• 5 minutes 'No - Deal Brexit' vs 'Operation Fear' Globalist Pushback ... Impact to World Economies and Oil
  • 8 minutes China has *Already* Lost the Trade War. Meantime, the U.S. Might Sanction China’s Largest Oil Company
  • 12 minutes Will Uncle Sam Step Up and Cut Production
  • 12 mins China has invested btw $30 - $40 Billon in Canadian Oil Sands. Trump should put 10% tariffs on all Chinese oil exported into or thru U.S. in which Chinese companies have invested .
  • 15 hours Iran Is Winning Big In The Middle East
  • 2 hours Tit For Tat: China Strikes Back In Trade Dispute With U.S. With New Tariffs
  • 4 hours Trump vs. Xi Trade Battle, Running Commentary from Conservative Tree House
  • 2 hours It's Not the Job of the Government to Dictate Where Businesses Should Go
  • 17 hours Not The Onion: Vivienne Westwood Says Greta Thunberg Should Run the World
  • 16 hours IS ANOTHER MIDDLE EAST WAR REQUIRED TO BOLSTER THE OIL PRICE
  • 1 day OPEC will consider all options. What options do they have ?
  • 1 day Trump cancels Denmark visit amid spat over sale of Greenland
  • 13 hours Strong, the Strongest: Audi To Join Mercedes, BMW Development Alliance
  • 14 hours Wonders of US Shale: US Shale Benefits: The U.S. leads global petroleum and natural gas production with record growth in 2018
  • 1 day Long Range Attack On Saudi Oil Field Ends War On Yemen
  • 9 hours Recession Jitters Are Rising. Is There Reason To Worry?
Alt Text

Chinese Rare Earth Exports Tumble As Trade War Accelerates

China, the world’s largest producer…

Alt Text

Peak Lithium Won’t Happen Anytime Soon

Peak lithium is not happening…

Alt Text

Vanadium Spikes On New Chinese Regulations

A new regulatory measure in…

Dave Forest

Dave Forest

Dave is Managing Geologist of the Pierce Points Daily E-Letter.

More Info

Premium Content

Copper Prices Could Rise As Another Major Copper Mine Goes On Strike

One of the world’s largest copper mines just came back online — with Freeport’s Grasberg, Indonesia operation reportedly finalizing paperwork to resume concentrate exports, after a 12-week standoff with the government.

But just as that mine restarts, another major operation could be going offline.

The Toquepala complex in Peru, run by Grupo Mexico subsidiary Southern Copper.

Unions at the facility — which includes the Cuajone and Toquepala mines, and the Ilo copper smelter — launched a strike Monday. Which labor officials said involves 2,200 workers, affecting 80 percent of operations across the complex.

Southern Copper management announced that production has not yet been affected. With officials saying that output from the two mines was running at 98 percent, and the smelter at 100 percent.

But it appears likely the labor action will take a toll over the coming days. With union leaders saying more workers plan to join the strike late this week.

Unions also said they would block train tracks, to prevent rail service to and from the facility.

All of which suggests we could see another copper supply disruption here. Very similar to the 43-day strike that ended last month at the Escondida mine in Chile, as well as the 21-day stoppage that hit Freeport’s Cerro Verde mine in Peru during March.

Demands from unions at Toquepala are similar to both those cases. With workers asking for a larger share of profits — in addition to improvements in health care and paid leave.

Output from Toquepala isn’t as big as either Cerro Verde or Escondida — currently running at about 60,000 tonnes per day of ore processing, as compared to 360,000 t/d for Cerro Verde. Related: Will Summer Bring $60 Oil?

But Southern Copper is currently in the middle of a $1.2 billion upgrade to the mine, to expand to 120,000 t/d. With that partially-sunk investment making this a critical center of growth for the company.

The next moves will be important, with the company reportedly considering bringing in temporary workers to replace strikers. That could raise potential for more-violent clashes here, perhaps lengthening the strike. Watch for the news on those developments — and for upward support in copper prices if Toquepala’s production goes offline.

Here’s to making it work,

Dave Forest

More Top Reads From Oilprice.com:




Download The Free Oilprice App Today

Back to homepage


Leave a comment

Leave a comment




Oilprice - The No. 1 Source for Oil & Energy News
Download on the App Store Get it on Google Play