BENGUET Corp. posted a combined net income of P381.39 million in 2020, more than tripling the previous year, owing to higher nickel sales and gold prices.

Its sales increased by 102 percent to P1.62 billion from P802.07 million the previous year. Nickel revenues accounted for the lion’s share of the total, accounting for P818.34 million.

“Nickel profits, which accounted for 50% of gross profits, increased by 1,165 percent to P818.34 million in 2019 from P64.65 million in 2019,” the firm said in a regulatory report.

Benguet Corp. reported that its nickel affiliate, Benguetcorp Nickel Mines, Inc. (BNMI), shipped nine boatloads of 1.2 percent to 1.4 percent nickel ore totaling 483,952 tons at an average price of $34.21 per ton in 2019, up from one boatload of 1.5 percent nickel ore totaling 55,000 tons at an average price of $22.50 per ton in 2019.

“Following the resumption of mining operations at the nickel project in Zambales in October 2020, BNMI was able to fully capitalize on the upbeat market for low and mid grades at higher prices,” the firm added.

Meanwhile, the firm reported that its gold sales for 2020 increased 18.7 percent to P704.30 million from P593.30 million the previous year due to higher values, while lime and other revenues increased to P97.09 million.

The Acupan Gold Project (AGP) sold 8,080.71 ounces of gold at an average price of $1,750.25 per ounce in 2018, compared to 8,236.65 ounces of gold at an average price of $1,395.43 per ounce in 2019.

“The Acupan mine’s gold production gained from a higher average gold price,” it said.

Benguet Corp.’s cost and operational expenditures in 2020 increased 38 percent to P1.27 billion from P923.78 million the previous year as a consequence of higher nickel ore shipping tonnage this year.

Moving ahead, the group stated that it does not anticipate any cash flow or debt problems in the next year.

“BNMI resumed mining activities and continues to sell saleable nickel ores inventory from the old stockpile, Irisan Lime Project maintains a steady market for quicklime goods, and AGP is projected to increase gold production,” the company said.

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