(Kitco News) -Rio Tinto has shown that they are trying to be very resilient during a tough time for the mining sector. Third-quarter mined copper was 18% lower than the same period of 2019.
Despite all the doom and gloom, the company said “Chinese iron ore demand is at record levels against a backdrop of recovering seaborne supply that was disrupted earlier in the year. However, with the major producers expected to deliver strong volumes in the fourth quarter, iron ore inventories are expected to grow modestly as China’s steel consumption eases from record highs and scrap consumption increases”. This is encouraging and will help to lift the sector. Adding to this, they went on to state, Copper prices reached a two year high with strong Chinese consumption supporting cathode imports. COVID-19 related supply disruptions remain ~4% of annual copper supply, in addition to normal industry supply disruptions.
Rio Tinto Chief Executive J-S Jacques said “We have delivered a good operational performance across most of our assets catching up on planned maintenance activity, particularly in iron ore, and continuing to adapt to new operating conditions as we learn to live with COVID-19. We have maintained our capex guidance and our 2020 production guidance across our key products.
Lastly, the go on to state, global economic activity in the third quarter was generally strong, helping to sustain optimism for a widespread recovery in 2021. However, recent high-frequency data suggests that the rate of recovery in growth is slowing in most economies, with pent-up demand dissipating, and the rise of renewed lockdowns threatening recovery.
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