Gold Fields Production In Ghana Decline

AngloGold Ashanti Limited.Gold Fields Limited’s managed gold mineral resource in the West Africa Region totalled 16.9 million ounces as at December 31, 2013, as against 23.0 million ounces during the same month the year before. ­­

The gold miner said its gold mineral reserves in the region in 2013 was 8.3 million ounces compared to 14.2 million ounces in 2012. ­­

These figures are net of about 1.0 million ounces from mined depletion, according to a report released in Johannesburg, South Africa yesterday. ­­

The West Africa Region operations comprise Damang and Tarkwa, both located in the Western Region of Ghana.

Gold Fields said the mineral reserves at Damang were reduced from 4.1 million ounces to 1.1 million ounces during 2013, as production from the Main Pit Cutback 2 is not economically viable at US$1,300/oz in its current configuration.­­

At Tarkwa, the exclusion of underground mineral resources and downsized pit shells, due to a lower gold price, impacted adversely on the declaration, it said.­­

The Group’s operations cover Australiasia, South Africa, the Americas and West Africa.­­Gold Fields Limited’s overall managed gold mineral resources totalled 136.7 million ounces and mineral reserves 52.6 million ounces as at December 31, 2013. ­­

Managed gold mineral resources and mineral reserves during the same period the year before were 149.3 million ounces and 59.4 million ounces respectively. ­ ­

The decline in the Group’s mineral reserves is mainly attributable to a US$1,300/oz gold price used compared with the US$1,500/oz gold price used in the December 2012 declaration.

Other than price impacts, mining depletion of 2.3 million ounces was the main contributor to the change in mineral reserves.­  ­

On an attributable basis gold mineral resource and mineral reserve figures are 113.4 million ounces (125.5 million ounces) and 48.6 million ounces (54.9 million ounces) respectively.­ ­

“The 2013 declaration is a reflection of Gold Fields’ restructuring over the past 18 months, during which the Group embarked on a fundamental shift in strategy away from an emphasis on ounces of production to a primary focus on driving margins and cash flow,” the company explained. ­ ­

To this end Gold Fields engineered a structural shift in the Group’s production and cost base, which included the elimination of marginal mining at a number of its operations as well as a significant reduction of its growth and exploration portfolio. ­­

In addition, Gold Fields has achieved greater regional production diversification with the unbundling of Sibanye Gold in South Africa in February 2013 and the acquisition of the Yilgarn South assets in Australia in October 2013.­ ­

The South Africa Region comprises 56 per cent of the Group’s December 2013 managed gold mineral resources, West Africa 12 per cent, Australasia 9 per cent, the Americas two per cent and the Growth projects (Arctic Platinum, Chucapaca, Yanfolila, Woodjam and Far Southeast) 21 per cent.

The South Africa Region comprises 73 per cent of the Group’s managed gold mineral reserves, West Africa 16 per cent, Australasia seven per cent and the Americas four per cent.­­

The gold mineral resource for Gold Fields’ growth projects totalled 28.7 million ounces (December 2012: 35.1 million ounces) with the decline due to the exclusion of the Talas Project in Kyrgyzstan, which was sold in December 2013.­­­­

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