DMCI Mining expects rough 2019 due to lower inventory, nickel grade

MANILA, Philippines – Consunji-owned DMCI Mining Corporation is expecting a tough year even with the lifting of the suspension of its subsidiary Berong Nickel Corporation last November.

This is also despite the nickel industry announcing its bright outlook amid high demand for stainless steel and e-vehicle batteries.

DMCI Mining president Cesar Simbulan said in a disclosure on Thursday, March 21, that they "will be shipping mostly lower grade nickel which fetches a lower price in the market."

Simbulan also said their investory is now "nearly depleted."

DMCI had posted a 22% improvement in production last year.

Aside from shipping 643,000 wet metric tons (WMT) in 2018, the firm saw its average nickel grade improve by 13% to 1.70% year-on-year in 2018. For 2019, the average grade of the company's nickel ore may drop to 1.57%. 

In the meantime, DMCI said it is working on the reopening of Zambales Diversified Metals Corporation (ZDMC), which was ordered by the Department of Environment and Natural Resources to suspend operations, production, and shipment.

ZDMC can only operate once it has rehabilitated the mine site and managed the nearby environmental structures. The firm said it has already submitted an action plan for this.

In 2018, DMCI Mining saw its net profit rise to P113 million from a P65-million net loss due to lower operating costs and a shipment from its old inventory weighing 525,000 WMT. –