LOS BRONCES MINE, Chile, Jun 22, 2010 (Dow Jones Commodities News via Comtex) -- With no new expansion projects coming online in 2010, the Chilean unit of mining and natural resources group Anglo American PLC (AAUKY, AAL.LN) will produce "slightly less" copper this year than in 2009, a company executive said Tuesday.
Anglo American Chile, which is the Andean nation's second-largest private-sector copper producer, churned out a record 669,814 metric tons of copper in 2009.
"According to the normal development of the mines, output will be a bit lower than last year," Miguel Angel Duran, chief executive of Anglo American Chile, told reporters during a visit to the company's Los Bronces mining complex east of Santiago.
Anglo American Chile, however, is aiming to complete an expansion of Los Bronces, its biggest mine, by the end of 2011, Duran said. The expansion will bring copper production there to some 400,000 tons per year from a current average of 230,000 tons annually.
The company also owns and operates the Mantos Blancos, El Soldado and Mantoverde copper mines in Chile, as well as the Chagres smelter.
Anglo American Chile also owns a 44% share of the Collahuasi mine. Diversified mining company Xstrata PLC (XTA.LN) holds another 44% stake in Collahuasi and the remaining 12% is held by a Japanese consortium headed by Mitsui & Co. Ltd. (8031.TO, MITSY).