First Quantum Minerals saw an increase in copper output in the second quarter and is now bracing for a month-long power supply reduction at its Kansanshi and Sentinel copper mines in Zambia.
First Quantum Minerals CEO Clive Newall told analysts during a conference call on Tuesday that the company produced 150,950 mt of copper over April-June, up from 141,912 mt a year earlier.
Mr Newall said first half production totaled 296,308 mt, up from 274,268 mt in H1 2017.
“Our copper production exceeded last year’s comparable period as drier weather conditions in Zambia returned,” Mr. Newall said.
“While metal prices are being negatively affected by global political concerns, demand for copper remains robust. We continue to sell all of our production into a market where there is excess demand.”
Mr. Newall said his company has been advised by ZESCO that electricity to First Quantum’s Kansanshi and Sentinel mines will be reduced from around end July to facilitate maintenance and upgrades to the electricity network.
However, the power cuts are expected to be “only marginally below what we need to run optimally,” he said.
“It’s not going to have a material impact on our guidance going forward and we’re doing what we can to make the most of the power that is available,” he added.