November 29, 2012 / 12:45 PM / 5 years ago

WRAPUP 1-Chile industry output leaps in October,lifted by demand

* Manufacturing output up 19.7 pct in Oct from Sept
    * Manufacturing output up 9.1 pct y/y, beats forecast
    * Chile copper output up 1.4 pct in Oct to 476,202 tonnes

    SANTIAGO, Nov 29 (Reuters) - Chilean manufacturing
production surged in October, beating expectations on the back
of extra working days and a pick-up in already buoyant domestic
demand, the government said on Thursday.
    Manufacturing output leapt a seasonally adjusted
19.7 percent in October from September and grew a
stronger-than-forecast 9.1 percent from a year earlier.
    A Reuters poll saw the index bouncing back in October by 2.7
percent from a year earlier after a sharp fall in September,
partly because of a greater number of working days in the month
and a low base of comparison. 
     October had five more working days than a holiday-packed
September in Chile, fueling the leap in manufacturing.   
    Analyzing the 9.1 percent manufacturing rise in October
versus the year-earlier month, the INE statistics agency said:  
 "At the local level, manufacturing production was favored by a
positive calendar effect, with three more working days versus
October 2011, and also by an increase in domestic and external
demand for various products, strongly highlighting increased
production of food and beverages."
    Export-dependent Chile has so far fared better than expected
amid fears of a slowdown on the back of slowing demand from top
trade partner China. The Andean country's economy expanded 5.7
percent in the third quarter from a year earlier.
    Chile produced 476,202 tonnes of copper in October, a 1.4
percent rise from the same month a year earlier on improved
mineral ore grades and increased production at some of the
nation's new mines, the government also said on Thursday.
    World No.1 copper producer Chile is struggling with
stubbornly dwindling ore grades in many of its aging, tired
deposits though new and expanded deposits have helped increase
output this year.
    Compared with September, output of the metal  grew 2.6
    Copper production expanded 3.8 percent to clock 4.46 million
tonnes between January and October.
    Analysts have called into question Chile's aim of producing
5.4 million tonnes of copper this year, deeming it
    A recovery in the world No. 1 copper mine, Escondida,
majority owned by BHP Billiton Ltd, as well as higher
output from Anglo American Plc's disputed Los Bronces
mine are boosting Chile's production.
    But slipping ore grades and operational problems have dented
output. Production at state copper giant Codelco and
world's No. 3 copper mine, Collahuasi are down year-on-year.

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