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23 January, 2020

Anglo American plc Production Report for the fourth quarter ended 31 December 2019

Mark Cutifani, Chief Executive of Anglo American, said: “We have delivered our full year production targets across the business. Production is up 4%(1) for the quarter led by the continued successful ramp-up at Minas-Rio in Brazil. Increased production at Metallurgical Coal in Australia was offset by the drought in Chile impacting water availability at Los Bronces, as well as the anticipated lower production from De Beers as Venetia transitions to underground in South Africa and Victor reached the end of its mine life in Canada. As planned, we received the operating licence for the tailings dam raise at Minas-Rio before the end of 2019.”

Key highlights

  • A 10%(2) increase in platinum and palladium volumes due to higher grades and throughput.
  • Strong performance from Collahuasi as well as productivity improvements at Los Bronces have partially mitigated the impact of production losses at Los Bronces due to the continued drought.
  • Continued strong performance from our Bulks business, reflecting the stability of operations under the Operating Model and progress in driving P101 levels of equipment performance to industry best practice and beyond.
    1. Minas-Rio continued its strong operational performance, with 6.2 million tonnes of high grade iron ore production in Q4. The tailings dam raise operating licence was received in December 2019.
    2. Kumba iron ore production of 11.8 million tonnes reflected improved run-rates following maintenance earlier in the year.
    3. Metallurgical coal production increased by 11% to 6.3 million tonnes due to the timing of longwall moves, as well as improved wash plant throughput and equipment efficiency.
  Q4 2019 Q4 2018 % vs. Q4 2018 2019 2018 % vs. 2018
Diamonds (Mct)(3) 7.8 9.1 (15)% 30.8 35.3 (13)%
Copper (kt)(4) 159 184 (13)% 638 668 (5)%
Platinum (koz)(2)(5) 532 485 10% 2,051 2,021 1%
Palladium (koz)(2)(5) 360 329 10% 1,386 1,379 1%
Iron ore – Kumba (Mt) 11.8 10.2 16% 42.4 43.1 (2)%
Iron ore – Minas-Rio (Mt)(6) 6.2 0.2 n/a 23.1 3.4 n/a
Metallurgical coal (Mt) 6.3 5.6 11% 22.9 21.8 5%
Thermal coal (Mt)(7) 6.8 6.9 (1)% 26.4 28.6 (8)%
Nickel (kt)(8) 11.7 11.4 3% 42.6 42.3 1%
Manganese ore (kt) 903 972 (7)% 3,513 3,607 (3)%

(1) Copper equivalent production is normalised to reflect closure of Voorspoed and Victor (De Beers) and Sibanye-Stillwater Rustenburg material that has transitioned to a tolling arrangement (Platinum Group Metals). Excluding the impact of Minas-Rio, Group copper equivalent production is down 1% in the quarter.
(2) Normalised for the transition of Sibanye-Stillwater Rustenburg material from purchased concentrate to a tolling arrangement.
(3) De Beers production is on a 100% basis, except for the Gahcho Kué joint venture which is on an attributable 51% basis.
(4) Contained metal basis. Reflects copper production from the Copper business unit only (excludes copper production from the Platinum Group Metals business unit).
(5) Produced ounces of metal in concentrate. Reflects own mine production and purchases.
(6) Wet basis.
(7) Reflects export production from South Africa and attributable export production (33.3%) from Colombia.
(8) Reflects nickel production from the Nickel business unit only (excludes nickel production from the Platinum Group Metals business unit).


  • This Production Report for the quarter ended 31 December 2019 is unaudited.
  • Production figures are sometimes more precise than the rounded numbers shown in this Production Report.
  • Copper equivalent production shows changes in underlying production volume. It is calculated by expressing each product’s volume as revenue, subsequently converting the revenue into copper equivalent units by dividing by the copper price (per tonne). Long-term forecast prices are used, in order that period-on-period comparisons exclude any impact for movements in price.
  • Please refer to page 16 for information on forward-looking statements.

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For further information, please contact:

Media Investors
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
South Africa Emma Waterworth
Pranill Ramchander Email: emma.waterworth@angloamerican.com
Email: pranill.ramchander@angloamerican.com Tel: +44 (0)20 7968 8574
Tel: +27 (0)11 638 2592
Sibusiso Tshabalala  
Email: sibusiso.tshabalala@angloamerican.com  
Tel: +27 (0)11 638 2175  

Notes to editors:

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, more electrified 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, nickel and manganese – 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.