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January 30, 2023
Vancouver, B.C. – Teck Resources Limited (TSX: TECK.A and TECK.B, NYSE: TECK) (“Teck”) today provided select unaudited fourth quarter 2022 production and sales volumes, annual production volumes for 2022, as well as operational and capital guidance for 2023 and production guidance for 2024 to 2026.
Our fourth quarter 2022 financial results are scheduled for release on February 21, 2023.
2022 PRODUCTION RESULTS
The table below shows a summary of Teck’s share of unaudited production and sales of our principal products for the fourth quarter and 2022 annual production in relation to our previously disclosed annual guidance. Our 2022 annual production was within the previously disclosed guidance range for zinc in concentrate, while copper, refined zinc and steelmaking coal production came in slightly below the low end of our guidance ranges as follows:
|(Units in 000’s tonnes
excluding steelmaking coal)
|Highland Valley Copper||27.0||27.9||119.1||127 – 133|
|Antamina (22.5%)||24.0||24.3||102.3||91 – 96|
|Carmen de Andacollo||10.5||10.9||39.5||45 – 50|
|Quebrada Blanca||2.1||2.3||9.6||10 – 11|
|63.6||65.4||270.5||273 – 290|
|Red Dog||141.6||119.9||553.1||540 – 570|
|Antamina (22.5%)||23.1||23.8||97.4||90 – 95|
|164.7||143.7||650.5||630 – 665|
|Trail Operations||57.0||46.2||248.9||257 – 267|
|Steelmaking Coal (million tonnes)||4.3||4.9||21.5||22.0 – 22.5|
1 Guidance as of October 26, 2022.
Our guidance for 2023, including production guidance for the following three years, is outlined in the tables below. The guidance ranges reflect uncertainties including increased frequency of extreme weather events and other potential disruptions.
Like others in the industry, we continue to face inflationary cost pressures, which have increased our operating costs compared to prior years. The increase in the cost of certain key supplies, including mining equipment, fuel, tires and explosives, are being driven largely by price increases for underlying commodities such as steel, crude oil and natural gas. While our underlying key mining drivers such as strip ratios and haul distances remain relatively stable, inflationary pressures on diesel and other key input costs, as well as profit-based compensation put upward pressure on our unit costs in 2022 and are expected to persist through 2023.
The Quebrada Blanca Phase 2 commissioning of Line 1 is progressing well and we are close to first concentrate production. Our focus continues to be on system completion and handover as part of the continuous commissioning plan through 2023. Construction capital cost guidance remains unchanged from our third quarter update and further details regarding key milestones achieved and expected in 2023 will be included with our fourth quarter 2022 release.
The table below shows Teck’s share of unaudited production of our principal products in 2022, and our guidance for 2023 and the following three years.
|(In 000’s tonnes
excluding steelmaking coal and molybdenum)
|2022 Actual||2023 Guidance||2024 – 2026 Guidance|
|Copper 1 2 3|
|Highland Valley Copper||119.1||110 – 118||120 – 165|
|Antamina||102.3||90 – 97||90 – 100|
|Carmen de Andacollo||39.5||40 – 50||50 – 60|
|Quebrada Blanca||9.6||150 – 180||285 – 315|
|270.5||390 – 445||545 – 640|
|Zinc1 2 4|
|Red Dog||553.1||550 – 580||500 – 550|
|Antamina||97.4||95 – 105||55 – 95|
|650.5||645 – 685||555 – 645|
|Trail Operations||248.9||270 – 290||280 – 310|
|Steelmaking Coal (million tonnes)||21.5||24.0 – 26.0||24.0 – 26.0|
|Red Dog||79.5||110 – 125||85 – 95|
|Molybdenum (million pounds)|
|Highland Valley Copper||1.0||0.8 – 1.2||2.0 – 6.0|
|Antamina (22.5 %)||1.5||2.2 – 2.6||2.0 – 4.0|
|Quebrada Blanca||–||1.5 – 3.0||10.0 – 14.0|
|2.5||4.5 – 6.8||14.0 – 24.0|
1. Metals contained in concentrate
2. We include 100% of production and sales from Quebrada Blanca and Carmen de Andacollo, because their results are fully consolidated in our financial statements. We include 22.5% of production from Antamina, representing our proportionate ownership interest.
3. Copper production includes cathode production at Quebrada Blanca and Carmen de Andacollo.
4. Total zinc includes co-product zinc production from our 22.5% proportionate interest in Antamina.
The table below shows our sales guidance for the first quarter of 2023 for select products.
|Q1 2023 Guidance|
|Zinc (000’s tonnes) 1||
|Red Dog||165 – 185|
|Steelmaking Coal (million tonnes)||6.0 – 6.4|
Note:1. Metal contained in concentrate.
Unit Cost Guidance
The table below summarizes our unit cost guidance for our principal products in 2022 and 2023.
|Total cash unit costs (US$/lb)||1.93 – 2.03||2.05 – 2.25|
|Net cash unit costs 3 (US$/lb)||1.48 – 1.58||1.60 – 180|
|Total cash unit costs (US$/lb)||0.54 – 0.59||0.68 – 0.78|
|Net cash unit costs 3 (US$/lb)||0.37 – 0.43||0.50 – 0.60|
|Adjusted site cash cost of sales (C$/tonne)||87 – 92||88 – 96|
|Transportation costs (C$/tonne)||46 – 49||45 – 48|
1. Copper unit costs are reported in U.S. dollars per payable pound of metal contained in concentrate. Copper net cash unit costs include adjusted cash cost of sales and smelter processing charges, less cash margins for by-products including co-products. Guidance for 2023 assumes a zinc price of US$1.45 per pound, a molybdenum price of US$17.00 per pound, a silver price of US$20 per ounce, a gold price of US$1,755 per ounce and a Canadian/U.S. dollar exchange rate of $1.33. Excludes Quebrada Blanca.
2. Zinc unit costs are reported in U.S. dollars per payable pound of metal contained in concentrate. Zinc net cash unit costs are mine costs including adjusted cash cost of sales and smelter processing charges, less cash margins for by-products. Guidance for 2023 assumes a lead price of US$0.90 per pound, a silver price of US$20 per ounce and a Canadian/U.S. dollar exchange rate of $1.33. By-products include both by-products and co-products.
3. After co-product and by-product margins and excluding Quebrada Blanca.
Copper production in 2023 is expected to be in the range of 390,000 to 445,000 tonnes. QB2 is expected to add substantially to overall copper production compared to 2022 as we ramp-up to full capacity before the end of 2023. The increase is partially offset by lower expected production at Highland Valley Copper due to harder ore and lower copper grades as part of an update to the mine plan and lower copper grade at Antamina as expected in the mine plan.
Excluding QB2, we expect 2023 copper net cash unit costs in the range of US$1.60 to US$1.80 per pound after cash margins for by-products. Guidance reflects continued inflationary pressures on diesel, explosives, tires and reagents, as well as increased unit operating costs at Highland Valley Copper due to lower expected production, as outlined above.
We continue to expect QB2 to reach full capacity by end of the 2023. As a result of recent changes to IFRS, we are required to recognize sales proceeds and related costs associated with products sold during the ramp-up and commissioning phase of QB2 through earnings rather than capitalizing these amounts. We expect this to increase our unit operating costs for QB2 during ramp-up. Once QB2 is running at full production rates, we expect the average net cash unit costs will be between US$1.40 per pound and US$1.60 per pound.
Copper production from 2024 to 2026 is expected to be between 545,000 and 640,000 tonnes per year, including QB2.
We expect 2023 zinc in concentrate production, including co-product zinc production from Antamina (22.5%), to be in the range of 645,000 to 685,000 tonnes. This increase from 2022 production levels is driven by higher zinc grades at both Red Dog and Antamina as expected in the mine plan.
In 2023, we expect our zinc net cash unit costs to be in the range of US$0.50 to US$0.60 per pound after cash margins for by-products. The increase over 2022 reflects a full year of inflation impact in 2023 on the cost of major consumables, such as diesel. In 2022, the inflationary impacts were primarily in the fourth quarter of 2022.
Zinc in concentrate production from 2024 to 2026 is expected to be between 555,000 to 645,000 tonnes per year.
In 2023, we expect refined zinc production to be between 270,000 and 290,000 tonnes, reflecting the residual impact of weather-related events on our Trail Operations at the end of 2022 that continued into January. Operations are expected to return to normal in the first quarter of 2023.
Refined zinc production from 2024 to 2026 is expected to be between 280,000 and 310,000 tonnes per year.
We expect 2023 annual steelmaking coal production to be between 24 and 26 million tonnes. Labour constraints are expected to continue to negatively impact equipment operating hours despite improved workforce attraction and retention from initiatives implemented in 2022. We updated our 2024 to 2026 steelmaking coal production guidance to 24 to 26 million tonnes per year to reflect uncertainties related to ongoing labour impacts and increasing frequency of adverse weather events.
We expect 2023 adjusted site cash cost of sales to be between $88 and $96 per tonne. Relative to 2022, we anticipate favourable mining drivers, lower profit-based costs and an increased rate of capitalization of stripping costs in 2023 that will be offset by continued inflationary pressures. Major plant maintenance is scheduled to take place in the second and third quarters, resulting in expected adjusted site cash cost of sales to be at or above the upper end of the guidance range in those quarters, offset with lower costs in the first and fourth quarters. Inflationary cost pressures remain the primary driver of unit cost increases over historical periods, which are expected to be more than offset by the strong steelmaking coal prices supported by global supply constraints.
Capital Expenditures Guidance
Our 2023 capital expenditures are expected to decrease from 2022, primarily driven by lower spending on QB2 development capital.
As previously disclosed, we expect approximately US$900 million to US$1.3 billion of QB2 development capital in 2023. A portion of this capital is related to items outside of the critical path for first copper, including the ship loader and the molybdenum plant.
The increase in sustaining capital in 2023 reflects the initial year of spend for QB2 and inflationary pressures across our business.
Capitalized stripping costs for steelmaking coal are expected to increase due to continued inflationary pressures, largely in mine and maintenance costs, and a notable peak period of capitalized stripping to advance the development of mine pits to support future production.
The table below shows our capital expenditures guidance for 2022 and 2023.
|(Teck’s share in C$ millions)||
|Copper 1||$ 340||$ 510|
|Steelmaking coal 2||650||760|
|$ 1,185||$ 1,430|
|Copper 4||$ 235||$ 250|
|$ 305||$ 360|
|Copper||$ 575||$ 760|
|$ 1,490||$ 1,790|
|QB2 development capital||$ 2,900 – 3,000||$ 1,200 – 1,750|
|Total before SMM and SC contributions||4,390 – 4,490||2,990 – 3,540|
|Estimated SMM and SC contributions to capital expenditures||(860) – (890)||(520) – (700)|
|Estimated QB2 project financing draw to capital expenditures||(315)||–|
|Total, net of partner contributions and project financing||$ 3,215 – 3,285||$ 2,470 – 2,840|
1. Copper sustaining capital guidance for 2023 includes QB2 operations.
2. Steelmaking coal sustaining capital 2023 guidance includes $220 million of water treatment capital. 2022 guidance includes $200 million of water treatment capital.
3. Growth expenditures include RACE21TM capital expenditures for 2023 of $35 million, of which $5 million relates to copper and $30 million relates to steelmaking coal.
4. Copper growth capital guidance for 2023 includes studies for HVC 2040, Zafranal, San Nicolas, NewRange (formerly Mesaba and NorthMet), Quebrada Blanca Mill Expansion (QBME), Galore Creek, Schaft Creek and NuevaUnión.
Capital Expenditure Guidance – Capitalized Stripping
|(Teck’s share in C$ millions)||
|Copper||$ 250||$ 295|
|$ 870||$ 1,100|
As one of Canada’s leading mining companies, Teck is committed to responsible mining and mineral development with major business units focused on copper, zinc, and steelmaking coal. Copper, zinc and high-quality steelmaking coal are required for the transition to a low-carbon world. Headquartered in Vancouver, Canada, Teck’s shares are listed on the Toronto Stock Exchange under the symbols TECK.A and TECK.B and the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol TECK.
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