Codelco announced yesterday that it’s suspending its third-party contracts for a month, citing operational restrictions related to COVID-19 containment efforts imposed by the Chilean government.
The suspensions will impact around 30pc of the total state workers employed by Codelco, the copper miner announced in a statement, and could be extended beyond 30 days, depending on progress containing the pandemic.
Chile has been in countrywide lockdown to contain the spread of COVID-19 and copper miners have felt the impact. Some miners are exploring production cuts.
However, the state-owned miner—and Chile’s largest copper producer—said its mining production remained unaffected. According to media reports, the company met its sales targets in March despite its customers shutting down.
The company’s production volumes declined by 5.8pc in 2019 because of inclement weather and a strike at its Chuquicamata mine.
Chile lowered its copper price guidance by 45¢/lb to $2.40/lb recently in anticipation of COVID-19’s impact on production and sales for the metal.