BHP Billiton announces record rise in iron ore output

Press Release   •   Jul 17, 2013 09:48 BST

BHP Billiton, the world's biggest mining company, has reported another record rise in iron ore output and at many of its Australian coal mines.

BHP said that production had jumped by 9 percent to 187 million tonnes for the year to 30 June.

Analysts said it meant that the commodity giants were betting on continued strong demand from China, despite the country's economy seeing a slowdown in growth.

Work to increase BHP's output capacity to 220 million tonnes a year is expected to be finished in December of this year, ahead of schedule, the company said.

For the period total petroleum production was rose by six percent to 236 million barrels of oil equivalent.

Petroleum made up around 20 pe cent of the company's earnings behind iron ore, which brought in 50 percent of revenue.
Iron ore is still the biggest earner for BHP despite a sharp fall in commodity prices over the past year.

In the April to June quarter, iron ore output rose 17.7 percent to 47.6 million tonnes compared with the previous year. The company plans to boost that production to 217 million tonnes in the 2014 financial year to fulfil demand from China and other Asian economies.

Yesterday, its smaller competitor Rio Tinto reported a better than expected six per cent rise in iron ore output for the six months to the end of June, also a record result.

For the full year, BHP Billiton had forecast iron ore production of 183 million tonnes, but it instead produced 187 million tonnes and now expects output to jump to about 207 million tonnes next financial year.

Shares in BHP, which have fallen ten percent in the year to date, rose 2.1 percent on the strong results and are now hovering up around 1.4 percent.

For more information on BHP Billiton, see the latest research: BHP Billiton

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