Lumwana copper output drops

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COPPER production at Lumwana Mine in Solwezi dropped by 2,500 tonnes in the quarter ended December 31, 2013, a quarterly performance report has revealed.
Lumwana, a subsidiary of Canadian owned and Toronto ExLumwana-Minechange listed Barrick Gold Limited, produced 33,500 tonnes in the last quarter of 2013 compared to 36,000 tonnes of copper in the third quarter of the year.
Barrick reported at the weekend that Lumwana mine was, however, pursuing a number of initiatives to further improve on production and reduce costs.
“Global copper production in the fourth quarter was 69,500 tonnes at cash costs of US$1.81 per pound and Lumwana contributed 33,500 tonnes of copper at $2.04 per pound.
“Production at Lumwana in 2014 is expected to be similar to 2013 but at slightly lower cash costs as the mine is pursuing a number of initiatives to further improve on cost reductions achieved to date,” the report said.
The mine plant at Lumwana was adjusted in the second quarter of 2013 to reduce waste stripping volumes earlier than previously planned.
This enabled the termination of a large mining contractor which has contributed to significant cost savings and focused site efforts on improving the owner mining fleet productivity.
“Elimination of the maintenance contractor associated with the transition to in-house maintenance and reductions to consumables have also contributed to the mine’s improved performance.
“Utilising option collar hedging strategies, the company has protected the downside on approximately half of its expected remaining 2013 copper production at an average floor price of $3.50 per pound,” further stated the report.