Coronavirus company news summary – Chile copper production costs decline by 17% – Covid-19 adversely affects Argentinian mining exports – Iamgold reduces production targets

6 November 2020 (Last Updated November 6th, 2020 09:38)

6 November

The Chilean copper industry witnessed a 17% decline in output costs during the first half of the year owing to the impact of the coronavirus pandemic on the country. Cash costs dropped to $1.21 per pound of copper produced in H1 from $1.45 per pound in H1 2019. The decline in costs is attributed to drop in prices of ingredients such as sulfuric acid and diesel used in copper processing apart from weakening of peso against dollar.

Argentinian mining exports saw a 25% slump as mining activity was severely impacted by the lockdown restrictions imposed to curb the coronavirus pandemic. Mineral exploration funding dropped to $160m from $241m in 2019.

Canadian gold miner Iamgold reduced its 2020 production guidance on the Westwood underground mine as an earthquake forced suspension of operations. The output estimate for 2020 has now been revised to between 630,000oz and 680,000oz from between 70,000oz and 760,000oz. Iamgold has gradually diminished the production guidance since March, owing to the impact of the Covid-19 pandemic.

Luxembourg-based steel major ArcelorMittal recorded a $261m net loss for the third quarter, compared with $539m loss it posted in Q3 2019. The company improved its performance from the June quarter, when it posted a net loss of $599m, thanks to a steady recovery of steel market owing to easing of Covid-19 related lockdown restrictions. ArcelorMittal’s steel shipments for Q3 stood at 17.5Mt, an increase from 14.8Mt reported in Q2.