Aeris Resources (ASX:AIS) - Executive Chairman, André Labuschagne
Executive Chairman, André Labuschagne
Source: Aeris Resources
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  • Aeris Resources (AIS) tumbles on the ASX today as its latest quarterly report reveals soft quarter-on-quarter copper and gold production
  • Both copper and gold production dipped over the September quarter, with Aeris claiming COVID-19 restrictions were largely responsible for the declines
  • For both copper and gold, Aeris recorded its lowest quarter of production over 2021 so far over the three months to the end of September
  • Moreover, Aeris today bumped up its forecast full-year copper production costs in light of what it called “historic high sea freight rates”
  • Shares in Aeris Resources are down 10.81 per cent and trading at 16 cents each at 12:14 pm AEDT

Junior miner Aeris Resources (AIS) tumbled on the ASX today after the company’s latest quarterly report revealed soft quarter-on-quarter copper and gold production.

The company said COVID-19 restrictions impacted its manning levels at its flagship Tritton Copper Operations in New South Wales, leading to a dip in quarterly copper production to 4534 tonnes over the three months to the end of September.

This is the lowest quarterly production of 2021 so far, with Aeris producing around 5800 tonnes and 5300 tonnes of the June and March quarters, respectively.

Aeris said a dip in the amount of copper ore produced from the Tritton Underground Mine was largely responsible for the overall production decline, with the 238,000 tonnes produced from the mine falling below the company’s plans.

While ore production from the Murrawombie Underground Mine in the area also dropped slightly, this mine’s production figures were still within Aeris’ mine plans.

As for Aeris’ other copper work, the company said it spent $9.7 million on growth projects over the quarter, with almost $4 million of this going toward exploration activities, mostly around the Constellation deposit in the Tritton area.

Aeris’ gold operations

At Aeris’ Cracow Gold Operations in Queensland, the company produced just under 14,700 ounces of gold at an all-in sustaining cost (AISC) of $1951 per ounce.

For reference, this is roughly 26 per cent lower than the 19,889 ounces of gold produced from the operations over the June quarter this year, produced at an AISC of $1568 per ounce. Aeris produced 15,548 ounces of gold from Cracow at $1557 per ounce over the March quarter.

Gold sales took a similar hit, with Aeris’ total gold sold and accrued topping under 15,800 ounces over the September quarter compared to 18,910 ounces the quarter before.

Aeris said the lower amount of sold gold drove the September AISC higher.

What’s next for Aeris?

Looking ahead, Aeris today revised its copper production cost guidance for the 2022 financial year in light of what it called “historic high sea freight rates.”

The company now expects full-year copper production AISC to land between $4.10 and $4.45 per pound, up from the previous range of between $3.95 and $4.30 per pound.

The company expects to produce between 21,000 tonnes and 22,000 tonnes of copper over the financial year.

As far as gold production goes, Aeris said it expected to produce between 67,000 ounces and 71,000 ounces of gold at an average AISC of between $1550 and $1600 per ounce over FY22.

Shares in Aeris Resources were down 10.81 per cent and trading at 16 cents each at 12:14 pm AEDT. The company has a $368 million market cap.

AIS by the numbers
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