SMM12, 24 July: in early December, Tek Resources (Teck Resources) announced that it had sold 30 per cent of its indirect stake in Compania Minera Teck Quebrada Blanca S.A. To Sumitomo Group (Sumitomo Corporation) and Sumitomo Metals Mining Co., Ltd. (Sumitomo Metal Mining Co.) Donovan's shareholders. Don Lindsay (Don Lindsay), president and chief executive of Teck, said at the time: "QB2 is one of the most important undeveloped copper assets in the world, and this deal further confirms the value of the project." "this partnership significantly reduces Tek's investment risk in the project, enhances the company's project economy, and retains the company's ability to continue to return capital to shareholders and reduce current outstanding bonds." "QB2 will be a long-lived, low-cost business with significant expansion potential, including the option of doubling or more production to become the world's top five copper producers," Lindsay added.
Tek's board of directors has approved construction in April 2019 and the project is expected to have an annual capacity of 316000 tons, up from 23000 tons in 2017.
QB2 will join BHP Billiton-owned Spence Growth Option (SGO) project, Los Pelambres to expand the first phase, owned by Antofagasta, and Mantoverde Expansion, owned by Mantos Copper, is expected to be produced in 2021.
The partnership highlights investors' prospects for expanding future copper production with high-profile long-term demand fundamentals, according to the Fitch report.
The report does warn that one of the main downside risks to Fitch's optimism about the outlook for copper production in Chile is the continued decline in ore grade in the country's mining industry.
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