Nickel sales contributed 27% to the Group's total metal revenue in 2018 (vs 29% in 2017). The decrease by 2 p.p. was driven by an increase of copper and palladium sales volumes, which were partly offset by nickel price outperforming other metals’ prices.
In 2018, nickel revenue increased 25% y-o-y (or by +USD 597 million) to USD 3,013 million primarily due to higher realized metal price.
The average realized price of refined nickel produced from own feed increased 26% to USD 13,531 per tonne in 2018 (vs USD 10,704 per tonne in 2017).
Sales volume of refined nickel produced from own Russian feed, increased by 1% (or +2 thousand tonnes) to 208 thousand tons.
Sales volume of nickel produced from third-party feed decreased 78% y-o-y to 2 thousand tonnes as Harjavalta reduced the processing volumes of third-party feed.
In 2018, sales of nickel in semi-products increased 55% y-o-y to USD 175 million primarily owing to higher sales volume of semi-products.
In 2018, copper sales accounted for 27% of the Group's total metal sales, increasing 23% (or +USD 555 million) y-o-y to USD 2,977 million primarily owing to higher sales volume (+USD 435 million) as well as higher realized price (+USD 120 million).
The average realized price of refined copper increased 6% from USD 6,202 per tonne in 2017 to USD 6,566 per tonne in 2018.
Physical volume of refined copper sales from the Company’s own Russian feed increased 18% (or +66 thousand tons) to 431 thousand tons (excluding copper in concentrates, produced by GRK “Bystrinskoe”) owing to higher copper production from concentrate purchased from Rostec.
Sales of refined copper, produced from third-party feed were completely ceased (reduction by 3 thousand tons).
Revenue from copper in semi-products in 2018 slightly increased 2% to USD 144 million.
In 2018, palladium remained the largest contributor to the Group's total revenue, accounting for 34% (+ 5 p.p. y-o-y). Palladium revenue increased 51% (or +USD 1,240 million) to USD 3,674 million. The positive impact of higher sales volume (+USD 526 million) was amplified by increased realized price (+USD 406 million).
The average realized price of refined palladium produced from own feed increased 19% from USD 858 per troy ounce in 2017 to USD 1,025 per troy ounce in 2018.
Physical volume of refined palladium sales from the Company’s own Russian feed in 2018 increased 24% (or +560 thousand troy ounces) to 2,913 thousand troy ounces. The increase in sales volume was driven by the sale of own metals from stock accumulated in the Company’s Palladium Fund in 2017.
Refined palladium sales from third-party feed were completely ceased as processing of low-margin third-party feed was terminated in 2018.
Revenue of palladium in semi-products in 2018 increased by 13% to USD 98 million.
Additional USD 593 million to palladium revenue in 2018 was contributed by the resale of metal purchased from third parties (vs USD 285 million in 2017).
In 2018, platinum sales (5% of the Group's total metal revenue) decreased 9% (or -USD 58 million) to USD 596 million following the decline of realized platinum price (-USD 51 million), which was exacerbated by lower sales volume (-USD 7 million).
Physical volume of refined platinum sales from the Company’s own Russian feed in 2018 increased by 3% (or +18 thousand troy ounces) to 657 thousand troy ounces.
Revenue of platinum in semi-products in 2018 decreased 35% to USD 20 million primarily due to decrease of sales volume of platinum in purchased semi-products.
In 2018, revenue from other metals increased 44% (+USD 213 million) to USD 702 million, primarily owing to higher revenue from cobalt (up 91%), rhodium (up 84%) and gold (up 11%).
In 2018, other sales decreased 3% to USD 708 million, primarily owing to Russian rouble depreciation (-USD 47 million). Revenue increase in real terms was primarily driven by increase in fuel and gas prices and higher revenue from services provided by transport subsidiaries of the Group to third parties.
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