Freeport may sell off Chile mine to focus on US investments
Phoenix-based Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold is reportedly considering selling its huge Candelaria copper mine in Chile to help pay down corporate debt and refocus its efforts in the US, according to a story in the Wall Street Journal. They say that Freeport may be negotiating with Aaron Regent, CEO of Canadian mining investment firm Magris Resources. Interestingly, the WSJ had previously reported that Magris had looked at acquiring Augusta Resources, parent of Rosemont Copper, during its takeover battle with HudBay Minerals. [Right, Candelaria mine. Credit, Freeport McMoRan Copper & Gold]
Freeport CEO Richard Adkerson was noted to have said previously the company wants to put emphasis on exploration in the US because of more consistent environmental and labor regulations. That fits with our perception that Freeport is increasing exploration in Arizona.
Candelaria, which is 80% Freeport and 20% Sumitomo owned, mined 370 million pounds of copper and 87,000 ounces of gold last year. Freeport describes Candelaria as "an iron oxide, copper and gold deposit" with development of "an open-pit copper mine and a 6,000 metric
ton-per-day (mtd) underground copper mine, which is mined by sublevel