Rising costs, prolonged labor strikes and geological challenges have impacted gold production in South Africa.
SEATTLE (Scrap Monster): Ghana emerged as the leading gold producer in the entire African continent, pushing South Africa to second spot. It must be noted that South Africa had been the undisputed leader in global gold production for more than a century.
Rising costs, prolonged labor strikes and geological challenges have impacted gold production in South Africa. Many leading miners have been either shifting their focus to other countries or diversifying into other precious metals. Consequently, the country is currently witnessing huge output contraction. The miners who have already announced reduced operations in South Africa include AngloGold Ashanti and Gold Fields. Also, Sibanyne Gold Limited has decided to cut thousands of jobs, as part of cost-cutting measures.
Meantime, miners operating in Ghana for many years now, see good potential for expansion. The country has much more friendly regulatory framework when it comes to mining approvals sand licenses, when compared to South Africa. As a result big miners have already shifted their focus to Ghana, sources indicate. Incidentally, Ghana’s gold output surged higher by 12% in 2018, in accordance with the data published by the Ghana Chamber of Mines.
Further, the restart of AngloGold Ashanti’s Obuasi mine later this year will give firther boost to Ghana’s gold output. The mine is expected to have a production capacity of around 350,000 to 450,000 ounces during the first ten years of operation. On the other hand, the gold sector output is expected to shrink further in South Africa.