Register
Login:
Share:
Email Facebook Twitter




Stock Market news at lse.co.uk - RSS News Feeds

Bhp Billiton Share News (BLT)



Share News for Bhp Billiton (BLT)


Share Price: 1,132.00Bid: 1,131.00Ask: 1,132.00Change: 0.00 (0.00%)No Movement on Bhp Billiton
Spread: 1.00Spread as %: 0.09%Open: 0.00High: 0.00Low: 0.00Yesterday’s Close: 1,132.00




UPDATE 1-BHP to suspend Australia manganese operation

Thu, 23rd Feb 2012 01:58

SYDNEY, Feb 23 (Reuters) - BHP Billiton will suspend production at its TE
MCO manganese alloy smelter in Tasmania, Australia by early to mid-March and conduct a review of the business, citing stiff international competition and rising operating costs, the company said on Thursday.

'Recently, there has been further erosion of its international competitiveness due to the strong Australian dollar and steady increases in input costs, including in reductants and electricity,' the company said in a statement.

At the same time, manganese alloy markets in Europe and North America have been weak and global prices remain low, it said.

BHP is the world's largest producer of manganese, used to strengthen steel, mining 3.25 million tonnes of ore from operations in Australia and South Africa in the December 2011 half-year period.

The weak market situation for manganese was being exacerbated by a large stockpile of ore at Chinese ports and poor demand for steel long products, according to metals traders.

'While measures have been taken to make the operation as cost effective as possible, these have not been sufficient to counter shifts in the market, increased costs of production, or operating losses,' BHP said.

Over the next three months, BHP said it will review the long-term future of the operation.

Permanent employees of TEMCO will not be immediately affected by the suspension, though the number of outside contractors working at the facility will be cut, BHP said.

The operation began production in 1962 and remains the only manganese ferroalloy plant in Australia. It incorporates four furnaces and a sinter plant and produces high-carbon ferromanganese, silicomanganese and sinter. Production has run as high as a quarter-million tonnes per year.

BHP also mines manganese on the Australian mainland and in South Africa.

Roughly 80 percent of manganese ore production is sold directly to external customers. The remainder is fed to the TEMCO smelter and another facility in Meyerton, South Africa, according to BHP.

BHP earlier this month cited a 22 percent decline in ore prices and a 10 percent decline in alloy prices as a 'major drag on profitability' of its manganese division in the half-year period to December 31, 2011.

Recovery, particularly of the construction industries in Europe and North America, could lead to a firming of manganese ferroalloy prices starting in 2013, according to a report this month by London-based Roskill Information Services.



(Reporting by James Regan; Editing by Michael Urquhart) Keywords: AUSTRALIA BHP/

(jim.regan@thomsonreuters.com)(+612 9373-1814)(Reuters Messaging: jim.regan.thomsonreuters.com@reuters.net)

COPYRIGHT
Copyright Thomson Reuters 2012. All rights reserved.
The copying, republication or redistribution of Reuters News Content, including by framing or similar means, is expressly prohibited without the prior written consent of Thomson Reuters.


Related Shares: Bhp Billiton Plc (BLT) 





S&P cuts metals price forecasts, to review miners' ratings

MELBOURNE, Aug 31 (Reuters) - Standard & Poor's warned on Monday it was likely to revise the credit ratings for some miners over the next week after c
[Yesterday 03:45]

Britain's FTSE posts biggest monthly decline since 2012

* FTSE 100 up 0.9 pct* Posts biggest monthly drop since 2012* Energy companies rebound, among top gainers (Updates prices, adds detail)By Kit Rees a
[Fri 17:19]

Britain's FTSE set for biggest monthly decline since 2008

* FTSE 100 down 0.6 pct* Set for biggest monthly drop since financial crisis* Energy companies rebound, lead the gainers (Updates figures, recasts)B
[Fri 13:36]

Britain's FTSE steadies, energy and mining sectors gain

* FTSE 100 flat* Glencore leads the gainers* Huntsworth falls after resultsBy Liisa TuhkanenLONDON, Aug 28 (Reuters) - Britain's top share index stead
[Fri 10:15]

BUZZ-Mining stocks: Icahn stake in Freeport-McMoRan lifts sector

** Mining stocks, battered by a rout in commodity prices, get hefty boost from activist investor Carl Icahn disclosing a stake in diversified miner &
[Fri 08:46]

BUZZ-Australia's metal companies rise; copper, zinc soar in overnight trade

** Australia's metal companies rise, with the ASX 300 Metals & Mining Index gaining as much as 5.2 pct to its highest since Aug 17** Dalian iron ore f
[Fri 05:38]

RPT-COLUMN-BHP downgrades China steel forecast but keeps iron ore strategy: Russell

(Repeats with no changes to text)--Clyde Russell is a Reuters columnist. The views expressed are his own.--By Clyde RussellLAUNCESTON, Australia, Aug
[Wed 13:00]

BUZZ-UK mining cos: Citi downgrade cuts short rebound

** London-listed mining cos resume slide after Citigroup cuts its price target on a raft of cos to reflect lowered commodity price forecasts** "We bel
[Wed 09:14]



Sign up for Live Prices
Home  |  Contact Us  |  About Us  |  Careers  |  Advertise with Us  |  Sitemap  |  Terms & Conditions  |  Cookies  |  Privacy


Datafeed and UK data supplied by NBTrader and Digital Look. While London South East do their best to maintain the high quality of the information displayed on this site,
we cannot be held responsible for any loss due to incorrect information found here. All information is provided free of charge, 'as-is', and you use it at your own risk.
The contents of all 'Chat' messages should not be construed as advice and represent the opinions of the authors, not those of London South East Limited, or its affiliates.
London South East does not authorise or approve this content, and reserves the right to remove items at its discretion.