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Chile SQM net profit rises 25.9% in Q2 2011qrcode

Aug. 31, 2011

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Aug. 31, 2011

Sociedad Quimica y Minera de Chile SA (SQM, SQM-B.SN), one of the world's leading fertilizer and specialty-chemical producers, saw its second quarter net profit jump 25.9% to $132.2 million, the company said Tuesday.

A growing world population, which strain resources such as arable land and water availability, have fueled demand for fertilizer and specialty-chemical products, keeping prices firm.

"The consistent demand growth and tight market conditions in three of our business lines helped boost results during the second quarter, and we expect these market circumstances should continue in the second half of the year," said SQM's chief executive officer, Patricio Contesse.

Demand for SQM's fertilizer, iodine and lithium products remained strong during the second quarter, he said.

Revenues increased 15.7% in the second quarter to $551.7 million.

SQM is ramping up annual potash production to 2 million metric tons in 2013, from an estimated production of 1.7 million tons this year.

The company is strengthening its fertilizer, iodine and lithium business lines, with a $750 million investment plan for organic growth through 2012.

Despite uncertainties relating to the global economy's health, "the underlying fundamentals in all of our businesses remain strong, and we are optimistic about the remaining months of the year," said Contesse.

SQM expects to see sales of more than $2 billion this year, compared with $1.83 billion in 2010, the company's chief operating officer, Patricio de Solminihac, estimated earlier this year.

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