London, England — MININGREVIEW.COM — 23 April 2010 – Mining giant Anglo American “’ one of the world’s largest diversified mining and natural resource groups “’ has posted strong first-quarter production, outdoing two of its biggest rivals with a rise in its output of copper, the group’s most profitable product.
Reuters reports that Anglo’s output in the first three months of 2010 grew in nearly every category “’ a sharp contrast to BHP Billiton, which on Wednesday reported lower output across most products, including a 19% slide in copper. And last week Rio Tinto posted a sharper-than-expected 16% fall in copper production.
Copper was Anglo’s most lucrative product last year, contributing 41% of operating profit.
Copper output in the first three months of 2010 increased to 161,000 tonnes, mainly due to higher ore grades at its Collahuasi and Los Bronces mines in Chile.
The company also reported a surge in output of iron ore “’ its second most important product “’ which along with manganese accounted for 30% of last year’s operating profit. Iron ore production jumped 23% to 12.3 million tonnes after Kumba Iron Ore opened a new processing plant for the raw material to make steel.
Kumba “’ the world’s 10th largest iron ore producer “’ produced 11.5 million tonnes of the metal, accounting for the bulk of Anglo’s output. The group also owns the smaller Amapa mine in Brazil.
Anglo made only a brief mention of its divestment programme, saying it was "progressing well", and did not comment on a report on Wednesday that it had received a bid for its Tarmac building materials unit. It also said the sale of its zinc assets was "well advanced and higher competitive".