Photo credit: Bilyonaryo - Philex Mining Corporation
Philex Mining Corporation (the “Company” or “Philex”), one of the oldest and largest gold and copper producers in Southeast Asia, and a leader in right and principled mining, generated Php676 million Core Net Income and EBITDA of Php1.182 billion for 1Q2022 due to higher operating revenues on account of higher sustaining Gold and Copper realized prices, stable production and managed operating cost and expenses.
Production level in 1Q2022 was within plan and, coupled with higher realized prices for Gold and Copper, lifted operating revenues to Php2.720 billion, higher by 7.5% versus the same period in 2021. Blended realized Gold and Copper prices peaked in March at $1,887 per ounce and $4.59 per pound respectively, driving operating revenues in March to Php1.075 billion, the highest since January. Operating costs were almost the same level as in 1Q2021 at Php1.655 billion.
Tonnage milled for 1Q2021 was 10% lower at 1.822 million tonnes from 2.025 million tonnes in 1Q2021 mainly attributed to unscheduled breakdown of mill equipment. Ore grades for Gold continue to be at the same level as in 1Q2021 while ore grades for Copper showed improvement over the same period in 1Q2021, mitigating the impact of lower tonnage in Copper production. Gold output for 1Q2022 was 9.8% lower at 12,097 ounces versus 13,413 ounces in 1Q2021. On the other hand, Copper output for 1Q2022 was 8.7% lower at 6.18 million pounds versus 6.77 million pounds in 1Q2021.
Operating expenses and ebitda
Total operating costs and expenses for 1Q2022 at Php1.655 billion were almost at the same level for the same period in 1Q2021 at Php1.647 billion. The increases in the purchase costs of materials and supplies as well as equipment parts were offset by the continued implementation of work programs in operations, leading to efficiencies in the usage of power and supplies.
EBITDA generated for 1Q2022 at Php1.182 billion was 17% higher than the Php1.011 billion in 1Q2021. The Company continue to accumulate cash surplus at a level programmed to partly finance the development of Silangan project by way of additional and fresh cash equity infusion into its wholly owned subsidiary, Silangan Mindanao Mining Co. Inc.
The current global commodity outlook points to sustained prices of Gold and Copper in the near to medium term. These sustained metal prices provide the Company with the ability to implement exploration and studies geared towards funding additional mineral resources/reserves within the current ore body and vicinity of the Padcal Mine.
The Company continues to work with its financial advisors for the completion of the fund raising exercise to start the Silangan Project, subject to approval of relevant government and /or capital market regulators. The successful and timely conclusion of the funding exercise will pave the way for the timely development and start of commercial operations of the Silangan project by early 2025. The Company is set to actively commence the development of Silangan as soon as the funding sources would have been finalized and completed, which will be in the form of a rights offer, possibly debt and fresh capital infusion out of the cash reserves of the Company.
“The first quarter of the year bore much promise that the mining industry, like the economy, was well on its way to full recovery with the tapering off of the global threat of COVID-19 and the relaxation of stringent quarantine and lockdown guidelines,” according to Philex president and CEO Eulalio B. Austin Jr. “The country, it seemed, was back in business and Philex continued to ride on the strength of sustained production and revenue levels, and took full advantage of the wave of increase in global metal prices. However, the current situation in Ukraine and its impact on the global supply chain and commodity markets makes us tread cautiously towards the remaining months of the year. We are still hopeful that the conflict in Europe will end soon enough. We move with caution and continue to assess and re-assess our plans and our strategies.”
“We view the current global situation with guarded optimism,” according to Philex Chairman Manuel V. Pangilinan. “Though there are gains to be realized with the spike in the prices of gold, copper, and even nickel, the current tension that is unfolding in Ukraine might impact the country’s and the industry’s pursuit of recovery post-pandemic. If the conflict pushes inflation upward, it could affect the country’s economic growth.”
Article courtesy of the Philippine Stock Exchange