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Australian mining giant BHP Billiton posted quarterly production guidance with higher copper output helping offset lower iron ore volumes out of the Pilbara and lower petroleum production from Hurricane Harvey. The mining giant has maintained full-year production guidance for all its commodities despite softer quarterly numbers.

BHP Ironore


Iron Ore production was down three per cent. $BHP produced 64 million tonnes of iron ore at its Western Australian operations in the three months to September 30, down four per cent from a year earlier, with its share dropping three per cent to 56 million tonnes. UBS had forecast total production of 63.6 million tonnes. BHP said record production at the Jimblebar operations was offset by the impact of lower stockpile levels following a fire at the Mt Whaleback screening plant in June, and planned maintenance in the September quarter.

Petroleum production down eight per cent at 50 million barrels of oil equivalent (mmboe) with its US assets impacted by Hurricane Harvey. The company said it has increased drilling rigs at the onshore assets from five to nine.

Copper output leaped 14 per cent in the quarter to 404,000 tonnes, helped by improved production at the Escondida operations in Chile and higher average copper grade and throughput. With copper prices ar three year highs it was the right commodity to higher in production.

BHP chief executive Andrew Mackenzie said the performance in the first quarter would keep the company on track for its full-year volume growth target.  "Our transition to lower-cost, high-return, latent capacity projects is delivering results, with first copper production achieved from the Los Colorados extension project at Escondida and Olympic Dam's southern mining area during the quarter," he said.

Source: BHP Billiton
From The TradersCommunity News Desk


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