Global producers of titanium minerals and zircon, Kenmare Resources have posted positive results for the first half of the year, amid the COVID-19 pandemic.

“Our performance during the first half of 2020 demonstrated Kenmare’s resilience and agility, effectively managing many challenges posed by the COVID-19 pandemic to continue to produce and ship our products safely,” said Steven McTiernan, Chairman of Kenmare, operators of Moma Titanium Minerals.

McTiernan said though production was weaker in the first half of 2020 than in the corresponding period last year, the company’s business remained profitable.

“I am pleased to announce an interim dividend of USc2.31 per share. This represents 20% of profit after tax, in line with our dividend policy,” said McTiernan.

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Meanhile market conditions for titanium feedstocks continued to strengthen in the first half of 2020, driving a 28 percent increase in received ilmenite prices, to US$217 per tonne, compared to last year.

“We have agreements for the majority of our H2 2020 ilmenite production, although market conditions are expected to become more subdued in the second half of the year,” he said.

The company said it continues to actively manage COVID-19-related disruption to the relocation of Wet Concentrator Plant B.

McTiernan announced that the first group of specialist contractors required for the move have been through quarantine and are now working on site.

“We remain on track to begin mining at Pilivili in quarter four. With close to US$100 million of cash at the end of June, we are financially well-resourced to complete the WCP B move and continue to pay dividends.”