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Palabora works through mining shift

17th Apr 2012

JOHANNESBURG, Apr 17 – Lower ore grades and concentrator recoveries worked against increased ore hoisting performance for South African copper and magnetite producer Palabora Mining in the March 2012 quarter.

The Rio Tinto Group company says the decline in the ore grade is expected to be temporary, arising from a necessary change to mining tactics at the Palabora complex in the Limpopo Province, South Africa.

MD Tony Lennox says improving smelter efficiencies raised the consistency of cathode production. Magnetite trucking to Maputo to complement rail capacity raised production 9% compared to the corresponding period but was 3% lower Q4 2011 due to wet weather.

Refined copper production for the March 2012 quarter was 15,000t vs 16.700t in the December 2011 quarter and 14,800t in the March 2011 quarter. Magnetite production was 957,000t vs 985,000t and 880,000t.



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