Anggi M. Lubis
JAKARTA. Publicly listed diversified mining company Aneka Tambang (Antam) reported that its first-quarter sales flopped by nearly 35 percent year-on-year (y-o-y) due to the sharp decline in the price of nickel and gold as well as a fall in production.
Antam’s unaudited financial report published recently shows that its revenue fell by 34 percent to Rp 2.22 trillion (US$192.62 million) during the first three months of this year, from Rp 3.34 trillion recorded during the same period last year, when the company recorded a 35.5 percent y-o-y increase.
Its total comprehensive income went down by about 11 percent y-o-y to Rp 409.95 billion between January and March.
Gold sales made up half of Antam’s first-quarter revenue, accounting for Rp 1.16 trillion, a 26 percent decline compared to the same period last year.
According to the company’s statement, the decline in sales volume and the drop in the price of gold were the two main factors behind the revenue drop. The company said the average price of gold fell 23 percent y-o-y to $1,318.31 in the first quarter of 2014 compared to the same period last year.
Antam’s gold production went down by 16 percent y-o-y to 513 kilograms during the first quarter of the year.
“The decrease was also attributable to the lower grade of the ore mined from the Pongkor [West Java] and Cibaliung [Banten] mines,” the statement read. This contributed to slumping sales, which declined by 20 percent y-o-y to 2,323 kg. The company’s gold sales included purchases from other gold mining companies.
Antam’s nickel ore production also slumped by 95 percent y-o-y to 178,459 wet metric tons (wmt), which came entirely from its high-grade Pakal Island mine in North Maluku.
In line with the implementation of the government’s mineral ore export ban earlier this year, Antam’s nickel ore production was largely used to supply the company’s ferronickel smelters, which left the company to book a 92 percent y-o-y decline in both its nickel sales volume and value.
Antam sold 215,400 wmt of nickel ore in the first quarter of this year, the total value of which stood at Rp 87 billion.
Following the government’s ban, Antam’s ferronickel sales rose by 46 percent y-o-y to 5,523 tons of nickel in ferronickel (TNi).
Despite a 21 percent decline in the company’s ferronickel average selling price to $6.3 per pound compared to the first quarter of 2013, Antam’s unaudited ferronickel sales grew by around 50 percent to Rp 891 billion, thanks to the higher sales volume.
“Antam remains confident that it will reach its 2014 production target of 18,000 TNi,” the statement said.
Meanwhile, Antam’s bauxite production rose by 186 percent y-o-y to 115,340 wmt, as the company has been aggressively boosting the commodity’s production in preparation of the company’s Tayan Grade Chemical Alumina plant.
The $490 million Tayan refinery was commissioned in October last year, and is expected to launch operations soon, with output set at between 125,000 tons and 130,000 tons of alumina throughout this year, before increasing to 300,000 tons next year.
This year, Antam plans to allocate Rp 2.8 trillion for capital expenditure (capex), compared to Rp 2 trillion last year, as more projects come onstream.
The state-run miner has also signed a memorandum of understanding (MoU) with mining giant PT Freeport Indonesia to develop a smelter to purify copper ore under a public private partnership (PPP).
Antam’s shares, traded on the Indonesia Stock Exchange (IDX) under the ticker symbol ANTM, closed at 1,150 on Friday, a 2.3 percent decline from the previous closing session.
Source : The Jakarta Post, May 03, 2014