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Global Copper mine production increases 4.5% during Jan-July

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LONDON (Scrap Register): Global Copper mine production is estimated to have increased by about 4.5% during the first seven month of 2018, with concentrate production rising by 4% and solvent extraction-electrowinning (SX-EW) by 5.5%, according to the latest figures released by the International Copper Study Group (ICSG).

The increase in world mine production of about 500,000 t copper was mainly due to constrained output in the comparative period of 2017 namely in Chile and Indonesia.

Production in Chile, the world’s biggest copper mine producing country, increased by 11% primarily because production inFebruary/March 2017 was restricted by a strike at Escondida (the world’s biggest copper mine) and also because there isan improvement in Codelco’s production levels in 2018.

Indonesian output increased by 30% because comparative output in 2017 was negatively affected by a temporary ban onconcentrate exports that startedin January and ended in April.

A 15% increase in SX-EW production in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC) and a 11% rise in Zambian mine outputdue to the restart of temporarily closed capacity.

Although no major supply disruptions occurred in the first halfof this year, overall growth was partially offset by lower output atsome mines in Canada (-6%) and in the United States (-7%).

After a strong increase in the last few years due  to  new  andexpanded  capacity,  output  in  Peru  (the  world’s  second  largestcopper mine producing country) has levelled off.

On a regional basis, mine production is estimated to have increased by around 10% in Africa, 6% in Latin America, 5.5% in Asiaand 7% in Oceania but declined by 5% in North America and remained essentially unchanged in Europe.

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