Red Dog output trends downward, while zinc price increases in 2016
Last updated 8/7/2016 at Noon
Teck Resources Inc. July 27 reported that its Red Dog Mine in Northwest Alaska produced 152,900 metric tons of zinc and 27,100 metric tons of lead during the second quarter of 2016.
This is about a 1 percent drop for zinc and a 13 percent drop for lead, when compared with production during the same period of 2015.
The company expects Red Dog's zinc production to continue to trend downward through the balance of 2016, due to lower grades of ore in the mine plan.
Despite this anticipated lower output, Teck expects Red Dog zinc production to be 570,000 metric tons, which is the upper end of the company's guidance for 2016.
Zinc prices at the London Metal Exchange averaged US87 cents per pound in the second quarter, down 12 percent from the US98 cents/lb. average for the same period of 2015 but up 14 percent from the first quarter of this year.
Zinc prices broke above US$1/lb. in mid-July and continue to remain in that range.
Teck said the zinc concentrate market continues to show a deficit following the closure and suspension of several large zinc mines last year, while demand for the galvanizing metal is expected to grow at about 3 percent per annum for the coming two years.
"While the commodity cycle continues to be challenging, we are starting to see some positive changes in the direction of zinc and steelmaking coal prices," said Teck President and CEO Don Lindsay.
The first ship loaded with zinc concentrates from Red Dog set sail from Northwest Alaska on July 6.