July 15, 2021

(Reuters) – Global iron ore miner Rio Tinto raised its full-year iron ore production cost guidance on Friday due to increased labour and input costs, while higher-than-expected rainfall in the West Pilbara region impacted its second-quarter shipments.

The world’s biggest iron ore producer now expects to ship the steel-making commodity near the lower end of its range of 325 million tonnes (mt) and 340 mt in 2021.

The miner now expects unit cost of $18.0-$18.5 per tonne for the year, up from its previous estimate of $16.7-17.7 per tonne.

The world’s biggest iron ore producer shipped 76.3 million tonnes (mt) of the steel-making commodity for the three months ended June 30, compared with 86.7 mt a year earlier. It slightly beat a UBS estimate of 76 mt.

Production for the quarter was impacted by rainfall in the West Pilbara region, Rio said, as it posted an 9% drop in output to 75.9 Mt.

(Reporting by Sameer Manekar and Anushka Trivedi in Bengaluru; Editing by Krishna Chandra Eluri)