THE country’s biggest listed mining company on Thursday said it may achieve record earnings for this year following a strong first quarter.
In disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange, Philex Mining Corp. said its net income more than doubled from P512.3 million in the first quarter last year to P1.310 billion this year, the fourth highest quarterly income level in its history.
Its core net income surged 156 percent to P1.330 billion from P520.1 million in the same three-month period last year.
Revenues of P3.864 billion were the second highest thus far in the company’s history and 59 percent higher than the P2.434 billion reported a year ago.
“With this quarter’s results, the company is on its way potentially to generating record earnings for the year. We are benefiting from the continuing improvement in the price of gold, which has now breached the $1,500 per ounce mark,” said Manuel Pangilinan, Philex chairman.
The executive said revenues from gold increased by 88 percent to P2.1 billion, while copper sales climbed by 31 percent to P1.65 billion.
He said that gold contributed 54 percent of total revenue, copper, 43 percent; and petroleum and coal for the balance.
Philex said its Padcal mine produced some 2.3 million metric tons of ore, with average grades of 0.221 percent copper and 0.613 grams of gold per ton.
This was higher than the 2.1 million tons produced from the mine last year, with average grades of 0.216 percent copper and 0.477 grams of gold per ton.
Philex said the higher tonnage and better grades resulted in higher production of copper concentrates. Copper concentrates amounted to 16,792 dry metric tons, against 14,893 a year earlier.
Accordingly, gold production rose by 51 percent to 37,003 ounces in the first quarter of 2011, while copper production went up 12 percent to P9.1 million pounds.
Revenue contribution from petroleum, under wholly owned unit Philex Petroleum Corp., also improved to P64.5 million this quarter from P35 million a year ago.
Pangilinan said they expect additional revenues from future mining projects, including Silangan and possibly, the Kalayaan property of Manila Mining Corp. in northern Mindanao.
“The company is close to finalizing an agreement with Manila Mining for a joint venture on the Kalayaan property. This will enhance the attractiveness of the company’s Silangan project, particularly that of its Bayugo ore body, which has a common boundary with Kalayaan,” Pangilinan said.
“Further, advanced exploration activities are being done in the nearby Boyongan ore body which will be developed separately by Philex. An exploration ramp is now being driven in Boyongan as part of its exploration activities and pre-feasibility study work,” he added.
Philex shares were unchanged at P17.40 on Thursday.