Chile's top miners boost copper output even amid protests

9th December 2019 By: Reuters

SANTIAGO – Copper production at Chile's top mines increased in October, Chilean copper commission Cochilco said on Monday, even as protests and sometimes-violent rioting gripped the nation.

Cochilco said output at top copper miner Codelco increased 2.5% in October over the same month in 2018, to 154 500 t.

Production at BHP's Escondida copper mine - the world's largest - rose 12.7% to 108 100 t in October, and the Collahuasi copper mine in northern Chile, a joint-venture between Anglo American and Glencore, produced 50 900 t October, up 3.7%.

Weeks of unrest in Chile have led to at least 26 deaths and billions in losses to private businesses and public infrastructure. The protests prompted the central bank last week to slash forecasts for growth, investment and demand through 2020.

Chile's vast copper mines have nonetheless largely maintained production and kept operations running normally, though there have been isolated incidents at some operations and uncertainty lingers.