[VIDEO] AngloGold Ashanti reveals plan to offset falling gold prices
In the wake of gold prices falling below $1,000 per ounce, AngloGold Ashhanti CEO Srinivasan Venkatakrishnan revealed the company will counter tough times by harvesting short-life gold mines for cash.
“As an industry, we’re going through pretty rough times but the rougher it gets, the more our determination becomes to see it through and to fight harder,” Venkatakrishna said Monday.
In mining, the term harvesting refers to suspending further investments while mining out the remaining ore until there is nothing left to extract. Many consider it a last ditch effort.
“We’ll look to harvesting them for cash until the crisis improves,” said Venkatakrishnan.
AngloGold is already harvesting two of its gold mines – Sadiloa and Yatela gold mines in Mali – and will continue to do so if gold prices fall below $1,000/oz.
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Among other things, AngloGold is in the midst of wage negotiations with unions in South Africa.
“I’m hoping that we don’t end up with a strike scenario because we’ve just seen the damage that has been done to the platinum industry on the back of a strike,” Venkatakrishnan said.
“In the event that our workers want to go on strike, I’m just pointing out the diversified nature of our operations and their ability to withstand a strike.”
Vale invests $150mn to extend life of Manitoba operations
Vale has announced a $150mn CAD investment to extend current mining activities in Thompson, Manitoba by 10 years while aggressive exploration drilling of known orebodies holds the promise of mining well past 2040.
Global energy transition is boosting the market for nickel
The Thompson Mine Expansion is a two-phase project. The announcement represents Phase 1 and includes critical infrastructure such as new ventilation raises and fans, increased backfill capacity and additional power distribution. The changes are forecast to improve current production by 30%.
“This is the largest single investment we have made in our Thompson operations in the past two decades,” said Mark Travers, Executive Vice-President for Base Metals with Vale. “It is significant news for our employees, for the Thompson community and for the Province of Manitoba.
“The global movement to electric vehicles, renewable energies and carbon reduction has shone a welcome spotlight on nickel – positioning the metal we mine as a key contributor to a greener future and boosting world demand. We are proud that Thompson can be part of that future and part of the low carbon solution.”
Vale continues drilling program at Manitoba
Coupled with today’s announcement, Vale is continuing an extensive drilling program to further define known orebodies and search for new mineralization.
“This $150mn investment is just one part of our ambitious Thompson turnaround story. It is an indicator of our confidence in a long future for the Thompson operations,” added Dino Otranto, Chief Operating Officer for Vale’s North Atlantic Base Metals operations.
“Active collaboration between our design team, technical services, USW Local 6166, and our entire Thompson workforce has delivered a safe, efficient and fit-for-purpose plan that will enable us to extract the Thompson nickel resources for many years to come.”
The Thompson orebody was first discovered in 1956 by Vale (then known as Inco) following the adoption of new exploration technology and the largest exploration program to-date in the company’s history. Mining of the Thompson orebody began in 1961.
“We see the lighting of a path forward to a sustainable and prosperous future for Vale Base Metals in Manitoba,” said Gary Annett, General Manager of Vale’s Manitoba Operations.