Commodities

Australia's South32 coking coal output rises 9% on Illawarra ramp-up

Credit: REUTERS/David Gray

South32 Ltd on Thursday reported a 9% rise in coking coal production for the first quarter, as the miner ramped up output at its Illawarra project in New South Wales.

Corrects percentage change in headline and first paragraph to 9% from 8%

Oct 17 (Reuters) - South32 Ltd S32.AX on Thursday reported a 9% rise in coking coal production for the first quarter, as the miner ramped up output at its Illawarra project in New South Wales.

Production of the steel-making ingredient, known as metallurgical or coking coal, was about 1.7 million tonnes in the September quarter, compared with 1.5 million tonnes a year earlier. (https://bit.ly/33CYBEU)

The Illawarra operations, which account for nearly all of the company's coal output, rose 9% in the quarter.

The miner maintained its fiscal 2020 production forecast across all of its operations, with Illawarra expected to produce 7 million tonnes of coal for the year.

The company, spun off from mining giant BHP Group BHP.AX in 2015, saw output from its Dendrobium and Appin mines at Illawarra rise following infrastructure improvements.

Meanwhile, the miner's aluminium production during the quarter was largely unchanged from last year, while Alumina production ticked up slightly.

In August, South32 announced a 25% decline in annual profit as the trade war between China and the United States hurt aluminium prices.

(Reporting by Ambar Warrick and Niyati Shetty in Bengaluru; Editing by Anil D'Silva and Maju Samuel)

((Ambar.Warrick@thomsonreuters.com; +91-80-6749-6625; Reuters Messaging: ambar.warrick.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net))

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