JAKARTA (TheInsiderStories) – PT Freeport Indonesia (PTFI), the unit of the global miner, Freeport McMoran Inc., (NYSE: FCX) and PT Indonesia Asahan Inalum (MIND ID), reported the copper sales reached 804 million pounds in 2020 or jumped 20.54 percent compared to previous year of 667 million pounds. The realization of production also rose from 607 million pounds to 809 million pounds.
However, the gold sales dropped by 13.46 percent, from 973,000 ounces to 842,000 ounces in 2020. The output also decreased from 863,000 ounces to 848,000 ounces. In this year, the copper sales are projected jump to 1.3 billion pounds from total output 1.4 billion pounds. Sales of gold also estimating climbs to 1.3 million ounces and the productions 1.4 million ounces.
“The growth will continue in 2021,” said President and CEO of Freeport McMoran, Richard Adkerson, in an official statement released on Tuesday (01/26).
The ramp-up of underground production at the Grasberg minerals district in Papua continues to advance on schedule. During fourth quarter of 2020, a total of 56 new drawbells were constructed at the Grasberg Block Cave and Deep Mill Level Zone (DMLZ) underground mines, bringing cumulative open drawbells to over 370.
Combined average production from the Grasberg and DMLZ mines approximated 85,000 metric tones of ore per day. The successful completion of this ramp up is expected to enable PTFI to generate average annual production for the next several years of 1.55 billion pounds of copper and 1.6 million ounces of gold at an attractive unit net cash cost.
PTFI estimated the annual capital spending on underground mine development projects is expected to around $900 million per year starting 2020 through 2022. The aggregate costs (before scheduled contribution from MIND ID) are expected to average $1.1 billion per year in the same period.
From these two underground mines, Freeport McMoran projected a gross income up to $150 billion with assumption the production will last 20 years and the price of copper is $3 per pound and gold is $1,500 per ounces. Ore production in the first quarter of this year is projected to reach 103,000 metric tones per day, said Adkerson.
PTFI operated one of the world’ largest copper and gold mines at the Grasberg mineral district in Papua. The miner produces copper concentrate that contains significant quantities of gold and silver. Freeport Mcmoran has a 48.76 percent ownership interest in PTFI and manages the mining operation.
Talking on the smelter progress, Adkerson revealed, that the unit continues to discuss with the government and with the majority owner of the existing smelter PT Smelting, which is 25-percent owned by PTFI, regarding an expansion capacity by approximately 300,000 metric tons per annum. The commercial and financial arrangements for this potential project are being advanced, he adds.
An expansion of Smelting would reduce PTFI’ smelter development commitment from 2.0 million metric tones to 1.7 million metric tones per year. PTFI continues to evaluate a new greenfield smelter project located in East Java in parallel with discussions with a third party to develop new smelter capacity at an alternate location in partnership with the miner
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