The price for ferrochrome that Merafe Resources will receive in the first quarter of 2018 is 15.1% lower than the current price, it warned shareholders on Friday.

Merafe’s share price fell as much as 3% to R1.36 after it said the European benchmark ferrochrome price had been settled at $1.18/pound for the first three months of 2018, down from $1.39/pound in the fourth quarter of 2017.

In August, Merafe said its share of ferrochrome from its joint venture with Glencore had declined to 70,000 tonnes in the three months to end-September from 89,000 tonnes in the matching period in 2016.

Merafe said this was due to "timing of furnace refurbishments to optimise stock levels".

But for the nine months to end-September, production rose slightly to 286,000 tonnes from 285,000 tonnes in the matching period.