MANILA, Philippines — Pangilinan-led Philex Mining Corp. saw its 2023 core net income  decline  to P963 million year-on-year due to lower  output and elevated operating costs and expenses.

This was 44.43 percent lower than the P1.733-billion net income it posted in 2022, Philex said in a disclosure to the Philippine Stock Exchange yesterday.

Philex noted that the drop in its bottom line was cushioned by “sustained favorable” metal prices as well as weaker peso.

The company said its total tonnage milled last year dropped by almost eight percent to 6.853 million metric tons from 7.432 million MT in 2022.

Both the mine’s gold output and copper output in 2023 declined due to lower recorded ore grades.

Philex’s gold output declined by more than a fifth to 37,784 ounces from 48,567 ounces while its copper production declined 15 percent year-on-year to 21.298 million pounds from 25.086 million pounds.

The lower mine output resulted in a P1.536-billion reduction in the company’s operating revenues last year to P7.726 billion versus the P9.262 billion recorded in 2022.

Nonetheless, the mining firm saw some offsetting measures in its performance last year, particularly the higher realized gold prices which peaked at $1,964 per ounce in the fourth quarter while copper averaged at $3.76 per pound last year.

The company’s operating cost and expenses, however, declined by 6.27 percent to P6.673 billion last year from P7.12 billion in 2022. – Jasper Emmanuel Arcalas