Jun 07, 2010, HAMBURG (Dow Jones)--Aurubis AG (NDA.XE), Europe's largest copper producer, expects business trends in the first half of its fiscal 2010 to continue in the last six months of the year, Chief Executive Bernd Drouven said Monday, reiterating previous comments.
His comments echoed those he made last month when he said that Aurubis expects its operating pretax profit in the second half of the year will be at least on the same level as the EUR77 million achieved in the first six months of the year.
Depending on the development of the global economy, second-half earnings may even outpace the performance seen in the first half, Drouven said at the time.
At a press conference on the sidelines of the Copper 2010 conference in Hamburg, Drouven Monday said the company's wire rod business and copper scrap recycling business are developing well.
Treatment and refining charges, on the other hand, continue to be at unsatisfactory low levels, he added.
Drouven said, however, low treatment and refining charges have increased opportunities for acquisitions as a rising number of copper smelters will struggle to survive at these levels.
Drouven said that European demand for copper will continue to be driven by the electricity generation and automotive industries.
The construction of conventional and renewable power production capacity and connecting such power plants to the electricity grid will trigger rising consumption for copper, Drouven said.
He added that copper consumption is also expected to rise due to higher demand from the automotive industry, which is increasingly banking on electric vehicles. Such cars are equipped with electric motors that also use copper in the magnetic coil that is driving the engine.