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Chile-focused miner Antofagasta reports Q1 production in line with guidance

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(Kitco News) - Antofagasta reported today that the company’s copper production in Q1 2021 was in line with guidance at 183,000 tonnes, 5.7% lower than in the same quarter in 2020 and 5.0% lower than in Q4 2020 mainly due to expected reduced grades at Los Pelambres.

Gold production was 59,100 ounces in Q1 2021, 9.2% lower than in the same period in 2020 and 8.0% higher than in 4Q 2020, mainly due to changes in grade at Centinela.

Molybdenum production in the quarter was 3,000 tonnes, an increase of 600 tonnes compared to the same period in 2020 due to higher recoveries at Centinela, and 700 tonnes lower than in Q4 2020.

Cash costs before by-product credits in Q1 2021 were $1.68/lb, 17c/lb higher than the same period last year due to the decrease in production, the stronger Chilean peso and the impact of the payment of a one-off signing bonus following the completion of labour negotiations at Los Pelambres.

Net cash costs were $1.16/lb in Q1 2021, compared to $1.10/lb in Q1 2020 and $1.14/lb in the previous quarter, reflecting the increase in cash costs before by-product credits, partially offset by the higher by-product credits.

The company’s full year guidance is unchanged at 730-760,000 tonnes of copper at a net cash cost of $1.25/lb and capital expenditure of $1.6 billion. Production in the second half of the year is expected to be slightly stronger than in the first half.

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