(Updates with prices in third paragraph.)
Feb. 9 (Bloomberg) -- Kumba Iron Ore Ltd., a unit of Anglo American Plc, said 2011 profit jumped 19 percent after it reduced discounted ore sales to steelmaker ArcelorMittal South Africa Ltd. and increased exports.
Net income rose to 17 billion rand ($2.3 billion), or 52.97 rand a share, from 14.3 billion rand, or 44.52 rand, a year earlier, the Pretoria-based company said today in a statement. Sales advanced 25 percent to 48.6 billion rand.
Kumba’s sales of discounted ore to ArcelorMittal South Africa fell 28 percent, giving it more scope to gain from higher international prices. Average iron-ore prices in China, a global benchmark, climbed 14 percent last year as Chinese and Indian steel mills increased purchases, according to The Steel Index.
The company expects export sales volumes to grow by about 3 million metric tons in 2012 from 37.1 million tons last year as volumes from its Kolomela mine increase. China will have to import iron ore to meet its needs, supporting seaborne ore prices, Kumba said.
“Demand remains robust as China continues to industrialize and urbanize,” the company said in the statement. Anglo owns about 63 percent of Kumba, the fourth-largest supplier of seaborne iron ore.
--With assistance from Jana Marais in Cape Town. Editors: John Viljoen, Amanda Jordan
To contact the reporter on this story: Janice Kew in Johannesburg at Jkew4@bloomberg.net
To contact the editor responsible for this story: John Viljoen at firstname.lastname@example.org