Most copper is mined/extracted as copper sulfides from large open pit mines in porphyry copper deposits that contain between 0.4 to 1.0% of copper. This is the case in some mines in Chile and the United states .
According to the British Geological Survey The amount of copper in use is increasing and the quantity available is barely sufficient to allow all countries to reach developed world levels of usage.
It was reported by the US Geological Survey (USGS), the global production of metal increased by 400 million tons between 2013 and 2014 reaching 18.700 million tons, although the demand for copper decreased compared to the previous year.
1. Chile (Mine Production: 5.800 million tons)
Chile’s copper production has been increasing for the last decade although technical and regulatory issues could slow down the trend. between 2013 and 2014 the production increased from 5.780 to 5,800 tons.
2. China (Mine production : 1.620 million tons)
China is the largest refined copper producer, but it lacks copper mineral deposits. It has to import unprocessed copper ores and copper scrap.
China increased its copper production in 2014, putting out 1,620 million tons of the metal compared to 1,600 million tons in 2013. Reuters reports that notes that the country’s production increased during the second half of the year, due to the re-lauching of a 100,000-tonne-a-year smelter Liaoning province (North east of China) after 5 years of inactivity.
3. Peru (Mine production: 1,300,000 tons)
between 2012 and 2013 peru’s prodcution didn’t change much. In 2013 the country produced 1.300.000 tons. But it is expected that the mine production could rise by as much as 10 percent in 2014, and Peru’s energy and mines minister, Jorge Merino, has projected a 17-percent increase in copper production alone thanks to several new projects and also the the expected increase of foreign investments in the mining industry.
Copper factory – Source: cnbc.com
4. United States (Mine production: 1,220,000 tons)
5. Australia (Mine production: 990,000 tons)
6. Russia (Mine production: 930,000 tons)
7. The Democratic Republic of the Congo (Mine production: 900,000 tons )
8. Zambia (Mine production: 830,000 tons)
9. Canada (Mine production: 630,000 tons)
10. Mexico (Mine production: 480,000 tons)
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Houria // SMC Editor