Chile: Copper prices rise in November; Chilean copper output falls in October
Copper prices averaged USD 8,190 per metric ton in November, up 3.1% from October’s price. On 30 November, the commodity traded at USD 8,388 per metric ton, 4.5% higher than on the same day of the previous month. Meanwhile, Chilean copper production fell 4.4% year on year in October, following three straight months of expansion. Output was weighed on by lower ore grades and copper processing activity.
Copper prices are forecast to rise in the coming quarters as industrial activity in China improves, supported by recent stimulus policies. Further government stimulus in the Asian giant and the path of monetary policy globally are key factors to monitor on the demand side. On the supply side, Chilean copper output will likely be fairly stagnant in 2023 as a whole relative to 2022 amid declining ore grades and water shortages in H1. Chilean copper output should get a boost next year, thanks to the completion of new mining projects and as El Niño brings rains and thus eases water shortages. While a higher mining royalty could temper investment going forward, the impact could be offset by the government’s plans to streamline the approval process for mining projects.