Aluminum and Copper

Top copper-producing nation Chile sees mining costs jump 29%

Top copper-producing nation Chile sees mining costs jump 29%
Mining News Pro - If copper mining is any indication, there’s still plenty of work to do to bring down inflation.

Cash costs at mines in Chile, the top-producing copper nation, jumped 29% in the first three months of the year compared with the same period of 2022, according to a report released Monday by government agency Cochilco.

Inflationary pressure is coming from lower ore quality, which means more rock has to be crushed to extract the same amount of metal. Other factors include pricier wages, energy and refinery fees. The cost increases would have been more severe if not for higher receivables from the sale of molybdenum and gold as byproducts.

While some of those factors have changed since the first quarter, two key cost drivers — lower ore grades and disruptions to production and projects — have continued, particularly at state behemoth Codelco.

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