This week, Chile’s Corporación Nacional del Cobre (Codelco) said copper production for the year is in line with the schedule, and there’s no room for setbacks. The company hopes to close 2016 in the black, while remaining focused on safety and the environment.
The company has maintained production despite lower ore grades and incidents involving the Andina, El Teniente and Salvador mines. At the end of the second quarter, the company had posted a loss of $97 million. For the medium and long term, the company said it was shifting from a development plan that would complete projects simultaneously to one that operates sequentially.
The board approved an “optimized” investment program at its September meeting. Among the major decisions, Radomiro Tomic Sulfides Phase II project was postponed to 2024, but the activities related to the desalinated water system were maintained. Mine development for the Andina Lower Panel was postponed.
The Chuquicamata Underground and Andina Transfer projects continue with construction according to plan, with start of operations scheduled for 2019 and 2020 respectively. Meanwhile, the Rajo Inca and Andean Expansion projects will advance their feasibility studies. The New Mine Level at El Teniente continues with the development of its area of operation, while working to technically solve the construction of the tunnels.
These adjustments involve rescheduling investments of $2.2 billion compared with the original plan, so that for the five years to 2020 will reach $18 billion, contributing to greater sustainability of the project portfolio.