Kansanshi Mining Plc (KMP) had sales revenue of K15.66 billion (US$1.64 billion) [(2016: K 14.51 billion US$1.5 billion)] for the financial year ended 31st December 2017. Gross profit of K6,263.65 million (US$656 million) was higher than that the K1,929.18 million (US$188 million) reported in 2016 on a combination of the increase in sales revenues and lower operating costs.
Copper production for the financial year ended 31st December 2017 was 250,801 tonnes, 1% lower than 2016 (253,272 tonnes) primarily due to lower plant recovery on the sulphide circuit, reflecting the drive to improve the concentrate quality and treatment of weathered material and lower copper recovery on the oxide circuit caused by changes in the ore mineralogy. Copper production was also impacted by reduced mixed final tails processed through the leaching circuit before and during the third quarter smelter shutdown to manage the onsite acid inventory.
Gold production was 140,595 ounces, about 5% lower than in 2016 mainly due to lower concentrate production. AISC (All-in Sustaining Cost) of $1.54 per lb. was $0.03 per lb. lower than 2016. Higher deferred stripping and royalties, treatment and refining charges and a lower gold by-product credit were offset by a credit to site administration costs. The credit followed a review of recoverable costs and operational provisions in the second and third quarters. Higher royalty costs resulted from higher royalty rates, which range from 4% to 6% depending on the underlying copper price.
The Kansanshi Smelter achieved record production and throughput in 2017, having treated 1,211,740 DMT (Dry Metric Tonnes) of concentrate, a 6% increase over 2016 despite the planned third quarter shutdown. Production totalled 297,553 tonnes of copper anode and 1,128,000 tonnes of sulphuric acid, each 16% and 2% higher respectively than 2016. The quality of concentrate treated improved significantly with over 26% copper in concentrate grade compared to 23% recorded during 2016. The overall copper recovery rate achieved was 96%. Production in 2018 is expected to be approximately 240,000 tonnes of copper, and approximately 145,000 ounces of gold. The High Pressure Leach circuit is expected to be in operation throughout 2018, with a 70-day planned maintenance shutdown for relining expected to occur during the second and third quarter of 2018.
At the Board meeting held on 22 March 2018, the Directors proposed dividend payments of K740 million (US$78 million), split as K180 million (US$19 million) related to the year-end 31st December 2016 and K560 million (US$59 million) for the year ended 31st December 2017.