The world’s fourth largest producer of uranium, Energy Resources of Australia (ERA), has registered A$422.8m in revenues for 2012, a 37% decline from the previous year.
Net loss for the company stands at A$219m, compared with a loss of A$154m in 2011, and includes an impairment charge of A$68m.
The firm attributed the loss to a decline in short and long-term uranium supply, lower prices for the nuclear fuel and a strong Australian dollar.
The spot price of uranium finished 2012 at A$43.38 compared to A$51.88 per pound on 31 December 2011.
During 2012, Ore reserves at ERA’s Ranger project declined from 13,484t to 9,675t due to depletion by processing and a pit re-design, while mineral resources decreased from 117,240t to 63,377t of contained uranium oxide, the company noted.
A considerable increase in depreciation resulted in A$151m loss in underlying earnings in 2012, against a loss of A$54m in 2011.
ERA expects that the uranium market will remain challenging in the short term. "However, the long term outlook is still very encouraging for established producers," the company said.
In 2013, ERA expects to produce 2,700t to 3,300t of uranium. The firm said it will continue to reduce the costs of its operations "to reflect expected production levels."
Image: The Ranger Uranium mine, in Australia’s Northern Territory, is the second largest uranium mine in the world. Photo: Energy Resources of Australia Ltd.