AUSTRALIA The world’s largest mining company shows no signs of relinquishing its title any time soon. BHP BILLITON released its year-end (June 30, 2008) financial results with record profits for the seventh consecutive year. Profit was up 12.4% to US$15.4 billion on revenues of US$59.5 billion. The company set records for production of copper, iron ore, manganese, alumina, molybdenum and petroleum.
BHP Billiton completed 10 major growth programs during its fiscal year, including the Koala underground diamond mine in Canada. It finished the Pinto Valley base metal project in the United States, a pair of iron ore projects in Australia and Brazil, three nickel projects in Australia and four petroleum projects in the United States and Australia. The 10 projects represent a total capital expenditure of US$8.0 billion.
With an eye to the future, the company is expanding aluminum refining capacity in Brazil and iron ore capacity in Australia. There are also four additional petroleum projects. A budget of US$6.3 billion is anticipated for these undertakings.
Project approvals during the year were given to expanding aluminum capacity and the Gemco manganese project, both in Australia. Two coal projects in South Africa and one in Australia were approved by the board. And three more petroleum projects in Australia got the nod. These projects carry a combined capital expenditure estimate of US$5.8 billion.
Readers wishing to unleash their inner accountants, should take a look at the Aug. 18, 2008, news release at www.BHPBilliton.com.