Chile Codelco CEO: Copper Refining Fees Done Falling-Shanghai Metals Market

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Chile Codelco CEO: Copper Refining Fees Done Falling

Industry News 10:11:42AM Apr 10, 2012 Source:SMM

SANTIAGO, April 9 (Reuters) - Chile Codelco copper giant CEO Diego Hernandez told Reuters on Monday he does not see spot copper TC/RC, or charges paid by miners to smelters for converting concentrate into refined metal, falling further.

"Spot (rates) have fallen but long-term contracts are still with their negotiated prices," the head of the world's top copper miner said on the sidelines of the ExpoMin mining fair.

A low rate suggests tight supply, as world leading copper producer Chile battles dwindling ore grades in tired mines, freak weather and work stoppages in its massive deposits.

"I think it's difficult (for the charges to fall more)," Hernandez said. "It's hard for them to be negative."

In 2010, copper concentrate supply was so scarce after swathes of mining capacity were shuttered during the global economic crisis that charges plunged to zero and there were reports of Chinese copper smelters paying mines for material.

In late March, spot standard-grade concentrate was sold to China at TC/RCs of $53 a tonne and 5.3 cents a pound, respectively, compared to TC/RCs of $60-$63.5 and 6-6.35 cents for shipments in 2012, two smelter sources said. Offers from international trading houses were at around $40 and 4 cents.

Chilean copper output rose 6.5 percent in February from a year earlier, on higher ore grades and due to a low base of comparison with 2011, the government said last month.

 

Chile Codelco CEO: Copper Refining Fees Done Falling

Industry News 10:11:42AM Apr 10, 2012 Source:SMM

SANTIAGO, April 9 (Reuters) - Chile Codelco copper giant CEO Diego Hernandez told Reuters on Monday he does not see spot copper TC/RC, or charges paid by miners to smelters for converting concentrate into refined metal, falling further.

"Spot (rates) have fallen but long-term contracts are still with their negotiated prices," the head of the world's top copper miner said on the sidelines of the ExpoMin mining fair.

A low rate suggests tight supply, as world leading copper producer Chile battles dwindling ore grades in tired mines, freak weather and work stoppages in its massive deposits.

"I think it's difficult (for the charges to fall more)," Hernandez said. "It's hard for them to be negative."

In 2010, copper concentrate supply was so scarce after swathes of mining capacity were shuttered during the global economic crisis that charges plunged to zero and there were reports of Chinese copper smelters paying mines for material.

In late March, spot standard-grade concentrate was sold to China at TC/RCs of $53 a tonne and 5.3 cents a pound, respectively, compared to TC/RCs of $60-$63.5 and 6-6.35 cents for shipments in 2012, two smelter sources said. Offers from international trading houses were at around $40 and 4 cents.

Chilean copper output rose 6.5 percent in February from a year earlier, on higher ore grades and due to a low base of comparison with 2011, the government said last month.