Rio Tinto reports Q3 Pilbara iron ore output 82.5M tons, down 3% from last year
Pilbara iron ore shipments of 81.9M tonnes in the third quarter were 5% lower than the third quarter of 2017, due to planned maintenance cycles and safety pauses across all operations following the fatality. Bauxite production of 12.7M tonnes was 1% lower than the corresponding quarter of 2017, with strong production at Weipa offset by lower production at the non-managed Sangaredi and Porto Trombetas mines. Third party shipments increased by 2% to 8.4M tonnes, reflecting firm demand. Aluminium production of 0.9M tonnes was 1% lower than the third quarter of 2017 due primarily to ongoing labour disruptions at the non-managed Becancour smelter in Canada. Full year guidance has been revised to between 3.4 and 3.5M tonnes, previously 3.5 to 3.7M tonnes. Mined copper production of 159.7 thousand tonnes was 32 % higher than the corresponding quarter of 2017, primarily reflecting increased production from Rio Tinto Kennecott due to higher grades. Titanium dioxide slag production was nine % lower than the third quarter of 2017, but 28 per cent higher than the previous quarter as production at Rio Tinto Fer et Titane and RBM ramped up following disruptions in the second quarter. Production at Iron Ore Company of Canada was 9% lower than the third quarter of 2017, however significantly higher than the previous quarter as operations ramped up to normal production rates following a labour dispute in the previous quarter.