Anglo American has posted an increase in its copper and iron ore production in the first quarter of 2014, but has seen a drop in its platinum output due to an ongoing wage strike at its South African operations.
Iron ore accounts for almost half of the group’s earnings, with output totalling 11.3 Mt in the first quarter, up 10 percent from the year before. Copper is the second-largest earner for the group and has seen its output rise 18 percent year-on-year to 202 000 tonnes, raising its 2014 copper production output guidance to 710 000 to 730 000 t.
In platinum, however, Anglo’s refined platinum production has fallen 39 percent to 357 000 oz on account of a three-month long wage strike that has crippled its operations in South Africa, effectively bringing the affected mines to a standstill. Rising production costs and suppressed platinum prices are also an ongoing concern for the group. Anglo now expects to produce about 2.1 Moz rather than the 2.3-2.4 Moz previously estimated.