Kazakhmys boosts profit

City A.M. Reporter
Kazakhmys, the world’s 10th largest copper miner, said yesterday its full-year profit jumped 74 per cent thanks to higher metal prices.

Earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation, excluding special items, rose to $2.84bn (£1.8bn).

The figure included a $903m contribution from its 26 per cent stake in Eurasian Natural Resources Corporation (ENRC).

Earlier this month, Kazakhmys chief executive Oleg Novachuk said he was exploring “strategic options” for the stake in ENRC. At yesterday’s closing price, the stake is worth about £3.1bn.

The biggest one-off item in the 2010 results was $130m to fund major social projects in Kazakhstan.

Prices for benchmark London Metal Exchange copper rose 31 per cent last year and hit a record high last month, driven partly by rising demand from markets such as China.

Kazakhmys said cost pressures increased over 2010, as they have for many miners, although its copper production costs remained globally competitive at 89 cents per pound.

Meanwhile, the miner announced that Peter Hickson will retire from the board and will be replaced by a new independent non-executive director in due course.

David Munro will also be stepping down from his position as development director, although he will continue to serve as a part-time executive with Kazakhmys.

Eduard Ogay, chief executive of subsidiary Kazakhmys Corporation, will be appointed to the board. Ogay joined the company in 2001.

The final dividend, which had already been declared, was 16 cents a share.?The full year-dividend is up 144 per cent on 2009 to 22 cents.

Shares in the firm closed 0.1 per cent higher yesterday at 1,426p.