Switzerland-based mining company Glencore lowered 2020 production guidance for copper and zinc, while nickel output is expected to remain constant. Copper production guidance for 2020 stands at 1.25mn mt from the previous guidance of 1.30mn mt. Zinc’s guidance has been revised down to 1.16mn mt from 1.26mn mt. Nickel production guidance is maintained at 125,000mt for 2020.
In the March quarter (Q1 2020), Glencore produced 293,300mt of copper, down by 9pc from 320,700mt in the year prior quarter. Zinc production rose by 13pc to 295,600mt and nickel was up by 4pc at 282,000mt, while lead production dropped by 17pc to 617,000mt from the prior year.
|Glencore production in Q1|
|Production (kt)||Q1 2020||Q1 2019||Change (%)|
Glencore’s Q1 production was not impacted by the COVID-19 pandemic as most of the mines were shut post-March 31. Copper production took a hit as Mutanda mine was put on care and maintenance and Mopani smelter underwent reconstruction. Zinc production rose on the back of Antamina JV, Iscaycruz mine in Peru which restarted production in Q3 2019. Canada mine produced high grades of zinc.
Glencore’s mine in Canada that produces zinc had suspended operations late in March but have now recommenced and is in the ramp-up mode. A direct impact would be less than one month of output, according to the company statement.
Nickle mine in Canada was shuttered late March which has now recommenced operations, but the output is likely to be less than that of a month. In New Caledonia out of two production lines, one is under a planned maintenance shutdown and is likely to resume operations in approximately two months.
The company’s Antamina JV in Peru produces copper and zinc which was initially halted for a two-week period from April 13 which has now been extended further. In Zambia, Glencore is in discussion with the government regarding continuing operations.