TORONTO (miningweekly.com) – Canadian miner Lundin on Wednesday posted a 71% drop in net earnings for the fourth quarter, which came in at $42.5-million, compared with $146.1-million a year ago.
Profit took a hit after the TSX-listed company lost out on sales from the Aguablanca nickel-copper mine in Spain, and the company reported an impairment loss of $35.7-million for the asset.
For the full year, net earnings plunged to $183.8-million from the $306.1-million figure Lundin reported for the prior year.
In addition to the impairment and operating profit impact of Aguablanca, higher depreciation, and lower net finance income also impacted earnings, Lundin said.
During the three months to the end of December, the company produced 75 877 t of copper, beating guidance, while zinc output of 111 445 t was in line with forecasts.
“We ended the year with a strong quarter of production, achieving record tonnages of ore mined and milled at both our Neves-Corvo and Zinkgruvan mines,” Lundin CEO Paul Conibear said in a statement.
Neves-Corvo is located in Portugal, and Zinkgruvan in Sweden. The company also owns the Galmoy mine in Ireland, and has a 30% stake in the Tenke Fungurume copper mine in the Democratic Republic of Congo.
Lundin said that the restart of nickel-copper mining operations at Aguablanca was scheduled for the second half of 2012. The company was forced to halt operations at the mine in late 2010 after heavy rains caused a slope failure.