Home Mining Softening Metal Prices Impact ZIMPLATS: 9% Increase in 6E Production Offset by...

Softening Metal Prices Impact ZIMPLATS: 9% Increase in 6E Production Offset by Price Declines

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Zimbabwe’s leading platinum group metal (PGM) producer, ZIMPLATS, faced financial headwinds despite a commendable 9% surge in 6E production and a 10% boost in sales, reaching 320,196 ounces during the six months ending December 2023.

The company’s Directors’ Report and Condensed Consolidated Interim Financial Statements (Reviewed) for the same period revealed a post-tax loss of US$8.8 million, a stark contrast from the previous year’s profit of US$159.6 million, reflecting a significant 105% decline in earnings.

Zimplats also reported a substantial 94% reduction in pre-tax profit, dropping from US$221.5 million to US$14.2 million. The decline was primarily attributed to the impact of softening metal prices, particularly in palladium (down 42%) and rhodium (down 70%). While platinum experienced a marginal 1% dip and ruthenium decreased by 11%, gold and iridium saw positive trends with a 13% and 24% increase, respectively.

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The half-year saw a 5% rise in mined ore, reaching 4.0 million tonnes, driven by pillar reclamation at Rukodzi Mine and increased production output at Mupani Mine. Tonnes milled, totaling 3.9 million tonnes, marked a 6.4% increase compared to the previous year, primarily attributed to optimization efforts at the Third Concentrator Plant.

Despite a marginal decrease in the Six Elements (6E) mill head grade to 3.34g/t from 3.39g/t, 6E production witnessed a commendable 9% rise to 327,810 ounces, mainly due to increased milled tonnage. The company’s strategic focus on efficient production processes and optimizing milling volumes contributed to maintaining a competitive edge amid challenging market conditions.

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