/ 30 March 2010

AngloGold to resume output at Ghana mine in April

AngloGold Ashanti said on Tuesday that operations at its Iduapriem mine in Ghana would resume in April after completing a temporary storage unit for environmentally harmful tailings at the mine.

AngloGold, the world’s number three gold producer, suspended output at the mine last month after discussion with Ghana’s Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) over potentially harmful impacts from the tailings storage unit.

The company said it had asked the EPA to allow it to build the temporary unit until a new permanent one could be built, probably by early 2011.

“[AngloGold] expects gold production to resume at Iduapriem in April,” it said in a statement.

The company said it had brought forward certain maintenance works to reduce impact on production.

“[AngloGold] continues to assess the rescheduling of production at the mine, with a view to recovering some of the lost production during the remainder of 2010,” it said.

The company also suspended gold processing at its Obuasi mine, also in Ghana, pending a new water management strategy to reduce contamination.

“The consequence of this is that production from the mine will be around 20 000 to 25 000 ounces lower than anticipated for second quarter of 2010,” it said.

In 2009, Iduapriem and Obuasi produced 190 000 ounces and 381 000 ounces of gold respectively, and together accounted for about 12% of AngloGold’s global output, the company said. – Reuters