MOSCOW, Feb. 3 -- Chelyabinsk Zinc Plant (CHZNq.L: Quote) (CHZN.MM: Quote), Russia's largest producer of the anti-corrosive metal, said on Tuesday it had increased output in the last quarter of 2009, although in the full year output fell.
It said in a statement output of zinc and its alloys rose by 14.1 percent year-on-year in October-December 2009, but in the 12 months of last year output fell by 20 percent to 119,900 tonnes.
Chelyabinsk had to cut output last year along with other Russian metal producers because of the economic crisis, which reduced demand and lowered metals prices.
But from the end of 2008 Chelyabinsk has implemented a series of cost-cutting measures, which helped it to swing into profit in the first nine months of 2009.
Russia's Urals Mining and Metals Co (UMMC) and the Russian Copper Company, the country's second and third largest copper producers, own a controlling stake in Chelyabinsk Zinc.
UMMC has pledged to restore output at Chelyabinsk to pre-crisis levels.
Chelyabinsk said on Tuesday it sold domestically 64 percent of the metal produced last year.
It said its Kazakh subsidiary, Nova Zinc LLC, processed 1.19 million tonnes of ore in January-December 2009, 10.4 percent less than in the same period of 2008.
UMMC also owns the other of the two Russian zinc plants, the smaller Elektrotsink. In November a government ministry said Elektrotsink should be halted because of excessive pollution.
An analyst then said that UMMC could compensate for lost volumes by increasing output at Chelyabinsk.