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Kazakhmys PLC (KAZ)

  Print      Mail a friend       Annual reports

Tuesday 01 August, 2006

Kazakhmys PLC

Q2 Production Results

Kazakhmys PLC
01 August 2006

                                                                   1 August 2006



                        Kazakhmys PLC Production Summary
                   for the second quarter ended 30 June 2006


•    Copper cathode production grew by 11% and copper in concentrate
     production increased by 13% in the second quarter of 2006 compared to the first
     quarter of 2006. Copper cathode produced from own copper concentrate was up by
     20% over the same period.

•    Zinc metal and zinc in concentrate production were respectively 14%
     and 20% lower compared to the first quarter as the Group focused on achieving
     increased copper recovery from complex copper-and-zinc containing ores and due
     to technical issues associated with the coolers at the Balkhash zinc plant.

*    Gold and silver production from own concentrate grew by 31% and 4%,
     respectively, compared to the first quarter of 2006 primarily due to increasing
     ore output from the high gold/silver grade ores of the Abyz and Artemyevskoe
     mines.


Kazakhmys Group Copper Production

                                   6m         6m         Q2         Q1         Q2
                                 2006       2005       2006       2006       2005
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ore extraction        '000 t   20,127     19,458     10,287      9,839      9,866
Average copper grade  %           1.1        1.0        1.1        1.1        1.1
Average zinc grade    %           4.0        3.0        4.0        4.0        2.8

Copper in Concentrate '000 t    202.6      200.3      107.6       95.0      103.5
own concentrate       '000 t    183.4      172.6       98.7       84.7       88.6
purchased concentrate '000 t     19.2       27.7        8.9       10.3       14.9

Copper Cathodes*      '000 t    187.9      199.7       98.8       89.1      104.3
own concentrate       '000 t    169.0      167.3       92.2       76.8       86.3
purchased concentrate '000 t     17.5       25.6        5.9       11.6       15.7
tolling concentrate   '000 t      1.4        6.7        0.7        0.7        2.3
Copper Rod            '000 t     14.3        5.9        9.0        5.3        4.6
---------------------------------------------------------------------------------

*Includes copper used to produce copper rod


Operational review

In the second quarter of 2006, the Group produced 98.8 thousand tonnes of copper
cathode (of which 9 thousand tonnes were used to produce copper rods), an 11%
increase on the first quarter of 2006. Copper cathode production from own
concentrate increased by 20% compared to the first quarter, reaching 92 thousand
tonnes. Copper cathode production through tolling arrangements has remained at
the same level. Total copper cathode production of 98.8 thousand tonnes
represents a 5.2% decrease compared to the same period in 2005. The reduction in
comparison to the same period in 2005 is primarily attributable to a 40%
reduction in purchased concentrate, operational difficulties due to adverse
weather conditions at the beginning of 2006 and, to a lesser degree, to the
delay in achieving customs clearance for 8 locomotives at the Chinese border in
the second quarter of 2006.

Kazakhmys Group by-products production

                                  6m         6m         Q2         Q1         Q2
                                2006       2005       2006       2006       2005
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Zinc in Concentrate  '000 t     70.6       42.3       31.3       45.1       19.7
Zinc metal           '000 t     33.8       28.7       15.6       18.2       11.6

Silver               '000 oz  10,692     10,638      5,443      5,249      5,641
own concentrate      '000 oz  10,660     10,593      5,433      5,226      5,632
tolling              '000 oz      32         45         10         23          9

Gold                 '000 oz    77.7       62.8       42.7       35.1       42.7
own concentrate      '000 oz    53.6       46.8       30.4       23.2       33.7
tolling              '000 oz    24.2       16.0       12.3       11.9        9.0
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Zinc metal production in the second quarter of 2006 was 15.6 thousand tonnes in
comparison to 18.2 thousand tonnes in the first quarter of 2006 due to technical
issues with the coolers at the zinc plant, which are currently being rectified.
Zinc in concentrate production was lower than in the first quarter of 2006 as
the Group focused on copper recovery from complex copper-and-zinc containing
ores.

In the second quarter of 2006, the Group produced 5.4 million ounces of silver
and 42.7 thousand ounces of gold, an increase of 4% and 22%, respectively,
compared to first quarter of 2006. Of the 42.6 thousand ounces of gold produced,
30.4 thousand ounces were produced from own concentrate (a 30.9% increase
compared to the first quarter of 2006). This increased gold production is the
result of a larger ore contribution from the Abyz and Artemyevskoe mines of
which both have high gold content in their ores. Of the 5.4 million ounces of
refined silver, only 9.6 thousand ounces were produced under tolling
arrangements. The higher silver production from own concentrate was also the
result of the raised output at the Abyz and Artemyevskoe mines.


Review by region

Zhezkazgan
                                   6m         6m         Q2         Q1        Q2
                                 2006       2005       2006       2006      2005
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ore extraction       '000 t    14,050     13,751      7,226      6,824     6,993
Average copper grade %            0.8        0.9        0.8        0.8       0.9

Copper Concentrate   '000 t     280.1      299.8      140.7      139.5     145.4
Copper Cathodes1     '000 t     105.8      117.9       54.1       51.7      57.9
of which tolling     '000 t       0.5        0.1        0.3        0.3        --
Copper Rod           '000 t      14.3        5.9        9.0        5.3       4.6
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
*Includes copper used to produce copper rod

At the Zhezkazgan complex, copper concentrate production was marginally higher
with 1% growth in the second quarter of 2006 compared to the first quarter of
2006. Copper cathode production was around 5% higher than in the first quarter
of 2006, but lower than in the second quarter of 2005 due to the scheduled
maintenance shutdown of the Zhezkazgan copper smelter.

Copper rod production increased significantly from 5.3 thousand tonnes in the
first quarter of 2006 to 9 thousand tonnes in the second quarter of 2006 due to
more favourable market conditions.


Balkhash

                                  6m         6m         Q2         Q1         Q2
                                2006       2005       2006       2006       2005
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ore extraction       '000 t    2,286      2,823      1,266      1,021      1,432
Average copper grade %           0.8        0.7        0.8        0.8        0.8

Copper Concentrate   '000 t    133.0       91.8       84.2       48.9       50.2
Copper Cathodes      '000 t     82.1       81.8       44.7       37.4       44.3
of which tolling     '000 t      0.9        6.6        0.4        0.4        2.3
Copper Rod           '000 t       --         --         --         --         --
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Copper concentrate and copper cathode production at the Balkhash complex
recovered from the first quarter results increasing by 72% and 20% respectively.
Overall, the first half of 2006 copper cathode production was higher than in the
same period of 2005 primarily due to higher copper grades.


East Region

                                   6m         6m         Q2         Q1        Q2
                                 2006       2005       2006       2006      2005
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Ore extraction       '000 t     2,318      2,428        957      1,361     1,276
Average copper grade %            2.6        2.3        2.9        2.4       2.2

Copper Concentrate*  '000 t     259.5      241.2      127.4      132.1     106.7
Copper Cathodes      '000 t        --         --         --         --        --
Copper Rod           '000 t        --         --         --         --        --
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

*Excludes concentrate processed by third parties


In the first quarter of 2006, copper concentrate production at the East Region
complex was 4% lower compared to the first quarter of 2006. However higher
copper grade ores from recently commissioned mines supported an increase of 7.6%
in copper concentrate production in the first half of 2006 compared to the same
period of 2005.


Karaganda

                                   6m         6m         Q2         Q1        Q2
                                 2006       2005       2006       2006      2005
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------
Ore extraction       '000 t     1,473        455        841        633       165
Average copper grade %            1.8        0.6        2.3        1.2       0.8

Copper Concentrate   '000 t      71.2       38.5       43.2       28.1      29.7
Copper Cathodes      '000 t        --         --         --         --        --
Copper Rod           '000 t        --         --         --         --        --
--------------------------------------------------------------------------------

Ore extraction and copper concentrate production at the Karaganda complex mines
in the second quarter of 2006 increased by 33% and 54% respectively compared to
the first quarter of 2006. Production ramp-up at the recently commissioned Abyz
and Nurkazgan mines continues to progress well and is in line with management
expectations.


For further information please contact:

Jinsoo Yang, Head of Investor Relations                   Tel: +44 20 7901 7800
Sergei Stephantsov, Deputy Head of Investor Relations
Kazakhmys PLC

Robin Walker                                              Tel: +44 20 7251 3801
Finsbury

- ends -

Notes to Editors

The Group's principal business is the mining, processing, smelting, refining and
sale of copper and copper products, including copper cathode and copper rod, and
is carried on by the Company's main subsidiary Kazakhmys Corporation LLC
("Kazakhmys"). Based on 2005 production, the Group is the 10th largest producer
of copper cathode and mined copper in the world. The Group's operations are
vertically integrated. Kazakhmys operates 19 open pit and underground mines and
two smelting and refining complexes in the Republic of Kazakhstan. Kazakhmys
also owns significant rail infrastructure in Kazakhstan and MKM, a copper
products fabrication company in Germany.




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