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Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Gold to finish in 50 years time

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Gold, one of the major foreign exchange earners of the country, will finish in the next 50 years, a study has revealed.

Irrespective of the fact that new discoveries of this natural resource are yet to be made and the countrys lands are full of gold, the precious metal would not last beyond 2061, some participants at an Institute of Economic Affairs (IEA) forum on trade for sustainable development stated.

Until new exploration activities reveal new gold deposits, Gold Fields Ghana Limited, the worlds third largest gold miner which operates both Tarkwa and Damang mines in the Western Region, has up to between 2025 and 2051 for its mines lives to come to an end.

The Damang mine currently has a mineral resource of 4.7 million gold ounces and a reserve of 2.1 million ounces, but Tarkwa, which produces Ghanas largest gold, has a mineral resource of 15.3 million gold ounces and a reserve of 9.9 million ounces.

However, AngloGolds Iduapreim mine located at Tarkwa, which was previously operated by Ghana Australia Goldfields, has a mine life of about 12 years while Obuasi, arguably the biggest mine in Ghana which is currently the only underground mine, has about 35 years more to go.
Ahafo mine of Newmont, the second biggest gold producing company, has up to year 2031 for its mine life to end.

The area has about 5 million ounces of combined reserves. However, indications are that its Akyem mine, which is yet to start production, would not last for more than 40 years though the Akyem forest is full of gold deposits.

Canadian-based Golden Star Resources, which acquired the Prestea/Bogoso mines in the Western region, also has about 20 more years to finish mining.

Relatively small firms such as Rangold Resources, Keagan Resources, Red Back Mining and African Gold Group are also engaged in some form of mining activities.

Currently, Ghana, the second largest gold producer in Africa and the 10th in the world, produces some 2.9 million ounces of gold per year, approximately four percent of global production.

Despite being one of the largest commodity exchange earners for the nation, gold yielded a return of only $2 for every $1 spent from1990 to 2009.

Dr. Tutu, a Senior Research Fellow of the IEA, urged government to invest and develop mining communities since they would have nothing after the mines are closed.

According to him, Ghana should take a cue from South Africa, where mining communities, including Johannesburg, have been turned into big cities.

From 1990 to 2009, $9.02 billion investments in minerals earned the nation 19.6 billion from gold.

However, total foreign exchange earnings for cocoa over the same period was $13.9 billion, with an investment of about $818 million.

Dr. Tutu called for the examination of trade in cocoa, gold and timber in terms of its economic, social and environmental impacts on Ghana.
Some participants also called for the strict regulation of small scale mining, explaining that financial and expertise support must be made available to reduce environmental degradation.

Presently, only 18 percent of Ghanas forest remains.

Source: Business guide

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Gold to finish in 50 years time

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