Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) has reported a first half net loss as the uranium price hovers around nine year lows amid weak demand.
The uranium miner reported a $127 million loss in the six months to June 30 after posting a $53.5 million loss a year earlier.
The company did not produce any uranium oxide during the period.
However, revenue from sales of uranium oxide increased to $171.6 million, up 26 per cent, from $136.2 million in the June 2013 half.
ERA said in the short term, the uranium oxide market remained challenging for producers.
“All Japanese reactors remain offline three years after the Fukushima accident and the market continues to be oversupplied,” the company said in its half year results.
“The spot price for uranium oxide has now fallen below $US30 per pound, the lowest level since 2005.”
ERA only restarted the Ranger uranium mine in the Northern Territory last month after a toxic leak forced it to close in December.
The company said production in the first half was adversely impacted by the suspension of processing operations.
The mine is expected to be operating at full capacity during the current September quarter.
ERA is no longer mining new ore at its open pit and is exploring underground to see whether there is enough uranium to justify a new mine at the site, which is surrounded by the Kakadu National Park.
The company expects to resume surface exploration program on the Ranger Project Area from the third quarter.
ERA added that the average realised sales price of uranium oxide for the half-year was US$46.65 per pound compared with US$53.63 per pound for the previous corresponding period.
Meanwhile, the company expects production of uranium oxide for 2014 to remain in the range of 1,100 tonnes to 1,500 tonnes.
Sales volumes in the second half are expected to be broadly similar to the first half.