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First Quantum quarterly profit falls

First Quantum –
production up,
profits and earnings
Toronto, Canada — MININGREVIEW.COM — 11 November 2009 – Listed on the Toronto and London Stock Exchanges, First Quantum Minerals Limited “’ a growing mining and metals company which focuses on Africa “’ has revealed that its quarterly profit has fallen 16%, hurt by weaker copper prices and a US$40.4 million (R320 million) hedging loss.

A statement issued here confirmed that the Canadian copper and gold miner had earned US$123.8 million (R990 million), or US$1.59 (R12.72) a share, in the quarter ended 30 September 2009, compared with a profit of US$147.5 million (R1.2 billion), or US$2.16 (R17.28) a share, in the corresponding quarter of 2008.

The statement added that revenue had slipped to US$557.9 million (R4.4 billion) from US$563.9 million (R4.5 billion) as realised copper prices eased to US$2.26 (R18.08) a pound from US$2.70 (R21.60) a pound, while production of the metal rose 14% to 93 486 tonnes.

First Quantum operates four mines in Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Zambia, and Mauritania. It has also been developing the Kolwezi tailings project in the DRC, but the government cancelled the project’s contract in August, following broad review of the country’s mining contracts.

The company confirmed that it was seeking a negotiated solution to the dispute, but said it might have no choice but to file arbitration proceedings.

First Quantum maintained its 2009 copper production outlook of 380 000 tonnes, and slightly lowered its expected gold output forecast to 205 000 ounces.