First Quantum sees higher copper production over next three years

First Quantum Minerals expects to achieve higher copper production in the next three years out to 2023, driven largely by its operations in Zambia and Panama.

The Vancouver, Canada-based company is forecasting copper production this year of 785,000-850,000 tonnes, up from 779,000 tonnes in 2020.

For 2022, First Quantum is expecting copper output of 805,000-860,000 tonnes, increasing to 820,000-880,000 tonnes in 2023.

The company was badly affected last year by the Covid-19 pandemic, particularly at its Cobre Panama operations in Panama.

Cobre Panama - the only major greenfield project in the copper industry - was placed on care and maintenance on April 7, 2020, after the government ordered a suspension of operations the previous day.

The suspension ended in July.

The company produces copper at operations in Zambia, Spain, Turkey and Mauritania. Its flagship operation is the Kansanshi copper mine near Solwezi, in Zambia’s North-Western Province, which is capable of producing 340,000 tonnes per year of copper.

In fact, the company reported record annual output of 251,000 tonnes at Sentinel in Zambia last year, exceeding the 221,000 tonnes produced at Kansanshi.

The company is planning to spend $270 million in 2023 on a proposed expansion at Kansanshi. This project is subject to board approval and the timing could be accelerated or delayed depending on capital availability, commodity prices and the Zambian fiscal regime, First Quantum said.

Fastmarkets copper concentrates treatment charge/refining charge (TC/RC) index, cif Asia Pacific set new lows in the first two weeks of January.

It was calculated at $40.30 per tonne / 4.03 cents per lb on January 8 before it dropped marginally to $40.10 per tonne / 4.01 cents per lb on January 15 and remains unchanged as of January 22 - at a record low since the index was launched in 2013.

What to read next
The publication of Fastmarkets copper concentrates TC index, cif Asia Pacific was delayed on Friday March 26, due to a reporter error.
State-owned copper giant Codelco has created two subsidiaries to further its expansion into lithium, a metal Chile has identified as essential not only for the global energy transition but for its own future development
After a month-long consultation period, Fastmarkets has refined the delivery terms for its international nickel sulfate price assessments, with Japan and Korea now the only accepted locations.
China-affiliated producers bought small volumes of US OCC imports but uncertainty still looms over a price rebound
After an extended consultation period, Fastmarkets has amended the specified brands in its cobalt standard grade and cobalt alloy grade price assessments.
A growing focus by consumers on Scope 3 carbon emissions is putting raw materials, such as bauxite and alumina, in the spotlight
We use cookies to provide a personalized site experience.
By continuing to use & browse the site you agree to our Privacy Policy.