Mining activity in Chile could aid the country tide over the economic losses due to the COVID-19 pandemic, states Chilean Copper Commission (Cochilco). The association has projected that copper output in 2020 will increase by 0.6pc from 2019 levels. It has also projected that copper prices are likely to remain up in H1 2021.
State-owned mine Codelco produced 159,000mt copper in October, up by 3.5pc from the year prior. Codelco’s copper production in Jan to Oct period also increased by 2.9pc from the prior-year period.
Codelco’s VP conveyed that the company plans to spend $210mn to keep mines running smoothly amid the COVID-19 pandemic. These earmarked funds could reduce should the productivity of the workers increase, despite their reduced numbers.
Fear of the second COVID-19 wave lingers in Chile, but Codelco is prepared to reduce its impact on operations.
Copper production at BHP’s Escondida mine touted to be the largest in the world, however, fell by 7.6pc to 99,900mt in October. While Collahausi, a JV between Glencore and Anglo American, reported a drop of 17pc in copper production to 42,000mt in October from a year ago.