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BHP braves cyclones to remains on track

BHP Billiton confirmed it expected to hit its full year targets despite iron ore and petroleum production falling on the previous quarter.

BHP Billiton confirmed it expected to hit its full year targets despite iron ore and petroleum production falling on the previous quarter.

The Australian resources colossus reported on a "robust" quarter and said its production guidance of 183m tonnes for the 2013 financial year remained unchanged, despite downtime during the period due to Cyclone Rusty.

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Iron ore production fell 5.0% in the quarter to the end of March versus the previous quarter, but the performance helped the group achieve record production for the nine month period to end-March.

Total petroleum products slipping 7.0%, also affected by adverse weather and and delays or maintenance at its Gulf of Mexico operations.

Queensland coal production was affected by adverse weather conditions during the quarter, although recently installed flood mitigation infrastructure enabled a rapid recovery in performance and the business was operating at full supply chain capacity at the end of the period.

Almost all base metals increased production during the quarter, with copper in concentrate production at BHP's Escondida project in Chile increased by 61% during the nine month period to the end of March.

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