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Chile's H1 2016 value of copper exports slide to lowest level since 2009

Santiago — The value of Chile's copper exports in the first half of 2016 slid to its lowest level since the immediate aftermath of the global financial crisis, central bank figures showed Thursday.

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The country, the world's largest copper producer, exported $13.4 billion worth of copper during the six-month period, down 16.1% from the first half of 2015 and its lowest level since 2009, the figures showed.

The value of copper cathode exports slid 15.2% to $6.356 billion, while exports of copper in concentrate fell 18% to $5.805 billion.

Monthly exports value fell 28% to $2.009 billion in June, the lowest monthly figure since March 2009.

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The drop in value reflects the decline in copper prices in the early months of 2016 to barely half of the 2011 price, which was over $4/lb.

The Chilean Copper Commission reaffirmed its prediction Thursday that copper prices will average $2.15/lb this year, down from $2.57/lb in 2015. Copper output in Chile also fell 5.1% in the first months of 2016 to 2.302 million mt.

The value of other mineral exports also fell, including silver, down 29% to $81 million and molybdenum concentrate, down 30.4% to $58 million. Exports of iron ore, however, rose 5.5% to $367 million, while gold exports, at $381 million, were little changed.

--Tom Azzopardi, newsdesk@platts.com

--Edited by Valarie Jackson, valarie.jackson@spglobal.com