5 May 2010 18:41

Ferrexpo boosts pellet output 20.3% in 4 mths

KYIV. May 5 (Interfax) - Ukraine-based Poltava Mining, the core asset of the London-listed Ferrexpo plc, boosted commercial pellet production from internal and purchased feedstock 20.3% year-on-year in January-April to 3.16 million tonnes as demand for the commodity soared, Ferrexpo said in a press release.

Ferrexpo said Poltava Mining produced 1.628 million tonnes of pellets with Fe-content of 62% from internal and purchased feedstock, up 24.4% year-on-year; and 1.533 million tonnes of Fe-65%, up 16.2% year-on-year.

Pellet production from internal feedstock rose 18.7% to 1.553 million tonnes for Fe-62% and 2.3% to 1.35 million tonnes for Fe-65%.

Overall pellet production from internal feedstock grew 10.4% in the four months to 2.903 million tonnes.

In April alone, Poltava Mining produced 741,000 tonnes of pellets from internal feedstock, 0.6% less year-on-year. This included 381,000 tonnes of Fe-62%, down 5.4%, and 359,000 tonnes of Fe-65%, up 5%.

It produced 81,000 tonnes of pellets from purchased feedstock in April, compared with zero in the same month of last year but 98,000 tonnes in March this year. Overall pellet production in April rose 10.3% year-on-year to 822,000 tonnes.

Crude iron ore production rose 10.5% year-on-year ion the four months to 9.55 million tonnes, and iron ore concentrate production grew 13.3% to 3.61 million tonnes.

In April alone, Poltava Mining produced 2.34 million tonnes of ore, down 4.3% from the same month last year; and 920,000 tonnes of concentrate, up 1.9%.

Ferrexpo exports most of its pellets to Austria, Serbia, Slovakia, the Czech Republic, other European countries and China.

The London-listed Ferrexpo plc is sole shareholder in Ferrexpo AG. Ukrainian businessman Konstantin Zhevaho owns 51% of Ferrexpo plc and RPG Industries SE (RPGI), the majority owner of coal producer New World Resources N.V. (NWR), owns 25%.