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BHP Forecasts Copper, Iron Ore Production Gains In FY 2019

Kitco News

BHP Billiton (NYSE:BHP) foresees single digit production increases from both its copper and iron ore groups during the next fiscal year.

BHP announced its operational review for its fiscal year end on June 2019. During BHP's FY 2020 it sees copper production between 1,705 and 1,820 kt, a 1% to 8% increase. Iron ore will range between 242 to 253 Mt, a 2% to 6% gain.

For the fiscal year finished, BHP said iron ore production was flat at 238 Mt. The company said increased production at Western Australia Iron Ore reflected the return to full capacity following Tropical Cyclone Veronica in March 2019. Copper production was down 4% to 1,689 kt due to production outages at Olympic Dam.

BHP said it will take a $1 billion hit due to declines in grade, production outages and a cyclone that disrupted production earlier in the year. Other financial hits were a tax dispute settled with Western Australia Government for A$250 million.

Regarding its liability with the Samarco dam failure, the company is still assessing. Earlier this year, BHP agreed to a $438 million fund related to the mining disaster.

BHP Billiton has big spending plans. The company said it has five major projects under development in petroleum, copper, iron ore and potash. The combined budget is $11.1 billion over the life of the projects.

BHP Billiton is currently trading a $58.02 just under its 52-week high of $59.02.

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