This Morning in Metals: Antofagasta’s Los Pelambres expansion remains on hold

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This morning in metals news, Antofagasta’s expansion of its Los Pelambres mine remains on care and maintenance during the coronavirus outbreak, copper prices gained to start the week, and Anglo American released an update on its operations during the pandemic.

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Antofagasta’s Los Pelambres expansion on hold

Miner Antofagasta offered another update on the suspension of its Los Pelambres mine expansion project, noting the suspension will be in effect for a maximum of 120 days.

“This is a temporary suspension that has been taken as it is not possible to continue with the construction of the project as originally planned and is only for the duration of the emergency, as we hope to resume work as soon as possible,” said Francisco Walther, vice president of projects at Antofagasta Minerals.

Copper picks up

Copper prices made slight gains to start the week, Reuters reported, amid dropping coronavirus death rates in Europe.

LME three-month copper gained 0.8% to $4,879/mt, according to Reuters.

Anglo American updates on operations

Like other miners, Anglo American offered a wide-ranging update on the state of its operations during the coronavirus outbreak.

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“For example, in South Africa where the most extensive operational impact is currently felt, we have committed to continue paying the salaries of all of our 47,000 employees during the 21-day lockdown period, ensuring that they are able to focus on the health and safety of their families and their local communities,” the company said.

In Peru, where a national quarantine is in effect until April 12, “all but critical work” on the miner’s Quellaveco copper project has been suspended.

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