SANTIAGO, April 25 (Reuters) - Chilean fertilizer group SQM said on Friday its cost savings program should help it battle lower global prices for potash and iodine, but won’t boost profits and margins until next year.
SQM’s profits shrunk last year as potash prices retreated following the breakup of a dominant global potash trader, and iodine prices fell as supply increased.
“The company has taken important measures to support its cash flow, such as restructuring of spending, which is going to be pretty significant,” Chief Executive Officer Patricio Contesse said at the company’s annual general meeting.
SQM, also the world’s largest supplier of battery ingredient lithium, said it hoped to save between $70 million and $80 million this year but that would not be reflected immediately in results.
“This effort will be reflected more fully in profits and margins next year,” said Contesse. (Reporting by Anthony Esposito; Writing by Rosalba O’Brien; Editing by Jeffrey Benkoe)