SECOND QUARTER AND SIX
July 27, 2023
Southern Copper Corporation (NYSE and BVL: SCCO)
- Despite an increase in sales volume for copper (+12.1%) and zinc (+12.9%) 2Q23 net sales were $2,300.7 million, slightly below 2Q22's figure principally due to lower metal prices for copper (-10.9%, LME) and zinc (-35.4%) and to a decrease in sales volumes for silver (-8.9%). These variances were partially offset by higher metal prices for molybdenum (+14.0%) and silver (+7.1%).
- On a year-to-datebasis, net sales were slightly higher than in 2022 due to an increase in the sales volume for copper (+11%), silver (+3.3%) and zinc (+9.2%) and to better prices for molybdenum (+41.9%).These variances were partially offset by lower average metal prices for copper (-10.8%, LME) and zinc (-25.9%) and by a decrease in the sales volume for molybdenum (-4.2%).
- 2Q23 net income was $547.5 million, which represents a 26.6% increase with regard to the $432.3 million registered in 2Q22. The net income margin in 2Q23 stood at 23.8%, versus 18.7% in 2Q22. This increase was mainly the result of a 7.9% reduction in cost of sales, which was mainly attributable to a decrease in lower third-party copper concentrate purchases. On a YoY basis, net income was 11.8% higher than in 2022 for similar reasons.
SCC's 2Q23 net income fell below the $813.2 million reported in 1Q23. This dynamic reflects significant differences in copper prices in the period-over-period comparison. In 2Q23, copper sales dropped $365.3 million due to lower price (-6%), volume (-4%) and to an accounting adjustment on 104,000 tons of open sales.
We have a positive view on the Company's sales volumes for the remainder of 2023. In the second half of the year, considering our current operations plans, the Buenavista new zinc concentrator and the Pilares project, we expect to produce 481,300 tons of copper; 11,400 tons of molybdenum; 76,000 tons of zinc; and 10.9 million ounces of silver. An uptick in production for copper, zinc and silver in 2H 2023 should support our sales through this period.
- 2Q23 adjusted EBITDA was $1,115.5 million, which represented an increase of 9.2% with regard to the $1,021.4 million registered in 2Q22. The adjusted EBITDA margin in 2Q23 stood at 48.5% versus 44.3% in 2Q22. Adjusted EBITDA in 6M23 was $2,683.4 million, 0.6% lower than in 6M22. The adjusted EBITDA margin in 6M23 stood at 52.7% vs 53.2% in 6M22.
- Cash flow from operating activities in 6M23 was $1,982.3 million, which represents an increase of 75.3% over the $1,130.6 million posted in 6M22. Cash flow in 1H22 was affected by a significant reduction in working capital, which was attributable to the Cuajone mine stoppage.
- Copper production registered an increase of 9.2% in 2Q23 in a quarter-on-quarter terms to stand at 227,533 tons. Our quarterly result reflects higher production at all of our operations. Production at our Cuajone mine was up 22% in a quarter-on-quarter terms, driven by higher recoveries and by the return to full operating capacity this year. Production
SECOND QUARTER AND SIX MONTHS 2023 RESULTS
at our Toquepala mine increased 19.5%, which was mainly attributable to higher ore grades. Production at our Mexican operations increased 2.7% in a quarter-on-quarter terms. On a YoY basis, copper production rose 6.6% in 2023 to stand at 450,805 tons, which reflected higher production at our Peruvian operations.
- By-productproduction: Mined zinc production increased 13.8% this quarter due to higher production at the Charcas and Santa Barbara units. This was partially offset by lower production at the San Martin mine. Total mined silver production rose 8.0% in 2Q23 driven by higher production at all our operations. Molybdenum production registered a slight increase of 0.2% in 2Q23 compared to 2Q22. On a YoY basis, mined zinc and silver production were up 8.1% and 5.6%, respectively, compared to 2022. Molybdenum production fell 4.6% driven primarily by lower output at our Toquepala mine.
- Operating cash cost per pound of copper, net of by-product revenue credits, was $1.12 in 2Q23, which represents an increase of 4% compared to the 2Q22 figures. In 6M23, the operating cash cost per pound of copper, net of by- product revenue credits, was $0.94. This represents an increase of 14.3% compared to the $0.82 reported in 6M22. The 6M23 cash cost was mainly affected by higher production costs and lower by-product credits for zinc and sulfuric acid.
- In 2Q23, we spent $252.5 million on capital investments, which reflected a 12.4% increase over the figure reported in 2Q22 and represents 46.1% of net income this quarter. In the first half of the year, we spent $490.6 million on capital investments, which represents 36.1% of net income and reflects a 14.2% uptick in capital expenses YoY.
- Dividends: On July 20, 2023, the Board of Directors authorized a dividend of $1.00 per share payable on August 23, 2023 for shareholders of record at the close of business on August 9, 2023.
Mr. German Larrea, Chairman of the Board, commenting on the Company´s progress and current circumstances, said: "Southern Copper is well positioned to leverage our strengths in a challenging environment. Our fortitude is evident when comparing results in quarter-on-quarter terms and on a year-to-date basis. Most notably, production and sales volumes over those periods rose for copper and zinc despite lower market prices. This evolution led net earnings to rise 26.6% in a quarter-on-quarter terms and 11.8% on a year-to-date basis.
We continue to focus on expansion: we have been operating the Pilares mine since 4Q22 and have subsequently increased our annual copper production capacity by 35,000 tons. Additionally, the new zinc concentrator at Buenavista has already received material to process and ramping up is underway. This project is expected to elevate yearly production by 100,000 tons of zinc, doubling our current capacity, and 20,000 tons of copper. Our El Pilar project (+36,000 tons of copper) is under development and we are engaged in on-site environmental activities.
Key Financial Data
First Six Months
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Cost of sales
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SECOND QUARTER AND SIX MONTHS 2023 RESULTS
Our current capital investment program for this decade exceeds $15 billion and includes investments in the Buenavista Zinc, Pilares, El Pilar and El Arco projects in Mexico and in the Tia Maria, Los Chancas and Michiquillay projects in Peru. This capital forecast includes several infrastructure investments, including key investments to bolster the competitiveness of the El Arco project.
Projects in Mexico:
Buenavista Zinc - Sonora:This project is located within the Buenavista deposit, where we have built a new concentrator. This facility has a production capacity of 100,000 tonnes of zinc and 20,000 tonnes of copper per year. When operating, the concentrator will double the Company's zinc production capacity and provide more than 2,000 jobs on the operating front.
Project update: the capital budget for the project is $416 million, most of which has already been invested. Progress is 98%; we have initiated vacuum testing at the plant and expect to initiate operations in August 2023.
Pilares - Sonora:Located six kilometers from La Caridad, this project consists of an open-pit mine operation with an annual production capacity of 35,000 tonnes of copper in concentrate. This project will significantly improve the overall mineral ore grade (considering the 0.78% expected from Pilares with 0.29% from La Caridad).
Project update: The budget for Pilares is $176 million, of which $131 million has been invested. Pilares is currently operating and delivering copper mineral to the facilities of the Caridad operation.
El Pilar - Sonora:This low-capital intensity copper greenfield project is strategically located in Sonora, Mexico, approximately 45 kilometers from our Buenavista mine. Its copper oxide mineralization contains estimated proven and probable reserves of 317 million tonnes of ore with an average copper grade of 0.249%. We anticipate that El Pilar will operate as a conventional open-pit mine with an annual production capacity of 36,000 tonnes of copper cathodes. This operation will use highly cost efficient and environmentally friendly SX-EW technology. The budget for El Pilar is $310 million.
Project update: The results from experimental pads in the leaching process have confirmed adequate levels of copper recovery. The basic engineering study has been completed and the Company continues to develop the project and engage in onsite environmental activities. Project engineering is being developed by top tier engineering and technology firms. We expect production to begin in 2025 and mine life is estimated at 13 years.
El Arco - Baja California:This is a world-class copper deposit located in the central part of the Baja California peninsula with ore reserves of over 1,230 million tonnes with an average ore grade of 0.40% and 141 million tonnes of leach material, with an average ore grade of 0.27%. The project includes an open-pit mine with a combined concentrator and SX-EW operations. Annual production is expected to total 190,000 tonnes of copper and 105,000 ounces of gold.
Project update: The Company has completed the environmental baseline study for the mine, concentrator and industrial facilities and will proceed to submit the Environmental Impact Statement (Manifestacion de Impacto Ambiental "MIA") to the Secretary of Environment and Natural Resources "SEMARNAT" to request the respective environmental impact permits. The Company is currently preparing studies for the port, power pipelines, townsites and auxiliary facilities.
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SECOND QUARTER AND SIX MONTHS 2023 RESULTS
Tia Maria - Arequipa:This greenfield project, located in Arequipa, Peru, will use state of the art SX-EW technology with the highest international environmental standards to produce 120,000 tons of SX- EW copper cathodes per year. The estimated capital budget for the project is $1.4 billion.
Southern Copper has been consistently working to promote the welfare of the population of the Islay province. As part of these efforts, we have implemented successful social programs in education, healthcare and productive development to improve the quality of life in the region. We have also promoted agricultural and livestock activities in the Tambo Valley and supported growth in manufacturing, fishing and tourism in Islay.
We reiterate our view that the initiation of construction activities at Tia Maria will generate significant economic opportunities for the Islay province and the Arequipa region. Given the current Peruvian economic situation, it is crucial to move ahead on projects that will stimulate a sustainable growth cycle. We will make it a priority to hire local labor to fill the 9,000 jobs that we expect to generate during Tia Maria's construction. Additionally, from day one of our operations, we will generate significant contributions to revenues in the Arequipa region.
Los Chancas - Apurimac: This greenfield project, located in Apurimac, Peru, is a copper and molybdenum porphyry deposit. Current estimates of indicated copper mineral resources are 98 million tons of oxides with a copper content of 0.45% and 52 million tons of sulfides with a copper content of 0.59%. The Los Chancas project envisions an open-pit mine with a combined operation of concentrator and SX-EW processes to produce 130,000 tons of copper and 7,500 tons of molybdenum annually. The estimated capital investment is $2,600 million and the project is expected to begin operating in 2030. We continue to engage in social and environmental improvements for the local communities and work on the project's environmental impact assessment.
Project update: As of June 30, 2023 part of the Project´s land continued to be occupied by illegal miners, 75 of whom have irregularly registered their stakes in the "Integral Registry of Mining Formalization" (REINFO). The Company requested, and the Authority subsequently ordered, that the aforementioned miners be excluded from REINFO and be qualified as "illegal" miners. The Company has also filed criminal complaints and other legal remedies to physically expel the illegal miners from the Project and confiscated illegal mined ore.
Michiquillay Project - Cajamarca: In June 2018, Southern Copper signed a contract for the acquisition of the Michiquillay project in Cajamarca, Peru. Michiquillay is a world class mining project with inferred mineral resources of 2,288 million tons with an estimated copper grade of 0.43%. When developed, we expect Michiquillay to produce 225,000 tons of copper per year (along with by-products of molybdenum, gold and silver) for an initial mine life of more than 25 years and at a competitive cash-cost. We estimate an investment of approximately $2.5 billion will be required and expect production start-up by 2032. Michiquillay will become one of Peru´s largest copper mines and will create significant business opportunities in the Cajamarca region; generate new jobs for the local communities; and contribute with taxes and royalties to the local, regional and national governments.
Project update: In 2023, in accordance with our social agreements with the Michiquillay and La Encañada communities, the Company has hired unskilled labor and is paying for the use of surface land. We are also supporting social programs in both communities. In addition, we continue exploration activities on this project and currently we have installed 10 drilling platforms.
Environmental, Social & Corporate Governance (ESG) Practices
Focus on risk prevention and management. By the second quarter this year, all of SCC's operating units had hit a milestone set in 2018 to obtain ISO 14001 certification for environmental management and ISO 45001 for occupational health and safety management. Our efforts to prevent environmental and security risks are supported by our ISO systems and reflect our alignment with best international practices. The aforementioned represents a significant step in our quest to obtain accreditation for responsible copper production in the framework of The Copper Mark certification.
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SECOND QUARTER AND SIX MONTHS 2023 RESULTS
We continue to make progress in the development of our Critical Risk Registry. This tool strengthens environmental and safety risk management by increasing the visibility of these components at all levels of the organization. The registry creates a knowledge base for informed decision making and ensures rigorous follow-up on controls for prevention and mitigation to avoid or respond to unwanted events.
This quarter, in line with our corporate environmental policy, we formalized our protocols for Sustainable Water Management, Biodiversity and Closure of Operations to establish our priorities and the means by which our operations address increasingly demanding environmental challenges.
In the ambit of biodiversity: in the second quarter of 2023 we reforested 464 hectares in the state of Sonora, Mexico. This represents 10 times the area affected in the period. With this effort, we have successfully met an objective set two years ago to reduce our historic environmental footprint by reversing the net loss of biodiversity and achieving a net positive impact for the area. In 1H23, the reforested area totaled 934 hectares, 5.6 times the affected area YTD.
The implementation and promotion of best practices such as the aforementioned has helped SCC secure and maintain a place on the S&P/BVL Peru General ESG Sustainability Index of the Stock Exchange of Lima.
On April 28, 2023, Grupo Mexico issued its 2022 Sustainability Development Annual Report, which includes detailed information about Southern Copper's efforts on the social, environmental and corporate governance fronts.
Positive impact in the communities in which we operate. We have served more than 900 women from communities close to our operations in southern Peru via our Community Wellbeing Program, by which we conducted a mobile health campaign to prevent breast and uterine cancer.
SCC has been recognized by the state agency "Pro Inversión" for its execution of a Drinking Water and Rural Sanitation Program in Poblado Yacango, district of Torata. This project, which has benefitted 137 families, entailed an investment of $2.8 million. Similarly, in Mexico, we invested $5.76 million this quarter to improve water distribution in Nacozari and Cananea, benefitting 53,800 residents.
The Youth Orchestras promoted by SCC were recognized at the Mexican Polymetallic Seminar in 2023. These orchestras support 1,646 students in Mexico and Peru. Additionally, in collaboration with the Instituto de Cultura del Estado, we held our first exhibition of the Traveling Workshop for Documentary Film at the Cineteca in the State of Sonora, Mexico. During this event, 17 original short films, which were produced by some of the 747 students from communities that participated in the workshop, were screened.
The Company's second quarter earnings conference call will be held on July 28, 2023, beginning at 10:00 AM - EST (9:00 AM Lima City time and 8:00 AM Mexico City time).
To participate in the call, it is necessary to register in the following link:
At the registration time, you will be provided a dial-in number and a personal confirmation PIN will be generated to access the call.
During the conference call, please join live presentation through Webex at the following link:
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Southern Copper Corporation published this content on 27 July 2023 and is solely responsible for the information contained therein. Distributed by, unedited and unaltered, on 27 July 2023 20:35:56 UTC.