Grupo México Experienced a Turbulent 2022
Grupo México, one of the largest copper producers in the world and the main one in Mexico, reported that it achieved solid results despite a tumultuous 2022. The company said that its performance demonstrates resilience and its ability to diversify businesses.
Grupo México reported that its accumulated sales reached US$13.8 billion. Although this was a good result, the sales were 6.1% lower than in 2021. The company's mining branch achieved sales of US$10.968 billion in 2022, down 9.3% from 2021 and down 1.8% in 4Q22 compared to the previous. The drop was caused due to slow production and low prices of key metals such as copper. However, these results were partially offset by sales of byproducts like molybdenum and zinc.
According to Grupo México, the lower results were caused by “uncommon” issues like protests and illegal blockades. On Feb. 28, 2022, community members cut the company’s water supply for the Peru-based Cuajone complex, which also affected the company’s operations at Los Chancas. Both incidents had repercussions such as a temporary drop in mineral grades and production. Despite the problems, the company recovered copper production by 0.1% year-on-year during 4Q22.
The company highlighted that its transportation and infrastructure divisions drove solid results in 2022. Sales in this division amounted to US$2.713 billion, 7.5% more than in 2021. The infrastructure division had sales of US$664 million, 19.1% more than in 2021.
Grupo México invested US$1.5 billion in projects in 2022, 10.3% more than in 2021. In 2023, the company expects to invest US$1.8 billion in different.
Previously, the company reported its Mexican projects are going through new investment stages valued at over US$7.7 billion for the next 10 years. For instance, the Buenavista Zinc project has a budget of US$413 million. Up to December 2021, the company had invested US$217 million. Grupo México added that this year will be key for the project since it is expected to become operational in 2023.
The Pilares project has an investment budget of US$159 million, of which US$75.9 million has already been deployed. Furthermore, the El Pilar project, with a US$310 million budget, is expected to start production in 2024.
Grupo México is the third largest publicly traded company in Mexico, the largest mining player in the country and the world’s third-biggest copper producer.