Codelco reports its operating results for the period 2022

Codelco released the results for 2022, highlighting that production that year was 1,445,622 thousand tons of fine copper, a figure lower than in 2021 by 10.7%.
The executive president of the Corporation, André Sougarret, assured that this result is mainly due to a lower grade in DMH (due to the change of sequence in the exploitation of the mine) and a lower recovery, in addition to a lower mineral grade , a reduction in activity and a drop in copper recovery at the DCH and DET concentrator plants, and less operational continuity at the state-owned smelters and refineries.
The executive mentioned that these negative figures “are also mainly due to two more structural reasons, one of which has to do with project delays, and problems we have had with operational continuity.”
Meanwhile, the Direct Cost (C1) was 165.4 cents per pound (c/lb), in 2022, versus 132.7 in 2021, that is, a 24.6% higher figure. This is mainly explained by lower production of copper and by-products and higher prices of inputs.
Likewise, the Net Cost to Cathode (C3) reached 282.5 c/lb, while in 2021 it was 230.7, that is, the increase was 22.5%. Sougarret explained that the increase in the C3 cost was due to the aforementioned with respect to the direct cost, which is partially offset by lower non-operating expenses.
Surpluses and contributions to the Treasury
The executive president of Codelco indicated that the state company generated US$2,746 million in surplus, that is, 62.9% less than in 2021, which is mainly due to the 13.8% drop in the sales price of copper in relation to the previous year; lower sales of copper and by-products; the increase in the prices of inputs and the lower result of subsidiaries.
Meanwhile, the generation of Operating Cash (Ebitda*) reached US$5,565 million (-46.4%). The variation of -US$ 4,814 million compared to January-December of the previous year is due to the lower realization price, the lower sale of copper and by-products, the increase in the prices of inputs and the lower result of subsidiaries, according to André explained. Sougarret.
Sougarret maintained that “contributions to the Treasury reached US$2,301 million, 58.7% less compared to the same period in 2021.”
Codelco milestones in 2022
Among the main events that marked the state company’s agenda during the past year, are the agreement that will allow Codelco to reinvest 30% of its profits annually.
Mention was also made of the closure of the Ventanas smelter, the contract to build a desalination plant for the Northern District and the change in contracts to ensure clean energy.
Another of the milestones of 2022 was the announcement, for the first time in its history, of the appointment of two women as vice presidents: Nicole Porcile and Mary Carmen Llano, who joined the executive committee.
Projections 2023
Sougarret pointed out that “production projections for 2023 are estimated between 1,350.00 and 1,420.00 tons of fine copper. But operational problems that we had during 2022 are already being resolved.
He added that “regarding the price of copper, the short-term supply is sufficiently balanced, without a doubt in the long term, as many analysts have announced, there will be a significant gap in terms of copper demand, to Putting the estimates that we are developing internally, we are talking about a price that will vary between 3.50 and 4.40 dollars“.
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