Centinela mines sulphide and oxide deposits 1,350km north of Santiago in the Antofagasta Region, one of Chile’s most important mining areas.

Centinela produces copper concentrate (containing gold and silver) through a milling and flotation process, and molybdenum concentrate. It also produces copper cathodes, using the solvent extraction and electrowinning (SX-EW) process.

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Operating performance

 Ore throughput remained consistent in 2023 with levels seen in the previous year, with operations maintaining a strong level of operational performance in line with the plant’s design capacity for the entire year. Higher production at Centinela Concentrates, driven by improved ore grade, was counterbalanced by lower ore grades at Centinela Cathodes.

EBITDA at Centinela was $1,219 million in 2023, compared with $1,157 million in 2022, on higher copper, molybdenum and gold sales volumes and higher molybdenum and gold realised prices partially offset by higher unit costs.


In 2023, copper production was 242,000 tonnes, 2% lower than last year. This reduction in output reflects lower ore grades at Centinela Cathodes, which was partially offset by higher ore grades at Centinela Concentrates.

Production of copper in concentrate was 162,700 tonnes, 9% higher than in 2022, reflecting a combination of higher ore grades and copper recoveries, with the concentrator operating in line with its design capacity. Copper cathode production was 79,300 tonnes, 19% lower than in 2022 due to lower copper grades, offset by higher throughput rates. Gold production during the year was 165,800 ounces, 24% higher than in 2022 due to higher gold grades (which are positively correlated to copper grades). Molybdenum production in 2023 reached 2,900 tonnes – a record for Centinela, with this year-on-year increase of 21% reflecting higher molybdenum recoveries during the year.

Cash costs

Cash costs before by-product credits in 2023 were $2.57/lb, 5.3% higher than in 2022 due to lower copper production, the conclusion of 3-year labour agreements and higher contractor costs related to

By-product credits were $0.94/lb, 25c/lb higher than in 2022 due to higher production and pricing of both gold and molybdenum.

During the full year, net cash costs were $1.63/lb, 12c/lb lower than 2022 due to higher by-product credits.

Capital expenditure

Capital expenditure was $1,045 million, including $569 million of mine development, $310 million of sustaining capital expenditure and $166 million of development capital expenditure.

Production is forecast at 225–240,000 tonnes of copper, 150–160,000 ounces of gold and 2.5–3,000 tonnes of molybdenum. Copper production is expected to decrease compared with 2023 as a result of lower grades at Centinela Concentrates during the year.

Cash costs before by-product credits are forecast to be approximately $2.30/lb, with net cash costs of $1.45/lb.