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Restructured Barrick picks up speed as new executive teams get down to business

Mining News - Published on Mon, 18 Feb 2019

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Barely six weeks after its merger with Randgold, Barrick is making good progress in achieving its short-term priority goals as well as its full year objectives, president and CEO Mr Mark Bristow said. Bristow, who has already visited most of the group’s operations in the Americas, some of them twice, said one of his first priorities had been to establish regional executive teams for North America, Latin America, and Africa and the Middle East. These are now in place and are already making a significant impact on the way Barrick operates. He announced that Barrick’s production guidance for 2019 was between 5.1 and 5.6 million ounces of gold and between 375 and 430 million pounds of copper. During 2019, the reserves and resources of newly-acquired Randgold will be combined with Barrick’s on the basis of common calculation criteria, and will be reported on that basis at the end of the year.

Turning to the operations, the higher cost of sales1 guidance for gold in 2019, of $880-$940 per ounce and all-in sustaining costs2 guidance of $870-$920 per ounce, primarily reflects the planned completion of mining at the comparatively high-grade, low-cost Cortez Hills open pit in the first half of the year. Lower costs at Turquoise Ridge, as well as the addition of lower-cost production from Loulo-Gounkoto and Kibali, are expected to partially offset this impact in 2019. Higher grades, improved efficiencies, and tight cost discipline are expected to reverse this trend over the next two to three years.

Mr Bristow said the Nevada assets, including Turquoise Ridge, were now being operated as a single complex, and were already delivering efficiencies. Still in Nevada, the recent Fourmile discovery has now been combined with the nearby Goldrush in a single project which has the potential to become Barrick’s next Tier One3 gold mine. Shaft sinking and construction at Turquoise Ridge is also on track, and along with a focus on improved efficiencies and cost discipline, it too has the potential for Tier One status.

In Argentina, a concerted effort to drive Veladero back to Tier One status is under way as Barrick looks to expand its Latin American business. At Pueblo Viejo in the Dominican Republic, a scoping study and pilot plant support the expansion of what is already one of the world’s largest open pit gold mines. Bristow said there was a renewed focus on exploration across the group’s Latin American portfolio.

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Posted By : Rabi Wangkhem on Mon, 18 Feb 2019
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