We have started our approach to mining industry in a high level, then we have centered our study in copper mines, so we are now willing to present some of the data that will take us to some of the conclusions that we want to present in this posts serie. Firstly the data:

Escondida Chile 1.121.500
Grasberg Minerals District Indonesia 464.406
El Teniente Chile 450.390
Collahuasi Chile 444.545
Los Bronces Chile 416.300
Antamina Peru 413.314
Los Pelambres Chile 405.300
Radomiro Tomic Chile 379.589
Bagdad, Sierrita, Miami, Safford, Chino & Tyrone USA 359.000
Chuquicamata Chile 339.012
Morenci Mine USA 290.000
Ernest Henry, Mount Isa & Cobar Australia 249.600
Katanga Democratic Republic of Congo 241.489
Andina Chile 236.715
Spence y Cerro Colorado Chile 232.600
El Abra Chile 230.000
Cerro Verde Peru 220.000
Mutanda Democratic Republic of Congo 218.261
Bingham Canyon Mine (AKA Kennecott Copper mine) USA 211.000
Tenke Fungurume Democratic Republic of Congo 210.000
Buenavista del Cobre, Cananea Mexico 182.200
Esperanza Chile 174.900
Cuajone Peru 168.600
Olympic Dam Australia 166.200
Mopani Zambia 152.941
Antapaccay/Tintaya Peru 151.200
Candelaria y Ojos del Salado Chile 150.000
Toquepala Peru 139.100
Gabriela Mistral Chile 128.170
La Caridad Mexico 120.800
Highland Valley Copper Canada 113.200
Alumbrera Argentina 109.600
Ray USA 103.000
El Tesoro Chile 102.600
Sepon Laos 90.030
Carmen de Andacollo Chile 81.200
Oyu Tolgoi Mongolia 76.700
Lomas Bayas Chile 74.200
Batu Hijau Indonesia 70.000
Kinsevere Democratic Republic of Congo 62.076
Mantoverde Chile 56.800
Quebrada Blanca Chile 56.200
Mantos Blancos Chile 54.600
Salvador Chile 54.242
Mission USA 52.600
El Soldado Chile 51.500
NorthParks Australia 50.000
Michilla Chile 38.300
Golden Grove Australia 33.780
Ministro Hales Chile 33.572
Pinto Valley USA 21.500
Silver Bell USA 19.900
Grasberg Mine Indonesia 15.700
Duck Pond Canada 14.000
Santa Eulalia, Santa Barbara, Nueva Rosita, Charcas & Taxco Mexico 6.400
Rosebery Australia 1.852

Source: author, based on different sources

As I said previously, these 69 mines provide more than 10.000.000 tons of copper, which is nearly the 55% of the 2013 copper production. So the 55% of all the wire, cable, electronics, electric motors, architecture elements and so on that were produced in the world in 2013 were mined at only 69 open pit mines. That was a surprise for me, because how such an important market is ruled just by a few mining operations in the world.

To accurate my vision about where the raw material was placed, I thought that it was interesting to know which countries lead copper production. So I have made this graph with the global copper production in 2013. Every colored square is proportional to the country production.

copper production per country 2013
copper production per country 2013; source: author, based in wikipedia


The graph is quite representative about the places which have the biggest copper resources. It is easy to see Chile’s leadership and that 8-10 countries control the biggest part of the business. Well, have I said business? In fact these are just the countries were mineral is, but where is business? We will try to go into this question in the next post.