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Freeport-McMoRan begins operations at new Indonesia copper smelter

Freeport-McMoRan (NYSE: FCX) announced Tuesday that its Indonesian subsidiary, PT Freeport Indonesia (PT-FI), has completed construction of its new Manyar smelter in Gresik, and has commenced commissioning operations.  

FCX said it expects the smelter will begin producing copper cathodes in the coming months and continues to target full ramp up by the end of 2024 in line with previous expectations.  

The miner also announced that on July 2, PT-FI received approval from the Indonesian government to export copper concentrates and anode slimes through December 2024 when the full ramp-up of the new processing facilities is expected. PT-FI will continue to pay export duties on copper concentrates during the smelter ramp-up period pursuant to Indonesian regulations, it said.  

PT-FI’s prior concentrate and anode slime export licenses expired on May 31, 2024, and PT-FI did not export copper concentrates or anode slimes during June 2024. 

“We are pleased to announce this important milestone for our new smelter in Indonesia,” Chairman Richard C. Adkerson CEO and Kathleen L. Quirk said in a joint statement.  “Our team executed this large and complex project extremely well and is prepared to deliver the ramp-up to full production safely and efficiently. The completion of the project positions PT-FI as a fully integrated producer in Indonesia, providing a foundation to extend its long-term operating rights.”  

As a result of the delay in obtaining PT-FI’s export license, FCX expects a portion of its second-quarter 2024 production will be shipped in future periods. FCX currently expects its consolidated sales for second-quarter 2024 to be approximately 5% below April 2024 guidance of 975 million pounds of copper and approximately 30% below April 2024 guidance of 500 thousand ounces of gold.  

Consolidated unit net cash costs for second-quarter 2024, which were previously estimated at $1.57 per pound of copper, are currently estimated to approximate $1.77 per pound for the quarter, principally reflecting lower by-product credits as a result of the delay in shipments, FCX said, adding consolidated average copper realization for the second quarter is expected to approximate $4.45 per pound.  

FCX said it is reviewing its sales guidance in connection with its routine quarterly forecast updates and does not currently expect a material change to its annual 2024 copper volume guidance.  

Source: MINING.COM – Read More