Shares in Vedanta Resources stood 1.25 per cent higher at £15.35 in London morning trading, off an early high of £15.73, after the India-based miner and smelter said higher commodity prices and zinc sales in the fourth quarter would produce a better-than-forecast result.

The statement came as part of a production report for 2005-2006. Production volume growth was in line with expectations. Aluminium output rose 54.4 per cent to 210,000 tonnes after a new smelter began operations.

Copper cathode production was 58.7 per cent higher at 273,000 tonnes and copper rod production 33.6 per cent up at 167,000 tonnes. However, Vedanta did point to fourth-quarter setbacks in mined metal output at Konkola where it dipped to 17,000 tonnes, 12,000 lower than the same quarter of the previous year. Output is seen building up in the coming year but improvements are taking longer than expected to come through, the company said.

Cash aluminium prices are at 17-year highs of about $2,400 a tonne, 20 per cent up on a year before.

In January, the company said its nine-month earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation was 115 per cent up at $601.1m.

The company is due to issue its full-year results on June 1.

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