought conditions."

 

"Full year iron ore production increased by 3%, although lower in the quarter, despite unplanned maintenance at Minas-Rio and third party rail performing below planned levels affecting Kumba's production for the year."

 

On 2022 outlook:

 

"As we move into 2022, we are pleased with the construction progress at Quellaveco, our new copper mine in Peru. We are on track and within budget, we mined our first ore in October 2021, and we are expecting our first production of copper concentrate in the middle of this year."

 

"In the first quartile of the cost curve, we expect Quellaveco to produce 120,000-160,000 tonnes of copper production in 2022 and to average 300,000 tonnes per year for the first ten years at full production."

 

Write to Jaime Llinares Taboada at jaime.llinares@wsj.com; @JaimeLlinaresT

 

(END) Dow Jones Newswires

January 27, 2022 03:26 ET (08:26 GMT)

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