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Zimplats revenue down

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Zimbabwe Platinum Mining Limited (Zimplats) revenues were down 11% in the second quarter ended June, despite a rise in output on the back of depressed metal prices.

Ore output was up 4% to 1 172 000 tonnes from 1 125 000 tonnes in the previous quarter.

Total revenues during the period under review amounted to $114 million from $128 million the previous quarter while operating costs were 17% above the previous quarter, in line with higher sales volume.

Operating profit was 52% lower than the previous quarter to $25 million from $51,8 million.

“Financial performance did not mirror a 13% increase in volume of metals sold due to depressed metal prices, with gross revenue 4E ounce 21% lower than the previous quarter,” the company said in a quarterly report.

“Mining production was good at 4% above previous quarter.

“Head grade was, however, 2% lower than the prior quarter owing to poor ground conditions encountered in some sections of the mines.”

During the period under review, metal prices were on a downward spiral due to an oversupply of the platinum group of minerals on the market.

The platinum price per ounce was 7% lower at $1 501 in the period under review compared to
$1 607 the previous quarter. Palladium and rhodium were 8% lower at $629 and $1 325 per ounce respectively.

“The depressed metal prices have put severe pressure on cashflows and the company will consequently have to secure higher levels of bank borrowings than originally envisaged,” the company said.

The company increased its processed ore by 8% in the period under review to 1 153 000 tonnes from 1 069 000tonnes.

“Tonnage milled was 8% higher than the previous quarter due to improved plant availability in contrast to the previous quarter when plant running time was affected by major maintenance shutdowns,” the company said.

Zimplats said the Ngezi Phase II expansion project was still on and the commissioning of the concentrator plant was scheduled for April next year.

“However, due to the constrained cash flows, parts of the infrastructure component of the project have been rescheduled to subsequent years,” the
company said in its quarterly report.

The expansion was expected to increase annual platinum production to 270 000 ounces per annum from 180 000 and would create 1 000 jobs.

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