Taseko Mines Ltd. (TSX:TKO,NYSEMKT:TGB) announced that in 2015 it produced 142 million pounds of copper and 1 million pounds of molybdenum. Copper production was 4 percent higher year-over-year.
As quoted in the press release:
Copper production in the fourth quarter was 33.1 million pounds, lower than the previous quarter due to the expected decline in head grade as well as slightly lower mill throughput and copper recoveries. Modifications made to the mill early in the quarter temporarily affected the grinding circuits and overall mill performance. By early December throughput had returned to design capacity along with improvements to copper recovery. Copper recovery remains a focus of the operations team.
Russell Hallbauer, president and CEO of Taseko, commented:
2015 was another strong production year for Gibraltar. Throughput, recoveries and grade were all higher than in 2014, which resulted in Gibraltar’s best production year ever and, in turn, low cost per ton milled and site costs. If we had not made the extensive investment in Gibraltar that we have, it is likely the mine would not be operating in the current price environment. We will remain focused on continual operational improvements to ensure we are well prepared to capitalize when stronger copper pricing returns.
We recently completed our 2016 operating budget. As previously indicated, the average grade in 2016 will be lower than in 2015 but have a similar profile, with lower grades being mined in the first half of the year and then increasing in the back half of 2016. Copper production for the year is expected to be in the range of 130 to 140 million pounds. Our molybdenum facility will remain on care and maintenance until we see the market stabilize at higher prices.
| Updated December 2015
Get Our Expert Guide to Copper Investing FREE!
Download this FREE Special Report, From LME Copper to Copper ETFs: Understanding Today’s Copper Price for Investing in Copper.