PGM Production Down at Implats

Impala Platinum confirmed during February that it recorded a year-on-year PGM production decline of 13.2% in the six months to the end of December 2008. According to Johnson Matthey’s Platinum Today, the South African company revealed that its total PGM production fell to 1.717 million oz, compared with 1.979 million oz for the equivalent period in 2007.

Nickel production was down by 12.1% from 8,300 mt to 7,300 mt, while rhodium output fell 3.8% from 133,000 oz to 128,000 oz. However, the two main contributors were platinum, which was down by 14.8% from 1.031 million oz to 878,000 oz, and palladium, which was down by 17.3% from 573,000 oz to 474,000 oz.

“With world economies and their financial systems still on life support, it is increasingly difficult to forecast the outcome for 2009,” said David Brown, CEO, Impala Platinum. “Suffice to say we do not expect any major recovery in automotive demand.”

With that in mind, the company has confirmed that it will trim production of the metal to 1.7 million oz in the 2008–09 financial year. It also intends to cut overall production by 200,000 os/y, taking it to a total of 2.1 million oz by 2012.

As featured in Womp 2009 Vol 03 -