March 9 South African miner Exxaro
reported a rise in annual profits on Thursday, thanks to a surge
in coal prices, saying it expected the market to continue to
strengthen this year.
The company, which also has interests in iron ore, said
headline earnings per share jumped to 1,302 South African cents
last year from 457 cents in 2015.
On Wednesday the company announced it was selling its 44
percent stake in U.S. listed inorganic minerals and chemicals
firm Tronox, worth nearly $900 million, leaving it to
focus on its core mining business.
"Supportive market conditions are expected in 2017 for most
of Exxaro's chosen coal market segments compared to 2016,
both domestically and internationally," chief executive Mxolisi
Mgojo said in a results presentation.
After half a decade of decline, thermal coal prices have
risen by two thirds since the beginning of last year, driven by
a sharp cut in Chinese production and strong demand.
Exxaro produces thermal, semi-soft coking and metallurgical
coal for export and for domestic consumption with some of its
mines tied to power stations owned by national power utility
A gross final cash dividend of 410 cents was declared, up
from the 85 cents per share paid out last year.
Shares in Exxaro were down 1.45 percent at 112,235 rand by
($1 = 13.2374 rand)
(Reporting by Zandi Shabalala)