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06 March, 2020

Anglo American Platinum announces the temporary shutdown of the entire Anglo Converter Plant (ACP), part of the chain of processing facilities, and the need to declare force majeure.

The Company’s ACP phase A converter plant, at Waterval smelter in Rustenburg, was damaged following an explosion within the converter on 10 February 2020. Nobody was injured in the incident and work has started to repair phase A, which is expected to be completed by Q2 2021.

As per normal business procedure, the phase B unit was commissioned to take over from the phase A plant and was in the process of ramping up to steady state, when water was detected in the furnace. Notwithstanding extensive testing being conducted to determine the source of the water, and a number of circuits being isolated, water continued to be observed in the furnace. This poses a high risk of explosion and the Company has determined that it has no other option but to temporarily shut down the phase B unit, to ensure the safety of all employees, and avoid a catastrophic event. It is anticipated that the repair works to fix the phase B unit will take approximately 80 days.

As a result of the temporary closure of the entire ACP, Anglo American Platinum has had to declare force majeure to customers, suppliers of third-party purchase of concentrate and suppliers of tolling material, as we are unable to complete the processing of material during the converter repair. Production from own mines will continue, and the concentrate from the mines will continue to be smelted at one of the four smelter complexes. However, production from own mines, as well as third party material will not be able to be converted to refined production while the ACP is undergoing repairs.

Initial estimates of the impact on AAP refined production are shown in the guidance below:

Refined production guidance
(‘000 ounces)
New H1 2020 guidance Revised full year 2020 guidance Previous full year 2020 guidance
Platinum 400 – 450 1,500 – 1,700 2,000 – 2,200
Palladium 300 – 350 1,100 – 1,200 1,400 – 1,500
Rhodium 65 – 75 250 – 350 --
Total PGMs (5E + gold) 850 – 1,050 3,300 – 3,800 4,200 – 4,700

Anglo American Platinum will host an analyst and investor call with time for Q&A on Friday 6th March 2020 at 13:30 SA time and 11:30 UK time. Dial-in details are provided below, and a playback will be available on the website. Pre-registration is required at the following link:

Conference call preregistration: www.diamondpass.net/2843044

A replay of the call can be accessed at the following numbers:

Conference Replay  
South Africa: 010 500 4108
UK: 0 203 608 8021
Australia: 073 911 1378
USA: 1 412 317 0088
International: +27 10 500 4108
Replay Access Code: 31410

For further information, please contact:

Media Investors
UK UK
James Wyatt-Tilby Paul Galloway
Email: james.wyatt-tilby@angloamerican.com Email: paul.galloway@angloamerican.com
Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 8759 Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 8718
Marcelo Esquivel Robert Greenberg
Email: marcelo.esquivel@angloamerican.com Email: robert.greenberg@angloamerican.com
Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 8891 Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 2124
Katie Ryall Emma Waterworth
Email: katie.ryall@angloamerican.com Email: emma.waterworth@angloamerican.com
Tel: +44 (0)20 7988 8935 Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 8574
South Africa  
Pranill Ramchander Emma Chapman
Email: pranill.ramchander@angloamerican.com Email: emma.chapman@angloamerican.com
Tel: +27 (0)11 638 2592 Tel: +27 (0)11 373 6239
Sibusiso Tshabalala  
Email: sibusiso.tshabalala@angloamerican.com  
Tel: +27 (0)11 638 2175  
Jana Marais  
Email: jana.marais@angloamerican.com  
Tel: +27 (0)11 638 2607  

Forward-looking statements:

This announcement includes forward-looking statements. All statements other than statements of historical facts included in this announcement, including, without limitation, those regarding Anglo American’s financial position, business, acquisition and divestment strategy, dividend policy, plans and objectives of management for future operations (including development plans and objectives relating to Anglo American’s products, production forecasts and Ore Reserves and Mineral Resources), are forward-looking statements. By their nature, such forward-looking statements involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors which may cause the actual results, performance or achievements of Anglo American, or industry results, to be materially different from any future results, performance or achievements expressed or implied by such forward-looking statements.

Such forward-looking statements are based on numerous assumptions regarding Anglo American’s present and future business strategies and the environment in which Anglo American will operate in the future. Important factors that could cause Anglo American’s actual results, performance or achievements to differ materially from those in the forward-looking statements include, among others, levels of actual production during any period, levels of global demand and commodity market prices, mineral resource exploration and development capabilities, recovery rates and other operational capabilities, the availability of mining and processing equipment, the ability to produce and transport products profitably, the availability of transportation infrastructure, the impact of foreign currency exchange rates on market prices and operating costs, the availability of sufficient credit, the effects of inflation, political uncertainty and economic conditions in relevant areas of the world, the actions of competitors, activities by governmental authorities such as permitting and changes in taxation or safety, health, environmental or other types of regulation in the countries where Anglo American operates, conflicts over land and resource ownership rights and such other risk factors identified in Anglo American’s most recent Annual Report. Forward-looking statements should, therefore, be construed in light of such risk factors and undue reliance should not be placed on forward-looking statements.

These forward-looking statements speak only as of the date of this announcement. Anglo American expressly disclaims any obligation or undertaking (except as required by applicable law, the City Code on Takeovers and Mergers (the “Takeover Code”), the UK Listing Rules, the Disclosure and Transparency Rules of the Financial Conduct Authority, the Listings Requirements of the securities exchange of the JSE Limited in South Africa, the SIX Swiss Exchange, the Botswana Stock Exchange and the Namibian Stock Exchange and any other applicable regulations) to release publicly any updates or revisions to any forward-looking statement contained herein to reflect any change in Anglo American’s expectations with regard thereto or any change in events, conditions or circumstances on which any such statement is based.

Nothing in this announcement should be interpreted to mean that future earnings per share of Anglo American will necessarily match or exceed its historical published earnings per share. Certain statistical and other information about Anglo American included in this announcement is sourced from publicly available third-party sources. As such, it has not been independently verified and presents the views of those third parties, though these may not necessarily correspond to the views held by Anglo American and Anglo American expressly disclaims any responsibility for, or liability in respect of, such third party information.

Notes to editors:

The ACP plant is a key part of Anglo American Platinum’s PGM production process, treating furnace matte from the company’s smelters. At the ACP plant, sulphur and iron contained in the furnace matte from the smelters are converted to sulphur dioxide and slag. The resulting converter matte is then slow-cooled to concentrate PGMs into a metallic fraction. From the ACP, material moves to the Magnetic Concentration Plant (MCP), where the converter matte is milled and the PGM fraction is separated magnetically. The PGM-bearing material then moves from the MCP to the Precious Metals Refinery (PMR), where the PGMs are separated and purified to yield platinum, palladium, iridium, rhodium, ruthenium and gold.?

Anglo American is a leading global mining company and our products are the essential ingredients in almost every aspect of modern life. Our portfolio of world-class competitive mining operations and undeveloped resources provides the metals and minerals that enable a cleaner, greener, more sustainable world and that meet the fast growing consumer-driven demands of the world’s developed and maturing economies. With our people at the heart of our business, we use innovative practices and the latest technologies to discover new resources and mine, process, move and market our products to our customers around the world – safely, responsibly and sustainably.

As a responsible miner – of diamonds (through De Beers), copper, platinum group metals, iron ore, coal and nickel – we are the custodians of what are precious natural resources. We work together with our business partners and diverse stakeholders to unlock the sustainable value that those resources represent for our shareholders, the communities and countries in which we operate, and for society as a whole. Anglo American is re-imagining mining to improve people’s lives.

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