PotashCorp Reports Potash Volume Increase Offset by Lower Prices

Potash Corp of Saskatchewan of Saskatoon, SK has reported fourth quarter net potash sales of US$504 million, down from US$513 million in the same period of 2012. The decline reflects a 27% decrease in the company’’s averaged realized price partially offset by a 34% increase in potash sales volume. The company’’s average price was US$282/tonne versus US$387/tonne in the same period of 2012. Volume sales grew from 1.3 million tonnes to 1.8 million tonnes. In North America, potash sales volumes increased from 0.6 million tonnes to 0.8 million tonnes. Offshore potash sales volume increased from 0.7 million tonnes to 0.9 million tonnes. For the full year, PotashCorp generated potash net sales of US$2.7 billion down from US$3.1 billion in 2012. Potash sales volume increased 12% from 7.23 million tonnes to 8.10 million tonnes. The average realized price fell from US$424/tonne to US$332/tonne. PotashCorp’s fourth quarter phosphate net sales were US$429 million down from US$491 million in the prior year period. An 11% increase in sales volume to 934,000 tonnes was more than offset by a 21% decrease in average realized price to US$455/tonne. For the full year, PotashCorp’s phosphate net sales at US$1.85 billion were down 12% from 2012 reflecting a slight decrease in volume sales, to 3.68 million tonnes, and a 12% decrease in average realized price at US$497/tonne. Bill Doyle, PotashCorp’s CEO, said, “This past quarter was a difficult one. Pricing headwinds – most notably in potash – weighed on our performance, although there were signs as the quarter came to a close that the uncertainty in global markets was beginning to abate.” IC Potash Corp (ICP) of Toronto, ON has announced the successful conclusion of an independent feasibility study for its sulfate of potash (SOP) Ochoa project in southeast New Mexico. The study projects an economically viable mining and processing facility with the capacity and reserves to produce 714,400 tons/year of SOP for a minimum of 50 years. The capital cost of the project is estimated at US$1.018 billion. The study recommends that ICP: commence engineering, procurement, and construction management activities; complete environmental permitting; and arrange project financing. Sidney Himmel, ICP’s president, said, “This feasibility study evaluated all aspects of our plan to produce SOP from our polyhalite mineral reserves. We are pleased with the technical validation of the mining and processing design, and the resulting economic characteristics. The Ochoa project positions ICP to become a world leader in SOP production and a bottom quartile cost SOP producer. We intend to begin immediately with the next phases of engineering and financing.”

Volume 28 issue 3

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