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Colombia nickel output gains in Q2; gold, coal fall

Lima — Colombian nickel output rose in the second quarter year on year, while gold and coal production declined, the government said.

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Nickel output gained 16% to 24.9 million lb in the quarter from 21.47 million lb a year earlier at the Cerro Matoso mine, owned by BHP Billiton spin-off South32, the National Mining Agency said Friday in a statement.

Gold output dropped 14.7% to 332,596 oz from 390,177 oz a year earlier, the agency said. The government has imposed tougher controls on gold trading as part of a clampdown on illegal mining. The agency didn't disclose quarterly silver or platinum production figures.

Colombia's coal output at mines operated by BHP Billiton, Drummond and Glencore fell 7.5% to 19.8 million mt in the quarter from 21.4 million mt a year earlier due to heavy rains, the agency said.

Colombia is Latin America's largest coal producer.

--Alex Emery,

--Edited by Jonathan Loades-Carter,