South American policy turns to copper mining, says Freeport CEO (NYSE: FCX)

Close-up of new and shiny copper pipe.

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Fundamentals of copper demand remain bullish, but supply prospects are more worrying as political developments in South America reverse against copper miners, Freeport McMoRan (FCX -3.0%) CEO Rich Adkerson says.

Chile and Peru account for ~ 40% of the global copper supply, but both countries are considering tax increases and stricter environmental and Community rules, and Freeport is postponing a decision on a major project in Chile until it receives political clarification, Adkerson said of today’s earnings. conference calls.

He noted that even though the United States is becoming more reluctant to approve new mines, “that’s just the reality around the world today,” the CEO said.

But Freeport is well positioned for growth by expanding existing operations, said Adkerson, who justifies the company’s plan to increase 2022 capex to $ 4.7 billion from $ 2.1 billion last year.

Seeking Alpha contributor The Value Portfolio believes Freeport McMoRan “could drive copper prices to record highs.”

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