Antamina copper, zinc mine resumes ops after Covid-19 suspension

The Antamina copper and zinc mine in Peru has resumed operations following its shutdown due to the Covid-19 pandemic, shareholder Teck Resources said.

The Vancouver, Canada-based miner, which has a 22.5% stake in Antamina, said that a reduced operating workforce had been mobilized with plans to start off at roughly 80% of full capacity after operations at Antamina were suspended last month to prevent the spread of Covid-19.

Teck expects a gradual ramp-up to full production in the third quarter, it added.

BHP and Glencore each have a 33.75% stake in the mine while Mitsubishi Corporation has the remaining 10% interest.

Comprehensive Covid-19 protocols are now in place to safeguard the health of workers and local communities, Teck noted.

No updated guidance was provided for production in 2020, although Antamina produced 459,513 tonnes of copper and 365,752 tonnes of zinc in 2019, according to data from Peru’s ministry of energy and mines.

Copper concentrate treatment charges (TCs) have dropped below the annual benchmark level of $62 per tonne following mines around the world declaring force majeure and being put on care and maintenance.

Fastmarkets’ copper concentrates treatment charge (TC) index, cif Asia Pacific was calculated at $51.60 per tonne / 5.16 cents per lb on Friday May 22, up from $49.60 per tonne / 4.96 cents per lb a week earlier.

Fastmarkets’ assessment of zinc spot concentrate treatment charges (TCs), cif China stood at $285-310 per tonne on January 31, but started falling amid quarantines being enforced to contain the spread of Covid-19, leaving it at $180-195 per tonne on April 24 most recently.

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