Global copper miner Sandfire Resources (ASX:SFR) has maintained its FY2024 production, cost and capital expenditure guidance after a solid December quarter at its MATSA and Motheo copper operations in Spain and Botswana.
The Company is on track on track to increase copper equivalent (CuEq) production by more than 50 per cent over the two years to the end of FY2025 as it expands Motheo and continues to bed down MATSA, which it acquired in February 2022.
Sandfire reported a 5 per cent increase in CuEq production in the December 2023 Quarter to 32.4kt. It increased Motheo mill throughput to an annualised rate of 3.5Mt for the quarter, to produce 8.7kt of Cu and 0.2Moz of Ag, for CuEq production of 9.3kt.
The underground mines at MATSA operated at a record 4.6Mtpa for the first half of FY2024 and produced 13.7kt of copper and 24.2kt of zinc in the December 2023 Quarter, for CuEq production of 23.1kt.
During the quarter Sandfire signed a framework agreement with Traditional Owner group Yugunga-Nya, to facilitate ongoing rehabilitation work at the de-commissioned DeGrussa Copper Mine in WA.
Sandfire managing director Brendan Harris said the Company looked forward to working with the Yugunga-Nya, the government and other stakeholders to deliver meaningful, sustainable outcomes for the local community around DeGrussa.
Commenting on the quarterly report, Mr Harris said: “Another important milestone was achieved at Motheo with the commissioning of the ball mill in the latter part of the quarter. The rapid and low cost expansion of our crushing, milling and concentration plant continues to exceed expectations and we are now focused on achieving the facility’s 5.2Mtpa nameplate rate on a sustainable basis, before testing its ultimate potential.
“Our operating performance at MATSA is also tracking to plan with a record mining rate of 4.6Mtpa achieved across the half year. In the December quarter itself, we produced 13.7kt of copper and 24.2kt of zinc, for copper equivalent production of 23.1kt. By signing an agreement with Endesa for the construction of a dedicated solar energy facility that will supply around 25 per cent of MATSA’s overall electricity requirements progressively from CY2025, we have further improved our long-term energy supply mix and reinforced the low carbon credentials of MATSA’s metal concentrates.
“Following yet another strong quarter of operating performance, we have maintained FY2024 production, cost and capital expenditure guidance, and remain well positioned to deliver over 50 per cent growth in copper equivalent production from continuing operations across the two years to the end of FY2025.”