Copper is a highly conductive metal used in transportation, construction, and manufacturing wiring, and is also vital to green energy transitions such as components for electric vehicles, turbines, charging infrastructure, and solar photovoltaic energy.
As global demand increases, the copper industry will need to spend more than $100 billion to build mines to offset what analysts say could be a supply shortfall of 4.7 million tons by 2030.
Positioned as the world’s top air producer, Mining Intelligence has compiled a list of companies with the highest global production in 2022.
The world’s top copper producer is Santiago-based Chilean miner Codelco, with 1,552.1 kilotonnes (kt) produced, 10% less than the previous year. Chile’s copper commission projected a 3.4% annual drop in national production in 2022 amid declining mineral quality, restrictions and union protests over water.
American miner Freeport-McMoRan, based in Phoenix, Arizona, ranks second with 1,296.9 kt of production, up 7% by 2021. In February, the company was forced to stop its iconic operations at the Grasberg mine. it is mine. was hit by floods.
3) Group BHP
The world’s largest mine is also its third largest copper producer. The Melbourne, Australia-based giant produces 1,108 kilometers of copper, up 6%. With exposure to increasing copper projects, BHP last year entered into an exploration deal with Capstone Mining in Arizona and Australian copper producer Oz Minerals in a $6.4 billion deal.
Baar, Switzerland-based miner and merchant Glencore is fourth with 993.4 kt of production, up 17% from 2021. Glencore has grabbed a lot of attention in the past year, especially for its $23 billion acquisition in March of Canada’s largest miner; Teck Resources. If successful, the acquisition would substantially increase Glenor’s copper exposure.
5) Southern Copper
Mexico City-based Southern Copper ranks fifth on our list with 895.2 kt of production, up 7% from last year. Southern Air returned to full capacity in April this year at its key Cuajone air operation in Peru after community protests closed the mine for nearly two months.
6) First, the amount of minerals
Vancouver-based First Quantum Minerals ranks sixth with 740.8 kt of production, the same as last year. The Canadian miner came under pressure this year to reach an agreement with Panama over a tax and royalty dispute that resulted in a halt in processing operations at its giant Copper Panama copper mine. An agreement was reached in March.
7) Zijin Mining
Shanghang-based Chinese mine Zijin is number seven, producing 676.7 kt, a staggering 42% more than the previous year. In 2021, Zijin opened the largest air mine in Serbia, Cukaru Peki. The project, on the part of Timok, is expected to make the Balkan country the second largest producer of copper in Europe. Zijin has also started producing gold at its Columbia mine and has a 39.6% interest in the Ivanhoe Kamoa-Kakula copper mine in the Republic of Congo, which will start production in May 2021.
Poland’s largest miners, KGHM Polska Miedz, ranked eighth with 536.6 kt of production, 4% less than last year. KGHM This month verified four more viable shafts at its Sierra Gorda copper-molybdenum mine in Chile, and a group of geologists suspect the recently identified shafts may actually be “one big super well.”
9) Rio Tinto
The world’s second-largest miner, Melbourne, Australia-based Rio Tinto, ranks ninth at 521 kt, up 5% from last year. With an eye on the future growth of the copper business, Rio Tinto has developed Nuton Technologies, a portfolio of copper-based leaching technologies. Rio also bought Turquoise Hill for $3.3 billion from King Oyu Tolgoi in Mongolia for direct bulk copper mining, and shared with Primo the amount of minerals in La Granja copper in Peru.
Anglo American, based in London in the United Kingdom, completes the list with 468.3 pounds of copper produced, 1% more than in 2021. The approval of the Chilean ministers in April of the review gives more than $3 million at the Los Bronces mine. I predict a big boost to English production.
Mining & Development with information from Mining.Com and Mining Intelligence