Rio Tinto PLC has released its performance review for Q3 on Wednesday, October 16th, 2019. The output for the Anglo-Australian miner was reported to be worse than expected earlier today. The data represents a significant decline in the bauxite and aluminum production while the Pilbara production primarily in western Australia, on the other hand, was reported to have risen considerably.
Pilbara Production Has Significantly Increased
In comparison to the data for Q3 of 2018, Pilbara production has seen an increment of 5% (86.1 million tonnes) in three months before October. Earlier this year, there were reports of Rio Tinto PLC taking a blow due to the weather and operations related challenges. A 6% gain (year-on-year) and 10% gain (quarter-on-quarter) in Pilbara production, however, highlights that the corporation has pushed through such challenges.
Bauxite production at large in the third quarter was also higher compared to last year by as much as 9%. The production (year-to-date) from joint ventures (non-managed), however, was declared lower than the forecast.
As compared to the Q3 of 2018, the 789,000 tonnes of Aluminum production was almost 3% lower. As per the officials at Rio Tinto, this was primarily linked with the preventive measure taken earlier in Iceland when one from a total of three pot-lines was shut down for safety. This was followed by pot relining in Canada that was implemented earlier than originally intended.
While copper production was announced as 1% lower than last year, it had risen remarkably (15%) compared to the figure for Q2 of 2019. Other data accentuated via the performance report included the production of Titanium dioxide slag that increased by 321,000 tonnes (8%, year-on-year) that gave further prominence to improving operational performance that was primarily linked with the reinstated furnaces earlier this year.
Guidance Unchanged For 2019 Except For Bauxite And Aluminum Production
Moving forward, the corporation has decided to keep its guidance unchanged for the rest of the year 2019. The only exceptions as intimated in the performance review relate to bauxite production (54 million tonnes from 56-59 million tonnes as estimated earlier), and Aluminum production (7.7 million tonnes from 8.1-8.4 million tonnes as estimated earlier).
Officials from Rio Tinto were reported stating in Mongolia at the underground project, Oyu Tolgoi, that there are no delays in the primary production shaft and it will be commissioned by the end of this month. As of July 2019, the crucial components of the infrastructure are complete including the shaft jaw crusher system, central heating plant, and surface discharge conveyor. Further redesigning of the mine is still under progress.
The Rio Tinto stock (ASX:RIO) opened at A$91.32 on Wednesday, October 16th, 2019. With a continuous decline in the share price, the stock is currently trading at A$89.81.