“We are on track for record iodine production in 2020, iodine prices are still strong, and our debt has been refinanced and significantly reduced,” said chief executive Tom Becker
The company said it expects to achieve the lower end of its production forecast, pitched at 340 to 360 tonnes.
Third-quarter crystalline iodine production volumes amounted to 170.8 tonnes, compared to 167.3 in the same period in 2019. It has tallied some 455 tonnes of production over the nine months ended September 30, 2020.
Iofina noted a pause to operations in the quarte, due to maintenance, and at the same time it also carried out planned improvements to its water take-up system with a view to increasing the volume of brines available.
“Iofina is currently in the strongest position it has ever been, both operationally and financially,” Tom Becker, Iofina chief executive said in the trading update.
“We are on track for record iodine production in 2020, iodine prices are still strong, and our debt has been refinanced and significantly reduced. These factors in combination with consistent production diversified across plants and product lines, as part of a prudent growth strategy, have allowed Iofina to continue to excel in spite of the global economic issues caused by the COVID-19 pandemic.”
The company, meanwhile, noted a recent softening in iodine pricing – it started the quarter at US$35 per kilogram and pricing for bulk orders are pricing between US$33 and US$35 in the spot market – though it pointed out that it remains above the average price for this time last year, which was US$32.
Iofina said that the outlook for iodine pricing and demand is likely tied to the rate of global economic recovery.
The company pointed to the automotive sector as one example. Iodine is used as a heat stabilising agent in this industry, and it is showing improvement. Elsewhere, Iofina noted that the use of iodine products in healthcare settings has increased but is not yet at the same levels as seen before the coronavirus pandemic.
In reference to finances, the company noted that it has so far drawn down US$3mln under the US$10mln 7-year term facility opened in its refinancing earlier this year.
Since March, the company has reduced debt to just below US$13mln from US$25.6mln.
Read More: Iofina PLC says its on track to achieve production guidance