Mining and Heavy Industries

Rio not slowing down on iron ore

Mega-miner Rio Tinto has announced an 8% year-on-year increase in iron ore exports in the first half of 2016.

Rio, which delivers results based on the calendar year, released its first half production figures on July 19.

The miner produced 160.8 million tonnes of iron ore in the half, and exported 158.9mt. Both figures were up on the first half of 2015, 10% and 8% respectively.

Iron ore exports were up 6% to 82.2mt in the second quarter alone.

“Second quarter Pilbara iron ore sales achieved a run-rate of close to 330mtpa (100% basis) in line with annual guidance,” the company reported to the ASX.

“Sales exceeded production in the quarter, partially unwinding the inventory build in the first quarter.”

Rio’s bauxite production was 12.07mt in the second quarter, up 13%, and hit 23.2mt in the first half, up 9%.

Aluminium production was 911,000 tonnes in the second quarter (up 11%), and 1.78mt in the half (up 10%).

Copper was up 5% in the quarter, and up 1$ in the half, to 282,300 tonnes.

Rio Tinto chief executive J-S Jacques was happy to announce what he called “another robust quarter of operational performance”.

“We continue tofocus on value and maximising cash flow from our assets, through both commercial and operational excellence while maintaining capital discipline.

“This will ensure that Rio Tinto is well-positioned to generate compelling and consistent returns for our shareholders.”

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