Anglo American production for Q4 2023 as expected

Duncan Wanblad, Chief Executive of Anglo American, said that the fourth quarter production was in line with Anglo American expectations and in line with the third quarter, despite the deliberate slowdown at Kumba to help draw down stock levels caused by poor third-party rail performance.

“Our Quellaveco mine in Peru delivered its strongest quarter yet of 93,700 tonnes of copper, while Minas-Rio also delivered its highest ever quarterly volume of 6.6 million tonnes of premium high-grade iron ore. Compared to the same period in 2022, fourth quarter volumes reduced by 7%, primarily due to the planned Kumba reduction and the current unfavourable ore phase at Los Bronces.

“Looking ahead, our deliberate prioritisation of value over volume is designed to improve margins and returns. We are committed to safely delivering a consistent production performance in a streamlined and more effective organisation with significantly lower costs and capital requirements and that is more resilient through the cycle.

“We are implementing the right actions to enhance value now and for the longer term, and will continue to do so. We see significant value upside from operational resilience, reducing complexity, and from the growth opportunities presented by the high quality of our resource endowments and the major demand trends.”

Q4 2023 highlights

  • Minas-Rio had a record quarterly performance, increasing production by 15% compared to Q4 2022. However, this was more than offset by a planned slowdown in Kumba’s production to align with third-party logistics constraints, resulting in an overall decrease in iron ore production of 12%.
  • Nickel production increased by 9%, reflecting improved operational stability.
  • Steelmaking coal production increased by 2%, reflecting steady performance at the Aquila operation and improved performance at Grosvenor, partly offset by ongoing challenging strata conditions at Moranbah.
  • Copper production decreased by 6%: a 16% decrease in Chile’s production was primarily driven by Los Bronces (expected lower grade and harder ore), which more than offset higher production from Quellaveco in Peru.
  • Production from our Platinum Group Metals (PGMs) operations was 6% lower, mainly due to the planned ramp-down of operations at Kroondal (now sold) and lower production at Amandelbult due to planned infrastructure closures.
  • Rough diamond production decreased by 3%, primarily due to the planned reduction as Venetia transitions to underground operations, partly offset by higher production from Botswana.
  • The Steelmaking Coal full year 2023 unit cost of $121/t was $6/t above guidance due to lower than expected production from the higher fixed cost underground operation at Moranbah.
  • 2023 production was 2%(1) higher than prior year, reflecting the 24% increase in copper volumes primarily from Quellaveco, a strong performance from Minas-Rio and a steady increase from the Steelmaking Coal operations.
  • All 2024 guidance is unchanged from the December investor update

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