Corporate News

Philex Mining profit rises in 1st quarter

Posted on April 28, 2017

EARNINGS of Philex Mining Corp. rose slightly in the first quarter as improved metal prices and favorable exchange rates partially offset a dip in metal output.

In a regulatory filing on Thursday, the gold and copper miner said net income grew 2.8% to P432.27 million in the first three months of the year, from the P420.45 million registered in the same period in 2016.

Core profit increased 18% to P458 million in the January to March period, from P389 million a year ago.

“The improvement in the Company’s financial results was attributed to higher metal prices, partly offset by lower metal output,” Philex Mining said.

Consolidated revenues went up 6% to P2.54 billion in the first quarter, amid improved metal prices and favorable foreign exchange rates.

Average realized copper prices hit $2.77 per pound during the January to March period versus $2.25 per pound during the same period in 2016. On the other hand, average realized gold prices jumped to $1,264 per ounce in the first quarter, from $1,239 per ounce a year ago.

The foreign exchange rate of P50.32:$1 also had a positive effect on first quarter revenues. In the first quarter of 2016, the foreign exchange rate was at P46.90:$1.

Revenues from gold were flat at P1.42 billion, while copper revenues jumped 15% to P1.09 billion. Sales from silver increased 30% to P21.89 million from P16.773 million a year ago.

Philex Mining said its Padcal mine in Benguet milled 1.998 million metric tons of ore during the first quarter, 14% lower than the 2.325 million tons milled in the same quarter last year. The mine operated for 88 days in January to March, from 90 days a year ago.

“The lower tonnage was affected by less operating days and equipment availability issues. The Company initiated measures to improve metal recovery, by enhancing the flotation process, to offset the lower milling tonnage,” Philex Mining said.

Consolidated costs and expenses increased 2% to P1.668 billion, due to higher depreciation and depletion charges, as well as a rise in excise taxes and royalty payments.

“Over and above the healthy financial performance in the first quarter, our commitment to advocate responsible mining, following stringent local and international standards, remains paramount,” Eulalio B. Austin, Jr., Philex Mining Corporation President and CEO in the statement.

“It is for this reason that we continue to roll out the activities we committed under the many agreements we have signed with the government and pursue the initiatives we vowed to provide our host and neighboring communities, in accordance with law, oftentimes exceeding what is required from us.”

Philex Mining expects to complete the definitive feasibility study for its Silangan project within the year.

The Silangan project passed its first ISO 14001 annual audit conducted in April this year by Certification International Philippines, Inc.

“The accomplishment means that Silangan maintains its ISO 14001 Certification, received on June 1, 2016. This also highlights the Project’s compliance with strict environmental management standards, during the provision of pre-mining development activities, and bodes well for its bid to commence mine development and commercial operations in the future,” Silangan Mindanao Mining Co., Inc. President and COO Yulo E. Perez said.

Trading of Philex Mining shares inched up 0.92 on Wednesday to close at P8.82 apiece on Thursday.

Philex Mining is one of three Philippine units of Hong Kong-based First Pacific Co. Ltd., the others being PLDT, Inc. and Metro Pacific Investments Corp. Hastings Holdings, Inc. -- a unit of PLDT Beneficial Trust Fund subsidiary MediaQuest Holdings, Inc. -- maintains interest in BusinessWorld through the Philippine Star Group, which it controls. -- J.C. Lim