By Paul Ploumis
ALBANY (Scrap Monster): Major Tin mines have reported strong growth in production during the third quarter this year.
The consolidated result released by Minsur for the third quarter of the current year suggests that the refined tin output from its Brazilian subsidiary, Taboca, has increased significantly by over 16% during the quarter, in comparison with the output during the corresponding quarter last year. The Brazilian output during Q3 2016 totaled 1,742 tonnes. The rise in output is mainly on account of the completion of repair works of the hydroelectric plant at the Pitinga mine.
The tin-in-concentrate output from the Pitinga mine operations surged higher considerably by 63% during the quarter to 1,911 tonnes. The mine reported higher tin head grades of 0.21%. Also, the volume of treated ore rose significantly by almost 47% year-on-year to nearly 1.7 million tonnes. The cash costs fell by 6% over the previous year to $16,574 in Q3, mainly due to reduced dependence on power from diesel generators.
Meantime, Taboca’s refined tin output during the initial three quarters of 2016 was marginally higher by 1% over the previous year. The company stated that its Brazilian operations are well on track to meet the production guidance of 6,000 to 7,000 tonnes refined tin set for the entire year 2016.
The company’s Peruvian operations too reported strong Q3 results. The refined tin output from its Pisco smelter jumped higher by 25% during the quarter. The smelter output totaled 5,182 tonnes. The tin-in-concentrate production from the San Rafael mine too has increased by 5% year-on-year to total 5,114 tonnes during Q3, primarily due to the commissioning of new ore sorting plant. The cumulative refined tin output from Pisco rose 4% to 14,550 tonnes during Jan-Sep ’16 relative to the previous year. On the other hand, the year-to-date production from San Rafael has reported 3% decline. The reported tin head grades dropped from 2.09% during the first nine months of 2015 to 2.04% during the corresponding period in 2016. However, the volume of treated ore recorded 24% jump during Q3.
The Q3 cash cost of production of treated ore from San Rafael mine declined sharply by nearly 45% to $66 per tonne. The cash cost per tonne of refined tin in Q3 also fell 12% year-on-year to $7,569.
Incidentally, the refined tin output by Minsur from its operations in Brazil and Peru totaled 6,924 tonnes during Q3 2016.
The Q3 mine production by PT Timah, state-run Indonesian tin company, has increased sharply by 20% when compared with the quarter prior to that. When matched with the same quarter a year before, the Q3 mine production was up by 9%. The total production of tin-in-concentrate during the quarter totaled 6,865 tonnes. Refined tin production totaled 6,475 tonnes, falling marginally by 2% over the previous year. The refined tin production for the initial three quarters of 2016 dropped significantly by nearly 23% year-on-year to 15,995 tonnes in 2016. The mine production too reported similar decline to 15,973 tonnes during Jan-Sep ’16.
Meantime, Renison mine in Tasmania reported considerable increase in production during the third quarter. The tin-in-concentrate production surged higher by nearly 49% over the previous quarter to 1,718 tonnes. The ore mined totaled 199,023 tonnes, whereas the plant throughput totaled 188,631 tonnes in Q3. The cash costs have dropped significantly by 37% during the quarter. The tin production from Renison mine during the initial three quarters of the year totaled 4,546 tonnes.