BHP to reduce costs, capex

Mackenzie reaffirms production guidance, says miner set to keep cutting costs.

BHP Billiton (BHP) chief executive officer Andrew Mackenzie has reaffirmed production guidance and told shareholders the miner is set to build on the reduction in cash costs it delivered in fiscal 2013, as well as reducing capex.

"The company's productivity agenda has the potential to create more value than anything else we do," Mr Mackenzie told an investor briefing in Houston, in the United States.

"A 25 per cent reduction in capital and exploration expenditure is planned for this financial year and our level of investment will decline again next year."

Mr Mackenzie said the miner will continue to build on the $US2.7 billion reduction in controllable cash costs delivered in fiscal 2013 by generating more volume from its existing equipment and lowering unit costs.

"With all of our operations now on a common information management platform, we can replicate best practice and improve operational performance across the group," he said.

"Our productivity agenda extends to our development projects where we are pursuing a higher rate of return on incremental investment by significantly increasing internal competition for capital and driving project costs down."

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