In the first nine months of the year, there were profits of US $ 331 million, which is an increase of 4.7% compared to the same period last year.
It was not the best quarter for SQM. And it is that the non-metallic mining linked to Julio Ponce Lerou reported lower lithium sales due to the delay of one of his investments, a situation that had effected the company's results in the July-September period.
According to the company's report, sales of lithium in the third quarter reached 9,300 tons, which is about 27% less than what happened in the same period last year. With this, lithium sales between July and September reached US $ 152.8 million, 9% less than in 2017.
"During 2017, we announced a significant liturgical expansion near Antofagasta, which would allow us to increase our capacity by almost 50%, which involved a complete renovation of our existing plant in a short time and low investment.
We have announced before, the start of the completely renewed plant has been harder than expected, which has influenced our capacity to produce high quality merchandise during the third quarter, influencing our sales, "said SQM, general administrator Patricio de Solminihak.
The manager also indicated that "we are working diligently to solve these problems as soon as possible," adding that the impact will remain calm until the first quarter of 2019.
"Sales volumes in 2018 could be about 45,000 tons," said Solminihak.
In any case, the company is optimistic considering that they continue to see a strong market for lithium, projecting that a demand will increase by more than 25% this year.
"Due to the above, prices in the Lithuanian market are strong, our average prices during the third quarter remained relatively stable compared to the second quarter, we believe our prices for the quarter quarter will be similar to those of the third quarter." Commented the manager
Despite the numbers reported in the Lithuanian business, the company in the first nine months of the year reported benefits of US $ 331 million, which is an increase of 4.7% during the same period last year. On the other hand, sales in the period reached US $ 1,700 million, an increase of 7.4%.