Chilean copper producer Codelco has announced that it is considering acquiring Anglo American’s mines in the country.
Anglo American is currently reviewing its asset portfolio and intends to sell off less-profitable businesses.
To assist the company during the sale process, Anglo will appoint its joint brokers Goldman Sachs Group and Morgan Stanley.
The company aims to offload at least three of its copper mines in Chile and a $1bn smelter by mid-year, and to retain its copper operations, which include Los Bronces and Collahuasi.
Codelco recently created a special smelter business division, according to an industry source.
Anglo American posted a net debt of $12.9bn as at 31 December 2014, compared with $10.7bn in 2013, with $15.1bn of liquidity, as well as $1.7bn of bonds maturing this year and $1.6bn maturing next year.
The group’s reported underlying earnings before interests and tax (EBIT) of $4.9bn, represents a 25% decrease owing to sharply weaker commodity prices, partially offset by weaker producer country currencies, as well as increased production and sales volumes.
Codelco develops its operations through six mining divisions and the Ventanas smelter and refinery, which the company has owned since May 2005.
The company also has ownership interests in several important mining companies, such as in Minera Gaby and El Abra.